It’s been a long time since I last wrote one of these entries, and this time it feels different, somehow. In previous courses I was constantly writing a new blog post once or twice a week, I had to find my own resources based on a few cues, and sessions with guest speakers felt a lot more improvised. I’m not sure if it’s because it feels different (refreshing, even) or what, but I’ve liked the new format a lot better.
Before, I had to find my own resources, read from a lot of different websites and authors, and synthesize all of it into yet another blog entry. Now we have assigned readings, and thanks to Hypothesis I feel like the whole experience has greatly improved. Being able to highlight and annotate along with all of my classmates makes the reading considerably more enjoyable. Sharing other complementary sources and points of view definitely adds to the experience. On top of it all, the readings are actually recommended by Ken, so I’m sure they will, at the very least, include relevant information to the course and whatever subject we are discussing.
With No Silver Bullet I was amazed at how many of the things written so long ago still hold up today. Essential and accidental tasks were two key concepts of this reading. We also got to learn how each of them actually affects the desired order-of-magnitude improvement, how much stuff they had tried by then and how promising (or not) some of the new things being tested were. This reading showed a lot about the context regarding software back then.
They write the right stuff was my favorite reading, for sure. I hadn’t considered how different software development and testing must be in a NASA project compared to any other. This is, once again, reaffirmation for how much software projects vary from one another. Obviously things will get very strict if so much is on the table, and it was astonishing to learn how effective their method is. The process may seem way too straightforward, but that’s just what’s better for the projects to be successful.
Dazia’s was my favorite guest speaker. I’m involved in the videogame industry and, even though we had already had a talk with her last year, this time it felt different. I think that’s probably because of the experience I’ve gained, but I feel like I absorbed a lot more this time.
Kent’s was definitely the most unique session. Having to do the whole TCR activity sure was frustrating, but fun nevertheless. My classmates made some good points with the questions they came up with, and Kent’s way of answering mostly with Sure, why not? or You may be the one to become the best at that new thing was kinda recomforting. In the moment that even felt inspiring, in a way.
As a group, we have discussed several topics. Some were new to me, others were not. Learning new concepts, points of view and technologies is always enriching, but revisiting “old” subjects from a new (self) perspective may feel just the same. I’m glad that this has been the case.