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Rajasegar Chandran
Rajasegar Chandran

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Developer types

9 Types of Developers

In this post we are going to take a look at some typical personality traits of developers. And based on their characteristics I have made some broad classifications of developers.

I am not sure these classifications are truly meaningful or really exist in the workplace, it's just a curious exploration and answer to the question "What if these type of Developers exist in the real world and what would be their typical behaviors and what would be their preferences?"

As I said, this is just an imaginative and fictional account of different developers, and if you encounter one such person in your team or organization, it is purely a coincidence. May be you are lucky to not have one such person in your team or rather more unfortunate to have more than one type of these.

1. The Altruist Developer

The Altruist developer is the one who cares about others.

They are the ones who generally contribute to open source and create many open source packages. They write good documentation and generally responsible for a lot of internal tooling within teams and organizations since they care more about the efficiency and productivity of their fellow developers.

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They periodically share their learnings and insights with others in the form of tweets, blog posts, articles and Youtube videos. They are the serious advocates of Pair Programming or Mob Programming in their teams and organizations. They are the ones who usually answer questions in forums and help others

2. The Ambidextrous Developer

They could potentially be a FullStack Developer cum Devops Engineer cum SRE. They are the go-getters in their teams. You can typically find these type of folks in early stage startups or very small organizations where one man is responsible for a lot of stuff.

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They typically multi-task. They may have multiple Code editors open simultaneously in their machines with multiple repositories checked out. They prefer the most sophisticated tooling in their job, probably the one does it all.

3. The Ascetic Developer

Minimalism is the motto for these developers. They have the typical characteristics of self-denial, austerity and lonely contemplation. They will usually be a fly in the wall in meetings.

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They don't prefer or use complex tools or libraries. There is not much surprise if you encounter such a developer who might use a text editor like Vim without plugins or even Notepad if he uses a Windows machine (Maybe I am exaggerating here or may be not). They prefer to use the default programs and tools that come installed in their machines and don't want to bloat their systems with additional 3rd party software or applications.

4. The Ego Maniac Developer

The first and the foremost question these types of developers have in their mind is "What's in it for me?". Their selfishness, greed and ruthless desire for self-advancement might hurt other people in the team.

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5. The Egotist Developer

These developers are obnoxious and typically carry narcissistic tendencies. They make it a habit to always coerce their peers and colleagues to give thumbs up to their pull requests though they don't care much about the quality of the pull request and the review comments. The Pick your reaction feature in GitHub is a blessing for these kind of developers. They simply can't live without it.

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In other words, they simply suffer from NPD (Narcissistic Personality Disorder) which is a mental disorder characterized by a life-long pattern of exaggerated feelings of self-importance, an excessive craving for admiration, and a diminished ability to empathize with others' feelings

Their gender specific pronouns in their Social media profile generally read like "I / Me / Myself". They would like to show off their intellectual prowess with all their subscriptions of books and magazines about the latest and greatest technologies scattered throughout their desk. The love to boast about their paychecks on Twitter. They think of themselves as an expert at practically everything.

6. The Extrovert Developer

These developers would like to hang out in meetings rather that sitting alone in the desk. Their coding or programming career may have a short span of life since they are always on the pursuit for roles where they get more chance to interact and collaborate with others.

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They dread coming to office during weekends and they feel an unusual discomfort if there are very less people in the workplace when they arrive. Sometimes they might think they accidentally came to office during an holiday and can't wait to call their close friends at work whether they are coming to work that day. If the answer at the other is end is a No, then the sky comes crashing down for them. Oh My God! Why the hell am I in office, why didn't they inform me yesterday they are not coming? I think these type of developers went through hell during this COVID times where remote work became the norm and they can't digest the fact that we are getting much work done without actually meeting each other in person.

7. The Introvert Developer

They are everything opposite to the Extrovert Developer. They don't speak much because that is his natural trait. They would like sit alone in his desk rather than hang out in meetings

They keep their opinions and feedback with themselves, don't bother or care to give inputs unless and until they are specifically asked to. Even most of the times when asked for inputs, they will respond with a simple and plain negative answer.

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They hate pair programming or any variation of it to the core. They prefer to work in the office in unusual timings where there is less human presence and almost always try to work through the weekends. You know why? They say they get more work done without people being present in the office, so they either come very early to the office or stay very late through the night rejoicing in the eerily silent and empty workplace.

They usually prefer to wear headsets (even though sometimes nothing is playing, they just simply wear it) because that allows them to filter or cancel out the noise in their environment. And you don't have to guess what kind of headsets they usually prefer to buy, the ones with the highlighted feature called Noise cancelling.

Open-ended questions usually don't work with these kind of developers and all or most of the answers you get from them is either a Yes/No or just one word replies.

8. The Misanthropic Developer

These developers don't believe in fellow humans to get the job done. They place their trusts in machines more than humans. They are big fans of automation. They consistently try to automate almost every part of their job.

They prefer to Google for answers to trivial questions even when their colleagues sitting next can help them out quickly. Shell script or Bash script is always one of the frequently used tools in their arsenal.

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They hate our species for our effects on the planet. They find the average level of human intelligence to be rather low.
They find most of their co-workers or peers to be incompetent at their jobs.

Because of their anti-human proclivities they usually end up in small groups of smart people. They never approve the pull requests the very first time owing to their skeptical nature.

9. The Male Supremacist Developer

They are also known as the Misogynist Developer. They generally have a strong prejudice against women in the workplace.

It is in their very nature to treat women unfairly and they usually don't appreciate or give credit for their work. They don't care much or solicit input from the opposite sex.

They have an inherent disrespect towards women regardless of their job, position or seniority. They don't trust women easily, especially their judgment or never trust them at all.

Raj Big Bang

Some of these developers are like the character "Raj Koothrappali" on the CBS sitcom The Big Bang Theory. Their vocal systems and speech synthesizers just shut down automatically when they face the opposite sex (women) and they literally freeze. Medical professionals are yet to find the root cause for these symptoms and they still don't have a conclusive evidence for this behavior I suppose.

That's it

Hope you enjoyed the post, please let me know your feedback in the comments section what do you think about these classifications and the developers. If you also happen to know any other type of developer or some additional traits of the above mentioned types, please let me know, I will add it to the list here.

You might also enjoy the Iconic developers Series' Articles by
Jasper de Jager.


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