Friday, August 24, 2007

Holding a Program in One's Head

Here's another great Paul Graham article, on the topic of programming:

As usual, it's more propaganda than how-to, but it's certainly a good, fun, read. If you are a programmer, you'll either love or hate his opinion. I happen to enjoy it immensely.

My big question is, how much programming does Paul do these days? I wonder if he's in danger of talking the same talk as always, even though he's not in the trenches anymore.

Hope he's still hacking lisp late into the night.


Update: I'm not particularly in love with my quick synopsis of this article. I think it was a bit too hasty. Paul actually does layout quite a few concrete things you can and should do to write great software. I'm also a believer in the fact that a few, expert programmers, can far outdo a large group of mediocre programmers. And, naturally, I agree with this bottom up (read: lisp friendly) approach.

One point where I might depart from Paul is that it isn't an organization vs. hacker issue that keeps great software from being written, but The Dip. It's easy to blame organizations, because, well, they are often to blame. But, even in an ideal environment, a programmer needs to cope with The Dip.

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