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What Makes You Passionate About Software Development?

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A while back, I ran a poll here on JavaLobby to find out why people became software developers. The answers were varied, from computer science being a convenient choice, to money. But the most common themes were that developers "knew" that it was right for them when they started writing programs, and that people were interested and excited by the future of technology.

Developing software is fairly addictive: you start with a blank file, and at the end you have something that at the end is (probably) useful at the very least, and possibly brilliant at the other extreme. 

The amount of change in the industry is fascinating. From acquisitions, to new frameworks, new programming languages and new technologies, developers are never bored. 

I definitely believe that right now is a great time to be a software developer. The range of devices that are available to us to create application is astounding. And this is what motivates me most right now - that almost any idea I have can be implemented thank to mobile devices, and people being connected to the internet 24-7. As well as developing for these devices (iPhone and iPad), I love using these devices and seeing what other people are doing. Some applications are amazing, but quite simple, such as FlipBoard. Is there any reason I couldn't do it? Probably not. Keeping up with my peers and having the opportunity to create great applications really motivates me. 

I'd like to see what makes other developers tick. Why are you still developing software?



Philippe Lhoste replied on Thu, 2010/08/19 - 6:54am

Well, some people are programmers just because pay is good, and/or there are (were?) many job opportunities, without being too exhausting... Beside the office, they wouldn't touch a compiler/interpreter/IDE with a 10ft pole!

Others, probably a vast majority of DZone readers, just enjoy programming, or are passionate about it, and if time permits code at home on personal projects.That's how we get so many freewares, open source or not, from IrfanView to 7-Zip.

I am on the latter category. Beside being a geek, enjoying technology, new, shiny things (softwares, libraries, languages...), I mostly code just for the thrill, for the intellectual challenge, to solve problems and make useful things: for example I edit with a text editor I contributed to, fixing things that annoyed me, adding features that I wanted... Giving useful things to the community (and getting them) is also rewarding.

Fabrizio Giudici replied on Fri, 2010/08/20 - 7:11am

For me, software has always fascinated me because you can bring out value just with an idea, and literally out of nothing for what concerns material resources.

Frank Silbermann replied on Fri, 2010/08/20 - 8:40am

Contradicting the conventional wisdom, the majority of programmers do program outside of business hours. However, the vast majority of this occurs during unpaid overtime on the job. Asking why some people want to do programming is like asking why some people want to be athletes or artists -- even if they're not highly-paid stars. The difference between programming versus software project management is like the difference between playing for the Yankees versus managing the team.

Laurent Cohen replied on Fri, 2010/08/20 - 10:14am

As Fabrizio put it, creating someting out of nothing, that's the beauty and joy of it. For many developers, programing is not just a job or a craft, it's a form of art.

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