Eric Elliot sent a tweet with a question: What do you think is the biggest / most common mistake software developers make?. I think it’s worth it to collect them here into one list.

  • technology is not politically neutral
  • underestimating the time something will take
  • deferring technical debt
  • “copy & paste”
  • coming up with patterns, just for the sake of patterns; solving real life problems is what they should do
  • chronically adopting new tools and frameworks, and leaving no time to learn or embrace the fundamentals
  • not testing
  • devs not willing to expand & experiment new ways of thinking about programming; thinking they know it all
  • being afraid of learning from someone junior to yourself
  • thinking they are too smart because they can “speak” technology and being too stubborn to recognize own failures and weak spots
  • not knowing how to separate work coding from play/hack coding
  • overthinking
  • follows patterns blindly without questioning why, nor stopping to create a better pattern
  • they think they need to implement everything, in all areas, right away, rather than consciously iterating on their practice
  • learning by imitating others’ code rather than learning how things really work
  • getting comfortable at jobs that limit their career trajectories

From my side:

  • proper testing is what should take place before shipping any product
  • minimum 95% of test coverage must be done; perfectly 99%
  • misunderstanding the purpose of test coverage reports
  • misunderstanding what’s the linting tools are for
  • afraid of changes


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