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My boss is asserting that good programmers are "heads down coders" who spend nearly all day writing code. I think this is misguided but can't convince him otherwise. Is there any research on the subject?

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You need to make your question more specific. Are there elements of your work environment that serve as examples? I consider it axiomatic that if you are coding more, you are going to write more code, but there are other things like thinking time that are required to be a good programmer. –  Robert Harvey Jul 13 '11 at 15:00
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He does not understand software. Flee! Run away! joelonsoftware.com/articles/HighNotes.html –  Job Jul 13 '11 at 15:07
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Most good programmers agree, we aren't paid to type, we are paid to think. –  CaffGeek Jul 13 '11 at 16:12
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2 Answers

up vote 7 down vote accepted

Measuring Programmer Productivity – A scientific study
http://agile101.net/2009/09/01/measuring-programmer-productivity-a-scientific-study/

Productivity Variations Among Software Developers and Teams: The Origin of "10x"
http://blogs.construx.com/blogs/stevemcc/archive/2008/03/27/productivity-variations-among-software-developers-and-teams-the-origin-of-quot-10x-quot.aspx

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The Duct Tape Programmer has this note that seems appropriate to consider from Jamie Zawinski:

It’s great to rewrite your code and make it cleaner and by the third time it’ll actually be pretty. But that’s not the point—you’re not here to write code; you’re here to ship products.

Course, I'm not sure how well that "you're not here to write code" would sit with him but that is the point you are trying to prove, right?

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