One of the common tropes I sometimes hear web developers share when talking about our work is something to the effect of…
I’m not a doctor. No one is going to die if I make a mistake.
But that’s not always true. Sometimes our work literally is life or death.
A few weeks ago, my friend Eric Bailey wrote about his experience with a mental health website. Eric was trying to access the site, but encountered a loading spinner that wouldn’t go away…
And for a mental health website, a mistake made by a web developer can literally be a matter of life or death.
I also need to point out that people are visiting sites like this because they are not in a good place. Depression and stress lowers your executive function. Furthermore, people internalize technology’s failures as their own.
What if I was suicidal? …
A person seeking help in a time of crisis does not care about TypeScript, tree shaking, hot module replacement, A/B tests, burndown charts, NPS, OKRs, KPIs, or other startup jargon. Developer experience does not count for shit if the person using the thing they built can’t actually get what they need.
And your organization builds bloated, over-engineered software, share it with them, and encourage them to stop. Build with HTML first. Under-engineer. Build things that work, even when parts of it break.