The Developer’s Ten Commandments

The Developer’s Ten Commandments

There are many “Ten commandments for developers”, “The Ten Commandments of Egoless Programming” and others on the web. Over at Keeward, we wanted to write down our own “Developer’s Ten Commandments”, so we had a brainstorming session and came up with our own list.

I. Thou shalt speak human

Because all your colleagues are only human. Not computers. Not robots. Not cyborgs. Human. Don’t use words like PHP SDK, compile, and threading.

II. Thou shalt understand the overall objectives of the project and always put yourself in all your users’ shoes.

Read the functionnal specifications, technical specification and the f*cki’n manual.
If the answer is not there, never hesitate to ask for clarifications.
Also, please use the best practices of the web.

III. Thou shalt always seek help.

If you don’t know the answer, google it.
If Google does not know it, report a persistant problem to your project manager.

IV. Thou shalt Listen, Execute, Add.

“Listen to what you are asked to do, do what you are told and, if you have any intellectual energy left over, then you can worry about adding value.” Joe Fuller
Do not listen and say it is OK if it is not.
Do not add “a really-super-cool-new-fun-API that connects to the coffee machine” before you have executed what you had been asked for.

V. Thou shalt respect the deadlines that thou agreed on.

If you cannot respect them, inform the project manager before the deadline.
Keep a printed version of the planning on your desk.

VI. Thou shalt test everything before delivering it.

We expect you to code stuff that actually works. Not almost, not 90%, always.

VII. Thou shalt not use “Lorem Ipsum”, “Test123”, “Toto12” or “This client is really a moron” but real data.

The whole world is sick of Lorem Ipsum.
Using “Lorem Ipsum” allows you to be sure that eventually actual data will not fit.
If you do not have real data, ask for it.

VIII. Thou shalt abide the developing conventions.

Backup your code.
Always write 1 line of comment for every 2 lines of code.
Backup your code, again.
Use the wiki, Redmine and GIT for every project you work on.
Then, backup your code, one more time.

IX. Thou shalt be honest with yourself and your project manager and shalt not say that you do know if thou do not.

Be honest with yourself and others or your life will soon turn into a nightmare.

X. If thou do not enjoy developing, quit it!

Learn something every day.
If you do not find anything fun to learn for more than a week, know your time has come.


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Benjamin Bellamy

Paris, Beirut, NYC & Agen // e-commerce, social media, open-source & geek // follow me on twitter: @benjaminbellamy.

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  1. 1 c@n n0 l0ngu3r sp3@k l1k3 7h1s :(

    • Yes you still can. But not to the project manager. ;-)