Author Archives: Graham

About Graham

I make it faster and easier for you to create high-quality code.

On rational myths

In my research field, one characteristic of institutions is their “rational myths”; ideas that people tell each other are true, and believe are true, but which are under-explored, unverified, and under-challenged. Belief in these myths leads to supposedly rational actions … Continue reading

Posted in academia, social-science, software-engineering | 2 Comments

We shall return one day

On this day 80 years ago, 16th November 1943, the villagers of Tyneham near Lulworth was evacuated to allow Allied military forces to prepare for D-Day. Despite promises that the evacuation was temporary, the UK lurched directly from the second … Continue reading

Posted in music | 1 Comment

In which things are given names

I recently joined in a very interesting discussion with some of my peers on the thorny subject of naming variables in programs. The core question was whether it’s OK to give a variable a temporary name while you’re still working … Continue reading

Posted in code-level | 1 Comment

I’ve vastly misunderstood the Single Responsibility Principle

So have a lot of other people; my understanding of it accords with much writing I’ve seen about the principle on the web, and elsewhere. For example, in Michael Feathers’ “Working Effectively with Legacy Code”: Every class should have a … Continue reading

Posted in architecture of sorts | Tagged | 7 Comments

Programming, language

Programming languages represent two things: programming, and language. Programming languages were previously designed very much with the former in mind. For Algol-style, imperative languages, design followed one of a few, mathematically-led approaches: Other semantics are available: for example if you … Continue reading

Posted in tool-support | Leave a comment

I was wrong, 80 characters is fine

Do you remember when I said, in my 2019 post Why 80?, that “80 characters per line is a particular convention out of many that we know literally nothing about the benefit or cost of, even today”? Today I saw … Continue reading

Posted in design | 5 Comments

Re-evaluating second brains

Because my undergraduate Physics teaching drilled into me the importance of keeping a lab book, I’ve always kept notebooks throughout my professional career too. If I want to know (and I’m not sure why I would) what process I created … Continue reading

Posted in memory, writing | 1 Comment

Type safety, undefined behaviour, and us

There appears to be a shift towards programming languages that improve safety by providing an expressive type system, automatic memory management, and no gaps in the specification that lead to “undefined behaviour”. If your program is consistent with the logic … Continue reading

Posted in software-engineering | Tagged | 1 Comment

On legitimacy and software engineering

More than 400,000 software engineers have lost their jobs in the last couple of years, I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s really significantly more than half a million as some won’t have been documented anywhere that the tracker project saw. … Continue reading

Posted in academia, software-engineering | Leave a comment

On association

My research touches on the professionalisation (or otherwise) of software engineering, and particularly the association (or not) of software engineers with a professional body, or with each other (or not) through a professional body. So what’s that about? In Engagement … Continue reading

Posted in academia, advancement of the self, Responsibility, software-engineering | Leave a comment