Virginia Woolf and Code

This article was always going to jump out at me – To Write Better Code, Read Virginia Woolf – given that currently I am working at a tech company, though not on the code yet. Doing the explaining and/or engaging. Ideally both.

Why Virginia Woolf? Well, actually, any literature will do. Or indeed any arts subject. That Virginia Woolf is chosen says something of her current iconic status – part of which clearly is as a writer about as far from the scientific method as you can get. Apparently.

‘…What does the brain matter,’ said Lady Rosseter, getting up, ‘compared with the heart?’ (Mrs Dalloway)

But of course it is not in either/or that the answer lies, but in both. And to underline his point the article’s author, J Bradford Hipps, deploys a quote from the most iconic figure of our current age:

How much better is the view of another Silicon Valley figure, who argued that “technology alone is not enough — it’s technology married with liberal arts, married with the humanities, that yields us the result that makes our heart sing.”

His name? Steve Jobs.