Modern-Synthesis

A Question Of Humbling Proportion

The road to hell is lined with convenient parking spaces. I said recently that we need fewer addresses and more routes. These slugs are attempts to get at what I think keeps going wrong for us — in the trade, possibly in entire culture. There are numerous systems for software development out there competing in mindspace. (Stock word for these is "methodology," but I resist. I’ll call them "methods", as to my reading, methodology is the study of methods.) Every …

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Decomposition Rage Tweet Explained

Yesterday’s irritated blurt was a matter of feels, not an attempt to offer insight or ideas. I got some queries about it, so let me wipe that slate and be a little less irritated. For now, anyway. 🙂 In geekery — in all tool use beyond a certain point, but my focus here is on the modern software development synthesis — we confront problems that have a size that is "too big to eat all at once". This is hardly …

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Showing Code Every Day Or Two

Let’s talk a little bit about showing your working code to your product person. A basic recommendation, which will seem strange and likely freak you out the first time you hear it. Look to show your new stuff every day or two. I want to address here both the how and the why. The why has three parts: 1) just-in-time tuning, 2) food-pellets. 3) cross-specialty connection. Just-in-time tuning is just feedback. But I used an odd word, as i’m wont …

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How The Modern Synthesis Tackles Blurgs

If we’re living now and always have been in the Age of Blurgs, then our strategy might change accordingly. Before I go to some ideas from the modern we got "The Age of Blurgs", and we got "Blurgs: Try Harder Won’t Work". We need some better ideas, and the modern synthesis has some. Today I want to focus tightly on "just the coding". Coding’s not all the work doing software for money requires, not even most of it at the …

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Blurgs: Try Harder Won’t Work

If we’re living now and always have been in the Age of Blurgs, then our strategy might change accordingly. Before I go to some ideas from the modern synthesis that are targeted at blurgs & blurging, tho, I want to point at one thing that won’t work, and why. What won’t work is "try harder", and why it won’t work is "because humans". What I mean about just trying harder not to blurg being ineffective as a plan: blurging is …

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Please Go Find Out

So. I dropped out of the conference scene by and large for a few years for a variety of reasons. The last couple of years I have been returning to it. I’m just home from two conferences in three weeks. I am not an extrovert, at conferences, I like to hang around with individuals or small groups. And I am drawn to smart weird people, because reasons. I am one of those people who prefers intimacy and authenticity in my …

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Always Small, Always Better, Always Wrong

Always Small, Always Better, Always Wrong. This is the mantra for anyone who seeks change in virtually any genuinely complex environment. I’ve written a lot about small and better, but not so much about wrong, which is what I want to take up today, but first, a little refresher. The complex systems I deal with professionally all fall under the simple problem statement: "make software for money". Those systems include lots of different aspects and layers. Two of these, at …

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Slicing Stories? Don’t Use Horizontal Layers

I’ve had some questions & comments about yesterday’s tweet: there are a million ways to slice stories. All the ones that slice it by layers are mistakes. Michael D. Hill (@GeePawHill) May 11, 2018 That’s natural and good and thanks to one and all. When one tweets a one-off like that, all pithy and telegraphic, folks who may not “already speak the lingo” can be mystified. I’ll take a few tweets to spell it out a little further. A little …

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How Long? (Technique Re-Mix)

How long (redux)? In the technical side of the modern synthesis, we develop code by writing and passing tests then re-working the code to make it as change-enabled as we can. The key "how long" aspect to this: how long does the code stay not working? That is, how long in between the times we could push the code straight to production? The desiderata in the modern synthesis is that we try to measure that number on a scale using …

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How Long?

How long? What amount of time passes between you saving the file you just changed and you seeing the results of that change? If that answer is over 10 seconds you might want to wonder if you can make it shorter. If that answer is over 100 seconds, please consider making a radical change in your approach. Thinking is the bottleneck, not typing, we’ve been over this a bunch. But waiting you can bypass — all waiting you can bypass …

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