Scott makes a comment about people being born coders. I wholeheartedly agree. I've known lots of people who have had reasonably successful careers as coders, but who've never been extraordinary. Plenty of people pull down a paycheck doing competent work as coders, but never achieve greatness. I agree that it's something inborn. Maybe it's the ADD and dyslexia. Whatever it is, my experience has shown that some people just don't have it, and no matter how hard they work they'll never get over the hump.
I recently spoke with a psychologist who was musing about the idea that the high level of coffee consumption in the NW is due to the fact that many if not most coders are ADD, and caffeine works to calm them down enough to work, in the same way that Ritalin works on kids. Not scientific, perhaps, but it makes some sense.
My son thinks it's pretty cool to be a geek. He's started referring to himself as “geek, son of geek”. He's a little miffed that there aren't any T-Shirts that say that. In his case it's tough to distinguish nature from nurture, since I was out as geek before he was born.
Maybe someday in the near future they'll map out the geek gene.