Re: [dwm] dijkstra quote

From: Matthias-Christian Ott <>
Date: Wed, 07 May 2008 23:23:31 +0200

"Szabolcs Nagy" <> wrote:

> a dijkstra quote [1] i've just stumbled upon and would like to share:
> The practice is pervaded by the reassuring illusion that programs are
> just devices like any others, the only difference admitted being that
> their manufacture might require a new type of craftsmen, viz.
> programmers. From there it is only a small step to measuring
> "programmer productivity" in terms of "number of lines of code
> produced per month". This is a very costly measuring unit because it
> encourages the writing of insipid code, but today I am less interested
> in how foolish a unit it is from even a pure business point of view.
> My point today is that, if we wish to count lines of code, we should
> not regard them as "lines produced" but as "lines spent": the current
> conventional wisdom is so foolish as to book that count on the wrong
> side of the ledger.
> [1]:


Great quote. I suggest to put it on Wikiquote.

Anyway I think this thought pattern/paradigm which arose from mass
production from the industrialisation on will persist or will be
become even worse (in whatever direction). That's a result from the
being/existence in the current mode of production - even if great
thinkers like Dijkstra complain about it.
So it's our "duty" stand against it ;). Therefore for example the suckless
project exists - very heroic, isn't it?

Received on Wed May 07 2008 - 23:24:05 UTC

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