Category Archives: software-engineering

Even more on generalist software engineering

There is a difference between a generalist software engineer, and a polyglot programmer. What is that difference, and why did I smoosh the two together in yesterday’s post? A polyglot programmer is a programmer who can use, or maybe has … Continue reading

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On interviewing and generalist software engineers

After publishing podcast Episode 53: Specialism versus generality, Alan Francis raised a good point: This could be very timely as I ponder my life as a generalist who has struggled when asked to fit in a neat box career wise. … Continue reading

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The Requirements Trifecta

It’s hard to argue that any one approach to, well, anything in software is better or worse than any others, because very few people are collecting any data and even fewer are reporting what they’re trying. Worst is understanding how … Continue reading

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On or Between

The new way to model concurrency is with coroutines (1963), i.e. the async/await dance or (building upon) call-with-concurrent-continuation. The new new way is with actors (1973), and the old and busted ways are with threads (1966), and promises (1976). As … Continue reading

Posted in architecture of sorts, code-level, design, performance, software-engineering | Leave a comment

Software design is refinement, not abstraction

James Koppel tells us that software engineers keep using the word “abstraction” and that he does not think it means what they think it means. I believe that he is correct, and that the confusion over the term abstraction comes … Continue reading

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Why are we like this?

The recent post on addressing “technical debt” did the rounds of the usual technology forums, where it raised a reasonable question: why are people basing these decisions on balancing engineering-led with customer-led tasks on opinion? Why don’t engineers take an … Continue reading

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Having the right data

In the beginning there was the relational database, and it was…OK, I guess. It was based on the relational model, and allowed operations that were within the relational algebra. I mean it actually didn’t. The usual standard for relational databases … Continue reading

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What is software engineering?

I suppose if I’m going to have a tagline like “from programming to software engineering”, we ought to have some kind of shared understanding of what that journey entails. It would be particularly useful to agree on the destination. The … Continue reading

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A little context: I got introduced to UML in around 2008, at an employer who had a site licence for Enterprise Architect. I was sent on a training course run by a company that no longer exists called Sun Microsystems: … Continue reading

Posted in agile, architecture of sorts, design, software-engineering, sunw, tool-support | 2 Comments

Discipline doesn’t scale

If programmers were just more disciplined, more professional, they’d write better software. All they need is a code of conduct telling them how to work like those of us who’ve worked it out. The above statement is true, which is … Continue reading

Posted in C++, learning, software-engineering | 6 Comments