Don't reinvent the wheel
Every software developer wants to create new exiting stuff - but very often the same things are reinvented over and over again. So, before starting to solve a specific problem, try to find out if others did already solve it. Here is a list of things you could do:
- Try to find good "buzzwords" for you problem and the google for them
- Try to find a newsgroup or mailing list that relates to your problem space and post your problem
- Don't by shy or afraid!
You will probably find out that other developers are very helpful. Actually many of them are exited that others are working on similar problems. If you finally solve your specific problem, make the solution available to others, like
- Blog about your problem and your solution
- Give credit to all people who helped you
- Link to other solutions
Over time, to might save a lot of time and get better solutions for your problem much faster.