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Showing posts from June, 2020

Intuitive Programming - Comments

Comments are a topic of vibrant discussion.  Ever since programmers could leave some text in the program that was ignored by the machine the debate started: “what’s a good comment, what’s a bad comment, why comment?”
There are endless instructions to programmers that say many of the following things: 1)Describe your function! 2)Don’t write in the comment what you wrote in the code. 3)Tell people why you are doing what you are doing.
What I think has been missing from this discourse is the audience for comments and through those audiences there is intent.  The code is being read, skimmed or analyzed by people and tools.  So what are the audiences and reading modes?
1)Maintaining and enhancing the code 2)Skimming through the entire module or file to figure out what the overall structure is 3)Reviewing the test files to check out the test coverage and edge cases 4)Seeing the docstrings of functions while being in a separate file altogether 5)Reviewing the files for copyright and intellectual prope…

The Last Dance of People Management

The Last Dance on ESPN is a huge hit.  I was a teenager during the Bulls’ era in the 90s and it was a wonderful way to relive the magic of that time.  For those of us who are in leadership roles, there were a lot of great lessons from players, coaches and managers of a  basketball dynasty.  However if you are looking to use some of Michael Jordan’s leadership tactics to your organization - I think it’s critical to know what applies and what doesn’t.

There is a myth around in Silicon Valley about a hard charging leader, who is pushing his team to get them to operate at the “next level.”  There are stories about how Steve Jobs and Bill Gates were mean to their employees, this is lauded as a key ingredient to success.  People who buy into that saw Michael Jordan pushing his teammates as a proof point that it’s the way to get it done.  The truth is that your company is not an NBA franchise.

Tech workers today do not put up with people pushing them and definitely won’t take a punch like S…