MONDAY, MAY 6, 2002

My first full-time job was in an industrial bread bakery. There were two huge rooms: one where the bread was baked, and one where it was put in boxes. In the first room, everybody dealt with dough problems all day. Dough got stuck in the machines, on your hands, in your hair, on your shoes, and everybody carried a little paint scraper to clean up dough jams. In the second room, everybody dealt with crumb problems all day. Crumbs got stuck in the machines, in your hair, and everybody carried around little brushes. I thought about how every job has its bugbear—its own private source of perpetual irritation—and gave thanks that I didn't have a job in a razor blade factory.

With programming, we have bugbears, ...

Get JOEL ON SOFTWARE: And on Diverse and Occasionally Related Matters That Will Prove of Interest to Software Developers, Designers, and Managers, and to Those Who, Whether by Good Fortune or Ill Luck, Work with Them in Some Capacity now with the O’Reilly learning platform.

O’Reilly members experience books, live events, courses curated by job role, and more from O’Reilly and nearly 200 top publishers.