Move over George Clooney, Chris Hemsworth, Denzel Washington and Kate Upton...
FULL DISCLOSURE: This is in jest as I one hundred percent believe in an individual's inner self and do not promote objectifying an individual's appearance. But, I believe in promoting the importance of software development. I am married to an electrical engineer turned software developer. However, the way things function never really got my full attention until I joined a technology company. When first relocating to Austin, friends and colleagues asked me how I could find it interesting to work for a company that provides advanced software tools for application developers and database professionals. I simply batted my eyes. SQL, Java and C++ etc. are no less sexy languages than French or Italian. They communicate our needs and they get us from here to there. And the software developers and database administrators, like my husband, who are advancing the things we do and how we do them, can be even more alluring.
Here are Three Reasons Software Developers Should be the 2016 Sexiest Man/Woman Alive:
1. Software Developers Create Useful Applications that Impact Our Well-Being. Software developers speak 'code' and translate that into developing and deploying useful tools for our daily lives. While sitting in a meeting, one of my former company’s employees projected a video of men and women in swimsuits. It turns out, my company's client had created the first-known connected swimsuit, using our application development tools for the mobile application. Because of software developers, you don't just get the first connected swimsuit; you get a GPS tracker in case your child runs fifty steps ahead of you in the park or an alert that you are indeed frying like a lobster.
Think about what that means for a healthcare setting. Have you ever gone to a doctor only to be told that your records or test results were not sent over? Imagine integrating wearable technology and information into a patient healthcare record, shared among all providers so that would not happen again. Or, just getting through a nurse's station to see the doctor.
2. Software Developers Create Game Changing Applications For Consumers. Have you ever been to the women's shoe departments at Bloomingdale's, Saks Fifth Avenue or Macy's in New York City? I, and many other people, often admire the fabulous pairs of shoes or boots that adorn the shoe department. How many times have you had to walk away from that pair you wanted but then anguished and obsessed about them for days? When they finally went on sale, your size was sold out. What if you walked just outside the perimeter of the shoe department and received an instant text message offering you a 25% off coupon if you bought those shoes in the next hour. Would you reconsider?
Maybe you are not a person with a shoe problem. Perhaps the game changer for you is saving money on utilities. If you could reduce your $300/month electric bill in the hot summer by 20% through adding a smart, self-adjusting thermostat, your significant other - is going to love you.
3. Software Developers are Valiant. Wait, isn't a firefighter valiant? Well, yes, of course. But, a software developer? Doesn't the developer just sit at a desk all day designing programs? No. In fact, a software developer is part of a collaborative process, communicating with others in order to solve problems we don’t even know we have - and achieve true innovation. While businesses and business leaders rattle off lists of strategic goals and visions, requirements for projects, etc., software developers take these ideas and make them real in the digital realm. On the way to bringing these goals to life, software developers navigate the terrain and offer suggestions to refine and perfect the functionality. When they throw out words and phrases like 'test environment,' 'agile' and ‘identifying bad code,' it feels like the A-team has shown up in my office.
---------Just decades ago, engineers were building the Hoover Dam, constructing the bridges we still cross daily. Engineers and astrophysicists were putting people on the moon. As you have probably heard, the Internet of Things (IoT) is here. In full force. You may already control the lights and utilities of your home while you are on vacation. All because of these people. More importantly, they are impacting our everyday lives not only as consumers but by improving communications and efficiencies in healthcare, manufacturing and other critical industries and infrastructure. Like “beacons,” a low-cost piece of hardware that software developers are utilizing that is already assisting the way we communicate indoors. Don’t even get me started. I'll save that for 2017.
Oh, and my electrical engineer turned software developer husband? Well, his ingenuity qualifies him in full measure.