Was software engineering ever alive?

The third phase of reanimating Crossderry

The third phase of reanimating Crossderry

The second phase of reanimating my blog is to re-start reading other bloggers. I gravitated back to Glen Alleman and Herding Cats, where his post Software Engineering is Dead? caught my eye.  Two comments:

Google and Wikipedia are the “shining” examples used by detractors of planning and controls.  Funny that they never reference Technorati — any blogger will tell you how unreliable it is.  Nary a word about the issues with cloud computing reliability that Dave Rosenberg notes here… 

Second, has there ever been widespread use of engineering principles in software design?  Sure, I saw it at SAP and I’m sure Glen sees it in A&D. But is software engineering really engineering?

The application of scientific and mathematical principles to practical ends such as the design, manufacture, and operation of efficient and economical structures, machines, processes, and systems. 

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2 Responses

  1. Paul,

    I’d conjecture this is a domain depenedent answer.

    Designing and build Command and Data Handling (C&DH) boxes for Mars missions is probably different than standing up SharePoint portals for customer service respnse tracking.

  2. Hi Glen,
    Yeah, but I’m not sure it should be as distinct as we make it. Portals and their relationships to business processes are outstanding examples of an IT blind spot. What if that portal needs to support a customer base of millions?

    Often the folks responsible for portals came from the PR and communications world, where they were focused on appearance rather than performance. While a good UI is necessary, it sure ain’t sufficient.

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