5 comments on “The Value of Software

  1. So Sad, bit so true Dino..
    I am lucky enough to have an interesting job, but I am amazed, and saddened, by how me and my team are seen… probably in my case is bad because we work with the public administration, but still I am tired of how Italy treats developers.
    BTW, I grew up at bread,computer and journals.. I bet I was the first one in my town to subscribe to “Computer Programming”… do you remember it?

  2. Dear Dino, thank you for this interesting post. I have to comment that I don’t agree with you, not for my experience.

    Firstly, what you’re writing may be applied to any other context in our country, not only software/developers. Most of the companies, in Italy, are small-medium size, have local boundaries, born around the figure of a businessman-master (in italian: “imprenditore-padrone”), so the hierarchy is very short: from the owner to the employee, in most cases without a good management staff in between. This is in the nature of italian firms and this is one of the main limits. The worst thing is that all of this reflects on the working culture, creating the foundation for the well-known problem of merits recognition.

    Moreover, there exists a significant gap between schools and companies but, in contrast, if a student would like to (and can) take an intership, in most cases he/she ends to make photocopies in some office. Exactly what happens with Google’s interns …

    Secondly, it would be very good if developers take in consideration to learn, maybe reading one of your great books 🙂 But it’s not so. I don’t want to generalize, of course, but too many italian developers have a “clipboard” approach to developing: they copy and paste everything is clipboard-able! Some call it “cargo cult programming” (I learned this saying a few days ago). This may be a good practice if you’re aware of what you’re doing and you take that opportunity to learn something new (but you have to copy good code, of course); in most cases this is a passive approach to coding (does it works? okay, let’s not worry about anything else).

    From my point of view, what is really missing, in Italy, is the culture of coding and engineering. We miss a new Mr. Adriano Olivetti, Dino?

    Ok, I have lot more to share but I stop here, I wouldn’t to bore anyone.

  3. I do remember the old good times of “Computer Programming”; we’ve been sort of pioneers 🙂

    @Marcello: I couldn’t agree more on the fact that culture of coding and engineering is missing. This is painfully true in Italy, BUT Robert Martin–a renowned international author and guru–wrote nearly the same for the global community of devs. We–the category–tend to lack professionalism in the sense that we don’t value it for ourselves as we accept any sort of imposition from managers. Team playing–Robert says–is when management and development share a common and negotiated reasonable goal. But if the idea is that devs are nerds …

  4. hi Dino,

    it’s indeed curious that you criticize how developers are neglected and suddenly make the same mistake with managers.

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