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Michael Ernst
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258 followers
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Michael Ernst's posts

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Ski rental, and when should you refactor your code?
A codebase often accumulates technical debt :  bad code that accumulates over time due to poor design or due to taking shortcuts to meet a deadline. Sometimes, you need to take a break from implementing features or fixing bugs, and temporarily focus on repa...

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Plotters, pantsers, and software development
Last week, I gave two talks at TU Delft and also had the privilege to hear a talk by Dr. Felienne Hermans  that analogized programming to story-writing .  One source of inspiration for her was the observation that when kids program, their programs might not...

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Automated generation of assert statements with Toradocu
Do you love writing test assertions?  If not, the Toradocu tool can help you.   Toradocu 1.0 has just been released. Toradocu automatically generates assert  statements that you can insert in your program.  This makes your existing tests more effective, and...

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Python evaluation rules
You cannot program in a programming language if you don't understand how the language works.  Some novices find programming a frustrating, opaque endeavor because they don't understand how the computer executes their programs.  When their program does not w...

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Practically relevant software engineering research
A paper about proactive conflict detection, which is part of my speculative analysis research project, has been ranked the most practically relevant software engineering research of the last five years.  In a survey of 500 software developers, the proactive...

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No German in the building
As my sabbatical comes to a close, I increase my appreciation for the remarkable talents of Peter Druschel , who hosted my previous sabbatical and has built up MPI-SWS into a world-class research institution. One of Peter's rules was to prohibit speaking Ge...

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Reverse culture shock
Last month, I was in the US for the first time in 11 months, for the graduation of my students Brian Burg and Kıvanç Muşlu . When I first landed, my initial reaction was, "How unusual -- everyone is speaking English."  My second reaction was, "Their accents...

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How to export a project from Google Code to GitHub
Google Code is shutting down , so you need to move your projects to a new hosting site. This article tells you how to export a project from Google Code to GitHub.  Google Code provides an "Export to GitHub" button at the top of your project pages.  That but...

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Preparing for reverse culture shock
We are starting to prepare for our return to Seattle in August.  In fact, I'm currently on a 1-week trip to the US, for the first time in over 10 months. These are things we are looking forward to in the US: appliances such as clothes dryer, dishwasher, kit...
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