Coding and the Future

Lately I've been thinking about my career and where I want to go. I think I have the mindset that once I get "good enough" at something, I tend to get bored with it. When I was younger, I played a lot of golf, and I got "good" at it. I played music a lot, and I got "good" at it. I've been coding professionally now for 10 years, and I'm at the point where I'm "good" at it.

Of course, "good" is very relativistic, which is why I have it in quotes all over the place. When I say I got "good" at golf, I mean that I got to the point where I knew what I needed to do to hit a good shot, and I could do that fairly often. But I was nowhere near a scratch golfer either. The same idea applies to music. When I pick up the guitar, I know a fair amount of music theory and I know what I'm doing on the fretboard. But I'm no Joe Satriani, not by any means. My point is I reach some level with things I pursue in my life where I feel fairly confident in what I do, and while I may not be an "expert" at it, I can perform at that task with reasonable competency, and then I want to move onto something else (sort of the "jack-of-all-trades-master-of-none" idea).

With coding, I'm getting to the point where I (usually) know how to solve the problem at hand, but I'm getting somewhat bored with writing the code. Not that I don't like it - I'm still a developer at heart - but when I'm on a project, I sometimes get tired of writing the next configuration class, or the next file parser, or the next thing that I've done 20 times on numerous projects before. I need to start moving into a position of leadership on projects where I'm not coding 8 hours a day. I want to be mentoring and leading developers and working with on the projects, but I really don't want to write the boilerplate code anymore. Yeah, I think I may be (slowly) making a move towards "management" in some way. 5 years ago I would've hated that idea, but I've realized that that's where my mindset is going, and I'm warming up to that direction.

* Posted at 07.21.2007 10:12:25 AM CST | Link *

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