Scott Hanselman

Hanselminutes Podcast 115 - Rediscovering Your Passion for Software

June 18, 2008 Comment on this post [7] Posted in Podcast | Programming
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carlfranklin (I forgot to post this one to my blog, so you may have already noticed it on the Hanselminutes Feed. My apologies.)

My one-hundred-and-fifteenth podcast is up. Carl Franklin returns in this episode, and he and I talk about the joys of programming and getting back to basics. Is it hard to stay passionate about this job? Is there a need for the community to revisit Computer Science 101? What do you do to stay excited about software?

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If you have trouble downloading, or your download is slow, do try the torrent with Āµtorrent or another BitTorrent Downloader.

Do also remember the complete archives are always up and they have PDF Transcripts, a little known feature that show up a few weeks after each show.

Telerik is our sponsor for this show.

Telerik's new stuff is pretty sweet, check out the ONLINE DEMO of their new ASP.NET AJAX suite. RadGrid handles sorting, filtering, and paging of hundreds of thousands of records in milliseconds, and the RadEditor loads up to 4 times faster and the navigation controls now support binding to web services on the client.

As I've said before this show comes to you with the audio expertise and stewardship of Carl Franklin. The name comes from Travis Illig, but the goal of the show is simple. Avoid wasting the listener's time. (and make the commute less boring)

Enjoy. Who knows what'll happen in the next show?

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. He is a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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June 18, 2008 17:32
While it's said that laughter is infectious, so is passion. The internet provides a number of excellent sites with great coding content, of which this is a prime example and your approach to coding helps feed my enthusiam.

As a coder, unlike in many other scenarios, I like to be the dumbest guy in the room (or on the site!) because that way I know I'm learning. I find nothing that fires my passion more than having to run, intellectually, to keep up. Conversely coasting on internal, corporate, simple data CRUD type applications really challenges my enthusiasm.

Really trying hard not to sound like sycophantic commenter!
June 18, 2008 19:24
Great podcast! Really it was quite refreshing, right up up untill the hysterectomy comment. I mean honestly, that was just strange.
June 19, 2008 11:59
I don't mean to be a nay-sayer (which is not in vogue I hear), but what a truly... weird episode. While I totally sympathize with your intensions, the result was... well, just plain weird. What with Carl's bizarre theory of programming as procreation (I thought he was joking until he told the airwave-silencing story of the barren woman), and your own slightly Freudian longing for acknowledgment from the alpha code knitters... all against a rather schizophrenic backdrop of hippie-like sentiments of pass the coding love mixed with -- in my opinion -- a somewhat elitist view of programmers as superior Creators with a capital C. I dunno. Perhaps there are some cultural differences that made the end result a bit unsavory for an old-worlder like me?
June 19, 2008 22:06
That was a really great podcast. The idea that all devs are, at the base, creators was really eye opening to me. Never really put it into that context myself.
June 19, 2008 22:18
Putting a computer together is not relaxing on a Sunday afternoon anymore.
June 19, 2008 23:53
Interesting and thought provoking podcast. I would definitely agree with the notion of programming as a creative outlet. Personally, my other main creative outlet is photography; there have been other creative interests that have come and gone, but programming and photography are the most attractive to me. I also agree with the idea of mentoring others as a great way to not only share your knowledge and passion, but to also hone your craft.

Regarding the comment about, "Where's the book" this is a question I have asked more than once in my career. While listening to this section a couple of analogies came to mind. Quite often when I'm seeing a new technology or tool I can readily see how I could apply it to a problem I'm dealing with, but I will have difficulty in devinning how to get from where I'm at to being conversant with the skills or tool I'm being shown; the analogy is standing on a hilltop seeing mountain peaks in the distance and trying to determine a path to get from the hill I'm on to the peak that attracts me.

This situation brings the "Where's the book" question, but I think it really goes deeper than that. Not everyone learns in the same way or at the same pace; and no one wants to look dumb or be embarrassed by asking the "dumb" question, so tell me what book I can go off and study to see if I can ferret it out for myself is a common response. Personally, I'd rather deal with walk throughs, more the Chilton Automotive manual dissection (the analogy the came to mind at the time was of the Trailblazer, the guide that was out in front leaving a blaze on a tree to indicate the path to follow). I see the technology and recognize the value, it's determining the best path to acquire the skills to be proficient enough to blaze my own trails that stumps me at times.

Thanks for being a Trailblazer and mentor, the world could use more of both.

Steve S
June 21, 2008 6:39
My wife and I used to compete nationally in, of all things, country-western dance! In 2000 we were ranked 5th in the world in our division. I HAD to compete. If we went more than a three months without competing or performing I started getting irritable. I choreographed most of our routines. I would hear music and "see" patterns and movement.

I graduated from a small technical college in late 1998 and in early 1999 began my career as a developer. I noticed that the further I got along in my career as a developer the less I "needed" to compete. At the time I theorized that before software development came along I didn't have an outlet for my creative energies.

It's been probably 6 years since we competed. I've thought about it but I just don't have the drive or the need to do that anymore. Hmmmm .... I guess developing software "killed" my dancing!

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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.