Monday, October 22, 2012

Not afraid of looking uncool

Sometimes I feel like software development world behave in certain way like fashion mode. I don’t say it because I think it is completely subject of trivial conditions like the influence of a pop star over young teenagers, but in small scale, most popular rock star frameworks tend to monopolize software engineers with recipes, sometimes to the point of thinking that anything distinct from the recipe is out fashion.

Frameworks like Struts, Spring or Hibernate are excellent tools for a lot of development efforts. The problem I think starts when a developer sets his mind to think that all projects should be implemented with the standard “fits all” recipe he uses. If someone else suggests to do something different, or just tells in a friendly conversation that he is using a different approach in an application, the framework recipe guy could look at him as the “uncool” or even mock him as the dinosaur of the team.

I've been watching the lectures from the recent Java Zone 2011 conference, and two short presentations caught my attention for their braveness to questions the “status-quo”. One exposes a different approach for dependency injection:

Dependency injection when you only have one dependency from JavaZone on Vimeo.

And the other one, which is the one that I particularly enjoy the most, is the one from this young lady where she stands firmly, and with good arguments, why she doeen’t like Hibernate.

Hibernate should be to programmers what cake mixes are to bakers: beneath their dignity. from JavaZone on Vimeo.

I’m not taking sides on these two presentations, I must confess that I need more experience to have a more informed position on the specific topics, but I truly admire these two fella for showing their out of the box approach on software development. Innovation comes frequently from setting apart from the rest.

We have a lot to learn as still young developers, and we should always be receptive to new ideas in this always changing business that is the software development world. Some ideas could be crap, but we need to have the humbleness to examine all of them to make a rational judgment on why we discard it. Let’s not be fanatic just because everyone uses a specific tool.

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