Rockstar Programming

A couple months ago I joined a new company. They are a management consulting firm. So of course they let everyone get business cards. The idea is that you would hand out your business cards to prospective clients and get new business for the firm. I thought I would apply to get some business cards of my own even though I am a programmer. I thought I would choose a title of “Rock Star Programmer”. The other choice I was mulling over was “Programming Rock Star”. The firm let’s you choose the title line for the business card. They do say that they will reject inappropriate titles. I figure my official title is just too boring for a business card. So I might need to get some authorization for the funky title.

Here is the kicker. I am not going to run out and get new business for our firm. I am going to write tight code and keep the customer happy on my current project. The only reason I am going to get business cards is to give to my friends and family. Yeah they will only cost the company 20 bucks. But there will be a lot of perceived good will on their part if they move ahead and give me the Rock Star title on the card. Now whether or not I am actually a programming rock star is a different story. I am, in fact, not a programming rock star.

I did a little research on the programming rock star phenomenon. I found the best description of such an individual at ReadWriteWeb. There was a post there by Alex Iskold. He said the rock star programmer:

  • Loves to code
  • Gets things done
  • Refactors code
  • Uses design patterns
  • Writes tests
  • Uses existing code
  • Is concerned with usability
  • Writes maintainable code
  • Can code in any language
  • Knows computer science
I score about a 6 out of 10 on this scale. Unfortunately that is still a failing mark. That is not a crime. It just means I am not a rock star programmer. However only the chosen few can honestly claim the title. I just slowly work on improving my skill set. And I think it would be fun to have a business card that falsely labels me a rock star.