[BangPypers] Responding to people who lack the curiosity

Kiran Jonnalagadda jace at pobox.com
Sat Jun 13 12:37:42 CEST 2009

2009/6/12 Srijayanth Sridhar <srijayanth at gmail.com>:
> I don't doubt that its a global phenomenon, however, I am still curious
> about the reasons for its prevalence out here.

I will add my little theory to this discussion.

If you are from a middle class background with no appetite for
entrepreneurial risk, but want a better life than your parents did, there
are few professional career options.

Doctor? Architect? Lawyer? They require dedicating a serious chunk of your
life and are one-way streets. But programmer... excuse me, software
developer? By gosh, a big company will make a software developer out of
anyone in just three months, plus you get to go abroad and settle down. If
it doesn't work, no big deal. You didn't invest five years and half your
parents' savings to realise that.

Ergo, we get a lot of people trying out to be programmers but not entirely
sure this is what they want, and bringing in that one key habit that got
them through life: when you need to know something, ask someone.

You have a leak in your bathroom and need a plumber? Ask someone if they
know a good plumber! Whoever heard of the yellow pages?

And the same thing online. Need help? Ask someone! They say there are these
things called mailing lists where knowledgeable people hang out? Go there
and ask someone!

Does this mean they are mindless? No. It means they simply haven't had the
incentive to understand how this stuff works. They are not trying to be good
programmers. They're trying to have good careers with respect to the visible
hierarchy around them.

Someone actually had the same problem and the answer is recorded in web
pages, which one can discover by typing key phrases into a search engine?
Gee, what a novel concept! Whoever knew search engines could be used for
anything more than popular keywords?

Kiran Jonnalagadda
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