There’s a giant elephant in the room. It’s huge, enormous even. It’s quite possibly the biggest flaw in the development community. And it really doesn’t get enough attention.
Developers seem to have an irrational love/hate relationship with programming languages. We tend to love the languages we use on a regular basis. And we seem to hate languages we don’t or no longer use. I’ve come to refer to this as Developer Stockholm Syndrome.
It’s a great time to be in the tech industry in general. Unemployment is down in most areas in the tech sector. You have the advantage. Use it. As with all things, times change. There were times it wasn’t good to be in tech. Those times will likely come again. But for now, you’ve got it good. If you’re not happy where you’re at right now, do something about it. Go and find a new job.
A couple of weeks ago I attended my favorite annual developers’ conference: Stir Trek. The reasons I like Stir Trek are many. It’s a fantastically run conference. It’s entirely a volunteer, non-profit effort. Over its history I have only missed two Stir Trek events. This year, as the time for Stir Trek registration approached, I made a decision. I was going to attend, as usual. This time I intended to do something more. The dev community has been good time. I thought it time to give back more.
The StackExchange sites are a collection of websites on various topics where people can ask questions and get answers from members of that community. People can also up-vote or down-vote both the questions and the answers, as well as add comments regarding either. People receive ranking points, called ‘reputation’, for asking questions and on how many up-votes/down-votes their questions and answers receive. It’s intended to drive an active (and interactive) community of people around each subject area. The first and most popular of the sites is StackOverflow.