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"Grazie Signore" Moments..

Posted by eitan on May 4, 2005 at 11:03 AM PDT

One movie that made a strong impression on me was the classic "Amadeus." Salieri, one of the main characters and a contemporary of Mozart, is often depicted (like most of us mere mortals are) as someone who can compose music but is nowhere near as quick or talented as Mozart.

There's a specific scene where Salieri is composing music, one small step at a time (one note at a time!) and derives great satisfaction from the task. He then pauses to thank the lord (in his native [Italian] tongue) for having given him his musical talents and the opportunity to practice music composition: "Grazie Signore."

I can't tell you how many times I find myself in such a situation. Every day we code. The going [for me] can be slow but things do move forward and progress. Every so often I pause and admire a new feature I've added to a system I'm working on and get a terrific feeling of satisfaction, just like Salieri did in Amadeus.

Dave Thomas (the Pragmatic Programmer) is right: many trades have much in common: composing music and writing software for example. Dave often talks about 'the art in programming' and I agree with him wholeheartedly: there's art in programming and there's also a certain dose of engineering in art.

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