D'Arcy from Winnipeg
Solution Architecture, Business & Entrepreneurship, Microsoft, and Adoption

Importance of the Human Factor in Software Development

Tuesday, April 15, 2008 1:53 PM

A comment was just made in the session today about preventing developers from doing something. The response was, in a nutshell, "Well, tell them not to do it."

I've noticed this in a few sessions/discussions that I've been part of at the MVP summit. Yesterday in our ASP.NET open space, we talked a lot about the MVC framework and the challenges coming up between MVC and Webforms. Alot of the discussion revolved around what this means for developers and learning, knowing what is the best practice, whether one framework is better than another, etc.

Today I was in a few sessions where we saw hard coded values entered directly into a windows form, and an n-tier implementation that you could argue at an architectural level whether it was truly seperated enough into individual concerns.

What do these have in common? There *is* no technical solution that solves the issue of understanding best practices and making those choices. Those are squarely the responsibility of:

a) Our learning institutions

b) Us as a professional community

Consider the big discussion right now in ASP.NET: Do we use Webforms or Microsoft MVC? Well, let's be real about that question: Do we use Webforms, MS MVC, Mono-Rail, IronRuby, or...??? We have many options, all that have different pros and cons. And how do we architect this? Based on Microsoft's guidance, open-source thoughts, SOA, etc, etc.... There are tonnes of ways to skin this cat. But all have the same commonality: the human factor.

*We* have the biggest impact on how software gets developed, not a tool or a language. We can't rely on the vendors to cover the things that we should be managing within our own organizations and for our own learning and understanding.

K, rant done...gotta call back home for a conf call.



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