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Madza
Madza

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Does coding become less fun when its a job?

Most of us have felt the freedom to create a side-projects, experiment with new stacks, explore new concepts, etc. This is usually the case while learning a development or looking for a job.

Once getting a job, you will most likely be tied to a particular stack, the technologies they use might not match your personal favorites, you will have to meet tight deadlines, etc.

Also, you will have less time to devote to your side-projects.

What is your experience on this?
Does coding become less fun when its a job? πŸ‘‡

Discussion (30)

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gochev profile image
Nayden Gochev

YES and no.... it depends on why you are working for the company, if it is mostly for the money surely it is less fun, if it is mostly only because the project is fun and you dont give a shit about the money it is even more fun :)

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Its best if you can combine the best of both worlds - awesome projects and competitive pay πŸ˜‰βœ¨πŸš€

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gochev profile image
Nayden Gochev

this I believe is never the case :) you see if the project is fun you will work too much on it and you will never get paid for the overtime or nights or weekends and so on since no one asked you to do that... and even if you got bonuses and everything the management will change and they mostly sucks so I would advice to have 2-3 fun sideprojects just in case you get bored at work :)

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Thanks for the input πŸ™πŸ‘

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Chris Partridge

After working in the industry for almost 20 years, I still find myself having fun on a daily basis.

I try not to exhaust myself on side projects if I'm busy at the office and inversely, If things are quiet at work, I find myself naturally ramping up my learning or side projects. If I don't keep this balance, I tend to get frustrated at problems instead of having fun solving them.

I have the most amount of fun when I'm learning something new, and thankfully I work for a company that understands technology is constantly moving, so trying and testing new technology is always encouraged (especially on internal tooling/projects).

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Thanks for the input πŸ˜‰πŸ‘

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smeetsmeister profile image
Jelle Smeets

It depends. I have done some great projects over the years that were absolutely fun!

It does suck when you don't have a lot of control over the projects, and you have to work on some ancient project for a longer period of time, because that is the most important thing to work on.

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Exactly πŸ˜‰ Great to see you have been part of fun and awesome projects in work, too ✨

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Erik W

I find that my side projects get more fun every 6 or so months because I've gained so much "real world" experience that I can now apply to them. Likewise, making something interesting in my down time can reinvigorate me in my professional work. I think they feed each other.

I'm lucky though. I like coding and having two different worlds of it (personal and professional) keeps me from burning out. this wouldn't work for me if slinging scripts was just a paycheck to me.

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Thanks for the insight πŸ˜‰πŸ‘

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Peter Brown

The tools are immaterial to some extent. It is the systems engineering that keeps me going and the sense of pride in a job well done. The ability to mentor is also motivating. This is a career not a job. When one has a career there is always more to work toward.

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madza profile image
Madza Author • Edited on

Thanks for the input πŸ‘πŸ˜‰

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Sudarshan K J

If you feel the inner need to write well designed, efficient and clean code to satisfy yourself, and then if you find yourself in a job where you don't have control over such things, but are supposed to just make things 'work' because the business need is 'critical', then it can get super boring and burn you down quickly. It's the same case, whether you are working on a personal project or on a job. Concentrated, honest and dedicated effort which brings out the best in you is always satisfying and enjoyable.

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Thanks for the insight πŸ™β€

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thoughtspile profile image
Vladimir Klepov

Unless you're looking for trouble (coming up with crazy architectural decisions, trying to do things BETTER than anyone has ever managed to do), coding, like actually writing code, is low-level and not fun. Building stuff that works and having actual effect on it is always fun, though.

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Thanks for the input πŸ‘πŸ˜‰

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ben profile image
Ben Halpern

Side projects which get side-tracked and go nowhere are also no fun after a while. With a job, you have the satisfaction of essentially getting paid for your efforts even through the most frustrating of times.

I think it ultimately has to be "it depends"... as others are saying :)

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Fully agree on this point πŸ˜‰πŸ‘πŸ’―

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Lars Ejaas

Well, I have to get back on this one: Starting in my first frontend developer job tomorrow, actually!
But it seems like a great company with a JamStack frontend stack and a lot of the same technologies I enjoy using in my own personal projects, so I think it will be great!
Never the less it will be a huge learning experience and I am looking so much forward to finally get started!

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Congrats man and best of luck πŸ˜‰πŸ‘

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Pavel KutÑč

For me, either the project must be good, or technology stack must be good. (Or both together) There must be some challenge! And of course the team must be fine.

I worked for courier company on their BE for logistics. It was in old ugly PHP. But the problems we were solving, it was fun. The team knew the code base is ugly and we were renovating it. Implementing best practices, improving test coverage. And I liked it, even the tech stack wasn't the most cool one in those days.

Now I work for IAM company. Only technology, we are using and I knew it before, is Redis. All others were new to me. But the business case is not really catching me. However, there are still some technical challenges. And that is what keeps me in the project.

And yes, there are some days when it is less fun, but the same happening for your pet projects.

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madza profile image
Madza Author

From personal experience, renovation and refactoring the code sometimes is harder than re-writing it all from ground zero πŸ˜„πŸ˜„ Thanks for the input πŸ™β€

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Richard Guay

Not if you truly love coding. I even love coding the most trivial items. It's just fun for me. But, I especially love a challenge. I've written programs in 20 different computer languages (including different assembly language and even raw machine codes. Yes, I'm old). I love learning new language and seeing what it's good at and not good at. My philosophy is that they are tools and there isn't a universal, all encompassing single tool. You have to use the right tool for the right job (including programming!).

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Thanks for the insight πŸ™β€

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Sandor Dargo

No. Though your job might become less fun if you have less and less time left for coding.

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Thanks for the input πŸ˜‰

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Luke Ryan

Nope - I quite like having a framework to code to.

I've experienced both sides though, my backend position was legacy code which was a whole mess of var a = and var b =, which for a first time developer is just horrific. Now I'm working on a clean Typescript codebase with great mentorship so very, very happy.

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Happy for yo! πŸ˜‰ Thanks for sharing πŸ™β€

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onumaku_bobby profile image
Onumaku chibuike victory

Yes, you have to make it a passion

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madza profile image
Madza Author

Thanks for the input πŸ™β€