Saturday, September 13, 2014

Software Updates - Programmer Edition

    Have you ever had to upgrade the software that you use on a regular basis?   For example a word processing program or browser will get upgraded occasionally to add all the new bells and whistles you didn't know you needed.  Regardless of the selling pattern, we do eventually upgrade our everyday software and hope it goes smoothly.  Usually it does, but other times a document or program that was just fine before the upgrade is now giving you problems.  "Well this is unexpected," you think to yourself and proceed to lose more time to the upgraded software.  The price of doing business on a computer, I suppose.
    As a developer, I usually am trying out the latest and greatest software that deals with my work.  As long as I have the time to spare, that is.  Sometimes,  you have to upgrade to stay current in your programming circles.  Today was one of those days for me as I upgraded my main XCode development environment.  I have been testing it out in the past, but today is the first day of using it as the 'main horse' to ride.  It is pretty nifty and pretty, but also a bit more strict.  Thanks to this, I have new bugs to chase down now, but a quiet weekend to do this.
    It does make you wonder or even pine for the good old days where you just typed everything into a glorified text editor and then told the computer to show you the results of your program.  The upgrade cycle then was pretty rare and in smaller increments of additional functionality.  You actually got pretty attached to your editors and small software utilities you used everyday.  Even today, I can usually stir up old arguments with other programmers by saying VI is the pinnacle of code editors.
    Of course, back then we didn't really have internet lookup of technical specs or development samples.   We would read the books that were available and experiment with the few examples we could find to learn how to do the next trick.  Now more tricks are available using the advanced programming tools, so we adapt and learn to deal with upgrades.  Hey, at least we have the internet to look up any tips or information we desire.  Sigh.
    And tell those kids to get off my lawn with their loud music...

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