The Diabolical Developer: What You Need to Do to Become Awesome

Wearing sunglasses and quite possibly hungover, Martijn Verburg's evil persona provided key tips on how to be a Diabolical Developer. His presentation at TheServerSide Java Symposium was heavy on the sarcasm and provided lots of laughter. Martijn insisted that developers take their power back and get rid of all the "modern fluff" that distract developers.

He provided several key tips to become a Diabolical Developer:

*Learn only from yourself.
Don't read blogs or books, and don't attend conferences.
If you must go on forums, only do it display your superiority, answer as obscurely as possible.

*Work alone
Best coding happens when you alone in your room, lock yourself in for days.
Make sure you have a gaming machine in with you.

*Keep information to yourself
Knowledge is power. Think job security. Never provide documentation.

*Make sure only you can read your code.
Don't put comments in your code. Name your variables A,B,C....A1,B1, etc.
If someone insists you format your in a standard way, change a small section and revert it back as soon as they walk away from your screen.

*Stick to what you know
Stay on Java 1.3. Don't bother learning abstractions. Write your application in a single file. Stuff as much code into one class as possible, a 30,000-line class is fine. Makes it easier for you to read and maintain.

*Use Real Tools
No "fancy-pancy" IDEs. Real developers only use vi.

*Ignore Fads
The cloud is massively overhyped. Mobile is a big fad for young kids.
The big, clunky desktop computer (with a real keyboard) will return.
Learn new stuff only to pad your resume. Ajax is great for that.

*Skip Testing
Test-driven development is a complete waste of time. They sent men to the moon without unit tests.
Just write your code properly in the first place and you don't need tests.

*Compiled = Ship It
User acceptance testing is an absolute waste of time.

*Use a Single Thread
Don't use multithreading. All you need to do is throw more hardware at the problem.

*Don't waste time on SEO.
If you've written the contract correctly, you are paid for writing code, not attracting users.
You don't want a lot of users, they only report problems.

*Avoid meetings
Fake being sick to avoid meetings. If you are forced into a meeting, play corporate bingo.
Once you stand up and shout "bingo" you will kicked out of the meeting. Job done.

Follow these tips and you'll be well on your way to being a Diabolical Developer!


Thanks for posting this. I was torn on whether to go this session and am glad i got to read about it.

Posted by Jeanne Boyarsky on March 18, 2011 at 05:49 AM PDT #

I'm not sure if I'll ever be invited to speak at another conference, _ever_ :) Thanks to the awesome crowd who threw me loads of curveballs, I had a lot of fun. Cheers, The diabolical developer @karianna, @diabolicaldev, @java7developer

Posted by Martijn Verburg on March 18, 2011 at 06:30 AM PDT #

That was awesome! Especially the part about going to the moon without unit testing it.
The moment I start reading that classic image of a programmer growing roots came to my head

Posted by Eduardo Cantú on October 31, 2012 at 03:28 AM PDT #

I've been doubting very seriously whether this was a joke or real advices. At my work many of the "tips" showed on this presentation/post are followed, and these people are pretty sure that they are doing the right thing...

Posted by Anthony on December 14, 2012 at 02:45 AM PST #

I want to be free of diabolic

Posted by siyabongaguest on December 02, 2013 at 04:29 AM PST #

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