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Team work and programming; why does my boss code better than me

by Mountain Computers Inc., Publication Date: Thursday, July 15, 2021
View Count: 77, Keywords: Programming, Coding, Teamwork, Hashtags: #Programming #Coding #Teamwork



For nearly 30 years, I have been programming and occasionally I work with my mentor, friend, colleague, ex-boss on programming projects, usually his, where he needs my help.
 
Why does my boss program and code better than me? It is true. He does have 15 years on me though and he programs like 70 hours per week where I only program 10-15 hours per week. That might explain it; yet his brain works the same yet a little differently. The synergy is awesome.
 
The fun part is when we program for hours and hours, day after day, at one computer, where we have a problem to solve, and we get in my office at my desk, and this is when the magic happens; we look at each other, ponder, get some coffee and begin; I start the programming and he talks and watches, then an hour later, he takes over and I watch and ponder and chat, then an hour later, I take over again, and we break 6 hours in and get lunch, and then come back and go 6 more hours until 11pm or 2am.. whatever. wives. kids. they know the deal. we are focused and on march to the sea.
 
What is amazing is that there are two best worlds at play here:
 
1. he is an amazing programmer; he knows it and i know it
2. i am a really good programmer; i know it and he knows it
 
he is about 15 years older than me and does pure programming, software only; whereas; I did hardware, software, networking and programming at many layers. His niche is trading software solutions and my niche is integration software solutions.
 
what is odd is our programming styles:
 
His programming is shall I say, very slick, fast and pretty clean.  My coding is rather; form, fit, function and robust and nearly un-hackable as fare as I can tell. He can start programming on a Friday night and not stop until Monday. For me, I start Friday night, stop at 4am, take 1/2 Saturday off, start again Saturday night, and then repeat on Sunday.  Even at both of ages, he is nearly 70, and I am 1/2 into my 50s, and he can program and code like he is in his 20s. I program and code like I am in my 50s. Doh!
 
Where I stand on our good and needing improvement comparison; my coding is robust; meaning it can take a hit and focuses on performance and stability. His coding focuses on simplicity, crazy logic and crazy terse, and prone to continue on error fail through and keep running; for him there is no try catch finally mentality. just fail through and don't stop, just keep going. That is very interesting. I don't stop in my code handling; yet if a try catch occurs, I am like what? we should not be here ever, and if so, someone is trying to hack my platform and solution, and of course, i deal with that separately in a very cool kind of way.
 
What I love about his coding is he takes something that I solve, say some C/VB/ASP/C#/C++ to SQL solution and improves upon it 10x. He can't figure out the answer yet when I do, he takes it and runs with it, and then evolves it so awesomely!
 
I loved our old coding sessions and miss them. He was/is cool. He's not dead yet and neither am I.
 
Moral of the story. when your boss wants to work with you on a project; enjoy it. savor it. remember it. sometimes those are the best memories you can keep and share.
 
oh. did I tell you; we have done this like 8 times in nearly 30 years and its always amazing. most of the time we spend 6 months to a year together, then part ways for 3-5 years and then repeat.
 
PS. for those wondering; his name is Ed.
 
I remember all the times we saved each others bacon on some technology issues, server issue, database issue, company party attendance segue, and more...
 
some friendships last a few years and some last a lifetime.  my friendship with him definitely has lasted nearly 1/2 my lifetime.
 
REF: Organizational Leadership 101 ; your boss will be 10-15 years older than you regardless in order to have a good relationship; my boss is/was 10-15 years older than me; yet I have experienced and seen subject matter experts who are leaders and their staff is older. that is a difference of a situation. I have been there multiple times. regardless, teamwork, respect, fun and solution finding and good karma is always best.
 
 
more to come...

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