Developer Superstition

Maybe you’ve heard the old “reboot your machine and see if it works”.

I know I have… many times.

Don’t do it. To me this is equivalent to giving up on your problem-solving ability and a potential opportunity to learn something. Basically, “I can’t figure this out. Reboot and maybe it will magically start working.”

Ok, so there’s no real consequence to rebooting your dev machine… but are you going to do this in prod? What if there are other applications on the machine, now all victim to your careless superstition? Computers aren’t magical beings with feelings that affect how they react to input. They’re pretty deterministic, and things tend to be pretty repeatable with a given state and input.

If you wouldn’t do that in prod, then why settle in your dev environment? Take the time to understand the underlying problem. If you understand it, you might be able to prevent it from happening later, in prod, when it matters. Never skip a chance to learn something… and remember that every time you give up and reboot, a very cute and innocent puppy dies.

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