Wednesday, May 11, 2005

What is a Lazy Programmer anyway ?

What is a Lazy Programmer you may ask. Is it pejorative, bad, an incurable disease affecting people couple of year short to retirement? Well, good thing you ask! I define myself as a Lazy Programmer and even starting a blog promoting my "bad habit".
But lets make something clear right away. As anything in life you can have dumb laziness and intelligent laziness. Obviously here I'm going to talk about the intelligent one.

What is good laziness then ?

Lazy Programming is fundamentally a time managing style. Just think about the last long, boring and useless task you've done. If your a student, it's probably the last assignment you had to hand-in. You probably already know this, if you'd started working on your assignment earlier it would have been better and you would have putted a lot less effort to it. Lazy Programming is based on this simple rule :
Do all the work you can the earlier possible.

Work ? Do all the work ? Wasn't I supposed to talk about lazy programming ? Well I've never said it was going to be easy. But, the good thing is, we are programmers, we make programs to make people life simpler, ours in particulars. What brings me to the second rule, which is the logical continuation of the first in the lazy programmer world.
Do everything possible to not do the same work again.

Aah! Now that is cool! I hate doing the same work twice. So when I do something boring I want to make sure I won't be doing it again. So I write a batch file, a little program, anything that will automate my task the next time I want to do it again. Note that term that I used, automate, here's the golden rules of lazy programming :
  1. Automate
  2. Automate
  3. Automate some more

Your boss always asks you to do the fill the same boring document over and over again ? Automate! You end up testing your code more then you code ? Automate! You spend countless hours building and packaging the final release of your fabulous application ? Automate! Your girlfriend (or boyfriend) has dumped and your back hurts like hell ? Get some spleep.

In my next post, I'm going do talk more in details on how to automate and be a true lazy programmer.


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