It’s traditional to make resolutions to celebrate the New Year. Often those resolutions involve battles with personal demons, such as losing weight, stopping smoking, or going to the gym. In fact, according to, popular New Year’s resolutions include those above, plus getting a better job, reducing stress and volunteering to help other people.

Those are general resolutions. What sort of resolutions should we make as technologists and as software developers? Here are some ideas:

* Resolve not to engage in zero-sum wars of any sort: It’s not about Mac vs. Windows, Java vs. .NET, open source vs. proprietary, iPhone vs. Droid, XP vs. Scrum.

* Resolve to make sure that the entire team understands the importance of software testing, and that it’s harmful to take shortcuts.

* Resolve to embrace those aspects of agile software development that add value to team efforts, while resisting those efforts that don’t appear to offer tangible benefits.

* Resolve to study emerging technologies, paradigms and methodologies, and urge pilots and adoption where it makes sense.

* Resolve not to be railroaded into jumping onto any bandwagons, whether it’s about mobile, agile or cloud computing.

* Resolve to embrace open standards, and to resist being seduced onto proprietary platforms that have a high exit cost.

* Resolve to educate yourself by reading books and trusted news sources, attending conferences and staying up on emerging trends.

* Resolve to fight groupthink by challenging the status quo and by hanging out with people who have different ideas about computing.

* Resolve to spend less time on Twitter, and spend more quality time with your friends and family.

Do you have other ideas for New Year’s resolutions for folks in our industry? Share them with me at

I hope that 2010 will be successful and meaningful for you and your family.

Alan Zeichick is editorial director of SD Times. Follow him on Twitter at Read his blog at