D'Arcy from Winnipeg
Solution Architecture, Business & Entrepreneurship, Microsoft, and Adoption

How I am becoming a better developer in 6 months

Wednesday, April 25, 2007 3:19 AM

Justice started a little challange, and i'm answering the call! Basically the idea is about accountability: what are you doing on an ongoing basis that is increasing your skills as a developer?

Justice has pushed the envelope somewhat...he's going to be reading a book every week from now until October. That's very aggresive and shows his determination, focus, and apparantly lack of any sort of life outside the range of his Macbook's screen. (Note that one of his books is "MaxOS: The Missing Manual". I pointed out to him that his books should be tech related and not toy manuals)

So what am I going to do from now until October to better myself as a developer?


I need to be realistic about what my schedule is like, but the reality is that books should be a constant in any developers diet. So I'm going to be reading two books a month (which is pretty heavy as it is). I don't have a list like Justice does, but I can say that the first one will be on WSS 3.0 development. Look for a full review mid May.


I also will be getting my personal website up and running. Having a website is all well and good, but unless there's good content it means nothing. Also having some value to the developer community is a must. So my site will be where I'll post webcasts, podcasts, and articles focussing around web development, Sharepoint 2007, and all things IW (Information Worker). You can expect:

6 Videos a month

2 Podcasts a month

4 Articles a month


Being a better developer also means being a social one...I'm convinced of that. I'm constantly floored when I think of the breadth of people that I talk to daily about development issues that I'm facing or that others are facing, and where these people are in the world (Canada, US, Overseas). So to fill this, I'm aiming for two things:

Do a User Group tour in the Fall of 2007

(Fingers Crossed) Speak at an as-yet-unanounced Western Canada developer conference


Certification is still a valid avenue for showing off your skill set. If your employer is a Microsoft Gold Partner, certifications can be an asset for getting work. So to that end, I have two goals for the next 6 months:

MPD - Web

MPD - Enterprise Developer

Now for 6 months, I think that's VERY aggressive, but like my personal trainer says: If it isn't tough you aren't going to get stronger.

Game on Justice, let's see what shakes!



# re: How I am becoming a better developer in 6 months

I'm already doing this "brain exercise" but most of the things i have been reading are non-tech. I guess i've been spawned to the ground by tech in the office that when i'm away of i work i try to read stress-free motivational books(the likes of john maxwell and c.s lewis).

i'll take the challenge too ;) i'll try to add those techy books on my list. 4/25/2007 11:57 AM | Keith Rull

# re: How I am becoming a better developer in 6 months



This post is awesome, and I know you're going to kick some serious ass in doing this. I'm really excited for you and the massive changes that are going to result. This plan, in fact, sounds like it could be MVP CITY for somebody...

This is a great post, man, and *I'm* inspired by reading half of what you're doing. Don't forget to tag 4 other guys though!!! Let's get this going!! 4/25/2007 3:06 PM | Justice

# re: How I am becoming a better developer in 6 months

Dude, this totally rocks and looking forward to it. BTW, where's the committment to completely succumb to the Chicken Wing diet? You do know if you come to DevTeach we're going to be making a YouTube video that will rival the Ok-Go treadmill one! 7/5/2007 3:38 AM | Bil Simser

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