You often hear that designers need inspiration and that coders just need to do their job, and well, code. I tend to disagree with that statement. Good coders just sit down and do their work, great coders will use any opportunity to push the boundaries and find new and better ways to code something, and that requires inspiration.
It can be something as simple as seeing something really cool someone else coded or it could be that 5 minutes you spend making a nice cup of coffee. Sometime 5 minutes away from your monitor can change your coding perspective completely.
Here are 5 places we tend to find inspiration from, maybe they can do the same for you:
1. By browsing through Mr.doob’s HTML5 and ActionScript experiments I normally get the urge to learn new technologies. Most of his experiments, especially the HTML5 stuff isn’t completely ready for prime-time as a result of our old friend Internet Explorer, but it’s still a great inspiration source: http://mrdoob.com/
2. Go for a walk in the wild and take photos while you’re there. It will give you a different perspective on things. Sometime you just need that fresh air and sunlight to get the creative juices flowing again. (I don’t have a link for this, so you can check out my flickr stream if you want.)
3. Look at what your peers are doing. This will make you want to excel in your field. A good place I find to do this is the Favourite Website Awards (FWA). They add one new project every day, keeping you updated on the latest and greatest work out there on this incredibly large Internet: http://thefwa.com/
4. A cup of coffee. Yep it’s that simple. Whether that is a cup of coffee you make for yourself with the instant powder stuff or an awesome cup of Truth coffee. Just having that couple of minutes to do the coffee drinking ritual will clear up most coding “problems” you might have. http://ilovecoffee.co.za/
5. The right music for the right occasion. I found that this can easily be the difference between delivering a great product and just barely delivering. When deadlines are pressing you might need something more up beat like one of the awesome Matt Conduit mixes and when you need to get into that level of concentration where no-one else is welcome something more chilled like The Black Keys or maybe you need something in between, something up-beat but also not enough so to be distracting. Then you could try something like Vampire Weekend.
Well, that was a mouth full, but I hope the above tips will help you find inspiration in times of need. No go forth and create awesome, boundary-pushing code.