Don’t be distracted by Influencers

This week, I had more free time than usual as I’m nearing the end of a long-running project with a client. With my schedule less cluttered, I decided to take advantage of the opportunity and explore some talks on software development best practices.

While going through a couple of videos, I came across a dichotomy where one influencer suggesting that we run all tests on developer’s machine to receive feedback as early as possible in the SDLC. At first, this idea really sounded compelling to me as this would be the best possible way to get the feedback as soon as possible.

[Read: How to print all the attributes of a dom element in Playwright]

Immediately after this video, I listened another talk and by coincidence both of these talks were on the same subject.

The next influencer was suggesting that we should not be doing a mistake by relying on human. Humans are prone to do mistake, or many times we human intentionally do mistake to rush for an objective. This is very prevalent among software professionals as well, generally developers tend to skip the test to merge their code. This influencer suggested that, we should only rely on machine for such activities which are critical to the process. He was advocating that, all the tests should run in CI pipeline and merge their code only when tests are green.

Well, both of these talks were interesting until you listened to both of them. I do agree that we should run the tests at the earliest possible stage of development process but at the same time, there is another point as well that we can’t rely on human to do something repetitively.

One more time, I learnt a lesson from these two talks that don’t blindly follow the influencers. You don’t even discuss these ideas in publicly until you have firsthand experience with them.

Initially, the ideas suggested by these so-called influencers may sound compelling and well-informed until you delve deeper into the subject.

Don’t adopt their ideas blindly.

There is fair possibility that, there could be differences in the situation where these ideas can be employed. You may have a difference in culture, people and way of working and probably their experience may not be the best fit for you. So better, you assess them thoroughly before making any decision based on their experiences.

What to do in such cases?

You should keep following these influencers, because they widen your knowledge with different perspectives. But you should not be a blind follower of them.

You should assess their ideas, if they fail in your case and you should fail fast. Remember change is the only thing which is constant, so you should be open for change until you don’t get the best result.

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