This post is inspired by an episode of the Art of Manliness podcast, with the psychologist Svend Brinkmann. I guess a good way to introduce it is to give you an example from the podcast. Imagine you go to a shop to buy some milk. You go to the checkout with your milk, and the … Continue reading People: an end or just a means?
There is a sometimes tangled relationship between what we can do and how we think of ourselves. I'm going to look at a part of this below. I can't do X because I'm a Y Have you heard someone (or yourself) ever say something of the form "I can't do X because I'm a Y"? … Continue reading Competence vs. Tribalism
I recently watched a video and listened to a podcast that form an interesting pair of opinions about performance. The video is Patterns for high-performance C# and the podcast is SE-Radio Episode 357: Adam Barr on Software Quality. There are two things where the podcast and video have no differences: the system must behave correctly, … Continue reading Performance optimisation – for machines or people?
Introduction There is a stereotype of a certain kind of programmer. It’s of a young white able-bodied man, alone in his room, creating the future through the force of his intellect. This creation leads to widespread change and a gazillion dollars for him. While it can be amazing to create things in code, and there … Continue reading Programmers should play nicely with others
Introduction I listen to the podcast Art of Manliness - its title is possibly misleading, as it's quite a mix of philosophy, practical skills, self improvement, lives of interesting people and so on. The episode I listened to most recently was about mental models, from Shane Parrish who is the person behind Farnam Street. I … Continue reading Programmers, mental models and decisions
Introduction I very much hope that this avoids being a rant. I also hope it avoids being self-indulgently clever rather than being helpful. Finally, I understand that people learn in different ways; I think I like images and like to get the big picture before getting into detail. Other people like to be led along … Continue reading Balancing big picture and details when coding, testing and documenting
There's the term Computer Science, which puzzles me - is this field a science? Before I go on at probably great length, I feel it's important to say a few things to set the context. The most important one to me is: it doesn't matter. You can be good or bad at it whatever you … Continue reading Is Computing a Science?