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190
votes
13answers
43k views

How to respond when you are asked for an estimate?

We, as programmers, are constantly being asked 'How long will it take'? And you know, the situation is almost always like this: The requirements are unclear. Nobody has done an in depth analysis of ...
316
votes
29answers
50k views

Why can't the IT industry deliver large, faultless projects quickly as in other industries?

After watching National Geographic's MegaStructures series, I was surprised how fast large projects are completed. Once the preliminary work (design, specifications, etc.) is done on paper, the ...
20
votes
16answers
3k views

How many programming languages do you work with on a daily basis and how do you effectively manage language specific tasks [closed]

Edit: How do you manage individual tasks when working on multiple languages In day to day task handling, how many different programming languages do you work with? Do you make a mental shift when ...
35
votes
15answers
3k views

How to code on a very tight schedule?

I'm working on a project that has very tight schedule. I don't have much time to code and test (even though I work more than 12 hours everyday, it's still delayed), and the result is very fragile. Its ...
30
votes
9answers
825 views

Abstraction: The War between solving the problem and a general solution [closed]

As a programmer, I find myself in the dilemma where I want make my program as abstract and as general as possible. Doing so usually would allow me to reuse my code and have a more general solution ...
16
votes
9answers
1k views

Does keeping a journal help in your job?

Years ago, in my first real programming job, my boss encouraged me to keep a journal of my daily activities. I still do so, although no longer a paper and hand-written one. Do you keep a journal, if ...
10
votes
10answers
1k views

How do you deal with time estimates? [duplicate]

If given too little time, quality suffers. If given too much time, developers will find a way to use all alloted time, no matter what. What would be a good way with dealing with estimates? Are they a ...
38
votes
19answers
1k views

What to do about “stopping point syndrome”?

I have noticed a behavior in myself that I call "stopping point syndrome"... it means I cannot stop working until I reach a "stopping point" (or I become exhausted). In other words, if I am in the ...
30
votes
20answers
5k views

Is it normal for programmer to work on multiple projects simultaneously

On a current job I have 2 projects to work on. First is very huge system and the second one is smaller but it also big (first project is being developed for 12 years, second for 4 years). At first I ...
8
votes
6answers
1k views

Time management and self improvement [closed]

I hope I can open a discussion on this topic as this is not a specific problem. It's a topic I hope to get some ideas on how people in similar situation as mine manage their time. OK, I'm a single ...
16
votes
5answers
2k views

How to avoid distractions during programming and keep up to date? [closed]

People always need concentration during work tasks, but i feel programming requires even a higher level. In general my biggest problem is getting distracted by my articles feeds, but i also give it a ...
13
votes
4answers
1k views

How to manage time for studying while working? [closed]

I've been programming 8 years for a company. We build business intelligence software systems. Since I thought working is learning, I've always studied in terms of what I was doing at the company while ...
24
votes
9answers
1k views

Should I log trivial fixes?

I'm in a code shop of two. And while I understand that a bug tracker is useful where the number of programmers is greater or equal to one, I'm not so convinced that logging bugs, changes, and fixes is ...
11
votes
1answer
560 views

How much time should I dedicate to refactoring my code?

I don't know if it's just with me, but when I start refactoring some code I waste a lot time doing that and it never ends. Every time I read the code again, I find something that can be improved, ...
4
votes
3answers
628 views

What is the most effective way of communicating potential delays in software development?

In development, what is the best way to manage delays? For example, you're doing a task, new requirements come in/something which further steepens the learning curve of something that must be learnt ...
348
votes
21answers
86k views

My customer wants me to record a video of how I develop his software product

Working as a freelancer, I often see strange requests from my customers, some of which can negatively affect my daily work¹, and others trying to set some sort of control. I usually encounter those ...
42
votes
10answers
2k views

How to start and maintain an after-work project

I work as a full time developer. My workplace, however, is very limiting in the technologies and programming languages I can use. All of the work is done in C++. It is clear that C++ is rapidly ...
38
votes
8answers
1k views

Should Professional Development occur on company time?

As a first-time part-time software developer at a small consulting company, I'm struggling to organise time to further my own software development knowledge - whether that's reading a book, keeping up ...
19
votes
9answers
547 views

Hard-copy approaches to time tracking

I have a problem: I suck at tracking time-on-task for specific feature/defects/etc while coding them. I tend to jump between tasks a fair bit (partly due to the inherit juggling required by ...
3
votes
5answers
378 views

How do you manage project estimation and managing your teams time

I'm thinking of things like: designating a developer having say 6 hours out of their normal 7.5 hour day dedicated to the project, the rest for other work/company related activity (meetings, emails, ...
13
votes
10answers
4k views

Effective methods for managing work tasks? (documenting/remembering/prioritizing) [closed]

I'm looking for suggestions on effective methods that I can use to document, remember and prioritize tasks at work. Many of the these tasks belong to a primary project, but they also exist for ...
5
votes
7answers
1k views

What software do you use to track time spent on a project? [closed]

What software do you use to track time spent on a project?
7
votes
3answers
156 views

Considering consistent change, how short of a planning period is too short?

Change is not uncommon, change in requirements, change in specs change in workflow. I've accepted that there will be change, but I wonder: knowing that change is going to happen, how short of a ...
2
votes
3answers
849 views

How to manage/organise when you have to multi-task on multiple 1 man projects? [closed]

We are a team of developers working on multiple small projects - a developer could have 3 or more 1 man projects to work on and keep moving. It can feel like your time is pretty fragmented & ...
0
votes
3answers
229 views

How to balance programming projects between feasibility and usefulness [closed]

I've become fairly competent as a programmer, but I would not say I am a master. I work independently, most as a hobby, although I have done some freelance PHP work. I tend to find myself dabbling in ...