Lazy, Stupid, and Mean

The Art of Writing Defensive Documentation Always write as if your reader is lazy, stupid, and mean… My 9th grade English teacher gave me that piece of advice nearly twenty years ago, and it has shaped the way I’ve thought about writing ever since. Defensive DocumentationLet’s face it,…

Establishing a Documentation Strategy: A Practical Template

Prioritizing documentation can be a struggle at any organization but, in my personal experience, a well-crafted documentation strategy can make that struggle seem far less real. Included below is a template I have personally used to propose and promote good documentation standards in the past. While it is far from…

Writing a Damn Good README File

Raise your hand if you’ve ever read a README file. Now, keep that hand raised if you’ve ever written a README file. I’m going to take a shot in the dark and assume that your hand is still raised; at least, it’s raised in spirit, since…

# Always Be Commenting

As developers, we like to think of source code as a recipe. All the steps are written out, so understanding code is as simple as reading those steps. But that’s not the way it really works, is it? Programming is an art form, and programmers each have their own…

Good Code Is Subjective, Documentation Is Not

Last week, I had an interesting chat with a peer about the difficulty of finding a balance between using established standards and building proprietary solutions within development projects. Personally, I’m an advocate for utilizing established third-party solutions whenever possible as a way to reduce new developer onboarding time and…

I'm Not a Writer

And So Can You! For the better part of the last decade, being a software developer has been more than just my chosen career path. It’s been my identity. Honestly, if you had asked me before today what I do for a living (or what my favorite hobby is,…