An interview with Fred George
Your ghost can be sued, pay bills, and all the rest
Fred George has been writing code since 1968, and claims to have used over 70 languages in that time. An early adopter languages and processes throughout his career, Fred has focused on the post-Agile process, Programmer Anarchy, lately in his development work. He is currently an independent consultant living in London.
Hi Fred! How was your last weekend?
Nice weekend! It was the finals weekend for the StarCraft GSL and GSTL leagues in Korea, and I watched some interesting games from the best in the world.
How you spend typical day?
If I am at a client, clean out my email first, then move into a morning standup to plan the day, and finally execute it. Avoid all meetings!
If not at a client, then email, chase a few threads of interest, and maybe a spot of computer gaming (StarCraft or Skyrim as my mood hits me.
How would you like to spend a typical day?
I pretty much get to do what I like already. Maybe a rare virtue of being an old war horse.
What software are you using the most?
Naked Ruby with TextMate is my environment of choice, with GitHub support. Of course my games are software as well.
Imagine World without computers. What would you do for a living?
That's easy: Be a lawyer. Law is the non-engineering field closest to programming. Models abound. For example, when you die, your ghost is a person under law (they call it your estate). Your ghost can be sued, pay bills, and all the rest. And English common law is all about arguing that your situation is just like the model set forth in a related case, and the other side argues for their model. It is why law schools love engineers as students.
Please describe your perfect holiday.
No lounging for me on a holiday! I need to be active, preferably in competitive situations or in learning situations. Geek cruises are particularly attractive, as is traveling to e-sports events.
What music bands we can find in your playlist? Do you listen to music while working?
My playlist is diverse, and tends to music videos over raw music. Current dance hits are always there. For programming and noise isolation, I will tend to play Celtic ballads very softly. The rhythm matches my thinking.
Could you send me your new picture, exclusively for BaRuCo?
Picture from Olympics attached...
You have 40 years experience in programming. Which projects gave you the most satisfaction in your career?
I had a wealth of great projects in my career. In the last decade or so, I would say an engagement at a very large manufacturing firm where we delivered in 9 weeks what the resident vendor was saying would take 18 months. We energized the entire organization with new Agile thinking that rippled across every area. It was very satisfying to see people enjoying their work more.