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are programmers "failures"?
03-28-2019, 07:03 PM
Post: #29
RE: are programmers "failures"?

My personal experience:

When programming was "difficult" (e.g. in my early days of programming calculators and when using punch cards to write programs on mainframes) the error rate was exceptionally low. One would carefully write down - on paper - every instruction and test it "dry" before punching it onto a card (or typing it into the calculator). Then put the stack of cards into the reader and paitiently wait a couple of hours for the results. Failure was not an option because it would cost another work day.

Later, when CRT terminals and desktop computers became available to me, I did what most people did and adopted a "shirtsleeve" approach to programming: Just type into the terminal what comes into your mind, let the compiler be your spell checker and run the program. If the result looks halfway decent, submit the code to the project manager and let the customer do the final debugging ;-) Never before and after have I been more productive in my life. Some of the code which I wrote that way was used to design the largest airliner in the world (which unfortunately, due to lack of demand, will cease production very soon).

Then came ISO 9000 (or Agile or whatever else it may be called elsewhere) which meant that for every hour of writing code one was required to spend nine hours doing paperwork, documentation, test cases, testing, acceptance testing, kick.-off meetings, other meetings, ... you name it. Took the fun and productivity out of the job completely. And the results? No A380 has come to grief yet, but two B737 Max airliner crashes have taken more than 300 lives recently despite their software being developed under those stringent rules.

Personally I have pulled the plug and stopped programming for renumeration. I expect satisfaction from my work and that was no longer possible for me. Now I fly our corporate jet (which of course is very much regulated as well but not as much as producing technical software) and enjoy the view.

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Messages In This Thread
are programmers "failures"? - Don Shepherd - 03-23-2019, 01:10 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - grsbanks - 03-23-2019, 01:21 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - mfleming - 03-23-2019, 02:55 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - cdmackay - 03-23-2019, 07:23 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - pier4r - 03-23-2019, 07:49 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - grsbanks - 03-23-2019, 10:14 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - Vtile - 03-23-2019, 11:43 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - pier4r - 03-24-2019, 09:15 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - cruff - 03-24-2019, 10:36 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - Pekis - 03-26-2019, 07:06 AM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - KeithB - 03-27-2019, 07:34 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - Leviset - 03-28-2019, 10:37 AM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - pier4r - 03-28-2019, 06:03 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - Maximilian Hohmann - 03-28-2019 07:03 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - pier4r - 03-30-2019, 02:07 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - Dan - 04-05-2019, 07:12 AM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - mfleming - 04-05-2019, 03:16 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - badaze - 03-30-2019, 11:32 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - Leviset - 04-30-2019, 10:08 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - aamiel - 05-03-2019, 02:46 PM
RE: are programmers "failures"? - pier4r - 05-03-2019, 11:35 AM

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