Hi Raoul,

No doubt it could be construed as either-or rather than both-and.  Having
relevant media to support professional development is necessary. However,
it seems rather too easy to end up with a cultural reduction toward the
technological means rather than the ends (and thus we end up mantras).
Personally, I find it useful to keep the big picture in mind. The
development of professional practices are not something that businesses are
particularly good at, in my opinion.

The subject of language choice continues the themes of description &
signing and interpretative complexity with respect to the constraints and
affordances of the language and its expected uses.  We seem to muddle on by
with rather overly complicated syntax by virtue of the knowledge that
certain languages are generally applied to specific domains (text parsing,
html processing).

Again, I would stress that the structure is not inherent to the language,
but rather is mediated through its use.  What we do with a language at the
level of action and the (desirable) craft-object of concern dictate the
subjective complexity. I think a useful distinction is being made between
the means of partitioning a problem and implementing it (the use of a
language) in distinction to a means to visualise artefacts derived from the
language. If the visualisation tool helps one to enlarge the scope of the
object of concern then it is also acting to specifically scope the approach
(which may be fine, but is worth recognising).

For me, these issues were clearly exemplified with windows based approach
to programming.  By providing ease of use in one area, one makes it harder
in others. Hence it is possible to undermine skills in design and
organisation by introducing short-cuts in an attempt to change the
landscape of a problem (thereby setting oneself up for more adventurous
problems in the future).

Best,
Huw


On 2 May 2016 at 20:13, Raoul Duke <rao...@gmail.com> wrote:

> <quote>Personally, I would place value on the development of these
> organisational / design skills rather than certain means to achieve them.
> Note that these originate as professional / ethical concerns rather than of
> any given business or organisation. I would be wary of the valuation of
> visualisation tools etc, as a means of postponing addressing good design
> (new silver-bullet merchandise) . Similarly, devoting time to describing
> the structure of code will certainly help with a reflexive appreciation for
> such structural concerns.</quote>
>
>
>
> That kinda reads to me like an either/or thing that is setting up 2
> different sides and purporting they can't get along. And that the setup is
> due to misconstruing the way in which tools can and should be used. (I
> mean, why don't we all go back to machine code, otherwise?)
>
> For me, the point is that if there are good things to do, then it would be
> even better if our systems helped to do those good things, and to refify
> them and encode them in the system. That way other people and my future
> selves can look at the system and understand it as much as possible, so
> that there is less reliance on the cultural memory around the code. Not
> because I devalue cultural memory, but because I think it is important in
> many ways to have backups, alternatives, and supports for the cultural
> memory.
>
> sincerely.
>
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