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Discussion on: Advice for Developers in the Early Stage of their Career

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cmiles74 profile image
Christopher Miles

I've been working in software development for a long time, I've found that keeping an "engineering notebook" has been really helpful.

Whenever I start a task that I have never done before, I flip to a new page in the notebook, add a heading that describes the task, the current date and the time. As I do research I note the important bits and when I start doing the work, I do my best to note the different things that I have tried. When the task is complete I write down the time to give myself an idea of how much effort it took.

Even though the notes are messy and a little all over the map, I have found that they are great starting points when I need to write up documentation. If I have to do one of these tasks again, flipping back to the notes from the last time I did the task often saves me a lot of time.

Lastly, it is sometimes rewarding to look at the notebook and skim through it. I am always surprised how varied the tasks are and it often reminds me that, yeah, I am pretty productive most of the time!

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conw_y profile image
Jonathan

Great tip; I do this a lot. I always keep a giant notebook on my desk with lots of empty pages for exactly this purpose.

It's also great for communicating with other developers, either explaining something to them or having them explain it to me.