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#2576Without coffee he could not work, or at least he could not have worked in the
way he did. In addition to paper and pens, he took with him everywhere as an
indispensable article of equipment the coffee machine, which was no less
important to him than his table or his white robe.
- Stefan Zweigs, Biography of Balzac
#2577"It was the Law of the Sea, they said. Civilization ends at the waterline.
Beyond that, we all enter the food chain, and not always right at the top."
- Hunter S. Thompson
#2578In the pitiful, multipage, connection-boxed form to which the flowchart has
today been elaborated, it has proved to be useless as a design tool --
programmers draw flowcharts after, not before, writing the programs they
- Fred Brooks, Jr.
#2579The so-called "desktop metaphor" of today's workstations is instead an
"airplane-seat" metaphor. Anyone who has shuffled a lap full of papers while
seated between two portly passengers will recognize the difference -- one can
see only a very few things at once.
- Fred Brooks, Jr.
#2580...when fits of creativity run strong, more than one programmer or writer has
been known to abandon the desktop for the more spacious floor.
- Fred Brooks, Jr.
#2581A little retrospection shows that although many fine, useful software systems
have been designed by committees and built as part of multipart projects,
those software systems that have excited passionate fans are those that are
the products of one or a few designing minds, great designers. Consider Unix,
APL, Pascal, Modula, the Smalltalk interface, even Fortran; and contrast them
with Cobol, PL/I, Algol, MVS/370, and MS-DOS.
- Fred Brooks, Jr.
#2582...computer hardware progress is so fast. No other technology since
civilization began has seen six orders of magnitude in performance-price
gain in 30 years.
- Fred Brooks, Jr.
#2583Software entities are more complex for their size than perhaps any other human
construct because no two parts are alike. If they are, we make the two
similar parts into a subroutine -- open or closed. In this respect, software
systems differ profoundly from computers, buildings, or automobiles, where
repeated elements abound.
- Fred Brooks, Jr.
#2584Digital computers are themselves more complex than most things people build:
They hyave very large numbers of states. This makes conceiving, describing,
and testing them hard. Software systems have orders-of-magnitude more states
than computers do.
- Fred Brooks, Jr.
#2585The complexity of software is an essential property, not an accidental one.
Hence, descriptions of a software entity that abstract away its complexity
often abstract away its essence.
- Fred Brooks, Jr.
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