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What Frustrates Developers in Today's Programming Ecosystem?

If you ask programmers about what they find irritating about today’s coding ecosystem, you will probably get an answer that you weren’t expecting. Often, programmers complain about the stupendous level of baloney that’s pervasive in the industry today.

Just conduct a quick Google search and you’ll know what I am talking about. There will be articles with titles like “how to make a six-figure salary after a quick bootstrap course” or “why programmers think Macs are the best for coding.” But if you look at Stack Overflow’s survey of developers, you’ll realize that most programmers prefer Windows.

Then you also get those that claim that Java is dying out when it has actually grown in use over the past few years. The same can be said for Functional Programming (FP) replacing Object Oriented Programming (OOP), but it’s just not happening.

What all this really means is that dealing with non-coders at meetings can be a difficult experience (sometimes).

So even though the actual act of programming can be difficult and frustrating at times, the nonsense that surrounds the industry can be far worse. The same can be said for dealing with the elitism and the egos displayed by novices and pros alike.

So primarily, what’s going to irritate coders has nothing to do with the act of coding itself, but rather it has more to do with society and the way it perceives the industry.

So what else do programmers hate?

1. The Rapid Evolution of Technology

Technology is evolving so fast that it can be very difficult to keep up with it. As soon as you master a piece of technology or a programming language, there’s something new that you have to learn.

This unlike engineering or accounting where changes take place in a slow and seamless manner. So this can be a source of frustration for some programmers.

Further, unlike construction jobs where you build the structure and move on, you will have to keep updating and making your application better over time. So no matter what kind of coding you engage in, it’s not going to be done and dusted at the end of the development cycle.

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2. Fixing Bugs!

Whether you love it (like anyone actually loves to do this!) or hate it, fixing bugs comes with the territory. Sometimes trying to fix a single bug can open up a can of worms. Further, you can fix one bug and then a simple test might 26 more.

So what started out as an interesting project can quickly turn into fixing bugs 90% of the time. So although there might be big egos in the industry, it’s far from glamorous occupation.

But the challenges that are presented by programming can also be what drives developers to keep doing what they do. Sometimes it’s what’s difficult that makes the job really rewarding. At the same time, although there’s an unlimited potential for growth, there’s also a sense that you’re never going to master it.

3. Annoying Questions

One of the most annoying questions that you can ask a developer is “when will it be ready or when can you deliver the finished product?” It can cause irritation as programming is a complicated process (remember the bugs?) so it’s near impossible to give an accurate deadline for any particular job.

To get the best out of a developer, it’s better to always give them enough time and space to do an excellent job. But unfortunately, it doesn’t stop here as coders are often asked silly questions that can irritate the best of us.

Probably the question that should make the top of the list is “did you try restarting?” This is a question that’s often asked by people who have little to no experience with computers. Sure it might help if your Word document froze while you were working on it, but it sure won’t fix a bug in the code.

4. Writing Manuals

Once the application is ready, you’re going to need a user manual. It’s natural to think that the developers would be the ideal choice (obviously they should know best since they built it), but not all of them will be able to execute it properly.

It can be a huge challenge to switch from code to writing manuals, so sometimes this can turn into a nightmare. It’s probably better to get a professional technical writer to work along with the programmer to create the best user manuals.

This is a general list of what developers usually find irritating working in the industry. There will be plenty more to add to the list, but a lot can be relative to personal preferences. For example, one programmer may prefer to code with Java instead of PHP and so on. Further, there are also complaints (like any other job) about company politics, culture, and managerial styles.

So the question must be asked, what drives you crazy while working in today’s programming environment? Share your thoughts and experience in the Comments section below.

IT Storyteller and Copywriter
Andrew's current undertaking is big data analytics and AI as well as digital design and branding. He is a contributor to various publications with the focus on emerging technology and digital marketing.