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{ Category Archives } architecture of sorts

Object-Oriented Programming in Objective-C

UIKonf 1995 Keynote : Object-Oriented Programming in Objective-C Introduction Welcome to the keynote for UIKonf 1995. I’m really excited for what 1995 will bring. Customers are upgrading to last year’s OpenStep release, which means that we get to use the new APIs and the best platform around. And really, there are no competitors. OS/2 Warp […]

Getting better at doing it wrong

For around a month at the end of last year, I kept a long text note called “doing doing it wrong right”. I was trying to understand error handling in programming, look at some common designs and work out a plan for cleaning up some error-handling code I was working with myself (mercifully someone else, […]

The Design of the Bazaar

In The Design of Design, Fred Brooks makes an interesting point about ESR’s description of the Bazaar model of Linux (and, by extension, “Open Source”) development. Linux was actually designed in a cathedral. The design was supplied by Unix, where Linux was to be a work-alike replacement for a particular component. There was even a […]

Hiding behind messages

A problem I think about every so often is how to combine the software design practice of hiding implementations behind interfaces with the engineering practice of parallel execution. What are the trade-offs between making parallelism explicit and information hiding? Where are some lines that can be drawn? Why do we need abstractions for this stuff, […]

On opinionation

I’ve realised that when I read that a tool or framework is “opinionated”, I interpret that as meaning that I’m going to have to spend time on working out how to express my solution in its terms. I have enough trouble trying to work out how to express my solution in terms of my problem, […]

…and in the end there will be the command line.

You’re pretty happy with the car that the dealer is showing you. It looks comfortable, stylish, and has all of the features you want. There’s a lot of space in the trunk for your luggage. The independent reviews that you’ve seen agree with the marketing literature: once this vehicle gets out onto the open road, […]

Layers of Distraction

A discussion I was involved in over on Facebook reminded me of some other issues I’d already drafted for this blog, so I stuck the two together and here we are. Software systems can often be seen as aggregations of strata, with higher layers making use of the services in the lower layers. You’ll often […]

There’s No Such Thing as a General-purpose Processor

http://queue.acm.org/detail.cfm?id=2687011 There’s no such thing as a General-purpose processor, and belief in such a device is harmful.

The next phase in technological convergence will be harder than the last, because it can’t be solved with technology. Last time the devices converged, some phone makers just needed to buy a photoelectric detector, a lens, and licenses for some MP3 patents. But how can the various tab-sized computers I carry – my bank cards, […]

More on Layers

I was told yesterday that entity-relationship diagrams can be OK as high level descriptions of database schemata, but are not appropriate for designing a database. Enough information is missing that they are not able to model the problem. Could the same be true of layer diagrams? Perhaps they’re OK as stratospheric guides to your software, […]