Thomas James Just a geek.

Technology, Gadgetry, Photography and Software Development

Being Wrong

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One of my favourite ways to spend my time on short flights between Brisbane and Melbourne, which I do monthly for work, is to catch up on the recent TED talks.

A recent one I watched was Kathryn Schulz: On being wrong, it got me thinking about how that applies to software development and the challenges we face when designing, build and maintaining software.

In an abstract way, software development is all about being wrong until you are right, then moving on to being wrong again. This is a process we repeat, or at least those of us interested in continuous self improvement, almost daily. Every time we start out we are wrong, we problem solve, get it wrong a few times and then finally get the solution and then go on to the next challenge in the project.

Software development “best practice” moves so quickly that what is considered good practice in the industry today is probably going to be considered harmful tomorrow. Our thought leaders, those that are respected and trusted, are all too happy to come out and say that they were wrong, new information, new ideas, new technology, we are living in a changing world so this could be considered common sense, but as most of us know, it isnt all too common.

Unfortunately, as Kathryn says in her talk, we live in a world that looks down on being wrong, rather than a way for us to learn and grow.

I’m proud to be wrong, because it means there is always something for me to learn and challenge everyone to accept that you will be wrong, get over it and start growing from it.

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