“…others had much less experience in digital politics, according to their LinkedIn profiles. One of its workers recently was a prep cook for Starbucks. Another was a teacher.”
—The Wall Street Journal
When news of the Iowa caucus chaos hit my Twitter feed, I caught wind of a trend in the coverage referencing the inexperience of the developers who built the app. I had a visceral reaction to the suggestion that a former prep cook or teacher was taking the fall for the app’s failure. The narrative suggests that someone with that experience, a person who decided to become a developer later in their career, is unqualified or less qualified than those with a traditional pedigree. This is fundamentally untrue.
It is true that people who are new in their profession should have mentorship, training, and oversight, especially when their work is so critical. To blame the apprentice is wrong. Blame the teacher.
Some of the most creative, genius developers are self-taught or shifted into…