@scottwerner @jamescgibson
Yes I also feel like what has persisted from the GoF book in programmer lore (I haven't read it) has really nothing to do with what Alexander is talking abiut

I found Richard P. Gabriel whilst researching the concept of "habitable code", which seems to fit my intuition about what makes for good code.

A codebase should be views as Living Structure not as a exercise in High Modernism.

Scott
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@alec @jamescgibson Yeah - have you seen Sarah Mei's talk from Railsconf this year? She's the first one I've seen use that concept

This line from the intro in the book struck me as the way I've seen people use the GoF book incorrectly:"..the ideas of A Pattern Language cannot
be applied mechanically. Instead, these ideas—patterns—are hardly more than
glimpses of a much deeper level of structure, and is ultimately within this deeper
level of structure, that the origin of life occurs"

@jamescgibson @scottwerner
I also just finished it, great find!
I love the mental model of a place to live in and the 4 steps seem to make sense.
The take was to take systems perspective and accept that the code and the people have to be looked at together.

@jamescgibson @scottwerner
Questions I had though:
She assumes that it is easy to tell what the "right" thing to do is. Personally I agree, I can intuit it in a kind of aesthetic way.
But what if your team mates don't agree or maybe its just your ego? Or their ego? How to avoid turning the discovery of good principles into cargo culting, religious wars or bike shedding?

@alec @scottwerner Not that I'm super up to date with Mei's writing, but I'm pretty sure she'd agree that it can be hard and has a lot of writing on that topic :)

@jamescgibson @scottwerner
A yes she mentioned that she has a lot of writing on the model of a software team as a creative group. I will make sure to check it out.

@alec @scottwerner I love the mental model of it _but_ I reject the original premise that it's impossible to find a 10x improvement. The very creation of the frameworks that allow us to be "interior designers" _is_ the 10x improvement.

I don't think this underminds her arguments at all, just found it strange.

@jamescgibson @scottwerner
I partially agree that the frameworks, and other infrastructure do that. Certainly time to market has been 10xed.

But as I understand her she argues that the real 10x lies in taking a broader perspective and thinking about the people and the "aliveness" of the code in an Alexander way.

Which then leads to a 10x not in the time to market but in some other metric, maybe 10x less entropy, or big hary messes in the long run.

@alec @jamescgibson hah yeah I also believe that 10x’s are possible and come from a alexander-like place.

Some examples are the functional map/reduce/filter/etc patterns. Turned 10+ lines of boilerplate code into one line.

Or look at how the patterns that Sinatra introduced about building web frameworks spread incredibly quickly to almost every other language.

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