Vibe Driven Development

2024-06-01

It’s very easy these days to fall into “the trap”.

What hot new JavaScript framework is trending?

What programming language is popular right now?

What should I learn to get a job?

And I get it. Some people don’t have the luxury of just pursuing stuff for fun. They may want to switch careers, need to support a family, or have some other commitments. And I think that’s perfectly fair.

But all that aside, I’m becoming a big proponent of what I’m calling “Vibe Driven Development”. What I really mean when I say this is just picking software and tools that you like the vibe of. And that’s it.

There’s a lot of criticism about using certain tools and operating systems (I’m looking at you, Neovim and Linux), where people say that these kind of things are a “waste of time”. And in a way, that’s not completely incorrect.

If you spend countless hours configuring your desktop or your editor instead of actually getting any work done, maybe that’s a problem. Totally calling myself out here.

A meme saying "it's just a little friendly fire".

But what about the other important questions?

Did you have fun?

Did you learn something?

If you can answer yes to either of these (and are actually still doing some other work), then what’s the issue? We don’t have to be productive 100% of the time.

The point I’m trying to get at in this post, is if you feel like you like the “vibe” of a tool, or it’s got an awesome community, or something else, just try it. Don’t worry about whether you can put it on a job application or how productive it is.

Why?

When I’m already interested in something, I find that I naturally want to learn more about it. All of the stuff I know about Linux I learnt because I was messing around and wanted to try a desktop OS that was super customizable. And guess what? It turns out that Linux knowledge is pretty useful for doing actual work.

From my anecdotal experience (so take this with a grain of salt), I’ve managed to land two contracts at two different startups purely from making content about stuff I was interested in.

Granted there is some luck involved, but if I hadn’t learned stuff I enjoyed I wouldn’t have gotten those contracts. Sometimes when you stop chasing money, or whatever other goal you have, it comes to you more naturally.

Anyway, pick more tools based on vibes, learn stuff that interests you, and have a great day.

I hope you enjoyed!

Jack