Friday, December 14, 2007

Automagically

Today I was in an informal meeting where I mentioned that perhaps a piece of software should 'automagically' fix a problem.
The business associate that I was with stated that she had never heard someone use that word before, and it caused me to
think a bit about Clarke's Three Laws:
  1. When a distinguished but elderly scientist states that something is possible, he is almost certainly right. When he states that something is impossible, he is very probably wrong.

  2. The only way of discovering the limits of the possible is to venture a little way past them into the impossible.

  3. Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic.
I'm particularly enamored with the second and third laws. One of the things that I love about software is that its writers are often presented with opportunity to venture venture a bit past the possible. The best part is that if the journey is successful, then the experience can be magical for both the engineer and the end user.

Everyone wants software that is fun, intelligent and easy to use.

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