The Greatest Thing About Coding Is That You Can Do It Alone

March 15, 2013 5:23 am

There is a reason why hackers are often compared to painters. In the past, before computers became mainstream, if you really had to ‘create’ something, you needed to depend on a lot of other people. This applied across the spectrum of things you could create: from making a small chair, to building a house. The only exception to this was art. You could write a play, or create a painting, all by yourself.

And then, computers came along. Suddenly there was something really valuable that you could do all by yourself. In many ways, it was just another form of art. But the advent of the commercial internet suddenly made selling easier as well – so now you could really make something on your own, and see people use it as well. (If you are interested in this tangent, you should read ‘It Is Never Too Late To Launch A Simple Website‘) – this is an immensely powerful idea, and the billions of connected devices around the planet have ensured that it gets more powerful every day.

The very idea that you could code up something all by yourself and either use it for yourself, or see hundreds,thousands or in some cases even millions use it – is extremely attractive to someone who is generally pained by the kind of things where he needs to depend on others to build stuff. Yes, when you code alone, you don’t need to convince someone of an approach – you don’t need to wait for approvals – you don’t need to ‘understand’ others and behave accordingly. But in reality, it is not the difficulties in working as a team – you might not even do it alone – that matters – but the fact that you can do it alone if you really want to – that is fundamental.

So that really is the secret nobody told you so far: The greatest thing about coding is that you can do it alone.

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