Delegate or die: the self-employed trap. | Derek Sivers

Ten minutes later, new question. Same process:

  1. Gather everybody around.
  2. Answer the question, and explain the philosophy.
  3. Make sure everyone understands the thought process.
  4. Ask one person to write it in the manual.
  5. Let them know they can decide this without me next time.

After two months of this, there were no more questions.


Sounds simple, but sometimes getting people to think for themselves requires you to repeatedly explain the thought process...

Liberal vs Conservative Software Engineering… another epic rant from ☛ Steve Yegge

Steve has posted another epic rant on Google+ about the Software Engineerings own political axis. My favorite part it the characterization of the Conservative View as Fred from Scooby-Doo and the Liberal View as Shaggy. The views are highlighted below

Conservative View

  1. Software should aim to be bug free before it launches.
  2. Programmers should be protected from errors.
  3. Programmers have difficulty learning new syntax.
  4. Production code must be safety-checked by a compiler.
  5. Data stores must adhere to a well-defined, published schema.
  6. Public interfaces should be rigorously modeled.
  7. Production systems should never have dangerous or risky back-doors.
  8. If there is ANY doubt as to the safety of a component, it cannot be allowed in production
  9. Fast is better than slow.

    Liberal View:

    1.  Bugs are not a big deal. 
    2. Programmers are only newbies for a little while.
    3. Programmers figure stuff out amazingly fast when their jobs depend on it.
    4. Succinctness is power.
    5. Rigid schemas limit flexibility and slow down development.
    6. Public interfaces should above all else be simple, backward-compatible, and future-compatible.
    7. System flexibility can mean the difference between you getting the customer (or contract) vs. your competitor nabbing it instead.
    8. Companies should take risks, embrace progress, and fiercely resist ossification
    9. Premature optimization is the root of all evil.

      Excerpted from "Notes from the Mystery Machine Bus" by Steve Yegge

      Rob Pike - " small shortcut about 40 years ago..."

      I'm pretty sure the concept of a hidden file was an unintended consequence. It was certainly a mistake.

      How many bugs and wasted CPU cycles and instances of human frustration (not to mention bad design) have resulted from that one small shortcut about 40 years ago?

      Keep that in mind next time you want to cut a corner in your code.


      As well considered Unix always seemed to be, the notion that hidden files were an unintended consequence of a "quick hack" is amusing...