Their method for avoiding the proliferation of different tools is interesting.
His discussion of the kind of people they want, once you ignore the semantics, is interesting. They want people who take responsibility and are always pushing the boundary of their knowledge into new fields. That's interesting.
My favorite part of the article was right at the end: "instead of asking questions about “why did something fail,” we want to ask why something succeeded, which is really easy to skip over."
What does irk me is that in real life, software developers who meet the Etsy CTO's standard often can't call themselves engineers. In many countries, misrepresenting oneself as an engineer without accreditation is against the law! 
In the U.S., there's no official occupational category for Software Engineer. It's just Software Developer (Applications), Software Developer (Systems), and Computer Programmer.
It is possible to get accreditation (http://ncees.org/exams/pe-exam/, under Software), but it didn't appear very useful to me aside from being able to call yourself an Engineer.
There is actually software engineers. At the U of A, where I went, Software Engineering is separate than Computing Science. Software Engineering was run by the Engineering department, and they had the same rigours as the rest of engineering has. However, Computing Science was run by the Science department.
In 99.99% of software jobs in the Canadian or US job markets you're simply never going to be able to accumulate enough eligible hours in your 6 year EIT eligibility period, because of the way APEGA defines things. Software jobs where you're supervised by a P.Eng., as required by APEGA, are likewise virtually unheard of.
My opinion (as a jr mechanical engineer) is that the whole law is a bit outdated and seems to be geared 100% to civil engineers who actually need to stamp drawings.
APEGA has essentially the same rule in Alberta. That's what makes it impossible to log enough eligible hours to qualify for a P.Eng. It may well be the same in all provinces.
Consequently, although APEGA insists that only Professional Engineers can use the title "Software Engineer", they simultaneously make it impossible for anyone to ever use that title in practice. There's been at least one court case about it that I can recall.
It's reasonably common for engineering grads of any speciality to simply end up working somewhere they don't need a P.Eng. While it might be nice if that were less common for Software Engineers, a P.Eng. must stand behind their work. Qualified candidates should show they worked in a manner that made an existing engineer comfortable ok'ing their work. That may not be common, but it's fundamental to the process.
Must be. Of the dozens of people who graduated from the Software Engineering program that I know or have worked with, you're the first I've heard of who's actually managed to obtain their P.Eng. I've known a couple of people who talked to APEGA extensively and were told that nothing they were doing (writing code, architecting solutions, etc) counted. Probably comes down to 99.99% of places aren't doing safety critical work and/or don't want to pay for formal verification.
Glad to know the title is being used, anyways.
UofA means University of Arizona around here
semantics == meaning. once you ignore what he's trying to say, the discussion ends, no?
edit: yes, i could care less about semantics of semantics, but i can't bring myself to it.
When large projects squeeze into tight deadlines, how much of that boundary pushing will be abandoned in favor of shipping things?
For instance just putting a platform like Etsy entirely on Google App Engine would allow Etsy to focus on the liberal arts side of the problem. Because GAE "solves" most all the engineering problems that typically have plagued software practices on the web...