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the full interview with Bear Bibeault  RSS feed

author & internet detective
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Due to space constraints (hey, people will only read so many bytes in a newsletter), we only published snippets of the interview in the December Journal. This post contains the full interview. Do check out the December Journal for snippets of our author interviews, the Countdown to 2014 promotion and links to the other author interviews.

Bear on Books
Jeanne: Why did you decide to write books?
Bear: It's something I'd always wanted to do. When I was much younger, I used to write lots of science fiction short stories. And even though I've never really blossomed as a writer of fiction, I've always enjoyed teaching -- I guess that explains my involvement with CodeRanch -- and writing programming books is just one way that I've massaged that particular need. Back when I lived in New England, I used to teach evening courses in the Graduate EE Department of the University of Massachusetts. When I moved to Texas, I really missed doing that. Helping out on the Ranch and writing books has helped to fill that gap.
Jeanne: Do you prefer to read e-books or paper books? Why?
Bear: E-books; for two reasons. Firstly, space. I read a lot, so books kept piling up and piling up and piling up. Switching to e-books has solved that problem. Secondly, my eyes aren't getting any younger. The benefits of the ability to adjust the font style and size of reading material are not to be dismissed easily.
Jeanne: What is your favorite book that you didn't write?
Bear: In the area of fiction, there's a five-way tie for best book ever: Frank Herbert's Dune, Isaac Asmiov's The Gods Themselves, Arthur C. Clarke's Childhood's End, Frank Herbert's Hellstrom's Hive, and D. F. Jones' Colossus. Please don't make me choose between them. I *do* read more than just Sci-Fi, but that's obviously a favorite genre of mine.
Jeanne: Cool. I've read three of those.

Bear on Technology
Jeanne: If you had a magic wand and could universally improve one software development pratice, what would it be?
Bear No surprise: Stop putting Java code in JSPs! Just stop. Now.
Jeanne: Tell us something about JavaScript that you wish more developers would know.
Bear: It's all about the functions. Newcomers to JavaScript tend to focus on objects; but really, it's all about the functions! If I may plug: chapters 3 through 5 of the Ninja book are, in my opinion, essential reading for anyone writing JavaScript. Can I add a secondary thing?
Jeanne: Sure.
Bear: It's not Java. It's just not. Ignore the name; it should never have been named JavaScript. The sooner developers coming to JavaScript from Java realize that, the sooner they'll be writing much better JavaScript.
Jeanne You've been a developer a long time. Yet in our industry, someone with 3 years of experience is a "senior" developer. What advice do you have for someone about becoming a "more senior" developer?
Bear: People often ask me why I haven't "burnt out" on software development even though I've been doing to for three and a half decades. I think the answer lies in that I believe that there are differing ways to approach software development. I think most people approach writing software as a purely technical endeavor. On the other hand, I think of it more as a *craft*. Let's use an artist as an example. A painter never gets tired of painting. A painter never feels that he or she has learned all there is to know about art. A painter never stops learning new techniques and applying them to his or her craft. For me, software development is the same way. It's something that's always evolving and there's a never-ending array of new ideas and new techniques to apply to the craft.

More Bear
Jeanne: Do you have a favorite quote? If so, what is it?
Bear: "Never underestimate the value of sucking up to the boss."
Jeanne: Hey! You have a more serious one?
Bear: If there's a quote that captures my philosophy towards work it "Love what you do; do what you love."
Jeanne: What is an interesting hobby that you have?
Bear: Making cooking videos. If I ever get them through post-production, I may post them to a YouTube channel, or I have a half-baked idea for a multi-media project. I'm not quite sure what I'll do with them yet.
Jeanne: What is something cool about Austin?
BearThe completely insane traffic. Oh wait, that's not very cool. OK, putting aside the demented drivers, what's *not* cool about Austin? We have SXSW (South By Southwest) and ACL (Austin City Limits), we have a cool music scene, we have mild winters, we have spectacular Hill Country views, we have the Alamo Drafthouse, we have Eeyore’s Birthday. Heck, we even have a bridge full of bats!

Thanks Bear for the interview!
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Thank You Bear awesome interview , been fan of lot of people one of that will be Bear!
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