jeudi 27 novembre 2008

"everything old is new again"

"Professionals in our field are surprisingly misinformed about its history. As and editor of a professional journal, I frequently see papers cross my desk that describe computing'past as prologue to some new idea they are presenting - and they get that past totally wrong. ...

The old truism "everything old is new again" is just as true in computing as it is in other fields, especially in software. The story [...]shows us that such modern concepts as data abstraction, modularity [...] date much earlier in the field than their appearance in the academic litterature. In many fields of endeavor, practice often precedes theory (for example, the steam engine and human flight predated the theories of thermodynamics and aerodynamics), and the softwar field is no exception. [...]

Robert L. Glass, Preface de In the Beginning, Recollections of Software Pioneers, IEEE Computer Society, 1998

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