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Ask Slashdot: Are 'Rock Star' Developers a Necessity? 356

An anonymous reader writes "Do you think so called 'rock star' developers are necessary at every company? Personally, I don't think so, and I equate it to not needing a college degree to work at Walmart. If you give every problem a complexity value from 1 to 10, and your problems never get higher than a 6 or 7, do you need people capable of solving the 10s? I work for a large software company and I'd rate myself a 7. There are more technically proficient developers, but I don't have an ego about my work, I work well with coworkers and customers, and I bring people up around me. Most 'rock stars' I've seen have been difficult to work with. Most of them are no longer with the company because they were terminated or quit for more money. Is this usually the case? Is it worth the trouble? (Note to any managers reading this: if you have a rockstar who is a pleasant person, pay them well; they are very rare.)"
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Ask Slashdot: Are 'Rock Star' Developers a Necessity?

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  • by Bill_the_Engineer ( 772575 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @05:01PM (#44823407)
    If Rockstar had no developers then how would Grand theft Auto V be completed? ;)
  • Re:Relative (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @05:08PM (#44823491)

    1 - 10? 6 or 7? I'm a Rockstar developer! I go to 11.

  • Re:Relative (Score:5, Funny)

    by gbjbaanb ( 229885 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @05:14PM (#44823573)

    Alice Cooper is a rockstar, and his Python skills are legendary.

    Not sure what his Perl's like though.

  • Re:Relative (Score:5, Funny)

    by intermodal ( 534361 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @05:18PM (#44823623) Homepage Journal

    I can't tell you much about Alice Cooper's Perl, but I do know that back in the day, Lionel Richie was amazing with Commodores.

  • by Zero__Kelvin ( 151819 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @05:36PM (#44823845) Homepage
    Clarification of who you are. You are a mediocre to below mediocre programmer with an inferiority complex. Your code is always bug ridden because you can't even review a simple Slashdot post properly before you hit submit. You regularly apply commits to the repo that pull the rug out from under the true developers, and you often screw the commit up because you just learned about revision control in the last year and still think SVN is where it is at. You have heard of git, but it is too complicated. You need antacids because you can't get the sour grapes out of your mouth. Did I miss anything? Oh yeah. That's right ... you are going to create a Slashdot account just as soon as you figure out how to do it.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @05:48PM (#44824003)

    And it is a constant challenge to make sure I am not talking down to people, or seeming to snotty.

    Try this method:

    "If the next thing you might say is douchey, skip it and think of something else. Repeat as necessary."

    As a programmer, you'll immediately think of improvements to this algorithm, but if you are a good programmer, you'll understand the pitfalls of premature optimization. Keep it simple.

  • Re:shut up. (Score:4, Funny)

    by I'm New Around Here ( 1154723 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @06:43PM (#44824623)

    everyone knwo what they mean:
    Then prima donna,(early 90s)
    Then [insert made up name] (97-2000)
    Then unemployed. (2001-2005)
    now it's rockstar.

    Next week it will be 'earwig' or some other nonsense.

    Completed that for you.

  • Re:Relative (Score:5, Funny)

    by Darinbob ( 1142669 ) on Wednesday September 11, 2013 @08:29PM (#44825275)

    I got a recruiter email that said "We're looking for rock stars!" which was pretty much the dumbest thing I've ever seen in a recruiter email (and they're all dumb).
    I was tempted to respond with "I'm a 75 year old Mick Jagger, I can only work 20 hours a week between naps and my speech is so slurry that it's best I don't interact with customers or investors."

Never buy from a rich salesman. -- Goldenstern