Flutterby™! : Software engineering and community building

Next unread comment / Catchup all unread comments User Account Info | Logout | XML/Pilot/etc versions | Long version (with comments) | Weblog archives | Site Map | | Browse Topics

Software engineering and community building

2003-03-12 18:52:03.704022+00 by Dan Lyke 2 comments

From Borklog which got it from Lars Pind, an email on the cocoon mailing list about software engineering and community building:

The good old Software Engineering practices they teach you in college are bullshit: making architecture decisions without continous reversibility is expensive because design constraints change too much. Those who want to apply hardware engineering practices miserably fail.

One of the advantages we have over the hardware folks is that our research costs are our fabrication costs. If we do incremental testing, ala Extreme Programming[Wiki], especially with languages that allow for quick prototyping, then we're doing what CAD[Wiki] and finite element analysis[Wiki] packages do for mechanical engineers.

But I still call my self a "software developer" and not a "software engineer".

[ related topics: Open Source Software Engineering Community Education ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment made: 2003-03-13 05:24:08.629265+00 by: Shawn

I guess I'm just not one for industry insiderness and buzzwords but I've never understood the various titles that get tossed around. I too label myself a software deveoper, rather than an engineer - partly because, for me, the word engineer carries strong connotations of somebody with a PhD and/or who does a lot of drafting and structural analysis. I don't see what I do as engineering.

And trying to figure out exactly what the h-e-double-hockey-sticks a "Programmer Analyst" is supposed to be makes my head hurt.

#Comment made: 2003-03-13 16:56:17.813364+00 by: Mars Saxman

I know what you mean, Shawn. "Engineer" sounds pretentious for a field this casual. A real engineer gets a formal spec up front, and when the program/blueprint is written they only get one compile pass and it had damn well better work. Failure has actual consequences. Out here in software-land, you just change the code and recompile it...

My current job title is "Compiler Guru" and that suits me just fine.