Great engineers work in small steps, but we don’t understand them well

Mastering software development isn't about making a giant leap forward. It's about taking small, consistent steps towards improvement. That's what Quantum Steps is all about - it's a place dedicated to exploring and understanding these tiny steps that make us better and better at designing and delivering software.

Steps suggest simplicity and approachability. Everyone can take a step, right? Plus, it suggests a small change, not a massive leap. As software engineers, we make choices every day - whether it's deciding when to refactor or figuring out the best architecture design. These choices directly impact our productivity and the quality of our decisions. So why not focus on making these choices the best they can be? Even the smallest improvements can compound over time.

Quantum might sound intimidating, especially with all the talk about quantum computing. But I'm using the word quantum to refer to the smallest possible unit of energy. Think of it as a tiny packet of light - that's what physicists call a quantum of light. We have limited mental energy daily, so leveraging it to the best of our ability is crucial. Quantum is also a term from a field that requires deep study and understanding, and therefore, in this publication, I'm bringing that same level of deep thought from my own experiences and research.

Quantum Steps, therefore, aims to answer one central question: "What are the minimal steps we can make to maximise developer productivity?".

Join me on this journey.

Who am I?

Hi, I’m Wisen 👋. I started my career as a software engineer. Throughout my career, I discovered that I don’t like being confined in a box; I love experimenting with boundaries. From software engineering, I shifted into release engineering, then hopped to become a system administrator. I managed a project to enable initiatives, then became a technical lead/engineering manager/consultant by accident. By heart, I became a startup CTO. By purpose, a Director in a high-impact charity. Now, I am a founder, a coach, and a writer.

You got the idea. I believe boundaries are where interesting things lie, so now, I'm trying to break the boundaries of the software engineering field. Two of my most viral Twitter threads connected software engineering to cognitive psychology:

  1. Organising your head with TDD (1420+ likes, 800+ bookmarks)

  2. Creating a mind point (790+ likes, 560+ bookmarks)

I enjoyed connecting these two fields, and people seem to love it too. That's why I'm starting this newsletter: to explore further and break those boundaries to help us become better software engineers.

Why pledge?

I’m trying to make a living doing what’s impactful for others, and I’ve found writing to be the medium that works really well for me. By pledging, you show that what I do is working for you. Therefore, I can continue to provide value to you.

My big ambition is to write a book. Given that this newsletter is about working with small steps, though, I aim to get 20 pledgers. And you’ll help me get there by pledging.

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Optimise developer productivity and judgement through small yet impactful steps. Essays from experience and research straight to your inbox.


Independent Consultant. Technical Coach. Fractional CTO. Previously Principal Consultant at ThoughtWorks.