Soft Skills: The Software Developer’s Life Manual by John Sonmez (PDF) (2022)

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Description User’s Reviews


You became a developer for one reason……because you love solving tough problems.Why aren’t you happy?When you started to code, the beauty of the pure logic captured your heart. Hard workand thousands of hours sitting at the keyboard have taught you how to develop software.Still, there’s something missing.What didn’t they teach you in school?Success as a Software Developer requires skill and something nobody talks about,mindset. If you’re not planning for your future, you’ll end up in a dead-end job you hate.The secret lies away from the computer.John uses a simple style to teach topics that you never knew you needed. This isn’ttheory, it’s proven through the results that let him retire at 33-years old.You’ll learn:Ways To Land The Job, Keep The Job And Climb The Corporate LadderHow To Stand Out From Your Competition10-Step Process To Learn AnythingWhat To Do With Your Paycheck to Maximize Your EarningsWhy Healthy Living and Exercise are CrucialWays to Build Your BrandYou’ll love this unique career guide, because it isn’t about writing a great resume, it’s aboutbuilding one that will land you the dream job and all the other things that go with it.Get it now.

User’s Reviews

Reviews from Amazon users which were colected at the time this book was published on the website:

(Video) Book Review: Soft Skills:The Software Developer's Life Manual

⭐I bought and gave Sonmez’s Soft Skills a read years ago. That was the first edition. The book goes well beyond basic suggestions for career development and gives you crucial life development concepts that too few ever even consider. I’ve been around long enough to have seen old friends and associates begin in roughly the same place but end up in wildly different places — financially, romantically, physically, in terms of impact on their respective fields, and in terms of their mindset of what’s possible for the future (note: not all mindsets are created equal).Why read this second edition? You don’t acquire a finely built piano, have it tuned professionally, and then never tune it again. You keep tuning it regularly. You don’t take your ride in for maintenance and say “Well, that’s done!” and then never again take your car in for a tune-up. You repeat the process every now and then to make sure everything is as it ought to be. And so it is with this book.I’m always learning something new and have a habit of getting into minutia. For me, that’s fun. But it’s also a timesink and time is increasingly scarce. And Sonmez’s tips on learning is a fine reminder of how to acquire knowledge skills rapidly. The section on learning and the 10-step process for learning how to learn is more than worth the price of the book — literally. I’ve purchased Sonmez’s course based on the same concept and I can tell you (shh… don’t tell John) that the bulk of the content, the important stuff, is right here for a small fraction of the price.Does it work? Yes. Also, consider that the techniques taught are quite similar to what you find in Scott Young’s book Ultralearning (published long after the first edition of Soft Skills) and that Scott Young, a polymath who knows his stuff, also offers his own course but at many times the price of Sonmez’s. Not to get wrapped up in prices and comparison shopping but my point is that there are many options for learning how to learn and this book offers a nice, neat methodology for one of the lowest demands on your wallet.How about how well his advice on physical fitness and financial success works? Yes, it’s all sound principles and sources are provided as well. And, frankly, just dive in to Sonmez’s YouTube videos. After you’ve spent some months there you will see for yourself that he writes what he knows and puts it all into practice. A ripped physique and enough money earned from his endeavors to basically spend his time doing what he wants in his early 30s, the guy knows what it takes to succeed.Recommended.

⭐So I kept getting these third-person viewpoint shifts – not John’s writing but my reading. I don’t DO software development day in day out. I support devs, engineer the systems they develop for, admin their servers. I’ve managed them, worked with them, and yes been one – but me doing development was back when Moore’s Law was merely a strong suggestion.Thing is, when I’m reading along and start thinking “whoa- that’s not me” I still get a definite “hmm. But I would tell a young dev that too, yeah.” Bottom line on applicability is you don’t have to be exactly the software developer of the title to benefit.A lot of John’s thoughts mesh with F.I.R.E. – well and good, but I’m sixty. The boat for me to “retire early” sailed, hit a rock, and sank. I’ll settle for “retire eventually”. Younger readers: listen to John. Compound interest is your friend, as is passive income. Debt mostly isn’t… until it is. Knowing where you want to go is kinda important, yup.His take on multitasking is good: “don’t, unless it’s two things that don’t interfere, then by all means do”. Some of his refrain does seem to be “concentrate; do one thing well at a time” – that’s good. Today’s fractured focuses and 160-character attention spans will get nowhere. He leaves out the same other “multi” that most folks omit though. Multipotentialites (see Emilie Wapnick) aka Scanners (see Barbara Sher) thrive on – nay, *demand* multiple irons in the fire. Not as a task-switching detrimental thing, but more as serial focusers, or how I think of my System Engineering mindset – not so much doing several things at once, but doing each thing several ways at once. The folks who have had multiple disparate careers get some of this naturally – in John’s domain maybe by simultaneously coding, with an eye toward functionality, security, marketability, useability, maintainability (all near-field overlaps), and also by keeping in mind say the legal or medical or fitness or distant-domain or subject matter experience you have. That’s a richness of experience thing that we gray & venerable ones might bring to the table. Some outfits synthesize this by ensuring teams are diverse – that works too.I was curious what John has to say about standing or treadmill desks. Mmm-hmm. Yes. Unh-huh. Voila- now you too are curious. As for me, I’m satisfied. What, you want spoilers?In the fitness section Jon talks a bit about gadgets. Not sure why he didn’t mention you already have a pedometer if you carry an iPhone. In several places in the book he mentions gamification as motivation & method. There’s whole books on the how-to and why of that, so don’t expect Soft Skills to have a comprehensive treatment. That’s true across the board by the way – John freely mentions this other author or that resource left and right rather than trying to distill all the wisdom he’s picked up to a few paragraphs. There’s still plenty of original meat to be worthwhile.I’m glad he has material about spirit/mind/attitude/self-image – I also believe we’re more than sophisticated sentient meat automatons. From my background I’m more skeptical than he about lasting positive changes being able to arise wholly from within, but he does point out good stuff. He gives a clear description of the Stoicism he’s embraced. I see why some outside both paths have commented there’s some commonality between that and my Christianity. I guess I’d say his take isn’t grossly at odds with my faith – I don’t feel at all like avoiding his conclusions through the book based on where he’s coming from. Christians can read this and not be put off by “woo” :-).For somebody with a pretty assertive personality John mentions in multiple places “this is working for me- it’s not the be-all and end-all.”I’m glad I bought it. I’ll read it again soon.

⭐Where do I begin? I discovered John Sonmez via YouTube at the Simple Programmer and Bulldog Mindset and also via the Simple Programmer podcast. Over the years he has been an interesting one to follow. Is he polarising? You betcha. Do I always agree with him? No. Does he have a wealth of experience and information that continues to help me level up? No doubt. I bought the first version of this book when I first thought about becoming a developer and was excited when I found out he was releasing an updated version. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this new version and like before I still think this book is mandatory for all budding developers and a very, very good idea for everyone else. This new version is what you would expect if you were actually mentored by an old dog but one that doesn’t just show you the ropes but shows you where the pitfalls are so you’re ready before you encounter them and trains you how to be. Not just as a developer but as a person. If you are ready to take responsibility, do the work and trust the process, this is the book for you. Highly recommended.

(Video) Soft Skills for Python Developers - Talk Python To Me

⭐This book has been helping me get back on track after a short break away from the IT industry this year. It’s amazing how much stuff you forget that you should know and be cognizant of in your daily career and this book has helped me tremendously by having so MUCH information all in one place! I can highly recommend this book for those just starting out or even those who have been in the business for a significant amount of time, 20 plus years in my case!

⭐I would not consider excessive aerobic exercise, like marathons, as a healthy, because they can burn out the body fast, including causing illness or sudden death from maladaptation of the body and a probably harmful diet of significant carbohydrate.In the “Creating a Routine” (to conserve limited mental resources) section, the hour durations were stated in a needlessly confusing manner, and common time costs, like getting up, meals, digesting, and commuting, didn’t appear accounted for, so significantly less than 8 hours actually remain! We must accept that we have limited mental resources while awake, so may also need to reschedule some mentally demanding tasks, and accept that it is counter-productive to do any activities which can disrupt sleep close to bedtime, so the usable period for such activities, after work, can be much shorter than expected. Limitations like this are probably why his, and others, ‘working’ periods appear to be significantly less productive than maybe expected, possibly because a standard working-day may be too-packed and/or too-long for some kinds of mental work, with time wasted on diminishing returns, better suited for other work or activities.I may revise this review after I’ve read the book several times.

⭐This book is split into the following sections: Career, Marketing Yourself, Learning, Productivity, Finance, Fitness, Mindset.Those of you aware of the Agile Manifesto will be aware that one of those behind it was Robert Martin (AKA Uncle Bob). Having Bob write the forward to any software related book is going to give it credence and hence this book immediately becomes more believable.I was not expecting a book on soft skills for software developers to include finance, fitness, and mindset. If you are reading this book in the hope of learning something to make you more valuable to an employer then I would concentrate on the first four chapters (Career, Marketing Yourself, Learning, Productivity).Overall, I do believe that John has written this book to add value to the reader.

(Video) How John Sonmez 4 MILLION in Real Estate Starting at 19 @BulldogMindset

⭐John takes a completely different approach to teaching you about software development in that he places the onus of responsibility on the reader to invest in themselves throughout all stages of their career in order to become a better person and ultimately a better programmer. One of John’s basic premises for the idea behind Soft Skills is that even though there is widespread perceived notion that software development is primarily programmers writing code all day and not having to worry about anyone else is actually completely misplaced. Rather developers produce software in order to make people’s lives better and easier so we as software developers have to be fundamentally people person orientated. In order to do this then we need to invest time in ourselves firstly through increasing what value we can offer employers and through better marketing of those particular values we have to offer. John writes clearly and to the point in a concise and informative way. Each chapter is reasonably short with handy actionable points at the end of every chapter again putting the onus on the reader to take action to further themselves along their chosen career path. One of the additional new chapters in this well revised Second Edition include how to set up and manage your own YouTube channel which is timely in light of the increased demand of online self-promoted video content. A excellent and well resourced book that provides a huge amount of inspiration to reach your next career goals.

⭐A very readable and relatable book. The fact that it’s broken down into 75 chapters makes it very easy to progress with it. We like to complete chapters and when they are hours long, it’s mentally difficult to start with a new one. It’s not the case here.But, it’s not just easy to read, you’ll also get very useful knowledge. Not the same type that you’re normally getting from books about software development.How to specialize, how to get a great CV – not how to write, but how to get -, how to hack the interview process, these very interesting ideas and the author seems to quite credible in these aspects.What’s also great is that the author doesn’t bullshit around. He shares his views even on sensitive topics, even if his opinions are not one of the mainstream.A great read, highly recommended!

⭐The book covers a wide range of topics. You may not agree with everything suggested, but I think that most people will get some real value from the book.Some points that struck me:- Treat your career like a business, even if you plan to stay an employee. Don’t just drift through your career, letting things happen to you, be purposeful & proactive.- Dealing with difficult boss/coworkers. Don’t yield to your natural response to be drawn in & take it all so seriously. Rather, approach the situation with “levity,” as if you are watching an office sitcom.- The real story behind the “freedom” of freelancing.Depending on your background & experience, some of the points may seem obvious, but I feel that I only need to get one or two new insights for a career book to more than pay for itself.If you have seen the author on YouTube, don’t be put off by his bravado. I found the advice in the book to be more balanced than I expected.

(Video) RR 366: Build Your Own RSpec: A Gentle Metaprogramming Intro with Paweł Dąbrowski


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