Impossible to Know What is Possible

The mathematics of creating software has turned upside down.

There is a sweet spot, some mix of consuming work by others, and just simply re-creating it. Finding this sweet spot is getting to be a ridiculous proposition. Not because the options are too few, but because they are too great.

Pick the right set of building blocks, and you can develop anything super quickly:

  • Platforms
  • Tools
  • Languages
  • Practices
  • Sequences

This has become a ridiculously time consuming process. Just knowing what options to pick from can consume an entire career. Picking the right combination of hundreds, even thousands of options? Mathematically it’s absurd to even think about it.

Obviously there are many approaches to solving this problem:

  • The glaze over approach – study options until you glaze over. Then pick what you studied.
  • The social media approach – ask your friends, follow social media.
  • The FoxNews approach – just know what is right. If you disagree, you are wrong. There, done.
  • The career halt approach – just stop being productive until you’ve studied every option
  • The management by following approach – pick the latest offering by big, credible vendors like Oracle, IBM

SMOSLT is an attempt to add one more option to this list. It is a variation on the glaze over approach. It doesn’t solve the problem, it just delays the moment of glaze over, letting you consider options a few more minutes longer before glazing over, and hopefully without halting your software development career in the process.

  • The SMOSLT approach – present combinations of options in terms of palatable math, metrics.

SMOSLT won’t feed your dog automatically, solve world hunger, or get your favorite politician elected. It may help you take a few more deep breaths before charging off and building software with ill considered technology combinations that end up sucking the life force out of your body. If it accomplishes even a part of that modest goal, it’s a big win.