Friday, October 1, 2010

Buy that hardware

As a consultant, I am often faced with starting a new project and being assigned insufficient hardware.

And spending anything between 10 and 30% of your time watching an hourglass.

And having painful context switches when trying to do something else while waiting.

And accumulating neurosis.

My experience is that, most of the time, your complaints will not be heard. Or they will be taken care of 2 month later, when the damage will already be humongous.

I never understood why managers don't realize how vital it is that developers have top notch equipment. I assume that this is because all they do is IE, Word and Excel and they are never faced with running Eclipse, XMLSpy, Word, Firefox, OracleXE and a WebLogic Cluster on the same desktop.

Some of them come up with funny recommendations like "why do you code in Eclipse, you can use Notepad instead". Or "why can't you deploy your code to the integration box". Getting mad will lead you nowhere. Stay cool.
This is the way things work in IT. Nobody would ever recommend a surgeon to use a kitchen knife instead of a scalpel, but in IT everything can happen.

So, my only recommendation is: buy your own hardware and develop on it. You can buy a top box with the money you make in 2 days. Or your extra 4 GB RAM with half a day salary. You can still sell it at the end of the project.

No point in fighting windmills. Find your way around.

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