re: Programmers that can't type shall be shunned and treated with disdain. VIEW POST


I disagree wholeheartedly.

1) We should be solving problems, not throwing SLOCs at problems.

2) This feels like unnecessary gatekeeping and self aggrandizing. Reminds me of a co-worker that had the Teh Most L33T Mechanical Keyboard that sounded like mortar shells dropping with each key press. Everyone was always so impressed with how fast he was typing. "Oh-Boy he must be such a 100x programmer!" When in fact he was trying to type so fast, most of his key presses were just slamming on the backspace repeatedly.

3) Along the lines of gatekeeping, this could also be pretty ableist. Not everyone who programs types with their fingers. Not everyone that codes can see. etc.


Perhaps I implied coding is the issue, but it's not the major problem. I'll copy from my answer to Isaac, typing is required for:

  • writing email
  • entering ticket information
  • writing documentation
  • chatting in slack
  • writing comments
  • asking questions online / searching
  • shell commands / app navigation
  • refactoring code
  • new code

New code is at the bottom, where I think we all agree it should be. All that other stuff occupies a good part of the day.

But even with code, a lot of it is exploration. The faster you can move bits of code around, the better able you'll be to explore different options. Now I don't really care if this is typing ability, or you've become a master of your IDE tools and mouse. The point is that you have to manipulate the computer a lot, and the faster you can do that the better. This applies regardless of the interface you are using.

I'm also assuming that most of the detractors to my comment are decent typists. As I said in other answers, I'm not looking for people that are speed typers, I'm just concerned about people that clearly can't type. A guy doing 100WPM with 50% backspaces also can't type.

Whether you believe it will hinder your job or not, if you can't type reasonably you won't past any interview that involves coding (nor any that involves chatting online). This is a real gateway that programmers have to get through.


I disagree as well. Programming is not about typing fast. It's this kind of elitist sentiment that keeps people out of programming. As if STEM isn't exclusionary enough already.


I think I fall in this camp too. Instead of sitting down and typing a gazillion lines I like the thought that we'd all step back from the problem and do one or more of the following: organize our thoughts, sketch and plan on a whiteboard or paper, discuss with others, etc. Usually these actions result in a better solution with less code, and lines of code are often a liability rather than an asset because of the bug density.

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