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I couldn't agree more, I'm currently cleaning up after a Ph.D. (basically a
weather man) who wrote a bunch of code then "optimized" it. He had no formal
training, but loved to use whatever he read in the latest trade books or
magazines. Of course, nothing was ever written down. I've never met him, and
I understand that he is a good guy just not SW engineer in any shape or
form. He's now doing fly-by-wire avionics, a scary thought.

There's the perception that SW is just code and anyone can do it. Which is
definitely not true. To many undisciplined, untrained people are in
engineering, and a lot end up doing SW after they wash out of other fields
because of this perception. I will stick with my assumption that any good
engineer will write good code, because a good engineer will take the time to
understand the problem and use the available tools to solve the problem.
Ada, of course provides the best tool for SW, and reduces some of the
effects of having "-1s" in the organization.

I have noticed that a lot of schools are starting to offer SW Engineering
majors in addition to CS. Where CS is the theory and SWE is the actual
design and use of SW in systems. Kind of like the differences between
Physics and Engineering. One has more theory and the other more application
of the theory.

Regards

John T Apa                              [log in to unmask]
L-3 CSW                                 (801) 594-3382
PO Box 16850                            Fax: (801) 594-2195
640 North 2200 West                     Salt Lake City, UT. 84116-0850



> -----Original Message-----
> From: Dale Jr, William [SMTP:[log in to unmask]]
> Sent: Friday, December 03, 1999 10:54 AM
> To:   [log in to unmask]
> Subject:      Re: What the competition looks like
>
> I have to restate my issue here ...  Ada and good S/W Engineering
> are not being tought to the right folk.
>
> Around here it is the non-computer specialist who writes all the code.
>        Badly.
> They get one class in Fortran (or maybe it's VB now) and use
> Matlab all the way through their PhD.
>
> Then he comes here and plays code monkey.  If this is what industry
> wants PhD's to do then they need a lot more S/W Engineering in their
> background.
>
> Worse yet, it is these folk who move into management and rise
> to the top of the heap as part of what ever technical (but non-software)
> group that has the political clout.
>
> Thus software issues and software management are looked at from a
> Fortan, Matlab, or MS VB/Excell viewpoint.   Cycle continues spirling
> downword.
>
> Bill
> Just another opinion ...