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I agree. It's so strange now that I will often make references to Joel or his essays in talks and no-one will know who I'm talking about. I always have to explain that back in the day there were two big software essayists - PG and Joel. No youngsters knows Joel's stuff now - the internet's great at getting you today's news, yesterday's tends to get lost underfoot.

Joel if you're listening please come back to blogging. You're a great writer and I think you've got such an utterly different perspective on things now after having done SE and Trello that it would be a massive waste for you not to share it back with the world again.




I entered this industry in February 2012, but his essays have still had a major impact on me as a developer. Part of the credit for this goes to Jeff Atwood, who has retained a lot more visibility than Joel, for frequently linking back to early internet writing.


Really? How young are you talking about? I graduated about a year ago and almost everyone I knew who was really interested in writing software read at least some of his stuff from joelonsoftware...


Same. I even went so far as to buy his books that are compilations of his writings and compilations of his curations of other great writings.

However, I feel like we might be self selecting here for people who give a damn about their craft on this thread ;)


I think it's a cultural osmosis thing. If the older developers mention stuff like "We're a 9 on the Joel test"[1] or "Obviously we shouldn't do a rewrite, what are we Netscape"[2] or "Are code base is large enough that the tooling requires static typing"[3] People will read the essays. If all anyone is talking about is tech-crunch, probably not

[1]http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/fog0000000043.html [2]http://www.joelonsoftware.com/articles/fog0000000069.html[3]...


You messed with your third link.

I've read it and I'd say that Steve Yeggie is making generalizations about static type systems using greatest common divisor of them all: Java.

He attributes the need for patterns to OCaml type system, where they aren't needed, for example. Or assumes that you need all interfaces up front.

Both those assumptions are not true!

I think SY is good at jealous humor like his post about "academy found an software engineer who cares about Haskell". That's his natural domain. I believe everything he writes is homorous and jealous, that way I don't have to think he is just plain stupid.


Joel is a class act. He spoke at YC's Startup School, which brings out his unique perspective - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pPJf8KrvJXU


He starts talking about Trello and his expectations for its exit at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pPJf8KrvJXU#t=27m43s .


> back in the day there were two big software essayists - PG and Joel

Don't forget Philip Greenspun!


22, read most of Joel’s blog when I was 16, despite living in Nigeria with Snow.

I can’t imagine the youngsters of today never wondering who stands behind SO—and that brings you to JoS and CH too.

I’ve seen a different opinion though: people claiming Joel and Jeff spoiled a generation of developers by presenting subjective opinions as self-evident truths in the form of feel-good light reading. I don’t subscribe to this viewpoint but it’s worth mentioning.


22, read his whole blog when I was 19. Still go back to his and PG's essays time to time (add "How not to die"[1] by PG to reading list for 3rd time this morning).

I remember skipping my classes in my first year at college to read Joel's blog!

[1] http://www.paulgraham.com/die.html


His essays were collected into a book. One copy of the book is in the Fort Vancouver Regional Library system. Also, I somehow managed to find and read his entire blog a couple years ago. His writing is not completely lost in time.


I'm 24, I've read all Joel's stuff in the past year.


I'd put Yegge at the top of that list.


Youngster (age 24) here. I'm pretty sure I've read all of Joel's stuff.




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