THE CODE ISSUE 27

August 5th, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one reminds us that in coding, as in any other industry, quality work is always appreciated and admired (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 94):

Bugs aren’t the original sin of programming. They’re just part of life, like unwanted body hair or political campaigns. The original sin of programming is cheating—breaking other people’s code with your new features, trying to jam your changes into the main codebase before they’re ready. Automated testing isn’t only a way to head off bugs; it’s also a way to suggest that you write respectable code, code that earns a salute.





THE CODE ISSUE 26

August 4th, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one poignantly reminds us that reliable, accurate coding prevents the painful interruption of personal and family time (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 94):

Relentless testing is one way to keep an eye on yourself and to make sure the other person’s bugs and your bugs don’t find each other one wintry night when everyone is home by the fireplace and crash the server right before Christmas, setting up all kinds of automated alarms and forcing programmers into terrible apology loops with deeply annoyed spouses.





THE CODE ISSUE 25

August 3rd, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one might be another case of confusing the cart and the horse (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 94):

If you hover near programmers, you will hear them talk tests—the writing of tests, the passing of tests. Some don’t even program until they’ve written the tests that the code they hope to write must pass. This is called test-driven design.





THE CODE ISSUE 24

July 31st, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one gives us a clue about where coders go to find help (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 92):

Sometimes a request goes too hard, for example, calling itself so many times that the stack, which is a finite resource, fills up and can’t take it anymore. Hence the name of the website Stack Overflow, where programmers go to answer questions and help each other solve bugs. It’s the 62nd-most-visited website in the world, trailing Craigslist by a few spots.





THE CODE ISSUE 23

July 30th, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one addresses the painful truth of Murphy’s law (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 90):

Programming is debugging. It’s the expectation that things won’t work. This is not something people bring up, just like they don’t bring up their medical history on the first date.





THE CODE ISSUE 22

July 29th, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one touches on the prodigious consequences that arise from code (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 90):

In programming, there are as many ways to destroy something as to create something. One stray character is all that’s required.





THE CODE ISSUE 21

July 28th, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one speaks of one of the corporate underdog patriarchs of the coding world (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 86):

When everyone goes to Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco and they stare rapturously as some man in an untucked, expensive shirt talks about ‘core data,’ this is the context. Onstage, presenting its Kits, Apple is rearranging abstractions, saying: Look at the new reality we’ve defined, the way that difficult things are now easy and drab things can be colorful. Your trust in our platform and your dedication of thousands of hours of time have not been misplaced.

They’ve pitched variations on this annually for 30 years.





THE CODE ISSUE 20

July 27th, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one addresses the frustrations of how much code you create yourself versus how much code you buy off the shelf. It becomes an especially important question when your company is facing a major IT systems problem (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 78):

[The question involves] a way to use more off-the-shelf components, a way to buy your way out of this.

. . . Sort of, . . . but when you’re making a system that will integrate with the systems around it and your company is a set of such systems, nothing is truly off the shelf. There are tools and packages and libraries, and if you have any wit at all you already use well-documented, free code for things such as e-mail validation, but that obviates only so much. . . .

You come to the conclusion: The world is broken.





THE CODE ISSUE 19

July 24th, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one suggests big can equate to bad (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 76):

‘Enterprise’ is a feared word among programmers, because enterprise programming is a lot of work without much to show for it. Remember healthcare.gov, the first version that was a total disaster? Perfect example of enterprise coding.





THE CODE ISSUE 18

July 23rd, 2015

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Here is another one of my favorite quotes from the special double issue of Bloomberg Businessweek on computer coding. This one addresses some of the creative destruction that has accompanied our technology revolution (Paul Ford, “The Code Issue”, 6/15/15–6/28/15, p. 74):

Of course, while we were trying to build a bookstore [Amazon.com], we actually built the death of bookstores—that seems to happen a lot in the business. You set out to do something cool and end up destroying lots of things that came before.