(This is a snapshot of my old weblog. New posts and selected republished essays can be found at raganwald.com.)

Thursday, August 14, 2008
  That's where the change is. The possibilities you can realize.

No technology will ever make up for unskilled developers, immature products, bad methodologies, unrealistic requirement documents and incompetent management. The industry average is average for a reason.

What will change is not the rate of success. What will change is the ability of the successful to do more interesting things, and do them better.

Fifty years ago we had to walk punchcard boxes from one room to another, now we trade messages with people on the other side of the globe. With spellchecking!

Back then we kept a rolodex with hand written scribbles and stapled business cards, today we have tools that update our rolodex in real time.

That’s where the change is. The possibilities you can realize.
—Assaf Arkin, SOA and the statistical non-FAIL

Comments on “That's where the change is. The possibilities you can realize.:
I thought you quit?

That seems like one of those inspirational speeches that sounds really nice but doesn't make much sense. It reminds me of a gay guy I took an advertising class with in college. He'd give 10 minute presentations that lasted 20, saying lots of really great, important sounding stuff, in his over-exaggerated lisp and dramatic tone. By the end of it I had no idea what the topic was. He got very good grades. This isn't quite that bad, just reminiscent.

So, in order to be fair, I went and read the full article. It's not as bad as I expected, and does make logical sense, except for those three history paragraphs. I suppose they're there for effect.

I especially like this sentence, "And the average article using statistics out of context to make a point that sounds good but doesn’t say anything."
Can I take credit for making you break radio silence? :-)

Welcome back.

@brennan, they're there for effect. Maybe I should have titled my post "SOA, still more reliable than trade journals".
Brennan, Assaf is very good looking, but I can give you another explanation for your advertising class not making sense: maybe you were too entranced with the presentation and not paying attention to the content?


But seriously, it's like this: Assaf wrote something that resonated strongly with my experience, namely that technologies have very little impact on whether a team will ship software. They have impact on what kind of software the team will ship. I go further and say the exact same thing about methodologies.

I'm not really blogging, it's just that those paragraphs seemed worth repeating.
Are you in the business of match making now? :-)
Lol. >_<

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A Brief History of Dangerous Ideas

rewrite.rubyforge.org / ick.rubyforge.org / andand.rubyforge.org / unfold.rb / string_to_proc.rb / dsl_and_let.rb / comprehension.rb / lazy_lists.rb

IS-STRICTLY-EQUIVALENT-TO-A / Spaghetti-Western Coding / Golf is a good program spoiled / Programming conventions as signals / Not all functions should be object methods

The Not So Big Software Design / Writing programs for people to read / Why Why Functional Programming Matters Matters / But Y would I want to do a thing like this?

The single most important thing you must do to improve your programming career / The Naïve Approach to Hiring People / No Disrespect / Take control of your interview / Three tips for getting a job through a recruiter / My favourite interview question

Exception Handling in Software Development / What if powerful languages and idioms only work for small teams? / Bricks / Which theory fits the evidence? / Still failing, still learning / What I’ve learned from failure

The unary ampersand in Ruby / (1..100).inject(&:+) / The challenge of teaching yourself a programming language / The significance of the meta-circular interpreter / Block-Structured Javascript / Haskell, Ruby and Infinity / Closures and Higher-Order Functions

Why Apple is more expensive than Amazon / Why we are the biggest obstacles to our own growth / Is software the documentation of business process mistakes? / We have lost control of the apparatus / What I’ve Learned From Sales I, II, III

The Narcissism of Small Code Differences / Billy Martin’s Technique for Managing his Manager / Three stories about The Tao / Programming Language Stories / Why You Need a Degree to Work For BigCo

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