List: words of wisdom for software engineers

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This is a list of sayings, clever quotes, juicy wisdom nuggets applicable in CS/IT/SE. I invite you to not evaluate these as true or false and

  • Mastery is in part knowledge compression into useful tiny bits that enable you to make decisions fast.
  • Spiral repetition (aka iteration) is both THE key to personal learning and A key to product success.
  • Repetition might not be a form of automation, but it’s a necessary (not sufficient) requirement. Corollary: “automation first” is highly inefficient.
  • Fast decisions == high decision throughput == less decision fatigue.
  • The biggest time waist is low decision throughput.
  • When you are learning you have several things in your favor: the learning curve, the knowledge tree (interpolation) and the practice of learning itself (compounding).
  • Done is better than perfect, when the amount of work done is > 0%. Ironically when the amount of work done is 0% and 100% then done == perfect.
  • All roads lead to stack overflow… but not all roads are clean (Kevlin Henney).
  • The most known orders of data processing are LIFO (Stack) and FIFO (Queue). But the most used one is GIGO – garbage in, garbage out.
  • Best practices can be just accepted tenets of a cargo cult. Unless you smash into Chesterton’s fence.
  • Axioms exist, hence you need memory when learning.
  • Knowledge is compression. Axioms and principles of derivation are the limits of that compression.
  • If you know assembly everything is opensource.

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