Avoid Zealotry

In the software development world, most of the people you run across fall into one of two camps:

1. Anti-Microsoft Zealots – if Microsoft makes it, it’s not worth using. These are the people you talk to who are constantly talking about how terrible Windows Vista is. But, when you get to talking to them you discover that they have never even touched the operating system for themselves.

2. Microsoft Fan-Boys – if Microsoft makes it, it’s the best product ever conceived. These are the people that bought the Zune the day it came out. You see a lot of these people hanging out around conferences. They would never consider looking at a product competing with one from Microsoft.

I started out my career in the first camp, and slowly made the transition to the second. But, dear programmer, I tell you there is a better way. Don’t either accept or reject a product on name alone. Read reviews from people whose word you trust, but TRY THE PRODUCT FOR YOURSELF! Keep an open mind. Try different things out. In the end, it will make you a better programmer by expanding your sphere of knowledge and giving you a wider variety of tools that you can then use to solve future problems.

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