Review

This is brilliant stuff and I have no idea why it is not discussed more. Do we need to wait until we have a massive public accident – the equivalent of bridges falling down – before software development is ‘forced’ to become a true profession?

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Dates 12 April 2013 – 14 May 2013
Time spent reading 4 hours, 21 minutes
Highlights 16
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Highlights

The project lead of Lotus Symphony received a call from a surgeon who was using Symphony to analyze patient data during open heart surgery.

Andrew Doran Andrew Doran

Quite scary. Probably covered in a giant disclaimer as you install the software.

“Progress” doesn’t necessarily mean sufficient progress.

Several studies have shown that 40–80 percent of a typical project’s budget goes into fixing defects that were created earlier on the same project.

the most sophisticated organisations—those that produce the most reliable software for the least cost and with the shortest schedules—spend a relatively small percentage of their budgets on the coding part of a project.

An attempt to trade quality for cost or schedule actually results in increased cost and a longer schedule.

A scientist builds in order to learn; an engineer learns in order to build.

For many classes of programs—inventory management systems, payroll programs, general ledger software, operating systems, database management software, language compilers (the list is nearly endless)—the same basic systems have been written so many times that you think they shouldn't require as much unique design effort as they seem to need.

“All models are wrong; some models are useful.”

Andrew Doran Andrew Doran

Reminds me of a great guy I worked with in the past who was responsible for internal training programmes as well as client education. Have heard him say this more than once.

Conway's Law: the structure of a computer program reflects the structure of the organization that built it.

Andrew Doran Andrew Doran

Have never heard his before. Do people think it is true?

Damien Ryan Damien Ryan

Read about it in Continuous Delivery. Certainly seen it in the real world - database and development teams don't talk therefore everything is implemented in ORM and all config is stuffed into XML files.

Success = Planning * Execution

Many practicing programmers work as though Software Construction is the only knowledge area that matters. As important as that area is, it is only one of 10 areas that a professional software engineer should know.

No occupation that affects the public as much as software does remains unlicensed.

One of the consequences of being a professional engineer is that you can be held personally liable for the work your company performs under your signature. Courts in the United States have held that only members of a profession can be found guilty of malpractice.

Education is strategic; training is tactical.

The differences between engineering and computer science accreditation criteria do not imply that one approach is right and the other is wrong. The objectives of each are simply different. Science programs prepare students to conduct research; engineering programs prepare students to participate in industry.

One publisher reported that the average software developer reads less than one professional book each year and subscribes to no professional magazines. This might not seem like an ethical issue, but it certainly is a professional practice issue.