I could probably write a book (not here of course!) about what really ails our benighted profession. Some people have even encouraged me to do it. Well, maybe...
When I was active in the field, I was called an Artificial Intelligence Architect or Adept or Witch Doctor or worse Time Waster. When I taught in college classrooms, I tried to instill the idea that product release (aka "Smart App") should follow app testing, app coding, app documentation, development of app design specifications, and inspiration (also determination of NEED for app) using a top-down approach pretty much in the reverse order of the general steps I just mentioned.
In the "real" world, the faster a person in development could type lines of code, the more productive that person was determined to be. Bugs, design flaws and logic errors were relegated to the "maintenance" programmers who were left to clean up the mess. It helped if the folks doing the repairs had strong psychic abilities because documentation was faulty, flawed, spotty and/or non-existent, and it was on the head of the fixer to come up with something which at least appeared to solve the current problem. If the fix created new problems (all of which remained undocumented, but which had copious documentation re: how much time was spent, who spent the time, etc.) which would later require more maintenance, the term describing the outcome was something like "job security."
I am not trying to be cynical. Nor am I on a mission to point my finger and blame anyone in particular or in general either, for two reasons. It wouldn't help in any way. It is already too late for casting aspersions.
We are building machines which boggle the mind - well, they boggle my mind, but perhaps now that I am an old fart, I boggle more easily. Smart phones? When I was growing up in a small Pennsylvania farm town, we had "party lines." The whole community shared the same phone line, and the common courtesy then was to pick up the receiver, listen to see if someone was using the line, hang up softly if they were, or dial your outgoing call if the line was free. OK, so I'm a dinosaur. Excuse me while I rearrange my scales.
I am not giving an arbitrary "history lesson." I am trying to make the point that in terms of our attitudes regarding what we are about and how and why we "do it," we are sort of like stone age people who have been given nuclear submarines and orders to sail off and find the New World without directions for use or the reasons why the "RED" buttons (no pun intended to those old enough to know who he was) should never be pressed - ever.
We have been prisoners of Moore's Law even before Moore discovered it. More, faster, greater, more powerful, think about consequences later (if ever), faster, more!
If there is a bottom to this hole we're digging, I sincerely hope to be in the next phase of life before we get there. To put an end to this: Try to imagine what the ancient pyramids all over the world would be like if our ancestors had simply started slapping stones together without any sort of well-considered thought fueling the ideas for the design of the edifices they were building. Even so, not all turned out as their designers originally intended.
Also please consider that there is much more to mark the difference between "Snake Oil" and a real pharmaceutically effective medicine than the bottles they come in, or the boxes in which the bottles were packaged.
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