All too often I encounter a situation similar to the following.
I tried [someThing] and it didn’t work well for me. I don’t think [someThing] is the ultimate answer to [someProblem].
This is always annoying because the person that’s doing the denouncing doesn’t know what the hell they’re talking about. Yet they feel empowered to make these authoritative pronouncements and they even have the gall to do it from a position of power. That power being alleged real-life experience with [someThing]. “I am speaking from experience and that experience is validating my claim!”
Shut the fukk up.
First of all, all they did was read a blog post or a couple of tweets about some discipline and made a half-assed attempt at doing it for themselves. They fukked it all up and then started complaining that it doesn’t work. Or at least that it doesn’t work for them. And by extension then it stands to reason that it doesn’t work for everyone and in all cases.
This person is nowhere near qualified enough to make any statements (either good or bad) about [someThing] because they don’t know enough about it.
There’s this common belief that every person is an expert on his or herself. That the one subject of which they know for sure is themselves. Well, given their poor knowledge regarding [someThing], I say that they don’t know enough about [someThing] to even know if it will work for their own selves. I reject, completely, their ability to even make judgements about their very selves regarding [someThing].
Again, the reason why is very simple: you don’t know what the hell you’re talking about with regards to [someThing].
Before you can form an educated opinion, you have to actually learn the material in question and you fumbling around on your own with [someThing] doesn’t count.
You cannot just read a book, or a few blog posts, or an article or two about [someThing] and then just think you can do it and do it well. You need both practical application and guidance/mentoring until you have a firm grasp on it.
Now with that being said, online training definitely counts as a bonafide source. This includes, but is not limited to, online schooling and video courses. Places like Pluralsight, Coursera, and CleanCoders are all wonderful learning resources.
I also think that even if you bought a book and that book had a very active and lively discussion forum where you can discuss the ideas and concepts therein, this too would count as a valid learning source.
However, this is assuming that you are actively applying what you learn to real projects and not just passively watching or reading. It also assumes that you have access to the teacher/writer/presenter to have your questions answered.
The point being that you need to be applying what you’re learning in real coding projects and you need to have your designs challenged.
You’re going to have questions and you need those questions answered by those who know that they’re talking about. You cannot just make up answers for yourself based on what you think.
You need your thoughts challenged and you need to challenge the things that you encounter that sound outrageous to you.
The key to it all though, is that you need someone who actually knows the path and that someone isn’t you.