2 Oct 2022
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Software Development Diversity: Blending Education & Experience

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By Tyrone Showers
Co-Founder Taliferro


With the number of software development jobs increasing yearly and the demand for developers growing, there's never been a better time to be in IT. The only problem is that developers don't all come from the same background. Many programmers today learn their trade online without university degrees or professional experience. Others went to school and got degrees in computer science before they started working as an architect - but what makes one type better than another?

Good architecture is one where the person who works on it knows what they're doing.

It's not just about design—it's about solving problems. If you don't know what you're doing, your architecture will be wrong and, therefore, useless for anyone else.

Software development has never been a linear process

It's a learning curve that goes up and down, with plenty of people falling off the mountain. This is why developers need to evaluate their work constantly and take on projects outside of their comfort zone.

Nothing is perfect, but we can always strive to improve our processes or the quality of our products. The best developers are constantly learning and adapting. They've worked through all sorts of problems, failed at solving them multiple times (or even worse—not solved them), learned from others' mistakes, and adopted new approaches based on their experiences.

Many new developers learn software architecture online without any academic background

It's a common misconception that software architecture is a subject you can learn in a classroom. The truth is that software architecture is a skill that's learned over time through experience and study.

You might be thinking: "Okay, but how do I go about learning this particular skill?" Well, there are many ways to learn software architecture—the most effective manner for me was by reading books and blogs.

Software developers with only an academic background often feel they need work experience to identify the pain points experienced by real-life users.

Whether an academic background is better than a more practical one is often debated. Some developers believe that an educational background provides the foundation for developing high-quality software, while others believe practical experience is key to solving problems.

In reality, both backgrounds are equally essential and can be used together to design suitable architectures. Academic architecture tends to be more conceptual, while experience-based architecture tends to be more practical. Academic architecture has a strong background in theory, while experience-based architecture has solid real-world experience. Experience-based architecture is more practical, while academic architecture is more theoretical.

Finding someone with a solid academic background and work experience is very hard, but that's what you should try to find. The best of both worlds would be if you could hire someone from each camp.

It's essential to understand the needs of real-life users because they can help inform the design process and ensure it's in line with what people want. You should take time to identify the pain points experienced by these users and look at how they are currently trying to solve those problems themselves (if at all).


If there's one thing I want you to take away from this article, it's that there are many different types of software developers, each with their own strengths and weaknesses. So don't be afraid to hire someone who isn't necessarily an expert in every area - they might surprise you.

Tyrone Showers