How to C.A.R.E about software projects?

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We, software developers, tend to have some bias towards cutting edge technologies and, in a perfect world, we’d only use them. It’s efficiency driven so that’s great but sometimes we forget that the code we write is written first to benefit the human and only second for a computer to understand.

And that’s why we should C.A.R.E. about things we do. And C.A.R.E stand for:

Communication
Assumptions
Requirements
Expectations

Communication

Some people may think that the job of the software engineer is just to write code. However, the fact is, a big chunk of our time is spent dealing with other people. So, even if writing code is the part of your job you love the most you still have to communicate.

Communication is tightly coupled with other three.communication.png

Starting with…

Assumptions

We all make them otherwise, we’ll never have anything done. The problem here is that what’s common sense to you doesn’t always have to be a common sense for someone else. So it’s wise to communicate assumptions you are making.
And it may be clever to do some fact checking by asking yourself “How do I know this?” before starting to work on something and make sure you are making the same assumptions as everybody else.

Requirements

From assumptions, you can go back and forth to requirements. This refers usually to customer requirements that are one way or another communicated to you. You are supposed to capture them and translate them into an app. Unfortunately, they may be for example vague or inconsistent. If you can’t answer the fundamental question: “What do I have to do?” how are you supposed to do that?

Expectations

expectationsRequirements are often customers expectations but those aren’t always the same. And not only your customer have expectations. You have ones. Your manager does. And same goes for everybody else you collaborate with. The main point here is to what others expect from you and explain what you expect from them.

C.A.R.E.

When we collaborate with others we have great opportunities and great challenges. And if we remember about those four simple words we’ll deliver not only a well-written code but also take C.A.R.E.¬†of a successful outcome of the project we work on and make other people happy.

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