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About the Book

Hiya! You might know me from my website, where I publish software essays on history, engineering, and formal methods. Not everything I write makes it there, though, and I sometimes kill essays that are mostly written. I've collected four of these essays into this thing, editing notes, TODOs, and missing sentences intact. They are:

  • The Language of Tradeoffs
  • YAGNI, SQL, and Flavour Pairings
  • Falsehoods Programmers Believe About Substituting Ingredients in Recipes
  • The Rise and Fall of UML

Again, word of warning: these are not complete essays. Two were 90% done and two were 40-60% done. Sections end suddenly, wild claims are unsubstantiated, and there's at least one case of TODO I hate this burn it all down. I did no cleanup whatsoever. I'm putting this out for people who really like my writing and/or want a means to throw money at me.

(Yes, I realize the deep irony of charging for my abandoned drafts and making my best content free. I am easily amused.)

About the Author

Hillel Wayne
Hillel Wayne

I have a blog at and a newsletter at

Table of Contents

  • Intro
  • The Language of Tradeoffs
  • YAGNI, SQL, and Flavor Pairings
    • Requirements Perturbation
    • Flavor Pairings
    • Perturbation Ubiquity
  • Falsehoods programmers believe about substituting ingredients in recipes
    • Recipe stuff
    • Basics
    • Measurements
    • Scaling
    • Conclusion
  • The Rise and Fall of UML
    • Prehistory (1969 – 1989)
    • Unified Method to UML (1991-1997)
    • Interlude: Just What is UML, Anyway?
    • The Honeymoon
    • What went wrong?
    • The Fallout
    • Epilogue
    • Source Sponge
  • Notes

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