Four Stages of a Software Engineer

A.P.
A.P.
Apr 1, 2017 · 1 min read

When I was back at Microsoft on the Office 365 team, there was a legend of sorts, apparently first uttered by our then-director, passed down by mouth to new developers. Before I write it down, it’s worth noting the title progression at Microsoft: Software Engineer 1, Software Engineer 2, Senior Software Engineer, then Principal Software Engineer. It’s a catchy way to remind us that software engineering is not just about solving problems, but also doing it in a way that is as simple and maintainable as possible.

SDE 1’s — simple problems, complicated solutions.

SDE 2’s — complicated problems, complicated solutions.

Seniors — complicated problems, simple solutions.

Principals — removes the problem altogether.

Originally published at blog.alexpark.me on April 1, 2017.

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