#489 What Distinguishes Great Software Engineers?
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Software engineering research has long aspired to develop an understanding of what it means to be a “great” engineer. Early research used metrics like lines of code to attempt to quantify differences between great engineers and ordinary ones, leading to the popular software engineering meme of the “10x developer”.
GitHub set out to discover the impact its new AI-based tool, Copilot is having on developers' productivity. The results seem pretty conclusive - 88% of developers surveyed reported they were more productive and an empirical study revealed developers were 55% faster coding with Copilot that without it.
I think you might want to be a software developer for a long time, in the same way that some people are musicians for a long time, or artists for a long time, or roofers for a long time. If not, you can hit “back” in your browser. It’s cool, no harm no foul. But I think maybe you would like to be a twenty-year programmer, or forty-year, or more.
As it took off, got an amazing attention and I received many different comments and replies, I felt a need to elaborate a little. To add some meat to this.
Many programmers know the name of the architect Christopher Alexander for his work on design patterns that has been adapted into the world of programming. A lot of people know of the, sometimes ridiculed, patterns like strategy (functions!) or visitor (pattern matching!) and some have read the Gang of Four design patterns book that introduced them.