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Discussion on: Are you a developer or a developer relations?

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byrro profile image
Renato Byrro

Hey, nice article! About:

Does your company make a product primarily used by programmers?

There is another case where product success may depend on developers. Slack, for example, is not meant to be used primarily by developers. But the apps and integrations that make Slack more valuable are implemented by them, that's why Slack has a Developer Relations program.

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Olle Pridiuksson Author

good catch! Also remember Facebook and Spotify. Both have devrel programs.

Here's another good catch ;-) Sometimes bigger companies repack their enterprise software to being friendlier to smaller dev studios and push it to the market via a devrel program.

So yeah, collect 10 devrel people and see how they cannot agree on what they're doing =] Jokes aside, this is one of the most popular topics on devrel meetups.

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Renato Byrro

Yeah, it's a totally different field. We're used to having the "right ways" of writing software.

Python has the "pythonic" and the Zen of Python, for instance.

There's no such thing for DevRel. At least not yet... I hope there won't be. It's more human relations than logic. More heart than reason. We need this freedom. Sounds too poetic maybe, but it's real.

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tooevangelist profile image
Olle Pridiuksson Author

yeah ;-) But then we put together a data scientist, a backend dev, a sys admin. All 3 may use Python, but... you've guessed it.

At my previous job we tried to put together a Lua community, since our product used Lua for scripting. Well... it was a total failure since there was so little in common for how and what Lua is used.

So I mean, it may be fun and useful to sometimes change the angle of how one sees own industry, as there may be a bigger world behind it. Not always useful though to one's immediate interest :P

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Renato Byrro • Edited on

I agree. This freedom can be both a blessing and curse.

The key seems to be using and promoting standards when it gives clarity and consistency, not rigidity. And promoting freedom when it promotes constructive creativity, not clutter and confusion.

It's hard to find the balance though. And sometimes there's too much passion behind decisions, even faticism, which interferes negatively on logic and reason.