Joel on Software

December 10, 2008

Trying to find something interesting to read other than the typical MSDN mag or a 700+ page manual on the latest Microsoft development platform, I hit my co-worker up for his copy of “Joel on Software” (the first one). I’m only about half-way through it, and it has been incredibly eye-openning and inspiring. I’ve never read any “technical” book other than the how-to or programmer-to-programmer types so it’s been quite a different experience.

There are two main points that really stick out for me in this book:

  1. Write specs for everything you have to code (that means before you write the code)
  2. If you are bad at writing, learn to write

I think the biggest reason this really sticks out to me is that I hate writing. No…I loathe writing; and according to Joel one of the key components of running successfull software projects and even being a successfull developer is being able to write specs.

So how do I become a good writer when I hate writing? He suggests writing an essay everyday. It can be on anything. So, that’s what I’m setting out to do. I’m going to try writing an essay every day on something programming related. I’m hoping to cover everything from coding tips to life experiences learned in the world of coding. Hopefully it will benefit somebody out there, but most importantly, hopefully I’ll become a better writer, developer, and project manager.