You Want to be Good, Eh?

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>Hindu Prince Gautama Siddharta, founder of Buddhism, once said:

The mind is everything. What you think you become.

Another author whose name I no longer remember defined our individual character by the quality of our thoughts during our idle moments.  Our thoughts form the connecting thread that binds these two statements together.

When idle, what do you spend most of your time thinking about? At work? At home? If we use our thoughts as a scale against which we measure ourselves, how do we fair?

Devotion Indicator

If I spend all my time doing “big design up front” (BDUF), thinking about its ramifications, and dealing with its subtleties, it’s fair to expect that it’s what I’m going to be good at.  If I devote all my time working on UML diagrams and designing architectures, it will become one of my areas of expertise.  If I dedicate my concentration and focus on writing lots of code, my ability to pump out volumes of code will increase.  But, is this really what I want?

Quality Focus

Although some things aren’t worth dedicating our time and energies to, quality deserves our most tenacious focus.  Whether we’re focusing on quality code, quality user experiences, or performance as quality, maintaining a focus on quality leads to skill improvement in that area — “What you think you become.”

So, you want to be good, eh? Then focus on quality.  Study it.  Learn it.  Absorb it. You won’t build a remarkable product nor a purple cow without it.  With it, however, maybe you’ll build the next Amazon.

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