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Discussion Starter #1
I am a software developer and an INFP and I am interested in meeting other INFPs who either were involved in the industry or are still involved as a developer.

My experiences have been very interesting. I really love Object Oriented Programming. But I have had a very hard time trying to develop a career.

From what I understand INFP is fairly rare in software development. I have had a hard time getting buy in for my software and my approach from management or from my co-workers. I am not very good at developing algorithms. But I am very good at OOP. I often hear the complaint that my architectures are too complicated or simply too difficult to understand.

I would really like to hear from others.
 

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Hello Patrick, I am in that business. I love the logical side of programming. I hate the people side of it. If I could just do the logical side that would be great. And yes, not many INFP's would even want to do this kind of work. People can get very aggressive in this business with competition and trying to outdo others. That is very though on the INFP, it is for me anyway. I would love to talk to you and compare notes. I am currently writing most of my programs in VB.net and love any object oriented programming. But I have done the inline coding too and that is fun but a different mindset than the OOP. But over the years I have used many different languages. Which ones are you currently using?
 

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I wrote before about how I think INFPs make the best programmers: INFP Programmers*


I think for INFP's the best career is not finding a dayjob, but starting startups, this is a good read: What Business Can Learn from Open Source

It basically comes down to the fact we *hate* working under a manager; we just hate being told what to do and being confined to a schedule.

If you work on your own startup, you get two things:

- You get to be your own boss
- You got to do what you love

And as a side effect, you might end up getting rich .. (but that's not the main point really, imho).

Another great read is Hackers and Painters.

---

* I don't know why that link is being a bitch ..
 

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God help you guys, haha! I'm in the game industry, although I am more on the art and design side of things than I am programming. I do have some experience in it though. My question is how do you put up with it? Searching pages for an error to find all you did was miss a comma isn't my idea of a good time ;D
 

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It's certainly not fun if you have absolutely no sense of ownership in the project you're working on.

If you're in the zone/flow, then finding that error is not as bad as it seems.

Plus I actually prefer dynamic languages like python/ruby over static ones like C/C++/Java/C#
 

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I would agree with all posts.

Hasenj, I read your post on INFP making the best programmers. I think we can be very good if we commit ourselves.

I do have a startup company. It has been running for over a year now, and I am completing work on an RIA RAD tool. It is written in JavaScript.

Blue Butterfly, I have read some of your posts and I agree with you. I feel very strongly that software can have beauty and that it can be sensed. It is so nice to hear that from a fellow programmer. I have also done work primarily in C++.

The reason why I started this post is because I am very concerned for the software industry. IMO The industry is not very will equipped to deal with complexity.

I am also very concerned for people like us in the industry. The industry does not know what to do with INFPs. We don't fit the mold. Our approach to solving problems has become alien to the industry.

I think the two are related. I think that in order to solve the complexity problem, the industry needs to realize that our approach is absolutely necessary.

I have a blog at:

www dot organicprogramming dot blogspot dot com.

I am at the moment trying to engage the software community and make them aware of an INFP approach. I am trying to make this approach legitimate. I call it Organic Programming.

On the other hand, I am trying to contact INFP developers to make them aware of this amazing skill I think they might have, and how much the industry really needs it.

I am speaking as if I know what I am talking about. I can only speak from my own experiences. I have never met another INFP developer and it would be really nice to compare notes.

pdooley at itkunst dot com
 

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I'm currently programming an augmented reality tool for primary school children. They have to search for 3d objects in their surroundings and send it back into time to help someone. It's quite an easy job with processing/JAVA.

Other programming experience includes actionscript 3.0, others are ASP and PHP but they are not much fun.
 

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Actually if you real Paul Graham, I think he might be INFP, and his writings seem to have very positive effects on the startup scene.

For example let me quote this from hackers and painters:

For example, I was taught in college that one ought to figure out a program completely on paper before even going near a computer. I found that I did not program this way. I found that I liked to program sitting in front of a computer, not a piece of paper. Worse still, instead of patiently writing out a complete program and assuring myself it was correct, I tended to just spew out code that was hopelessly broken, and gradually beat it into shape. Debugging, I was taught, was a kind of final pass where you caught typos and oversights. The way I worked, it seemed like programming consisted of debugging.

For a long time I felt bad about this, just as I once felt bad that I didn't hold my pencil the way they taught me to in elementary school. If I had only looked over at the other makers, the painters or the architects, I would have realized that there was a name for what I was doing: sketching. As far as I can tell, the way they taught me to program in college was all wrong. You should figure out programs as you're writing them, just as writers and painters and architects do.
Does this sound at all like what you think of as "organic" programming?

Perhaps Steve Jobs is also an xNFP, seeing how Apple really cares about industrial design and the feel of their products (F) and the incredible amount of innovations (NP).
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Dear hasenj,

I will look into Paul Graham. It certainly is sounds like he could be. Did you have a chance to read a few of the articles on my blog? Thanks for the lead.

Dear BabblinBrook,

Have you worked with OOP to any great extent? When I discovered it, I fell in love with it. Has anybody else experienced this. (I am going back 15 years).

Patrick.
 

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Count me in as one of those strange INFP code monkeys that the industry in general doesn't seem to be entirely sure what to do with.

The biggest difference I see in my personal experience between myself and other non-INFP devs is not necessarily in methodology or approach to problem solving, but more that programmers in general tend to be very detail oriented, step by step, methodical people in general. Myself, not so much. I am constantly all over the place, both at the project level and at the code level. I don't necessarily always see the point in stopping by point B on the way from A -> C just because that's the "logical" progression of things or a time honored tradition. Sometimes A -> C requires a stop by Q and Y, forget B. This tends to drive other code monkeys, and especially project leads, a little bit batty. But, the other side of that coin is, my code is almost always delivered as required, on time and working, and those I've worked with eventually accept my "style" and let me do my own thing.

Don't really have much more to add at this point, but will be watching this thread to see what others have to say.
 

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Dear IDCynic,

I think I can relate to that. We use a more holistic approach.

I remember once giving an update to my manager and I had to draw about 20 different classes on the board to display what I still had to do.

He would always respond with "you are working outside your complexity level". I never knew what he was talking about.

Where somebody might have 5 classes, I would typically have 60 classes.

My approach tends to break all the rules. I tend to touch way too many files when adding a feature. I am constantly reworking the code to incorporate a better understanding of the problem domain.

You my friend could be an OP in waiting.

Patrick.
 

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Dear BabblinBrook,

Have you worked with OOP to any great extent? When I discovered it, I fell in love with it. Has anybody else experienced this. (I am going back 15 years).

Patrick.
Hi Patrick. Sorry to say, but I haven't really worked with classes all that much, kinda tried to avoid it actually when working with Actionscript, it seemed a bit circuitous. I don't mind a bit of chaos; I can find my way around.

I like programming every now and then, but I have to say that my passion does not really lie at programming. I just like to understand how to build programs and I think I am quite a quick learner. I know it's going to be helpful for me working in arts and visual design. Processing is definitely something I'd like to explore a bit more, next step might be OpenFrameworks.
 
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Okay so break my theory:laughing:

I think there is still some validity to the theory. I used to hate programming until I got into Object Oriented Programming. Then I never looked back. Perhaps it is not for everybody though.

When done right - programming is an Art. There is no doubt. I enjoy it so much because I am creating something that is beautiful and functional . It may be something worth looking into.

One of the reasons I started this thread is because I was hoping I could connect with people like me who were programming but really hated it. I want to show them that there is a side to it that is amazing, but only really applicable for INFPs. I also think there is a real financial opportunity here. If you can master OOP, then I think you could really make a lot of money - because very few people in the industry really know how to do it. I think there are very few INFPs in the industry.

If I have my way, that will eventually change.
 

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I love the OOP way of developing. One programmer can create the dll file and others can use it directly or inherit it into their own class. There is endless possibilities and advantages with reusing objects. I would never want to go back to inline programming.

By the way are you hiring programmers? Just send me a project of any kind and can write a program to accomplish the task.

I have visual studio 2010 on my home computer so I can write anything from windows apps to internet apps as will as database apps. And cell phone apps too by the way.
 

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God help you guys, haha! I'm in the game industry, although I am more on the art and design side of things than I am programming. I do have some experience in it though. My question is how do you put up with it? Searching pages for an error to find all you did was miss a comma isn't my idea of a good time ;D
That is the part that makes my heart beat with joy. I love nothing more than to have a bug in a program then to work searching for it. It is sheer joy to fix the problem then see the program run without a bug.

That part that is torture for me is setting in these awful meetings with the users trying to drag out of them what they need the program to do. Most often they are clueless as to what they want to program to do. Then I am left with the responsibility to ask them questions to get them thinking. And some people are not very good with thinking.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
It is not my intent to debate software methodologies. Only to point out that I believe we are very well suited for OOP.

At the moment I am not looking to hire anybody. But if there is someone out there that can do what I can do, then I definitely want to keep in touch with that person.
 

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I did SQL/MSSQL database programming for about 10 years. I was Oracle Certified and worked with .NET mostly at my last job.

I never really loved programming just because I WAS so different from everyone else. Other people seemed so logical in their approach, whereas I threw myself in the sandbox and figured things out.

My code always worked out, but I never got the feeling that I was a "natural" at developing as the other guys were. It's almost like the managers and other developers communicated on a different wavelength then me.

Over time, I became more structured and adapted to their world. However, the routine of what the office life entails never jived with me. Maybe if you can work from home and be your own boss an INFP could make this life work. For me, it was not just the job but the work environment that goes along with it.
 

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@PatrickJL:

Yea I wasn't trying to debate.

Only to point out that I believe we are very well suited for OOP.
I would generalize that to high level stuff. I like working with ideas and abstractions; that's why I build layers of abstraction (sometimes using OOP).

The point is, I want the high level function to be short and sweet and succinct.

I also love to use a lot of functional programming concepts.

@timn421:

I was Oracle Certified and worked with .NET mostly at my last job.
ew .. that's the boring end of programming. I hate databases and enterprisey systems.

I never really loved programming just
I'm not surprised then ..

Maybe if you can work from home and be your own boss an INFP could make this life work. For me, it was not just the job but the work environment that goes along with it.
Exactly!! Same here.

That's why we work better in a startup (specially ones we found) or doing consulting work.
 

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...I never really loved programming just because I WAS so different from everyone else. Other people seemed so logical in their approach, whereas I threw myself in the sandbox and figured things out.

My code always worked out, but I never got the feeling that I was a "natural" at developing as the other guys were. It's almost like the managers and other developers communicated on a different wavelength then me.

Over time, I became more structured and adapted to their world. However, the routine of what the office life entails never jived with me. Maybe if you can work from home and be your own boss an INFP could make this life work. For me, it was not just the job but the work environment that goes along with it.
I can relate. I was a dot NET web developer for 4 years, and in other languages for 3 years before that. Programming was my passion. I still regret leaving it because I really enjoyed creating web apps. I also enjoyed the camaraderie of working as part of a team and always learning new things, and the job security. But towards the end, I was working long hours in front of a computer with no human contact, on large projects with tight deadlines. I felt like a machine. It just wore me down to the point where I switched careers to technical writing (had a lot of the same negatives as programming) and then application support (a much better job for me).

I felt the same way as you. I never felt like I fit in because I couldn't program as quickly as everyone else. I always felt second best and like I had to work harder than everyone else. It wasn't that I didn't know how to program. I was just easily distracted. I loved to delve into new technologies or languages or apps and just figure out how they work or figure out why something didn't work.

I do a lot of troubleshooting now in app support (for our internally developed apps). I can help with some issues but if it requires a programming fix, I am the communication link between the users and the developers. I am always learning because the apps I support are always changing. No long term projects. And I get to be a hero every 30 minutes. :happy:
 
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