To “Full Stack” or not, that is the question

By Ravi Suhag Dec 7th 2017
To “Full Stack” or not, that is the question

Skills you need to be a well-rounded developer—Here are a few techniques that will be instrumental in being a full stack, and kicking the do-one-thing-syndrome’s butt:

Today, we have an app or software to perform everyday tasks that you would have performed in an entirely different manner 10 years ago or couldn’t have even dreamt of doing. Software really is eating the world at an unprecedentedly fast pace. And that is great news for developers.

With businesses and individuals all over becoming increasingly reliant on technology, developers are the people who build things from the ground up and the demand for developers will only go up in the time to come. Almost every single industry is becoming more reliant on people who know how to write code. And with fast-changing technologies, there was never a better time to be a developer. Companies are now on the lookout for someone who can work on every layer of the development process and has the ability to extract insights from the massive data sets. The ability to think about the time to come and develop a product keeping in mind the various platforms and frameworks is also crucial for an up and rising developer.

For someone aspiring to be a developer, achieving the title of a “full stack developer” is probably the most coveted of them all. So, what does it take to be a developer proficient in all the tenets associated with developing and delivering a functional and finished product; How to be ‘full stack’?

Here are a few techniques that will be instrumental in being a full stack and kicking the do-one-thing-syndrome’s butt:

The Mindset:

The general perception of a ‘full stack developer’ is someone with specialized knowledge in all stages of product development and is capable of delivering a finished product. So a full stack developer would be writing APIs to build application software while also designing cool interfaces. However, being full stack is not just about the skillset you have but also about your mindset. It’s about how passionate you are about developing the product and how intrigued you are about finding out what it takes to deliver a complete working system. The desire to be full stack arises from one’s need to solve real world problems, not from a necessity to land a job with a certain pay packet or title.

The Approach:

One’s approach to becoming an all-round developer should always be about learning the fundamentals. A UI designer is not just concerned about developing his skills in using Sketch or Photoshop but about learning how his interface will help the people he/she is designing it for. Similarly, being a full stack developer is not about learning all the programming languages under the sun but it’s about understanding how various tenets of code will come together in a finished product. Learning any new language will then become a mere means to end – a part of the process and not the process itself.

Being full stack is not just about learning as many languages and frameworks as possible but about how these new languages and tech will help you build reliable software.

Action:

So for now, the best way to go about achieving the goal of becoming a ‘full stack developer’ is to start building something. It’s about building whatever idea may be in your mind with a confident start, all the while looking for inspiration in the works of others. It’s about learning to stop thinking about frontend and backend as disparate entities but as part of one idea and product in the making. Now, once you have the first iteration of your idea, get feedback from the people who are good at it or maybe even the end users of your intended product itself. Lastly, always keep learning. Learn to work with up and coming technologies and how to draw insights from available data. Everyone wants to learn, but not to study. So, do study.

Conclusion:

The art of being full stack is about dreaming more than others think practical. Exploring all that you can and imagine to be, and giving it a try. At the end of the day, being full stack is not merely about being a diligent professional or being best at everything you do, but about enjoying the process of building something you care about and love doing. It’s about learning something new every other day, even from places you would least expect to.

The author is product engineer at GO-JEK

Disclaimer: This article is published as part of the IDG Contributor Network. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the contributing authors and not of IDG Media and its editor(s).

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