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graduated expectations

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  • Dave West
    Gabriel s original proposal was to redefine computing. Computing being a fairly broad term that could encompass everything from hardware to languages to
    Message 1 of 1 , Apr 23, 2001
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      Gabriel's original proposal was to "redefine computing." Computing
      being a fairly broad term that could encompass everything from hardware
      to languages to software to systems.

      An argument can be made that 'resets' of various content and scope are
      needed across this entire spectrum.

      It also leaves open the range of possible expectations from very
      concrete - "fix this..." - to grandiose - "let's invent a whole new
      discipline with an exotic name."

      My own expectations, hopes, goals run this gamut.

      If the domain of interest is 'computing technology' (which, following
      Demming I would consider traditional computer science, network design,
      hardware, etc.) then my expectations are very limited. I am not
      intrigued with questions about the relative merits of token ring versus
      ethernet, or compiling versus interpreting, or alternative search
      methods. I would like to know why anyone still thinks it necessary to
      have an operating system, especially as a command and control mechanism.

      If the domain of interest is software development (which I think is the
      case for most of us) AND if it assumed that we are generally doing the
      "right things" but poorly or with poor tools and without sufficient
      detail to human factors ... then there are a host of interesting
      questions that might be addressed next week. A lot of the posts by our
      more pragmatic cohort fall into this area. I would hope to contribute
      some things and learn a lot more from this type of discussion.

      If our domain of interest is software AND we believe that the entire
      field is fatally flawed - should never have been seen as a logical
      outgrowth or extension of computer science, math, logic, engineering,
      and management disciplines - then the questions and issues are much more
      fundamental and potential solutions far more radical in nature. this is
      the domain that is most exciting to me - and the source of most of my
      motivation for attending the conference.

      I hope to bring with me (end-of-semester demands on my time permitting)
      an articulation of the kind of fundamental questions I think should be
      addressed and how various approaches to those questions might redefine
      what we understand as the world of software development OR mandate the
      creation of a new discipline to supplant what is currently in place.
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