When I started programming I used programming language as a tool to solve problems. I could care less about the architecture or the beauty of the solution I came up with; long as the programme worked I was happy and satisfied.
After a few years everything changed I realized that programming is more than that. It is a way of expressing yourself. Every time you write a programme you put a bit of yourself into it, your proud of what you have written and it’s something you can call it your own. This is “ART” The expression or application of human creative skill and imagination.
If you look at an experienced programmers code, you can see a structure, a pattern (not the dreadful design patterns), but how he is naming the variables, methods, classes, solutions he comes up with, how the flow works, so on. Over the years the programmer’s expression changes, even if he read a tons and tons of books about coding style, best practices and design patterns, his code will always have a personal touch, I have seen some of my colleagues code which I think is complicated but that does not mean it’s bad coding, it’s just a personal touch that he has, something that looks complicated for me would look different to another person.
Sure, all developers (most I know) we read tons and tons of best practices books, but none of us adopted a practice or style fully. I honestly think that our coding style and practice is a mix of things we learn and personal touch which we have gained over the years.
I sometimes wonder reading best practice books does it actually help us develop an efficient code or is it actually blocking us from being an Artist.