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Talk - Myth of Genius Programmer

This talk revolves around the myth that goes around in the corporate world of software development of force-identifying Heroic Geeks at varied levels starting from team to programmes to the entire company. Okay, okay, the startup world of software development is as well plagued by this myth.

In this talk Brian Fitzpatrick and Ben Collins-Sussman, sets the context very mildly and jumps into a set of guiding principles that an individual in a team has to abide by in building successful GEEK TEAM. That brings me to also point out that they together have also authored a wonderful book titled, Team Geek. Get your copy, for it's worth your time.

Guiding Principles to becoming that Golden Geek Team
  • Lose Your Ego: Lose your personal ego. Having team ego is perhaps okay. Don't try to be a genius in the team.
  • Criticism Is Not Evil: Feedback often is more about how you look like a nice person in conveying your thoughts to someone - crap! Code is not about a person; don't make it personal.
  • Embrace Failure: Failing repeatedly for the same dumb reason is embarrassing and definitely bad. Collaborate early and often.
  • Iterate Quickly: Its about - "Fail fast. Learn fast".
  • Practice Is The Key: Veritable indeed is the statement, "Practice maketh a man perfect". Pay attention to your tools and techniques as well.
  • Be Influenced: Be open to being influenced.
If you know me, I've always cherished and evangelised these. There are occasions and places, I've been crucified for these. Know your environment. If it isn't congenial, be patient and hunt for one that demonstrates these in their culture. Good luck!

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