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SuperCoder

When I decided to get my degree in computer science, I knew I would be learning how to program and gaining an understanding of technology in our world today. What I did not realize was just how much of a super-power programming can be. Everyone in the world relies on some or multiple forms of technology everyday, but only a small fraction of people truly understand how these technologies work. We as a society have developed a significant reliability on these powerful technologies without much questioning of them. From financial software to ride sharing apps, these technologies improve quality of life and increase productivity, and to thank for all of this, we have programmers. They are greatly responsible for shaping the world we live in today, as we can see their products having a profound impact in all industries and in the lives of people of all ages. Programmers have power because they possess this knowledge that the majority of people do not know. These same people however want and need the help of programmers to have smartphones, computers, and more technologies that they can no longer live without. For this reason, I view programming as a true super-power. And with this power comes a tremendous responsibility to write proper code that will be used to advance our society and culture and never to exploit others with less understanding or create potential harm. If we as programmers succumb to unethical practices in order to complete a project or please an employer, we are just as much at fault. In the words of Bill Sourour, “as developers, we are often one of the last lines of defense against potentially dangerous and unethical practices”. We must all follow a code of ethics to ensure that our power is never used improperly. But being responsible for our own code is simply not enough. The community of programmers is small yet growing rapidly; meaning people are gaining this super-power everyday. As a result, we must revise one another’s code where it is appropriate. If we want to be true superheroes we must go above and beyond when using our talents to help the greater good. Not only must we write clean, ethical code, we must also take every opportunity to vet any piece of code that we believe to be unethical and ensure that it not plague our society who is unable to revise the code for themselves.

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