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Krisztián Maurer
Krisztián Maurer

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What is it like to be a software developer?

I am writing this article for beginners who are not yet aware of what awaits them. I hope it will give you a better insight into what it means to work in this profession.

First of all, the journey from zero knowledge to the first job is one of the most challenging, in my opinion. There are several paths, each with its own advantages and disadvantages.

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Learning is a constant requirement. It's important to understand from the beginning that if you venture into programming, it's good to enjoy learning because there will never be a time when you don't need to learn something new. You will probably learn a lot while working, but I recommend sideprojects. Read more: Do you need side projects?

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You will likely work in a Scrum-type team, so it's good to familiarize yourself with it. There will be daily meetings to discuss progress and tasks for the day. Most of the time, you'll be working on bug fixes or new features. Often, it's not just about typing code, but understanding the context takes up more time. You will read more code than you write, and over time, your ability to understand things will improve, and you'll be able to understand things faster. When faced with a problem, you probably won't start typing everything from memory. Instead, a few things won't be clear, so you'll look them up on Google, search for solutions, think about which one is the best, implement it, and then your senior colleague will review your pull request and suggest improvements. You make the necessary changes, and the cycle starts again.

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Sitting in front of a computer

Developers spend most of their time sitting in front of a computer. If you have a problem with that, it's a big issue. However, they also have short breaks, meetings, meal breaks, and so on. Personally, I make sure to get up every hour to make tea or coffee or simply to clear my mind.

Joy of creating

One of the best things about being a software developer is the joy of creating something new. I love starting from scratch and building software from the ground up, turning ideas into real things that people can use. It's satisfying to see my work come to life.

You can build all sorts of cool things using your imagination and skills.

The fun part is that you get to solve puzzles and find smart ways to make things work. It's like a challenge that you can conquer. And there's always something new to learn because technology is always changing.

When you create something from scratch, you feel proud and in charge. You have the freedom to design and build things just the way you want. It's like being the boss of your own digital world.

As a software developer, I have a special power. I can take abstract ideas and turn them into practical software. I know how to write code and use tools to make ideas become real.

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There will be days when you feel like you're too stupid for this, don't know too much, etc. Programmers often face some tough challenges when they are working on their projects. One of the first difficulties is understanding what the client or project manager wants. Sometimes, they may not explain things clearly, which can lead to mistakes. Another problem is designing the software to handle lots of data and users without slowing down. It's also hard to choose the right tools and technologies because there are so many options available. As projects get bigger, it becomes tricky to manage all the complicated parts and organize the code. Finding and fixing bugs is another big challenge that can take a lot of time. Meeting deadlines and delivering good quality work in a short time is stressful too. Working in teams can be hard because everyone has different ideas and styles. And as technology keeps changing, coders need to keep learning new things to stay updated. It's not easy to balance writing efficient code with making it easy to understand and maintain. Despite these difficulties, coders keep learning and adapting to become better at their work. In coding, it's important to be okay with not knowing everything for sure and be comfortable with being uncomfortable.

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I really enjoy working in the field of coding. It's a profession that lets me be creative and solve problems using technology. Even though it can be challenging at times, the feeling of accomplishment when I build something or solve a tough coding problem is incredibly satisfying. Overall, I'm very happy with my career choice in coding.

Thank you for your time. 🙏 What is your experience being a programmer? Leave a comment. 🙂

Top comments (7)

ant_f_dev profile image
Anthony Fung

Thanks for sharing.

I agree with the points made, and found the cartoons funny because they're true. Two points I'd like to add:

  • Depending on where you work, it might be possible to get a standing desk. At one place I worked, someone had a desk where the desk supports were telescopic: the whole desktop could be raised. At another, it was possible to ask for (smaller) platforms that you can put onto your desk to lift your IT equipment for standing use.

  • One of the traps that people can fall into to feeling attached to their code. It's good to feel proud of what you've created. But if you don't keep in mind that you're writing it for the team (and 'giving it away'), it's easy to get upset if it's (constructively) criticised during code-reviews.

lico profile image
SeongKuk Han

Thank you for the article. It was fun reading. I started my programming journey because it was truly joyful I can make actual things from some ideas in my mind and talked about the code with people. Now, many noises came in my mind, like

'I have to be a good programmer', 'This is not as good code as other developers write', 'I have to know all basics of my field', 'I have to get paid -, -', 'This logic has to be written in ~', 'This skill is dead', 'I have to know the trend for a better job', 'work is not enough, my work is almost the same every day I have to do some blogs, side projects, research to improve my skills for the rest of the day',.

This may be able to applied for other jobs too. It may be just that because it's changed from my hobby to my job.

I'm not sure if I can be a "good" programmer in the future, but I still love my job. I like talking with people who have the same interest and there are thounds ways to communicate with people about the same interest, is also one of them. I just want to get rid of the noises and just want to enjoy my work as I imagined for this job at a start.

maurerkrisztian profile image
Krisztián Maurer

I appreciate your feedback on the article, and I'm glad you found it enjoyable. I completely understand these thoughts, I have them too. Coding as a hobby is different from coding as a job. Over time, things will become easier. It's important to focus on the positive aspects. I checked out your GitHub, and I think you don't need to worry because you belong among the determined ones, which is incredibly important. Many people don't take the time to work on side projects or write blog posts. Keep up the great work!

zyabxwcd profile image

This should be in the curriculum when people are choosing a career path. Although I fear, it might just demotivate or scare them away from all the good things or the advantages it has. It does not mean that the article is sadistic in nature but simply that a new guy who is not aware of this environment might comprehend things differently.

maurerkrisztian profile image
Krisztián Maurer

Thanks, I wanted to give a fair and honest overview of coding, including both the good and bad aspects. Many articles only focus on one side of the story (the good part), so I aimed to provide a more complete picture.

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assassin1771 profile image
Tushar Garg

Once you get a hang of your job.. Side projects are a must in my opinion!