Alo Sarv
lead developer

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Developer's Diary

Friday, April 22, 2005

Talking about design?

You'r probably wondering, why the blog posts are becoming rarer and rarer recently. And you'v already heard several reasons for that in the past, but let me give you some more.

During past year, the main development target was the engine, and edonkey plugin. Programming is science, and science can be discussed and talked about. However, the engine is finished, edonkey module is finished, so what do I write blog posts about now?

The answer to that question seems obvious - I don't. This doesn't mean I don't work on hydranode - I still pull 12-16h development-days, I still wake up 9pm and go to sleep 8am, but when I go to sleep, I have nothing to say that would be "talkable". So what is it that I'm doing?

Design. Visual things. And talking about design is like dancing about architecture - you can't do it. I is impossible to talk and discuss about design, since design is art, design is largely influenced by taste, and you can only fight about taste, not discuss it in a civilized manner. Consider how would the following sample blog post look like:

"Today I spent several hours playing around with various layouts, testing several color schemes. Blue certainly doesn't cut it, perhaps red does? Oh, and I changed a button to use bold font today, now it looks so much better."

Not very interesting, eh? And how would you comment such a post? "What? RED? Why? Green is definately the way to go!". And there, you have it, fight about whether something should be red or green. Time wasted on fighting instead of designing. Often, some bad design decisions are needed in order to understand the problem better, and re-design it into a fundamentally different, better thing the day after - but with daily updates, everyone sees that, and starts fighting and discussing things that were simply steps on the path. Some believe the journey is more important than the destination. While it is often the case, when it comes to design, the journey is something private, and only the destination should be shown to the others.

When talking about code and programming, such things never raise, since there's always a clear indication which is right way to do something, and which is wrong. Code is science, design is art.

Frankly, I really don't know what to do with this blog. Interface development (once it starts) will be rather un-interesting thing to talk about, except perhaps some fundamental application design topics (how different parts of the interface code should interact - already decided and designed at this point). One thing for sure - the "daily diary" times are mostly over.


Wow man, thanks for you work !
You finnally get to the interface ! I cant wait to Get a working version !
You are not going to abandon us now, will you? I mean wtf - who's going to keep us company.

I don't know - blog about whatever comes to your mind. Is 64bit better than 32bit for the donkey network? Should sha1 be replaced by sha256? Should the code be refactored to throw exceptions instead of ints? How many unique downloads you got today for the core? What do you think of (implementing) this or that other P2P? Need I go furhther :)
lol you should start writing novels instead of code :)
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