randyp

Please Do Not Feed The Code Monkey

2015-02-27 by CodeGrump

Greetings, my name is Randy Pensinger and I write software.

Currently (at time of writing) I'm on sabbatical after leaving my last company, Porch.com, a premier software startup in Seattle trying to create a "Love Your Home" web experience.

Come to think of it, I have only worked at software startups. Before Porch.com I worked at Opera Solutions, Gaikai, and Speedtax. I feel my work, usually as part of a team, has always been critical to a project's success, and I find that pressure fulfilling.

But working at software startups is risky business. Project failure is usually fatal for the company. Emotions run high as accounts dwindle. Even the most diligent work may not be enough.

Regardless of how your experience at your software startup ends, I have a tip to make the experience more satisfying: do not feed The Code Monkey.

Inside each of us exists The Code Monkey, god of degenerate programming. Eager to press the clicky black keys on the rigid keyboard, and eager to please The Boss Monkey, The Code Monkey furiously authors thousands of lines of code.

But The Code Monkey always misses the bigger picture. Too often The Code Monkey's focuses on shiny technologies, lacking merit and academic rigor. Too often The Code Monkey works alone in its cubicle, for individual gain.

Too often The Code Monkey forgets to be a highly evolved, thoughtful, social being.

However, hope was never lost. I restrain The Code Monkey with a strict diet of social programming, education, and honesty. Industry standards don't hurt me either, but I try to pioneer as well. With each startup I feed The Code Monkey less frequently, and I couldn't be happier.

So please, respect yourself and your fellow employees. Program with discipline, and above all, do not feed The Code Monkey.