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Re: [XP] Theologists and missionaries

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  • Paolo Bizzarri
    ... Well, as a matter of fact, I did never worked with Turbo Pascal (except a school project, lots of years ago). But my point was that there was no trace of
    Message 1 of 31 , May 1, 2007
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      On 5/1/07, John Roth <JohnRoth1@...> wrote:
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      >
      > ----- Original Message -----
      > From: "Paolo Bizzarri" <pibizza@...>
      > To: <extremeprogramming@yahoogroups.com>
      >
      > Sent: Monday, April 30, 2007 11:41 PM
      > Subject: Re: [XP] Theologists and missionaries
      >
      > > On 4/30/07, John Roth <JohnRoth1@...> wrote:
      > >>
      > >>
      > >>
      > >>
      > >>
      > >>
      > >> There's a very straightforward answer to this question.
      > >>
      > >> The personal computer.
      > >>
      > >> I'm absolutely serious. When I started in the middle '60s,
      > >> I had a separate department that put my programs onto
      > >> punched cards, and I got one run a day (overnight), with
      > >> a pile of paper on my desk the next day.
      > >>
      > >
      > > Hi John,
      > >
      > > I am not convinced. Things like PCs and Turbopascal were already
      > > available in the '80. I got my degree in Computer Science in the 1994,
      > > and there were (apparently) no idea of something like TDD.
      >
      > I agree to the specifics of TDD - that was invented right here on
      > this mailing list a few years ago when several of us noticed that
      > the combination of practices that XP advocated melded into something
      > quite new. To use a very hacknied phrase, it was not just the sum of
      > its parts.
      >
      > It did, however, come out of the Smalltalk environment. Most of
      > what we think of as XP came out of the Smalltalk environment.
      > Your mention of Turbo Pascal almost guarantees you never
      > worked in that environment, so it's not surprising that you never
      > saw anything resembling TDD.
      >

      Well, as a matter of fact, I did never worked with Turbo Pascal
      (except a school project, lots of years ago). But my point was that
      there was no trace of something like TDD in the Computer Science
      theory, at least as it was teached in Italy among the end of the '80
      and the beginning of the '90.

      > Now consider the environment that Wirth, Djikstra, Hoare and their
      > collegues worked in. They did not have personal workstations
      > at their disposal, neither did their students. They did not grow up
      > in that environment.

      Yes. But this was exactly my point: they could not come with something
      better than weakest preconditions, because they were not developing
      code. They were neither interested, nor ready to produce a better
      theory for the current environment.

      As soon as I have seen TDD, it was obvious that this was something I
      have learned in my courses in Computer Science.

      > Their entire background, and their day to day
      > working environment was the batch compile and test environment.
      > Is it any wonder that the problems they worked on, and the results
      > they got, fit the batch compile and test environment and consequently
      > have little relevance to people who have personal workstations that
      > can do an edit, compile and test run in a matter of a minute or two?

      No. But things have changed from then. And the theorists were quite
      late at seeing the changes.

      Paolo


      >
      > John Roth
      >
      > "The present is the child of the past."
      > -- Quote from someone, somewhere.
      >
      > >
      > > Ciao
      > >
      > > Paolo
      > >
      >
      >
      >
    • Steve Freeman
      There are actually a few. Sheffield has been running a very interesting programme for several years now (that s why the XP conference was held there). I ve
      Message 31 of 31 , May 3, 2007
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        There are actually a few. Sheffield has been running a very
        interesting programme for several years now (that's why the XP
        conference was held there). I've been teaching a few bits and pieces
        with Ivan Moore at University College. I think Huddersfield does
        something. It's not exactly a landslide, but it's catching on.

        S.

        On 1 May 2007, at 16:49, Elizabeth Keogh wrote:
        > IIRC Aberystwyth is the only university in the UK which teaches any
        > of the
        > Agile practices - there may be a second by now (?).
        >
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