Engineering Thinking

I’m a big fan of David Mackay’s Sustainable Energy—Without the Hot Air, not least because it’s a command performance by a master of back-of-the-envelope calculations. This post by Kent Beck on NoSQL databases is a smaller example of that art, but still fun. Amid quotes like, “[Amazon] EC2 is basically a really complicated way of charging for electricity,” and, “At internet scale, programmers are (sometimes) cheap compared to the cost of electricity,” there’s some nice number crunching to explain why non-relational databases are suddenly fashionable. Thinking like this really does deserve to be called software “engineering”.

In the wake of posts about Shopify's support for white nationalists and DataCamp's attempts to cover up sexual harassment
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