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re: Software is like gardening VIEW POST

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I think software has changed a lot over the years too. For instance, in the 1950s and 1960s, typically software was written in machine code for a specific mainframe hardware architecture. Once it was in production, it was unlikely to undergo many changes. Even making a small change was a huge pain.

Then, a decade or so later, the company might buy a new mainframe, with a totally different architecture. So now they had to rewrite the software completely from scratch. That's probably a more apt comparison to how a bridge or a building is constructed.

Over time, the advent of compilers, operating systems, and hardware standardization allowed software to be re-used. Software became increasingly "soft." A piece of code could be re-compiled for new hardware, and its calls into the OS and standard library would still work. That way, software didn't have to be re-written from scratch anymore. It could just be updated with new features.

Nowadays, with online updates, software really is like a living organism that is continually changing and evolving.

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