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Being Geek by Michael Lopp – A must read for software developers

January 3rd, 2011

My Review
This is one of those books that should be read by software developers in particular. Just like the subtitle, this is 100% – The Software Developer’s Career Handbook.
It’s not a programming guide book, but definitely one that is full of valuable advices and facts for your career advancement, if you intend to stay in software development.
I would have appreciated if I got to read this very much earlier, but it’s better late than never.
If you do not have an elder sibling in software development that could give you advice on how to progress in your career or what’s in store in the world of software development, this book is definitely for you.
The author, Michael Lopp, is/was a software developer with many years of experience, in various companies. He started writing about software development and various topics in his popular blog Rands In Repose.
Most of the content in this book is a compilation of the writings from his blog.

Summary
Michael has split the content into a few chapters that you can read individually, and to provide all the experience and facts he had gathered for your own decision-making.

Software Developer Career
How to actively engage and perform better in an interview. Identification of the different types of people who you can have a better interview with certain strategies.
Negotiation of a salary and how it should be calculated.
In the end of the chapter though, the love of what you do is still important as your career is your business and nobody else.

Management
According to Michael Lopp, everyone is a manager. Every manager is different but a manager should have 1:1 or 1 to 1 session with every subordinate.
Find out what type of meetings you should participate and which that you can skip, and would not jeopardize yourself.
Like the chain of command, the chain or flow of information and decisions should be strictly followed in any organization to ensure flawless communication.
Again, the author is able to identify the few types of managerial personalities that you can relate to.
There are also a few personalities when it comes to a knee jerk (change) situation.
Team building, including introducing games and ways to keep the group doing things well.

Understanding Nerds
Only a geek or nerd knows what it really is to be a nerd. Some of the personalities of a nerd include having control issues, building himself in a cave, loves toys and puzzles, has an amazing appetite for information, builds an annoyingly efficient relevancy engine (the part that I liked most), and according to the author, is fucking funny.

Looking for the next Gig
Considering your next career move? Again some valuable tips for the interview and also your performance or yearly review.
And before you do jump into your next gig, some questions to consider before actually making the jump. Are you going to a startup or established company? A branded corporation? Development or Managerial?
The author has valuable insights for such questions leaving the decision making entirely up to you, making them informed decisions.

Conclusion
Yes, this post is summarized because being a geek/nerd will automatically extract relevancy from any given piece of incoming information.
So if you’re a geek, Being Geek is surely for you.

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