Software Development Blogs – Why We Need Them & Our 15 Favorites

A question often asked during job interviews, especially for newer developers, is “what software development blogs do you read?”

Asking about what blogs someone reads can sound weird, but blogs are how a lot of developers stay up to date and consume industry news.

There are a few reasons for this:

  • Changes to languages and frameworks happen faster than books can be written.
  • People have many differing opinions on what makes good software, and how to create software that hits those standards.
  • New versions of operating systems or web browsers can cause issues with software that people need to react to.
  • There is a lot of poorly documented software, so bloggers often fill in the gaps with articles.

Writing about software has become the primary source of income for hundreds of people, and some software development blogs are read by thousands of people each day.

What should developers read?

When not reading documentation, books, or tweets, developers will be reading blog posts. Software development blogs can span a wide range of topics:

  • Specific programming languages, e.g. Ruby
  • One aspect of development, e.g. accessibility
  • The business of software development
  • A collection of bugs people have found and how they fixed them
  • How to guides
  • Industry news
  • Code snippets or useful methods. e.g. this post on how to instantly insert your most used bash commands

It’s a good idea to get information from a variety of sources. Doing so will give you more well-rounded thoughts and will let you form your own decisions about what makes good software.

Reading blog posts is often a great middle-ground between the fast thoughts thrown around in a social media update and the time commitment that reading a book can take.

Most blogs have comment sections or ways of getting in touch with the author, this can be an excellent way to seek clarification, learn more about the topic, or thank the author for writing something useful.

Why programmers should have a blog

If you’re a programmer that reads a lot of blogs, the question becomes, should you also run your own blog? One of our blog contributors, Toby, has long maintained that good things happen to those that blog

Keeping a software development blog can help:

  • Clarify your thinking on a subject
  • Improve your communication skills
  • Help get you noticed in the community

Keep in mind that maintaining a blog is a substantial time commitment. After spending all day fixing something, you might not have the energy to write about it, no matter how much it would help people. Think carefully about your goals and how much you have on before taking on this new initiative. But if you can make the time, it can certainly pay off over the long term.

15 Top Software Development Blogs to Follow

Looking for some inspiration for your new blog? Or perhaps you want some fresh ideas to read. Below are some of the most popular software development blogs online today:

#1 GitHub’s Blog

Updates, ideas, and inspiration from GitHub to help developers build and design software.

#2 GeeksforGeeks

“A computer science portal for geeks.” It contains well written, well thought and well explained computer science and programming articles, quizzes and interview questions.

#3 DZone

DZone.com is one of the world’s largest online communities and a leading publisher of knowledge resources for software developers. Visit Dzone.com to read about the latest technology trends and learn about new technologies, methodologies, and best practices through shared knowledge.

#4 Hacker Noon

Hacker Noon reflects the technology industry with unfettered stories and opinions written by real tech professionals.

#5 SitePoint

SitePoint is a hub for web developers to share their passion for building incredible Internet things.

#6 CSS-Tricks

CSS-Tricks began as a blog solely about CSS by Chris Coyier, but has since evolved into a great resource for all things front end web dev with a variety of contributing authors. 

#7 NixCraft

NixCraft is an online community of new and seasoned Linux / Unix sysadmins who want to make the most of sysadmin-hood.

#8 dev.to

dev.to is an open online community for sharing and discovering great ideas, having debates, and making friends.

#9 Atlassian’s Technology Blog

Where the team at Atlassian reports on the latest trends and methodologies to help you stay ahead of the curve.

#10 The freeCodeCamp Blog

The team dedicated to helping people learn to code for free covers a variety of development tips, tutorials, and news.

#11 The Toptal Blog

The Toptal Blog is the top hub for developers, designers, finance experts, executives, and entrepreneurs, featuring key technology updates, tutorials, freelancer resources, and management insights. 

We also asked some of the Smile engineers to share a few of their favorite lesser-known blogs. Here are four that top the list for them:

Michael Tsai’s Blog

Michael Tsai’s blog features a robust collection of articles and commentary that primarily cover topics related to Apple software. 

NSHipster

NSHipster is a weekly blog that covers the “overlooked bits in Objective-C, Swift, and Cocoa.”

Indie Stack

Indie Stack is a Cocoa development blog by Daniel Jalkut about “hacking the Mac, iOS, and more.”

Bitsplitting

Another blog from Daniel Jalkut that serves as his “personal soapbox” – offering a little more variety than Indie Stack.

What is your favorite software development blog?

Are you a software developer? We’d love to hear what blogs you read regularly! Tell us your favorites on Twitter and Facebook.

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