How to become a 10x Software Developer in 15 minutes
What are the defining differences between a 10x developer and a "normal developer"? In this article I illustrate the most important difference for you.
Join the DZone community and get the full member experience.Join For Free
There's a lot of superstition related to 10x software developers. Some would even argue there is no such thing as a 10x developer. However, at the end of the day it's really quite simple, and it's all based upon having a pragmatic mind, avoiding over engineering, and using the best tools available. For instance a carpenter insisting upon never using nails, but exclusively using screws instead, will automatically never be able to become 10x in his job. Simply because a nail can be hammered into wood in 5 seconds, where a screw requires much more time. Understanding this is not really rocket science, and once you've had your Eureka moment in these regards, you are a 10x developer - It's really that simple.
Only a fool reinvents the wheel
Hence, if a 10x software developer can get away without having to do anything, and only use existing building blocks, he will do nothing, and yet still be able to deliver in minutes - While the junior developer will happily use his tea spoon to shuffle snow from the parking lot, not realising he's destroying the foundation for his own employer, and such cannibalising his own future, because it is "so much fun" to create solutions to problems others have spent years on solving before him. In fact, you can easily check if your developers are 10x by asking them a handful of control questions, such as for instance ...
- How would you create an HTTP client class in C#?
- How would you create an O/RM library using Java?
- How would you create a frontend framework to allow for easily developing portable web apps?
Of course, the correct answer to all of the above questions is as follows ...
I wouldn't, I'd use pre-existing tools!
Why? Because creating a good HTTP client class, a decent O/RM library, or a marvellous frontend framework, could easily require half a dozen of developers working for years, before you'd have anything even remotely resembling the quality of for instance Hibernate or Angular. This doesn't mean that Hibernate or Angular are perfect tools. All such frameworks and libraries have "quirks", such as .Net's HttpClient class for instance, with all of its issues - But unless these quirks are game breakers for your particular domain, trying to re-create any of the above yourself, in an organisation who's main purpose is not to create O/RM libraries or frontend frameworks is simply pure madness!
If you work in yyy, do yyy stuff, and leave the rest to those equipped with the time, knowledge, and resources to solve those problems!
In the following video I demonstrate how I created a CRM system using Magic Cloud, and how I did it in 5 weeks of manual software development. If I hadn't used Magic and its Low-Code features, doing the following myself would easily require some 5-12 months, maybe even an entire team of software developers. If you don't believe me, go ask anybody who's ever done it. Still, I pulled it off alone in 5 weeks.
I realise economy is considered "boring" to most software developers. Your craft is software after all, while "others" are taking care of finance, right? However, having at least a basic understanding of finance will become crucial for your ability to have food on your table in the near future. I must assume being able to eat on a daily basis is of importance to you, so I will therefor explain the financial aspects of this as simple as I can for you below.
If somebody came to your manager and asked for an estimate for creating the above system, your manager would start creating a resource requirement document that would typically resemble the following.
- One C# backend developer for 6 months (Typically a cost of €50,000 in Europe)
- One Angular frontend developer for 9 months (€75,000)
- One Flutter developer for 9 months (another €75,000)
- One Azure Web App (€200 per month)
- One Azure MySQL server (another €200 per month)
Then he'd find his calculator, add up the above numbers, call the customer and say something such as follows ...
"Yeah, we can create your system for €200,000, and we'd need 9 months to deliver, and it would cost you €400 per month to host it"
I billed the client €5,000, I am hosting it for €200 per month, and I delivered the system in 5 weeks. To put this into perspective, imagine me showing you two identical cars, one costs you €200,000 and the other costs you €5,000. One cars takes 9 months to deliver, the less expensive car you can get in a month. Which car would you buy? Both cars have the exact same traits from your point of view, the same security traits, and the same speed. Both cars are equally durable, and even have the same colours. Seriously, that's what it is all about.
- Download Magic Cloud - It's 100% Open Sauce, and the only thing you have to loose is your ability to eat tomorrow ... ;)
Disclaimer; I work for ServerGardens.Com, and I created Magic. However, just because I am not 100% neutral in these regards, doesn't imply I am not correct in my description of the dilemma. Now to my conclusion, which is "How do you become a 10x software developer?" The answer to that question is actually pathetically simple to understand, and it is as follows ...
Do as little as possible, and have the machine do the rest!
It's not really rocket science, is it ...?
Opinions expressed by DZone contributors are their own.