Subject: Re: what makes a production quality programer? (was  Re: New Lisp ?)
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: Sun, 30 Dec 2001 05:38:43 GMT
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Russell Wallace
| On the other hand, this is not necessarily irrational.  It's my
| experience that software usually does not evolve from being very
| unreliable to being very reliable.  There are exceptions, but if a
| program or module threw up lots of bugs in the past (unless it was an
| early alpha version where that's to be expected) I've found it will
| usually throw up lots more in the future, even if the currently known
| ones are fixed; so I'm reluctant to ever rely on it.

  You gave us a scenario where an important property did not change.  What
  happens to your impression if it is completely rewritten?

  "Experience is what you get when you do not get what you want."  There is
  no telling what kind of quality control there is to your "experience", or
  indeed whether it was entirely invalid.  All of these "experience" things
  are great if you live in a world that does not change appreciably in your
  lifetime.  Most cultures are based in a false belief in constancy and
  permanency and contain a lot of "material" that is basically there to
  protect the culture from a changing world.  So, too, with programming
  cultures, only it is far worse in our field than in the world in general.

  The past is not more important than the future, despite what your culture
  has taught you.  Your future observations, conclusions, and beliefs are
  more important to you than those in your past ever will be.  The world is
  changing so fast the balance between the past and the future has shifted.