The desire to try something new, always

This is the converse and polar opposite to Sledgehammerism. Given any project, if there is a new technology available or a tool that might sound good on a CV, then attempts should be made to utilise it somewhere, somehow at some point for any reason no matter how flimsy.

Career building

The effects of this are to increase developer interest in the project as well as providing the developer with career building opportunities, but also to add what may well be a risky, unproven, lightly documented component to the system. A very real example of this would have been projects that used Docker prior to the release of v1.0 despite disclaimers by the Docker team not to use it in production.

The benefits of betas

Projects that do use experiment and beta products can see some great benefits if they are able to absorb the risks and have enough breathing space to make large changes should it not work out as expected. However, there does exist a mindset that we should try new things when we can, and that all projects are changes which by itself implies that there is never a wrong time to do this if enough consideration is taken.


A great developer will continue to explore technology and know about upcoming tools, technology, methods, and approaches so that they can apply something new when it has significant benefits over more established options. The Experimentalist however seeks to push the latest and greatest at every opportunity. In more conservative environments this is unlikely to be beneficial, but for startups and cutting edge projects it can be a bonus. There is a fine line between Explorer and Experimentalists, governed by judgement.

Risky choices

There are many risks with adopting new tools or technologies, not least of which is a lack of stability in the software itself. Another risk is a lack of expertise available to support the new tools.