From aspiring developers struggling through their first Intro to CS class to industry pros implementing the latest refinements to Google search algorithms, all software engineers who are passionate about their craft have one thing in common: they spend significant amounts of time religiously reading software development blogs. While developers’ blogs of choice vary greatly according to level of expertise, niche of interest, sense of humor, and more, this common theme is no accident.
The software engineering industry evolves faster than any other industry, and its fixation on open sourcing new technologies has led to a near-daily flood of new technologies, libraries and updates. If you’ve encountered a tricky task, chances are someone else has already solved it, and has written an open sourced library to save you the time. For software engineers who need to improve their skills or stay on top of their game, it is critical to regularly stay abreast of the leading software engineering blogs, tech news aggregators, and columns. Whether you’re looking for high-level tutorials, news updates, tech lifestyle pieces, or something else, there is a blog out there to meet your needs.
Here are the top 10 software development blogs.
The Toptal Engineering Blog outpaces the rest of the blogs on this list for the consistently excellent quality of its articles and its impressive publishing frequency, with new pieces coming out every day or every other day. With over 100,000 subscribers, this general software engineering blog should be the first stop for any developers, regardless of skill level.
Articles range from in-depth tutorials and tricks complete with extensive code snippets, to introductions of new frameworks or technologies and their usefulness, to common programming mistakes to avoid, and much more. As a bonus, for those interested in remote work or digital nomadism, the Toptal Engineering Blog also features guides on remote collaboration, project management, and remote tech lifestyle. As Toptal developers, authors here are some of the best software engineers in the world.
Jeff Atwood, the man behind the brilliance of Coding Horror, is a co-founder of Stack Overflow (now StackExchange), the foremost lifesaving software engineering Q&A site. Atwood’s sense of humor shines through strongly in this well-known blog, as posts often include funny asides on the human aspects of coding.
Posts on this blog are extremely easy reads with plenty of insight, and often discuss recent advances in the tech world. While coding tutorials and the like aren’t the type of posts that Atwood doesn’t typically engage in coding tutorials
3. A List Apart
The articles, blogs, and columns on A List Apart form an excellent, extensive knowledge-base across a wide range of software engineering subjects, and even include pieces on topics like design, business, content, user experience, and more.
The site draws from the know-how of hundreds of experts and encourages industry pros to submit pieces for review. By only publishing sufficiently insightful content, A List Apart does well in ensuring consistently excellent quality. The blog focuses in particular on web standards and best practices, and is an outstanding resource for those working with web technologies.
From the team building the popular Basecamp project management software, Signal v. Noise is an excellent publication about all things web. The Basecamp team is also responsible for the bestselling Rework and Remote, so the quality of the writing here is excellent.
Blog posts offer uniquely valuable insight into productivity hacks, ways to increase business efficiencies, startup success stories, and more. For anyone interested in how fledgling businesses get off the ground, how to get the most out of your employees, or how to remove bottlenecks in your own workflow, this blog is the place to start.
From the team at StackExchange, the umbrella site that includes the aforementioned Stack Overflow, the StackExchange Blog features excellent news pieces that often discuss advances to features on the site.
As StackExchange is the go-to site for getting questions answered and bugs fixed, keeping up with the blog is key for the programming community. Additionally, a nice feature that distinguishes this blog from other publications is its regular use of podcast discussions to uncover insight from excellent guests.
Martin Fowler started this site in 2000, and since then has transformed it into an enormous reservoir of writing that covers a huge variety of topics in software development. Fowler is a long-time industry vet with ThoughtWorks, and puts a lot of energy into the upkeep of this excellent blog.
Prominent topics include microservices, continuous delivery, DSL, NoSQL, code refactoring, agile development, and design. The site features articles as well as Fowler’s popular “Bliki”, a blog/wiki hybrid that he has stylized.
Unlike many of the previous blogs here that focus on programming lifestyle, news, or technology introductions, the primary purpose of CodeBetter is to directly improve the already excellent programming skills of its readers.
The blog features extensive code examples, best practices, in-depth methodology discussions, and cutting-edge techniques. The blog focuses on Microsoft technologies, making it a must-read for any developers who need to stay up to date with .NET-based languages and technologies.
Scott Hanselman is a web developer on Microsoft’s Web Platform Team, and in his free time he runs one of the most popular software engineering blogs on the internet. This blog has been around for over a decade, and also includes several podcasts for those who are more audio-inclined.
Hanselman covers everything from coding to tech culture, and writes outstanding posts on things like diversity in tech and where he sees the industry moving in the future. With posts coming about once a week, it’s an excellent source of tech insight from one of the best in the business.
If you like your tech blogs to have frequent humor mixed in, Stevey’s Blog Rants is a must-read. Steve Yegge is the man behind the blog, the Amazon and Google vet who is also infamous for accidentally publicly releasing his extended commentary on an internal Google memo.
While Yegge hasn’t published new posts in a few years, Yegge’s commentaries and tips on the interviewing and hiring process have received extensive attention, and are still relevant today. The blog also includes rants on productivity and culture in the tech industry.
10. The Berkun Blog
Scott Berkun is a frequent an outstanding writer whose published works include books on creativity, leadership, philosophy, and public speaking. While this blog isn’t ranked higher here because it isn’t technically speaking software engineering blog, it is still an extremely relevant and underused resource for programmers.
In particular, his posts on creativity (with ambitious titles like “How to be a Genius” and “How to Survive Creative Burnout”) are essential reads for developers who feel like they could improve the way they approach devising solutions to tough problems in their work.
The blogs listed here are by no means a comprehensive list of the great written resources freely available to software engineers. They are, however, a well-rounded list of some of the absolute best blogs to be found on the internet for programmers of all levels of expertise.
For aspiring developers who are new to the practice of following great tech blogs, a great way to get started is to subscribe to a few of the general blogs here, and then add additional niche blogs as needed to cover your core technologies of interest in-depth. Use the blogs listed here to improve your incoming streams of tech insight today!
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