Obviously you work as a professional programmer, and obviously, you are talking under the "productivity" point of view of a company. When I code at home, I prefer to spend some time thinking about how to make my code more efficient than going to buy another computer if I need to run it faster :) .
I think that knowing how to make your code more efficient is an important step when learning how to program. If you learn how to make your code faster, at the same time you will learn if the goal worths the effort, and surely you will be a better programmer.
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