Vivek Haldar

A Programmer's Thanksgiving

(It’s Thanksgiving here in the US, and the peer pressure for counting your blessings finally got to me.)

The tribe of those who make their living by writing code has a lot to be thankful for. Here are some things, in no particular order.

(For the pedantic among you, yes, there are good days and bad days. Just prepend the phrase “by and large” to each of the following.)

  • There is a lot of work to be had. As with some other professions, we do not have to worry (yet) about a shrinking field.
  • It pays well enough to keep us on the higher rungs of Maslow’s pyramid.
  • We get to work with smart, enthusiastic, reasonable and passionate people.
  • We get to work on something that is intellectually stimulating.
  • Our work does not feel like work at all.
  • The tools and artifacts we make (the biggest example is the Web) fold around to become our creative and expressive outlets.
  • We build artifacts that are used by, and improve the lives of, many people.

If you look around today, there are very few professions for which all of the above are true (and I think the number is shrinking).

For all this, I am deeply grateful.