>Over the years, I’ve dealt with some pretty ugly code. I’ve contributed my fair share especially when I was starting out in this field 15 years ago. Over the years though, I’ve learned that just getting it working is not enough. Writing good code, that is easy to maintain, is as important, as making sure that it works. Taking pride in the code that you produce is just as important as getting it working. I’m not alone in this feeling. Ed Merks who I highly respect, has blogged about the Teflon Programmer syndrome. Unfortunately many in this industry have taken a “just get it done” attitude. Adding new features, while incurring the debt of the bugs that never seem to get fixed. So it is with great pride that I signed the Manifesto for Software Craftsmanship today:
As aspiring Software Craftsmen we are raising the bar of professional software development by practicing it and helping others learn the craft. Through this work we have come to value:Not only working software, but also well-crafted softwareNot only responding to change, but also steadily adding valueNot only individuals and interactions, but also a community of professionalsNot only customer collaboration, but also productive partnerships
That is, in pursuit of the items on the left we have found the items on the right to be indispensable.
The manifesto is important, just as the Agile Manifesto is to agile development. I want to encourage others to sign it as well.
We need to take the time to do it well, instead of just getting it done. We need to refactor. We need to have unit tests. We need the code to be easy to maintain and evolve. We need to take care of our technical debt so that we can add those new features the customer wants, easily. We need to leave the code better than we received it. We need to become craftsmen.