Learning by... Avoiding mistakes

Richard Gaskin ambassador at fourthworld.com
Sun Mar 24 13:25:59 EDT 2013


Jerry Jensen wrote:
 > I recently did a job where I had to poll two asynchronous serial
 > ports. Timing had to be somewhat interlocked. Some input was response
 > to stuff I sent, including verifying echos, and some was volunteered
 > by the devices. I really really needed that flowchart. As I was
 > puzzling over it, the client looked over my shoulder and asked "What
 > are you doing, drawing cartoons?" 8-)

Programmers aren't typists.  Metrics like KLOC tell so little of the 
story that there's no project manager worth his salt that relies on 
them.  Indeed, the best programmers can deliver systems with fewer 
lines, often able to to so because they spent some up-front time with 
"cartoons".

When I had an assistant in my office, I got worried when he went too 
long without his feet up on the desk staring at the ceiling.  THAT's 
when the real work happens.  The rest is just typing.

Some of the most productive time I spend in development is with 3x5 
cards spread out on the floor, representing function points or UI 
elements, looking for the flow and patterns between them.  To someone 
unfamiliar with how software is made I suppose it might look like the 
world's least useful rug, but there are too many apps waiting to be 
written to spend much time with such folks.

--
  Richard Gaskin
  Fourth World
  LiveCode training and consulting: http://www.fourthworld.com
  Webzine for LiveCode developers: http://www.LiveCodeJournal.com
  Follow me on Twitter:  http://twitter.com/FourthWorldSys




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