Linked by Eugenia Loli on Sat 14th Jan 2006 03:26 UTC
General Development What is the best way to think of software development? Is it science? Is it art? Is it craft? Is it something else entirely? Read Steve McConnell's article here.
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by CrLf on Sat 14th Jan 2006 04:23 UTC
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I think it depends on the project and how the programmer sees it.

If the project is exciting and the programmer really likes what he's doing and has enough room to be creative, then I think it is something close to art.

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RE: Depends...
by Sphinx on Sat 14th Jan 2006 18:50 in reply to "Depends..."
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It's a craft. You do not step back and get a great masterpiece from bits of crap thrown on the wall, it is built layer upon layer by the tiniest brush stroke of the masters hand. Any project can be either david or a cow pie.

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RE: Depends...
by rcsteiner on Mon 16th Jan 2006 17:39 in reply to "Depends..."
rcsteiner Member since:

I think it also depends somewhat on the "development environment" in which the software is written, which might include such factors as:

* The specific languages and execution environments being used, which can heavily influence what can or cannot be done.

* The type of organizational structure and culture under which one operates (is a heavily structured or compartmentalized process in place with many people assuming limited/specialized roles, or are there a few Jack-of-all-trades programmers working in an old-school "agile" environment),

* The nature of the software being developed (in-house software which might be fairly malleable over time versus for-sale software that only exists as discrete static release levels),


When I'm working on a utility of my own design, I'd say it's as much art as engineering.

When I'm working on a formal application for external customer use and following a tight testing/QA process, it's less art and more engineering.

When I whip together a quickie script for a one-time event, it's sometimes closer to dart throwing. :-)

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