Thats the title of my weekly Slaw post.
The combination of the launch of the Google Chrome browser, and the current PC hardware refresh occuring in our office got me thinking about programming philosophies.
Chrome reviews say it is faster and uses fewer computing resources than the competion. And the reason we replace our PC’s every few years is not so much that the hardware is broken, but that the computing resources software requires are constantly increasing.
To some extent that is understandable, and just the nature of the beast. Hardware is constantly improving, so it is natural for software designers to take advantage of that.
But that advantage should be used to improve the software – not to get sloppy about programming techniques. You sometimes have to wonder how efficiently current software is being coded.
When I learned how to program (I won’t admit how long ago that was), we were taught that computer memory and processing speed were precious and limited commodities, and the best coding to perform a task used as few resources as you could get it to use. The downside was that it lead to the Y2K problem, and the code was sometimes hard to follow – but it was efficient.
I still think, though, that the basic philosophy was sound. In my view the best software will always be the one that gets the job done using the least computing resources.