Kurt's Blog

May 9, 2009


Filed under: Software Development — Kurt Häusler @ 12:44 pm

Here are some quotes that I used to have on my wall in my old job. I don’t necessarily agree with all of them, some of them are interesting because they summarize points of view that were once widely held, but now serve to remind us how things change. However some of the oldest quotes are also the ones most valid today.

“Simplicity is prerequisite for reliability ”
– Edsger W. Dijkstra

“The process of preparing programs for a digital computer is especially attractive, not only because it can be economically and scientifically rewarding, but also because it can be an aesthetic experience much like composing poetry or music.”
– Donald Knuth

“The perfect project plan is possible if one first documents a list of all the unknowns.”
– Bill Langley

“Complexity kills. It sucks the life out of developers, it makes products difficult to plan, build and test, it introduces security challenges and it causes end-user and administrator frustration.”
– Ray Ozzie

“Copy and paste is a design error”
– David Parnas

“There are two ways to write error-free programs; only the third works.”
– Alan J. Perlis

“Technology is dominated by two types of people: Those who understand what they do not manage. Those who manage what they do not understand.”
– Putt’s Law

“Ugly programs are like ugly suspension bridges: they’re much more liable to collapse than pretty ones, because the way humans (especially engineer-humans) perceive beauty is intimately related to our ability to process and understand complexity. A language that makes it hard to write elegant code makes it hard to write good code.”
– Eric S. Raymond

“You know you’ve achieved perfection in design, not when you have nothing more to add, but when you have nothing more to take away.”
– Antoine de Saint-Exupery, Wind, Sand and Stars

“Without requirements or design, programming is the art of adding bugs to an empty text file.”
– Louis Srygley

“Computer programming is tremendous fun. Like music, it is a skill that derives from an unknown blend of innate talent and constant practice. Like drawing, it can be shaped to a variety of ends – commercial, artistic, and pure entertainment. Programmers have a well-deserved reputation for working long hours but are rarely credited with being driven by creative fevers. Programmers talk about software development on weekends, vacations, and over meals not because they lack imagination, but because their imagination reveals worlds that others cannot see.”
– Larry O’Brien and Bruce Eckel in Thinking in C#

“It is not necessary to change. Survival is not mandatory.”
– Edwards Deming

“Quality is not a project based variable, but a corporate asset.”
– Ken Schwaber

“Adequacy is sufficient.”
– Adam Osborne

“Brilliant process management is our strategy. We get brilliant results from average people managing brilliant processes. We observe that our competitors often get average (or worse) results from brilliant people managing broken processes.”
– A senior Toyota executive

“He who will not apply new remedies must expect old evils.”
– Francis Bacon


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