The Future of Programming – hint: it’s not a new IDE!

So as I’ve been tweeting a bit, there was a #RasPiThon this weekend. For me, it was at first a bit of a curiosity as I’ve got one and wondered what it was all about. The bit that got me totally hooked though, was the interactivity of it all – both between the coders (of which there were about 4 – find out more about them at Raspithon – 48 hours of Python) and their “audience” (in the chat window). And the fact that it was “just” a bunch of kids between 12 and 16! When you here about something like this, you assume it’s at least a bunch of 20-somethings or maybe even some “old codgers” like me getting together… Then it hit me! In 5-10 years, these “kids” will be the programmers working on systems I’ll be architecting – how cool!

Raspberry Pi o ThonIt struck me as quite funny that so many in the “Agile community” and many other people are debating about pair programming… Strangely enough, these kids haven’t been listening to that or going to “the right conferences” and taken it to the next level of what @JenniferSertl calls “social coding”. How spot on!

Imagine this in a corporation, with a live stream of the developers, chatting by voice, then the “product owners” chatting in a window (you have to limit their bandwidth somehow ;) seeing the software develop in real time! Getting a bit boring? Go away and come back later…

Oh – and how do you get the code? That’s on GitHub: RasPiThon. OK, so in a corporate context, you’d have a corporate GitHub, but you get the picture – just “corporatise” the toolset they’re using, or maybe not…

Part way through the whole marathon, they were DOS’d – Raspithon continues: live feed undaunted by DDoS attacks – BTW Major -ve Karma to whoever did that. The interesting thing was how “the group” then re-oriented themselves to solve this (it was after all the key part of their “value chain” :), eventually finding another host and updating their DNS record – oh for this sort of swift response in a corporate context… No “website is down” form submissions or SLA’s – they just solved it! Back to the coding then, which did result in a complete game:

If you looked at this whole thing from a process point of view in the context of The Marshall Model, these guys were drifting between Synergistic and Chaordic! And yet again, I bet you they’ve never ready any of Bob’s work (although I suspect they will one day :) It was just natural for them.

So what are the lessons for us to learn? If you want to see the “future”, then just check out what the “kids” are doing… If it freaks you out, you’d better get used to it as they’re coming whether you like it or not :-) As @flowchainsensei and others have tweeted, the end of the “pure manager” is coming, so you’d better get engaged wherever you are and start doing something productive, wrap you’re head around the “social context” which is coming (although that’s probably redundant if you’re reading this) as what we are seeing in activities like this really is the “target process state” of things.

I’ll leave the last word however to lozlesndstuff (who you’ll probably work with one day), that I think indicates what this (and RaspberryPi) was really all about:

    lozlesndstuff: This is awesome, inspired me to learn more about coding


  1. Pingback: The Raspithon’s finished! | Raspberry Pi
  2. Zewlzor

    I was the moderator/donator of prizes for the RasPiThon, and I have to say it was definitely an awesome social experience for both me, the coders and the audience.

  3. Pingback: The Raspithon’s finished! | Massif Software
  4. Will Godfrey

    To paraphrase…
    Those that can, do.
    Those that can’t DDOS!
    Great work guys, and great response to an out-of-field ‘problem’.

  5. Pingback: The Future of Programming – hint: it’s not a new IDE! | ChangeArc « Jose Murilo’s Weblog
  6. Darla

    Great post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m impressed! Extremely helpful information specifically the last part :) I care for such information a lot. I was looking for this particular info for a very long time. Thank you and good luck.

  7. Pingback: RasPiThon | Benjamin Howe

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