Re: What databases have taught me

From: Tony D <>
Date: 9 Jul 2006 08:31:52 -0700
Message-ID: <>

topmind wrote:
> I am just saying that formal software proving has proved (pun) tedious
> and slow so far.

[ snippage ]

> Can you provide an example? It is not clear to me what you are
> proposing.

[ snippage ]

> Back then the drum probably cost more than the programmer. Scraping for
> every last bit mattered back then. Only in the early 70's did software
> maintanence and management become more important than hardware.

[ Aside : it's now the 21st Century - things should have moved along a bit in the last 35 or so years. ]

[ snippage ]

> Again, it is not clear to me what you are proposing. Formal proving is
> not a common industry practice.

Maybe, what I'm suggesting is that we, as an industry, grow up and stop "winging it". Here comes dear old uncle Edsger with yet another appropriate quote, from EWD1284 :

"[A]s computing science is not allowed to save the computer industry, we had better see to it that the computer industry does not kill computing science."

but I like this (possibly rather harsh) one too, from EWD512 :

"Don't blame me for the fact that competent programming, as I view it as an intellectual possibility, will be too difficult for "the average programmer" -you must not fall into the trap of rejecting a surgical technique because it is beyond the capabilities of the barber in his shop around the corner." Received on Sun Jul 09 2006 - 17:31:52 CEST

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