I was invited to speak at Atlanta Code Camp on September 15th. I spoke about mixed reality and was fortunately able to run some demos. When I got out of standard business app dev a few years ago and began specializing in VR on MR, one of the unfortunate side-effects was that I saw a lot less of the community (Mixed Reality tends to be more of a global community, for whatever reason, that convenes online rather than in person). Coming in for this event is one of my great chances to meet up with old friends.
In the speakers room, we talked about military apocalypse preparedness, the difficulty of getting jobs on the dark net, the advantages of trio programming (a better version of pair programming), and being paid in bitcoin.
Not to derail us, but how should MR devs dress?
My feeling is we shouldn’t be wearing the standard enterprise / consultant software dev uniform of a golf shirt and khaki pants with dog walker shoes. That isn’t really who we are. ORMs are not the highlight of our day and our job doesn’t end when the code compiles. We actually care how it works and even if everything works we care if it is easy for the user to understand our app. We even occasionally open up Photoshop and Cinema4D.
This is the hard part, but here’s the start of a suggestion of the general style (subdued expensive) for men (because I have no clue about women’s fashion): faded black polo shirt buttoned to the top, slightly linty black velveteen jacket, black jeans, Hermès pocket square, leather dress shoes. It signals concern with UI but not excessive concern. Comfort is also important (UX) as is the quality of the materials (the underlying code and software architecture).
Finally, MR/VR/AR/XR development is premium work and deserves premium rates. The clothes we wear should reflect this fundamental rate, indicating that if what we are paid doesn’t support our clothing habit (real or imagined), we will walk away (the ability to walk away from a contract being the biggest determiner of pricing).
Black, of course, suggests the underlying 70’s punk mentality that drives innovation. MR devs are definitely not grunge rockers. The pocket handkerchief suggests flair.
[This post was excerpted from a discussion on the Microsoft MVP Mixed Reality list.]