The Making of a Software Engineer
Software engineering is foremost an engineering discipline. Engineering in general and software engineering specifically has to balance many factors to achieve viable tradeoffs–an understanding of the factors as well as the viability criteria is at the heart of the educational challenge. All engineering has one ultimate goal: the delivery of artifacts (products, commercial or not) that meet the needs of those using such artifacts. All engineering lives in the intersection of people, technology, domain, and opportunity aspects. Software engineering, however, is laden with its own specific difficulties. Software as an engineering medium fills a space between the fluidity of digital content, with which software shares the representation, and the nature of machines, with which software shares the flexible and repeatable application. This brief article covers some of the author’s personal observations and suggestions with a hope to inspire (and provoke) those striving to improve software-engineering education.
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