A desert tortoise (Gopherus agassizii) hatching from its egg.

When a human is born it lacks most skills. Children depend on people around them for years. Others have to teach them things and care for them until they grow up.

Some other animals are hatched with everything they need to know to survive. The parents, or rather the source of the egg and sperm, might be miles away. Still the young know what to do to get by on their own.

As a grown up human it is easy to forget everything we once didn’t know. In the software industry I see this manifest in a specific way.

Software developers are mammals.

Every TLA (three letter acronym), language caveat, “convention over configuration” and buzz-word you know, was once new to you.

Software developers do not hatch.

Remember this when you interact with people that are new to the technology you are using.

Remember that you once did not know the things you know today.

Be kind. State things explicitly. Create documentation that make people feel smart (and not in the “I just deciphered something” way). Be curious about what others know that you have yet to learn.

Software developers are born, not hatched.

ps. I recommend the Wayfarers series by Becky Chambers for more inspiration on things like sentient reptiles.


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