Coding Horror

programming and human factors

See You at EclipseCon!

I have the very great honor of speaking at this year's EclipseCon with one of my heroes, Clay Shirky.

eclipsecon logo

The theme of this year's EclipseCon is collaboration -- so all the talks are presented by two speakers. Our talk, The Social Mind: Designing Like Groups Matter, will alternate between the theory (Clay) and practice (Jeff) of online community. Hopefully in a coherent way.

This is an easy talk for me to deliver, because I quite literally used Clay Shirky's book, Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations, as a blueprint for building Stack Overflow.

Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations

I wasn't kidding when I said It's Clay Shirky's Internet, We Just Live In It.

I can't emphasize enough how deeply I respect Clay. I've read everything he's written to a degree that you might even say I studied it. Clay continues to be one of the most perceptive and insightful technical writers in the world on the topic of internet culture and community. His latest missive on the demise of newspapers is not to be missed. It's thrilling to have this opportunity to speak side by side with such a vital, important figure in internet history.

It is also extremely gratifying to me that I am giving this talk to a group of non Windows-centric developers. Despite my personal background, we always intended Stack Overflow to be a tribute to the greater craft of programming, a place where you could rub shoulders with fellow programmers from all sorts of different backgrounds and professional interests -- a bit like the old, classic computer programming magazines like Byte and Dr. Dobb's Journal.

old-byte-magazine.png old-dr-dobbs-magazine.png

It pains me to see developers who let themselves get locked into some particular toolchain ghetto, without at least peripheral awareness of what else is going on in the programming world around them.

Good programmers are interested in everything -- and that's exactly the kind of talk Clay and I intend to deliver.

Update: I'm not sure the event was recorded, but Alan Zeichick's summary of our talk is outstanding. I also put the slides up on SlideShare for viewing or download, though it's tough without audio.

Written by Jeff Atwood

Indoor enthusiast. Co-founder of Stack Exchange and Discourse. Disclaimer: I have no idea what I'm talking about. Find me here: