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[ontolog-forum] Software Engineering — NOT!

To: "[ontolog-forum] " <ontolog-forum@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
From: David Eddy <deddy@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Date: Mon, 27 Dec 2010 17:46:00 -0500
Message-id: <75A610E5-F9C0-4DF9-B1CE-F5BD24783DD0@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Mike -    (01)

On 2010-12-27, at 4:42 PM, Mike Bennett wrote:    (02)

> The problem is less acute in non English speaking countries, and
> in English speaking countries outside of the UK and the Americas.
> In most countries, using the term "Engineer" is considered to be
> as precise as using the term "Doctor", but somehow in British
> usage it has become reduced to a generic term along the lines of
> "workman". This hasn't helped anyone in software "engineering" to
> find themselves part of the culture and practice of engineering,
> sadly.    (03)

A realistic assessment.    (04)

Folks call them selves "enterprise architect" when they've built a  
website.  Huh?    (05)

Last week I was at MIT (in the same room where the Data Quality  
Financial Services track met).  Topic was "complex systems."    (06)

Eventually someone brought up "software engineering"... which I  
jumped on.  To my delight challenging "software engineering" as  
engineering got a big laugh.    (07)

How can a profession be considered "engineering" when after 60+ years  
we don't even have a universally recognized, accepted, and practiced  
means of measurement?  At least in the UK, screw thread standards are  
down to a manageable 5... after what?  300 years?    (08)

By a show of hands, who here—with the exception of JFS—(1) knows what  
Function Points are, (2) has used them, and (3) is in an organization  
that relies on them?  Don't everyone raise their hands at once.    (09)

I'm happy to argue that since we're no where close to measuring the  
software process, putting forth ontology as an engineering discipline  
is a tad premature.    (010)

David Eddy
deddy@xxxxxxxxxxxxx    (011)

781-455-0949    (012)

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