I’m intending to write a series of posts on development methodology or something similar. Over the years I have come across a load of development methodologies. Most of these make sense one way or another, many emanates from older ones, it’s kind of evolutionary, as it should be. Newer methods tend to be better than older, but at the same time there is nothing new under the sun, when I read what the true pioneers wrote more than half a century ago about programming I’m baffled over their insights and understanding of programming and software development. But much is also bullshit created by inflated egos trying to make a buck out of baloney.
In the mid 1980ies I attended a software user conference, one of the attendees was Mr X, he didn’t know the software well and it was clear to me he was there to sell himself and his services. Mr X was political, socializing with managers and software representatives only, he managed to become ‘head’ of the user community for a short period of time. Anyway at this conference Mr X held a presentation about his developing method. The first slide had three defining moments in the history of computers:
- 194X The first computer
- 196Y IBM’s 360 architecture
- 198Z Mr X developing method
Most attendees stopped listening here, I lack a critical mind, so I listened with some enthusiasm but I soon realised there were nothing new or exciting in Mr X presentation and nothing remotely connected to the software we had gathered for, so I also stopped listening after a short while. Then a norwegian software developer tried to interrupt the presentation ‘Mr X your...’, he was hushed into silence by Mr X, the norwegian developer was all too insignificant for mr X to take notice of. Then I saw what most of us already had seen, there was an ink spot growing just below the chest pocket on mr X shirt, slowly but steadily. By the time the spot was clearly visible to everyone, we were all mesmerized by the growing dark blue spot on the white shirt. No one listen to Mr X and the norwegian guy tried once more ‘Mr X your...’ and once more he was hushed by Mr X ‘Can you wait until after my presentation with questions, please!’ When the spot was larger than the palm of a hand, the norwegian guy could not hold it back anymore ‘Mr X I think your pen is leaking’. That was the end of the presentation. At the dinner that evening Mr X had a glass to many and never showed up again (as I recall it).
Now when I’m writing about development methods I am aware it might just be pretentious bull. You can judge for yourself when I publish (if I do). But I will read eventual comments with respect no matter who you are.