· software-development

Good Lazy and Bad Lazy

One of the things I remember picking up from reading The Pragmatic Programmer is that developers need to be lazy in order to find better ways to solve problems and I came across a post by Philipp Lensson from a few years ago where he also suggests good developers are lazy and dumb.

Something which I’ve come to realise more recently is that it’s not necessarily true that being lazy as a developer is always a good thing - it depends in what way you are being lazy because there are certainly good and bad ways in which you can express your laziness!

I think bad laziness is often linked to the path of least resistance and is where we just take the easiest route to solving our problem without necessarily considering whether that solution fits in with the way the code is being written or the problems that we might have later as a result of our approach.

I’ve noticed (by doing most of them!) that there are some fairly common ways that we can fall into this trap:

I’m sure there are more but these are just some of the ones that come to mind.

In most of these cases the laziness actually comes from not really spending a lot of time thinking about what we are actually trying to do - we just picked the simplest approach that came to mind.

On the other hand if we take the time to think when we have problems to solve we can still come up with ways to be lazy but do so in a positive way.

I think the key to good lazy is that we get longer term benefits from this laziness as compared to bad lazy where we might get some immediate benefits but will probably suffer later on as a result of that.

Again I’m sure there are more of these and I’m still striving to make sure that when I’m lazy it’s in the second category rather than the first.

  • LinkedIn
  • Tumblr
  • Reddit
  • Google+
  • Pinterest
  • Pocket