The Pragmatic Programmer - Deepstash
The Pragmatic Programmer

Markus 's Key Ideas from The Pragmatic Programmer
by David Thomas

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Why some programmers talk to rubber ducks

Why some programmers talk to rubber ducks

Talking to an inanimate object like a rubber duck is a debugging technique called rubber duck debugging.

The term was shaped in 1999 by Andrew Hunt and David Thomas - the authors of the book The Pragmatic Programmer.


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Why it works

Why it works

Explaining a problem (it doesn't even have to be a bug in programming) helps to look at the problem from a different perspective. That helps to better understand what one is trying to accomplish and often the error is almost obvious while explaining it to someone else.


285 reads

A very simple but particularly useful technique for finding the cause of a problem is simply to explain it to someone else. The other person should look over your shoulder at the screen, and nod his or her head constantly (like a rubber duck bobbing up and down in a bathtub).



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Rubber Duck vs. Person

Rubber Duck vs. Person

Rubber duck/Inanimate object:

  • very patient listener
  • has infinite time
  • is always available
  • holds back on feedback


  • not always available
  • might not have time/patience to listen to the whole problem
  • might give advice if the problem does not want to solve itself


278 reads



I started a habit of reading in my free time a couple months ago and this seems like a convenient place to store the key ideas of each book.


When a bug gets you stuck, explain it to a rubber duck.

Curious about different takes? Check out our The Pragmatic Programmer Summary book page to explore multiple unique summaries written by Deepstash users.

Markus 's ideas are part of this journey:

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Learn more about problemsolving with this collection

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How to stay motivated and avoid burnout while learning

How to break down complex concepts into manageable parts

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Curious about different takes? Check out our book page to explore multiple unique summaries written by Deepstash curators:

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