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"Coders at Work" and Cargo Cult Programming

Mihai Lihatchi
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Joined: Oct 28, 2005
Posts: 138

Hello Peter.
Your book is the only one I also found recommended on one of my other favorite sites (JoelOnSoftware in this article ) so I already look at it with respect.
However I can't stop wondering whether just doing what other great programmers did will help us be better programmers. I recently read Cargo Cult Software Engineering and there were some places I worked at that really suffered from this.
Each of us has his own way of doing things and some adaptation is required to be effective.
How do you address this issue ?
Thank you.
Mihai


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Leandro Coutinho
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Joined: Mar 04, 2009
Posts: 417
Why are older people more respected? (at least in some countries, eg: Japan )
It’s because they have more experience, hence more knowledge.

You can choose to learn things by your own ( ) or follow advices.
It's like when your mom says: "I told you not to do that!"

Trial and error is nice too, because when you make a mistake, you tend to not repeat it.

A code analogy can be given. If I had read all API of the JTextComponent, I would have found this method: replaceSelection(), but I didn’t know this method, so I create the code below:
Peter Seibel
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Joined: Oct 18, 2009
Posts: 48
The thing that makes Cargo Cult activities Cargo Culting is the adoption of the forms of practice without the understanding that leads to those forms. I'd hope that if someone reads Coders and finds that one of my interviewees uses some practice, that they would then try to understand that particular practice before they try to use it themselves.
 
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subject: "Coders at Work" and Cargo Cult Programming
 
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