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2 minutes reading time (405 words)

Planners vs Thinkers: Those Who like Pagebuilders and Those Who Don't

planning-whiteboard

In the Winter quarter, I teach a course at DePaul University on Designing for Content Management Systems. I enjoy teaching this course as it keeps me on my development toes. In the last class, I opened it up to questions. Students could ask questions about the class project, Joomla! or Danico. I was impressed with the questions that were asked (I've got some really intelligent students!).

There were a few questions around Page Builders, Templates and Building from Scratch using a Theming Framework like Gantry5. As I answered their questions, I got to thinking, does the preference come down to the developer being a Planner or a Tinkerer

Where the planners did not like pagebuilders and tinkerers did. During my commute back home, I thought about the various developers that I know, my students, my intern and what their preference is in this scenario would be. I felt like I was onto something.

As I looked through the list, hastily jotted down, it seemed like everyone on the Planner side didn't like working with pagebuilders and those on the Tinkerer side did. Going further I thought about their individual development styles. Reviewing each person on the list, I saw a pattern emerge. Each person that created project plans, design specs, and/or other documentation, things that give a sense of control, absolutely did not like pagebuilders. I have to include myself in this category. I like controlled chaos. I like having a plan and a contingency (or two). I thought back to how I felt when working in a page builder. What stuck out in my mind, was a sense of lack of control. I felt like I was constrained. Now, is this a matter of being a planner or a control-freak? I'm not sure. 

I then looked at the list of Tinkerers. They all liked "winging it". I know this because they tend to laugh at me when I ask to see "the plan" when they ask for help or we're collaborating on a project. They have a general idea of what they want to do and plan to figure it out as they go along. Digging a bit more, I felt I was even more so that I was on the right track.  The ​Tinkerers​ could rattle off more templates than I could and have tried more than a couple of pagebuilders. 

Could it be that simple? I don't know but it is an interesting thought, don't you think? 

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