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#1 BrendanH  Icon User is offline

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Software Developer vs. Software Engineer

Posted 15 July 2013 - 12:43 AM

Whats the difference between a software developer and a software engineer?

This post has been edited by macosxnerd101: 15 July 2013 - 07:44 AM
Reason for edit:: Renamed title to be more descriptive

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Replies To: Software Developer vs. Software Engineer

#2 macosxnerd101  Icon User is offline

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Re: Software Developer vs. Software Engineer

Posted 15 July 2013 - 07:48 AM

It really depends on the company in question. Both are usually just titles for someone who develops software for a living.

Not to be rude, but did you even attempt to do any research before asking this question? A quick Google search did turn up a lot of good information as well.
https://www.google.c...-a&channel=fflb
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#3 DarenR  Icon User is online

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Re: Software Developer vs. Software Engineer

Posted 15 July 2013 - 09:09 AM

in my company a developer is just that -- some one who develops what they are told to develop
the engineer develops and also designs the programs.

every company is different though...

This post has been edited by DarenR: 15 July 2013 - 12:36 PM

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#4 gonzaw  Icon User is offline

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Re: Software Developer vs. Software Engineer

Posted 15 July 2013 - 11:36 AM

Software Developer is usually the guy in charge of implementing the code of the program/system, designing it, etc. If you apply a broader definition he can be in charge of other steps of the developing stage, like unit testing, deployment, maybe even requirement gathering and analysis, architecture analysis, etc.

Software Engineering, well I suppose is the guy in "charge" of the software engineering process. But this is just too broad as well
But let's say there is a lot of shit the SW E. has to do that the SW D. doesn't.
For instance, he may be project manager as well, so he'll have to analyse costs, measure the viability of the project, analyse the possible results of that project and all of its process. Estimate results, effort, human resources, etc.
Then he may be in charge of other areas, like determining plans of requirement engineering (determine HOW to go talk to the client to know what the product will doe, determine how to structure the documents needed for the processes to function properly, etc). He may also be in charge of the planning of the verification/validation process as well, which includes not only testing but all the management behind it. For instance WHO is running WHICH tests WHEN, analyzing the results and determining how to proceed depending on how much defects are found, etc.
Maybe he's also in charge or maintenance. Not in implementing changes himself (the software developer may be in charge of that), but setting plans to determine WHAT has to be changed WHEN, which changes are viable to make and which ones aren't, etc.

If you are a Software Engineer you certainly will have "more" to do in that regard. If you are the Software Developer you just develop software, either in a small-scale project, or in a big-scale project where you take orders from the Software Engineer and other guys.
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#5 AdamSpeight2008  Icon User is offline

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Re: Software Developer vs. Software Engineer

Posted 15 July 2013 - 12:25 PM

Engineer is a protected professional title in some countries eg Germany.
You have to certain qualifications (like a degree) to qualify and then usually also a member of professional guild or union for that profession.

The Developer thinks at a holistic level, about what the customer actually needs.
Database? Network? Application? or tweak to an Excel spreadsheet.

The Engineer designs and implements the structural aspect of the project. What Interface objects they will need and the hierarchy of those objects.

The Programmer is the code monkey that does the menial typing of the code into the IDE and GUI.
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#6 lordofduct  Icon User is offline

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Re: Software Developer vs. Software Engineer

Posted 15 July 2013 - 01:39 PM

I agree with AdamSpeight's explanation, it's the closest to real world use of the terms.

And do note, 1 person can fill the role of all 3.
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#7 AfterBurner66  Icon User is offline

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Re: Software Developer vs. Software Engineer

Posted 20 July 2013 - 04:20 AM

If we answer that using formal definitions, then Software Engineer is in charge of the whole software project, so necessarily has to deal with customer and company aspects as well, software developer is "a scale down" meaning that he has to administate and organise the whole project, regarding software itself, meaning technical details and programmer is indeed the "code monkey", to implement all this.But there are some important remarks here: First and foremost, due to the nature of software, the lines or boundaries between the above areas are greatly blurred, meaning that each one is not in a vacuum tube doing only what he has to,because in this case the project is doomed to fail.Beginning from "down" programmer must know a great deal of development, so he can take some decisions when he has to and so does developer. On the "up" side of the pyramid, software engineer cannot be just a business person, but he has to have a great deal of knowledge and experience in coding.
Second, the whole thing is greatly dependent on the country, on the size of company and of course on the size of project in question.There are many cases where someone must wear three hats, other casee with two etc. What is important here, speaking according to my own experience, is everyone whatever of the above three is, having as much knowledge as he can and not to say for example, there's a lot of design here, so who cares anyway, sw engineer will do all this, it's not my job to know all this, or there's a lot of math, ok who cares etc.
I regard myself as just a programmer for web and desktop, but I've studied hardly for many years, so I can understand and do a great deal more than I have to, and so do as I think, everyone who respects himself and has a passion with what he is doing. On the opposite side of course,one must take the initiative when he is allowed to and he absolutely has to, so the roles must be absolutely distinct, but not the knowledge or expertise.
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#8 andrewsw  Icon User is offline

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Re: Software Developer vs. Software Engineer

Posted 20 July 2013 - 04:33 AM

Quote

Second, the whole thing is greatly dependent on the country, on the size of company and of course on the size of project in question.

I think this is very apropos. If you are in luck, the job description will clearly delineate the responsibilities.
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