Programmers and Tool Builders

, Oct 18, 2006

Great post from Phil Windley:

Programmers should be tool builders. If you’re not building tools to make your life easier, you’re wasting time. […] I was thinking about this the other day and concluded that it must be awful to not know how to program. You’re at the mercy of other people to build your tools. I’d hate it. It would be like not knowing how to drive.

I totally agree. When I work together closely with others, I always get silently mad when I notice them typing in the same things again and again, reformatting lines and lines of almost identical text by hand, using a UI to repeat the same file-rename operation over and over … granted, there are times when I spend hours automating what I would have been able to do by hand in minutes, but that’s the exception. Or so I hope.