As part of National Coding Weekthe developers here at Parallax are keen to share their music preferences to help them stay focused.
In order for our developers to deliver the right results for our clients, they listen to a plethora of music, allowing them complete concentration. Often there will be distractions working in an office environment. There will be noise at times and the cost of those distractions to developers can mount up.
This blog post will explore some of the reasons why our developers have specific music choices when coding and how a distraction can really hold them back.
Keep it down…
In a really interesting article focusing on the cost of distractions on programmers, we can learn that on average, developers can take “10-15 minutes to restart editing code”, after resuming work from an interruption. Developers are no exception to other colleagues in the office, however, there is insightful data available to back up the cost of distractions. The office environment here at Parallax is far from rowdy, in fact, we do have days where you could hear a pin drop. However, keeping the noise down is respectful for those who require serious focus.
Be honest with your distractor
Unnecessary interruptions can be very costly. Recently, I popped over to a developer with a few non-work related questions. Little did I realise, the developer was in the middle of a really important coding project. He was honest and politely told me to send him a message saying he’ll get back to me when he has the time. So, the first point to cover here is honesty. Being honest with your colleagues prevents further distractions from taking place in the future.
Parallax has us covered
Developers are known for working much longer hours, often operating later into the evenings, rather than through the day when there are many more distractions around. Just one of the many positives to help a developer concentrate is noise cancelling headphones to shut out the office buzz. Parallax has recently invested in 18 pairs of BOSE noise-cancelling headphones and this was a welcomed move from a developer’s perspective. Jamie Sefton, head of back-end development, believes something as simple as noise cancelling headphones can make a real difference.
"The developers here are Parallax aren’t an exception to requiring a bit of peace and quiet. Everybody needs to really focus and avoid distractions at some stage. The recent investment in the noise cancelling headphones gives those people who need time to focus, a great opportunity to get into their zone."
- Jamie Sefton, Head of back end development.
So, what music makes our developers tick?
Up first is Jamie Sefton- Jamie believes Dance and Electronic are where it’s at and he likes to listen to fast, upbeat music as it has a positive mental effect and helps him to work faster and be more productive. Next, we have PHP developer Andrew Hart, and he’s very much into Pop Punk – very fast paced and energetic, the tempos really help him focus, and the weight of the music isn’t heavy enough to be a distraction.
George Baker, a back-end developer, takes himself into the medium of film soundtracks – strictly no lyrics. He believes having lyrics is like trying to read a book whilst in a club; film soundtracks give him real motivation. George also thinks the bass often accompanying film music acts as a noise cancellation in itself. Director, Andy Fitch really thinks Dance and Electronic music is perfect for helping him keep his mind on its train of thought, sharing the same opinion as Jamie. Director, James Hall likes to dabble in synthpop/electronic, and just does, no reasons required.
Sam Beevors is that ‘one guy’ who loves heavy metal. Lyrics aren’t a problem when you get a good old thrasher track keeping you pumped – nice one Sam! Harry Parton likes his music to be repetitive when he’s coding and fancies himself as a man of Trance. Head of the front end development team, Adam Jareh likes an eclectic mix of underground electronic music, soul, hip hop and r&b, but tends to avoid vocals when the maximum concentration is required. Finally, Oli Squire, who is a man of music having previously played in an indie/rock band, loves his music and enjoys listening to indie whilst coding as it helps him to get into the zone.
So there we have it, a good mix of music to help our developers stay focused.
Do you require some playlist motivation? Well you’re in luck, our developers have put together a smashing Top 10 Music for Developers playlist on Spotify.