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How has failing made you a better developer

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Whether it's a task at work you failed to get working, broke production, needed help, got fired, didn't get a dream job, couldn't find a job, or even failed at something on your own personal or side projects...

We all know that some times these moments can get the best of us. But how have failing these made you a better developer?

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Doing my best to learn and build modern applications and tools and teach others what I know. I love to write tools and applications to help others, especially in my field, or those less fortunate. Eventually, hoping to solve bigger problems.
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If I'm honest, not every failure has made me a better developer, but most failures make me more humble and that makes me a better person. Right now I'm in a role I haven't done in 15+ years, so failure is as certain as traffic on the way home. That regular opportunity to reduce my arrogance is always a good thing.


I've got too many stories, so I'll just pick one at random:

I designed an application that I knew had performance issues due to the technologies we had chosen. I did the pragmatic thing and ran performance tests to prove to myself that it would never be pushed outside of its performance tolerances under real-world usage scenarios. Unfortunately, the source of my data for what was "real-world usage scenarios" had focused on average usage, not the outliers. After it was deployed to production, one such outlier was the source of a production crisis that had me woken up and 4am to fix an unrecoverable system crash that took me and my team 4 days to resolve. After that, I modified my approach to performance tuning to focus on theoretical maximums rather than subjective thresholds. That allowed me to design an entirely new system a year later that had - by all measures - astonishing performance characteristics.

I really could go on and on and on on this topic, but suffice to say all I am is the sum total of me learning from the mistakes I've made.

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Building apps, tools, and learning new things with code.

Writing Co.de is a place where I talk about my experiences as a developer, learning new languages, writing tools, and figuring out what it takes to be a blogger.

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