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Re: [XP] Theologists and missionaries

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  • rett
    John, I took my first computer course in 66 at U.T. Austin, and I could get 4 or 5 batch turn arounds a day, even there. By 1974, I had access to terminals on
    Message 1 of 31 , May 1, 2007
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      I took my first computer course in '66 at U.T. Austin, and I could get 4 or
      5 batch turn arounds a day, even there. By 1974, I had access to terminals
      on a regular basis, and was able to submit batch jobs and look at the
      on my terminal by 1975. After I educated a few supposed systems types on
      how that was done, turn around went from 4-5 a day to 20+ almost
      immediately. Those using DEC minis had that facility a lot sooner than
      so I'm not quite sure what you are talking about. I do know that a lot
      of shops
      held onto punch card, hand, batch submission far longer than the technology
      allowed. And, there was absolutely nothing wrong with the TSO environment,
      almost from the beginning, and the VM/CMS that actually predated it was
      much more powerful. One could simulate a whole machine on one's own
      little terminal. Granted, everything was non-graphical, but that did not
      that it was not full screen and interactive.

      So, I would say that by 1975, most large mainframe shops had the ability
      to have interactive editing and testing, even when batch mediated, and some
      had it long before that. I cannot help the fact that your environments
      were so
      poorly handled, but my mileage varied, and I was there, setting it up and
      using it. In addition, I was doing computer source code management and
      "instant" programming in the early 70's, turning around report requests
      in as
      little as an hour, and that included driving time for someone to come and
      pick up the report and take it back to the main office.

      I will admit that I had to pry their almost "cold dead hands" off of
      their trays
      of cards, but I spread a calculated lie that I made into a truth. I
      spread the
      rumor that cards got slick after passing through a card reader more than a
      few times, which was technically true, but not a real problem. I would
      "slip" and drop the 1000 cards that I could hold in one hand, and then we
      would play the programmer's version of 52 card pick up. Nobody was
      conscientious enough to number their huge decks, so, they got to spend
      several hours with their last listing and the unsorted cards. Without
      fail, the
      next time the deck came over, it came with a request to place it on the
      code management system. Finally, the company actually owned and controlled
      all the source code, and we had a change history, which made backtracking
      trivial. Now, in that time frame, I was operator, systems programmer, and
      sometime regular programmer, which is now the role of every poor sucker
      with a PC.

      Everett L.(Rett) Williams II

      John Roth wrote:
      > ----- 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.
      > On the other hand, everything else you mention is from the era
      > of the PC - the expectation that you have a personal workstation
      > on your desk is so utterly pervasive that, if you haven't worked in
      > an environment where this isn't true it's very hard to imagine the
      > consequences.
      > My first paying job was in '65, which makes me a couple of years
      > younger than Ron. It was impossible to get anything resembling a
      > personal workstation for over 20 years, and I have never worked
      > in a mainframe environment where a personal workstation was
      > anything other than a dumb terminal emulator for a mainframe. Such
      > exist, but I've never used one. The first time I even had that was in
      > the late 70s, and you don't want to hear some of the stories about
      > the early mainframe time sharing environments.
      > 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. 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?
      > John Roth
      > "The present is the child of the past."
      > -- Quote from someone, somewhere.
      >> Ciao
      >> Paolo
      > To Post a message, send it to: extremeprogramming@...
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    • 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.


        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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