Keynote: Six Impossible Things
Kevlin Henney is an independent consultant, trainer, reviewer and writer. His development interests are in programming, people and practice. He has been a columnist for various magazines and web sites, a contributor to open source software and a member of more committees than is probably healthy (it has been said that “a committee is a cul-de-sac down which ideas are lured and then quietly strangled”). He is co-author of two volumes in the Pattern-Oriented Software Architecture series, editor of 97 Things Every Programmer Should Know and co-editor of 97 Things Every Java Programmer Should Know.
“Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast,” the Queen told Alice on her adventures through the looking glass. Only six? In software development we believe impossible things all the time, no matter the time of day!
In this talk, however, we are going to take a look at six specific impossible things that shape the limits of what we can develop, all the way from the smallest detail of integer representation to the minefield of task estimation and prioritisation, via the uncertainty of distributed systems and the limits of computability. Once we know our limits, we can work within them to create solutions rather than problems.