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Corporate Programming Sucks Expand / Collapse
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Posted Wednesday, January 2, 2008 5:23 PM


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Comments posted to this topic are about the item Corporate Programming Sucks






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Post #438193
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 1:59 AM


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In my experience its not the cutting of code that is the problem.

One should always build quality software.

Its the people, especially those in charge, and they are usually the bean counters who hold the purse strings.

Read the Dilbert Principle by Scott Adams - It is not comedy it is a tragedy of how these people operate!

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Post #438276
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 6:41 AM
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I think it takes a special person to be a corporate programmer. I tried that for a bit in my internships in college. For me, though, I can't really do well personally in your stereotypical corporate office. As much as I don't mind automating tasks with the quickest way to get it done, there are times when I like having the creative license to think outside the box and apply new ways and technologies to things. And for me, super serious corporate stuff just didn't keep my interest and let me put all of my programming abilities to use.

For me personally, I'd agree that corporate programming sucks. But being an in-house programmer for a company that promotes technology and likes technology rocks -- that's the job I work and enjoy now :)
Post #438350
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 8:20 AM


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Drab, grey buttons work as well as well thought out colorful ones in corporate systems, so no one wants to pay any extra money to make things better.


Better? OK. I'll grant you one on the choice of colors. I like using the system colors. That wqay the user can choose the colors using Windows. I've done things with cool animations like forms that fade in an out using tranparency. That is until the customer called and asked how to turn it off.

My look and feel sucks. I know that. I let our graphics design folks come up with the standard for what makes it look good and they let me make it work good. That's team work.



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Charles Kincaid

Post #438392
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 8:28 AM
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I totally disagree that being an in-house programmer sucks. I have been an "in-house programmer" for 14 of the last 19 years, and I have found plenty of opportunities to get creative in my work, and "delighted the customer" in the process. As a result, my bosses would give me even more opportunities to be creative. But there is a difference between doing creative things that make a difference in the final product and doing "sexy" things that are superficial.
Post #438399
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 8:45 AM
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I don't think it always sucks. Definitely there is a focus on solving problems quickly and pragmatically, which isn't always the same as elegantly. I think Steve is on the money when he says that for many people coding isn't their life; a nice job where they can do interesting work, work reasonable hours, and maybe get some occasional training suits them. It's easy to want to work 60 hours a week when you're 25, no so easy 10-15 years later when you have a family! Ultimately its about the company and the leadership; I had a lot of opportunities to work on some really challenging projects, at other times I had to do the dull work of building reports!


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Post #438421
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 8:58 AM
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I like being a "corporate programmer", I guess it depends on the size of the company that you work for and the distance between you and your users. I like that I get to see first hand that I make improvements in people's day-to-day work.

I tell people here that my job is simple, all I have to do is make their lives easier. There's been endless repetitive jobs I've eliminated so that they can more productive (and hopefully find it more enjoyable) at work. I also get to see my impact on the company's finances that I wouldn't if we just sold products, when work I do increases sales or decreases costs.

In the end it sounded like Joel was pitching a job rather than making any real comments about the industry. There's companies where it's great to work for and those where it's drudgery-- no matter how existing the products you work on are.
Post #438429
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 10:10 AM


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It is not being a "corporate programmer" that sucks, it's working for someone that does not allow your creativity. I worked for a small division of Merck for 10 years and it was about the best job I have ever had. Our "corporate" was far enough away that the boss got to set the complete tone of the job. And he looked forward to seeing us shine and write excellent software. Two of the projects I was the IT project manager on made it into the Merck annual report. Not because the IT portion was so overwhelming, but I think because the whole project, including the IT portion, made a big, positive difference in the bottom line.
Then I went out on my own and worked as a contractor at a true "corporate" job. ANY ideas of creativity was immediately stepped on as being a waste of time. I made the mistake in 1993 of asking the boss if he wanted me to add a line or two of code to make sure the program I was writing would not break at Y2K.
I truly feel it is not where one works, but for who one works that makes a great deal of difference.


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Post #438491
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 11:43 AM


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I've been resisting the joke about an in house programer being better than an out house programmer.

I let that slip out. Rats! I need food.


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Charles Kincaid

Post #438549
Posted Thursday, January 3, 2008 12:46 PM


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Made me smile, Charles!

Glad to see people enjoying their jobs. I've always enjoyed it myself.







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Post #438578
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