Monday, March 03, 2008

Day 1 at ETech 2008

The first day at ETech is tutorials.

First up was Live, Vast and Deep: Web-native Information Visualization by Tom Carden of Stamen Design. Although it was pretty high level and didn't get into too many details, there were lots of thought provoking examples and links to things to investigate - and that's what I'm looking for.

It was a tough choice between this and Storyboarding for Nonfiction by Kathy Sierra (or Creating Passionate Users). I decided that I might get more useful ideas (for me) from visualization. But I bet Kathy's talk was good too.

In the afternoon I went to Debugging Hacks: What They Never Taught You About Solving Hard Bugs by Marc Hedlund of Wesabe. Nothing really new but a good talk on how to solve hard bugs. One point that resonated with me: "the goal is not to suppress the symptoms, it's to understand the problem". I have this discussion with my own programmers on occasion - removing an assert is not "solving" the problem! And conversely, adding the assert did not "cause" the problem.

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