Freesteel Blog » Onwards to the East

Onwards to the East

Monday, February 20th, 2012 at 9:25 pm Written by:

Dropped back my 24 bike hire before noon today (cost $38), now packing my things and food for journey to Missourri.

Ho hum. Only 2 days since last explosion, I mean email cockup.

Trying to orient myself with some St Louis news. Expecting to make it back here in March for more of a holiday, and not so much work — though I have promised that some machinining algorithms will get done for HSMWorks, and I don’t deserve a holiday until I can demonstrate some progress.

Meanwhile, back at the other programming project, a new fad of Behavoir Driven Development has swept the table. This of course looks like it’s modelled on the same idea as Behavoirism, which was an early 20th century theory in psychology which said that brains were nothing more than stimulus-response devices with no internal cognition or conscious thoughts or beliefs, for example. Evidently cannot be entirely true, like so many all-encompassing theories. But the appropriate domain of application is not going to be discovered when the doubters are condemned as “uncomfortable”.

In the brief time I have before lunch and catching the Number 10 bus I am hereby proposing the next revolution: Cognitive Driven Development. With CDD we imagine that people a mental model of what is going on in the IT system, which guides them in their expectations of what to do to achieve the outcomes. Then we codify this mental model as closely as we can in a high-level programming language (or simulate it if there is a more appropriate internal model in the computer).

Hey, maybe we can also test code by verifying the computations of the model using assert statements, like we did in the old days — and more importantly expand and communicate and explore alternative models in terms of their structure, rather than in the form of cognitively-cleansed behaviour tests that are like wordy exam questions that you have to sweat over to make sense of what exactly they are getting at.

It would have really been cool if those BDD systems like lettuce and tomatoe were written using BDD throughout because then it would have taken until 2015 for them to be completed.

Gotta go…

1 Comment

  • 1. Patrick replies at 21st February 2012, 11:14 pm :

    Cognitive driven development – I like it!
    Reminds me of Clay Shirky’s “Cognitive Surplus” rant.

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