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The Side Dish

Can You Crack the Code?

Nathan Atkinson, Software Engineer / 10.2.2018

The following is some quick “website code” to explain what my day generally looks like as a software engineer.  Note – this isn’t programming language specific, so it doesn’t have perfect syntax.  It’s more of a quick example into how some code might look if a developer’s day was explained in code.

Cropped shot of an unrecognizable male programmer at work

A Few Terms You Should Know

Before we get to the code though, let me explain some elements of the code:

  • Variables: named items that have a value.  In their simplest forms, they could be a number, true or false, or a string (group of characters).
  • Functions: blocks of code that do something that can be used over and over.  They usually return results but don’t always have to.  The functions used below aren’t “defined” for simplicity’s sake.  Normally, any function used would be in the same file or other files being used by a project.
  • “If” statements: used to conditionally do something or not.  It checks if something is true, and if so, does whatever’s inside the following curly braces ( { } ).  If the check is false, then the lines of code contained in the braces are not executed.
  • Also, below is a “while” loop, which repeats the code inside the braces while the condition is true.  Once the condition is false, the section of code would be skipped, just like an if statement that evaluates to false.
  • Next to a lot of the lines are comments, denoted by “//”.  The text following // isn’t run and is there to help explain code to humans.

The Daily Code

//if this is true, continuously execute what’s between the { on this line and also } on the last line
while (workingHours) { 
        //if caffeine level is less than 5, this is true. 
        //5 is an ambiguous measurement in this example.
	if (caffeine < 5) {
                //GetsTea and then adds the result to the caffeine level.
                //+= is shorthand for caffeine + GetTea() = caffeine
		caffeine += GetTea();

	//IsTimeForMeeting() would check time, check calendar, and determine if it's time to attend a meeting.  
        //Could be true or false.
	if (IsTimeForMeeting()) {
		AttendMeeting();//function that attends the meeting

	if (haveEmail) { //is true if emails are in inbox
		//This would be a function that would go through and respond to emails as needed

	//variables can be null, meaning they have no assigned value
	if (CurrentProject == null) {
		//function that figures out priority and assigns focus to a project
		CurrentProject = StartNewProject();

	//makes sure that CurrentProject isn't null.  
        //If it was null, there'd be nothing for the enclosed functions to do.
	if (CurrentProject != null) {
		CodeCurrentProject();//build some functionality
		//test if new functionality works and didn't break something else

		if (stuck) {
			//see if someone else has come across same issue(s) and found a solution

			//if still stuck, discuss with a teammate
                        if (stuck) {
        //Check the current time and check if it is time to end the day
	if (CheckIfQuittingTime()) {
		workingHours = false;//will stop loop once restarts and is false

BIG YAM’s Got Your Back, Jack

So, clear as mud? Coding isn’t for everyone. If you need a dedicated digital development team in the Phoenix, Ariz., we’re here for you!