The Boulder is Chasing Me Down the Hill
October 5, 2015
Last week, Tim Kadlec published an article on his site called The Fallacy of Keeping Up. Tim addresses a hot topic among front-end developers today, “how can we keep up with all the new standards and techniques that define our craft?” I wrestle with that issue constantly. In fact, last week I had a conversation with a former colleague about that very topic. I have read several other articles in the last year about it.
I have 3 takeaways from Tim‘s article:
- Focus on the core
- It is okay not to be on the bleeding edge
- Nobody is keeping up (we are all in the same boat)
Of these three takeaways, I wanted to take some time to share some thoughts on the first one.
Focus on the Core
As Tim points out in his article, having a solid understanding of the core helps you determine which tool in the toolbox works the best for the particular problem. For some problems, a framework would be best to use. For others, just using the core.
David Bushell wrote an excellent article earlier this year, I don’t do Angular, is that OK? One of the things I really liked about the article is that David states that he knows his core very well. It is from that core knowledge that he has made a decision not to do Angular right now. But if he did not have that core knowledge, he could not make the informed decision that he has.
I recently watched Rachel Andrew talk, The Business of Front-End Development. She addresses the need for today’s developers to be strong in the core. She has been amazed at how many today do not understand how to code the core without the help of frameworks and pre-processors.
Where the Rubber Meets the Road
- Tim mentioned Susan Robertson’s article, Overwhelmed by Code. This is a good read with practical advice on how to go from being overwhelmed to coming up with a plan to add to your skillset.
- I have not had a chance to listen to it yet, but I have heard good things about The Web Ahead Episode 104. Rachel Andrew is the guest and she talks the topic of building your skills and focusing on the core.