poetic programming

“The programmer, like the poet, works only slightly removed from pure thought-stuff. He builds his castles in the air, from air, creating by exertion of the imagination. Few media of creation are so flexible, so easy to polish and rework, so readily capable of realizing grand conceptual structures…. Yet the program construct, unlike the poet’s words, is real in the sense that it moves and works, producing visible outputs separate from the construct itself. […] The magic of myth and legend has come true in our time. One types the correct incantation on a keyboard, and a display screen comes to life, showing things that never were nor could be.”— Fred Brooks, The Mythical Man-Month: Essays on Software Engineering

Is poetry just as real as software programs? The concepts and emotions evoked in the reader show them “things that never were nor could be?”

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About Brad Werner

Technical Evangelist
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