The IT business is changing and developing rapidly. As a developer, it requires a lot of effort to keep up with the latest technology. When I look at my own situation, being an ASP.NET developer, I often think about becoming a ‘better’ developer and what steps I need to take to keep up with the constantly changing and evolving IT business.
Step 1: Start listening to Podcasts
Since 2 years I’ve started listening to technology podcasts (.NET Rocks, Hanselminutes, Herding Code, Security Now! and The Stackoverflow Podcast). I have quite a long commute (2,5 hours per day, depending on the traffic it might be up to 4 hours) so listening to podcasts is a nice distraction when being stuck in a traffic jam.
Step 2: Start reading Blogs
About the same time I started listening to podcasts, I’ve subscribed to several blogs using Google Reader. My normal working day starts with reading some blog posts. By doing this I learn a lot about new technologies, and what people are working on.
Step 3: ‘Adopt’ a open source project
By taking the two steps I’ve described above, I feel much more up-to-date with what’s going on in the world of technology. Still I feel something is missing.
After reading an inspiring blog post by Phil Haack, I came to the conclusion that I am ready to take the ‘next step’. In this post, Phil talks about a person who contacted him and asked how he [Phil] became such a successful developer and what steps he had taken to become who he is now. A quote from his blog post:
If one thing in my career has paid dividends, it was getting involved with open source projects. It exposed me to such a diverse set of problems and technologies that I wouldn’t normally get a chance to work on at work.
Perhaps it is a good idea to look around and see what there is and what seems interesting to me.
In the following blog posts I will be discussing several open source project which of one I will probably adopt.