Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Go on, ask.

I think we've all been there, spending a couple of days battling with an SDK to get it to do something slightly different, something slightly leftfield. Something slightly risqué.

We keep battling away, Googling and re-Googling, heading further into the SDK's proverbial dusty corners, not knowing if the classes and methods that we're searching for will even do the job.

And then finally we crack and ask someone for help.

What do we expect to get from asking?

Someone to tell us that we just need to call the Foo::Bar() method?

If we're lucky this is exactly what will happen.

If we're less lucky we'll be told to explore another dusty crevice requiring further Google action.

But most likely, we'll be given some advice that will help us to look at the problem in a different way:
Perhaps we don't need the gui to do that funky trick, and it would actually be far move user friendly if it behaved in another, more standard way.
Perhaps we shouldn't try and make that library function totally generic and rewriting it to solve a specific issue is perfectly acceptable.

Whatever happens, we shouldn't see asking for help as a weakness, but rather as an opportunity to better ourselves by learning from our peers.

1 comment:

Tom Gaulton said...

And then when you find the answer, document (preferably in the original API if you have access to it) to help the next programmer who gets stuck :)