To this day, there are still lots of misconceptions about the development process and the actors involved in it. Not anymore a developer is a person who hacks into computer systems, ATMs and performs other actions that are inconsistent with the law. Others are sure that the programmer will fix their computer and reinstall Windows, will set up TV channels, or will write overnight a new Facebook and will show how to generate document content in Word or even will repair a microwave either some other technique. This is funny, but still, it’s the reality for some people.
Moreover, some stereotypes have taken root so much that impact the general perception of a developer’s function.
To avoid confusion in this regard and to make clear every trifle of the most popular stereotypes. We have prepared for you a rating of the most important myths that need to be dispelled first. Let’s get down to destroy them.
MYTH 1. Development is not for women
Since 2015, such companies as Facebook and Google have been developing towards “leveling” the number of female workers in relation to men. Plus, from the reports provided by Statista, we notice that with each passing year, the number of employed women as developers increases, while the percentage of male employees decreases, in order to balance the ratio. Moreover, such type of action is typical not only related to IT.
Reality. Analysis of statistics for 2020-2021 says that there are more and more women in IT every year.
MYTH 2. Math skills determine development skills
According to the Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2021, more than 50% of responding developers wrote their first line of code between the ages of 11 to 17, and at that age, no one is learning advanced math yet. This means that anyone who studied or studies in an ordinary average school can make a start in programming.
Reality. Good knowledge in the field of mathematics is still necessary, but for those who want to realize themselves in such areas as: scientific field, encryption, Machine Learning, Data Science, development of Artificial Intelligence, and everything related to big data…a lot of math is needed.
MYTH 3. You can become a highly paid IT professional if you have university studies
In addition to Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2021, almost 60% of respondents learned how to code from online courses, forums, and other online resources. From 82,963 of surveyed developers from the USA and Europe:
- only 25% received university degrees;
- 10% have degrees in liberal arts and other sciences;
- 16% consider higher education a waste of time.
Reality. To become a qualified IT developer, it’s enough to successfully complete advanced courses and get some certifications that will prove your skills, to become an exceptional engineer still University is the only way to go through.
MYTH 4. Development has age restrictions
At DAS Solutions, we have senior developers who started their career at 16 years, programming websites and others.
Considering Statista survey findings, most of the responding game developers were between 35-39 and 40-49 years old, with 22% each. Moreover, based on Stack Overflow Developer Survey 2021, 28.48% of developers are over 35 years old.
Reality. Psychologists say that children 8-9 years old are able to understand and learn the basics of programming languages, as well as successfully create their own programs, but they are not yet the engineers that are wanted.
MYTH 5. Machines and applications will rule our FUTURE
People have learned to create artificial food, but farmers have not disappeared anywhere. People have created drones and UAVs, but no one has stopped hiring soldiers in the Armed Forces. So many programs have been written, but there is still a lack of teachers in schools. So it is in IT. The work of a programmer will simply evolve, as, for example, the work of a plowman who followed a horse with a plow and now sits in the cab of a computer-controlled combine.
Reality. As far as AI is concerned, any machine can only generate solutions from a template. It is not capable to create something fundamentally new. Only the human brain can do this.
MYTH 6. Developers are repairmen of any equipment
A mobile app developer specializes in creating applications for mobile devices. He knows programming languages, technologies, frameworks and has great baggage of narrow skills that allow him to do his job efficiently and without wasting time. However, why should this specialist be able to fix TVs, create websites or install Windows if this is a completely different industry in IT?
Everyone is an expert in their field and we should not forget this.
Reality. Developers are not good at any technical related issue.
MYTH 7. X Programming Language is better than another
None programming language is better than another, just like English is no better than Chinese. Each developer may have his/her preferable language, but in the IT industry does not exist the best programming language. Therefore, arguments about the superiority of one language over another are simply irrelevant, because each of them is focused on specific tasks that have nothing to do with personal biases.
The benefit of the language is only within the framework of solving certain problems. One language is more suitable for mathematical calculations, another is for creating corporate software, the third is good for web development. Learning several languages at once is not an option at all. Programming is an art. If you speak five languages but cannot write a good poem, you are not a poet.
Reality. Each programming language may give the best result for a specific issue. The best or ideal programming language doesn’t exist.
MYTH 8. Developers need to know English perfectly
To start a career in IT, it is enough to know English at A1 level (basic). Of course, along the way, you will need to improve your English level because the size of the salary will depend on this topic and the level of growth as a specialist. Plus, companies have no interest in collaboration with people who don’t want to develop continuously their skills and knowledges.
Reality. The level of English proficiency will only play a role in the salary raise for developers at the Middle level and above.
MYTH 9. Experienced developers work around the clock
Despite the reluctance to succumb to stereotypical thinking, instantly arises in your imagination the image of the guy who types like in the film Bruce Almighty. It’s funny, but the reality is totally different.
Besides that, many people know that lack of sleep does not increase productivity, on the contrary, slows down the working process. Few people are happy with this state of affairs, because many developers have family, friends, and personal affairs, to which they are more likely to devote their free time.
Reality. Developers ONLY SOMETIMES need to work overtime, and get paid in return with a higher hourly rate.
MYTH 10. The more people check the code, the fewer bugs it contains
“Given enough eyeballs, all bugs are shallow”, said Eric S. Raymond. This implies an advantage to open source because any developer can review it and fix bugs. In reality, this is not quite the case, because open-source software has more users who are unable to fix bugs in the code than people who are willing to contribute. Simply said, seven nannies have a child without an eye. The best solution in this situation is to employ a problem-focused team as Quality Assurance engineers.
Reality. Each specialist has his own point of view and 2 of 5 developers have something to add or edit in the code.
MYTH 11. Developers are rich people
Against the background of line workers and employees with flowing short tasks, senior developers really look like Arab sheiks. It’s true that for a programmer it is easier to find a job with a higher salary than the national average.
The developers’ salary varies greatly from specializations, skills, education, hard work, a little bit of luck 😊, and other factors like the ability to sell oneself to an employer or stress resistance. To reach professional heights you need to work hard, or come up with a really cool product.
A large salary is offered to already experienced developers. Novice developers will have to settle for small amounts, gradually building up a portfolio. Nobody becomes a billionaire overnight, and most programmers never even become millionaires.
Reality. Years of practice, desire, and hard work are the ingredients of success.
Surrounded by stereotypes, newcomers find it difficult to take the first step towards high technology. We hope that by getting rid of the misconception about developers, it will be easier for you to choose the right development direction.
It will be interesting to discover the funny stereotypes that you have come across during your practice, and we’re sure there were quite a few of them. Leave your options in the comments.