Tuesday, January 03, 2006
Here's today's "Perl" of funnish wisdom from O'Reilly columnist Geoff Broadwell:
"When Autrijus Tang started the Pugs project to create a Perl 6 compiler, he had an explicit goal: optimize for fun. Fondly referred to as -Ofun -- a typical compiler writer's joke, referring to the standard -O flag used to tell a compiler what its primary optimization goal should be -- optimizing for fun is probably the most important decision Autrijus made...Instant gratification? Well, yes, in the sense that fun brings you more completely and more deeply into the world (and what can be more gratifying than that?). Wonder? Yes, in deed. That's what makes me get religious about the whole thing, that wonder-fun. And discovery? Always new.
"As any cognitive science expert will tell you, fun is a great way to focus the mind. Developers that aren't enjoying themselves will slow down, write buggy code, make poor decisions, and eventually leave the project (even one that pays). Conversely, rampant fun will bring coders in droves, and give them a passion for their work that shows in quality, quantity, and goodwill. It's a pretty good bet that optimizing for fun will produce a better product than almost any other method.
"So what's Autrijus's secret for -Ofun? As he puts it, 'the essence of fun boils down to instant gratification and a sense of wonder and discovery.'"