Issue No.01 - January/February (1998 vol.15)
In his essay, Ed Yourdon expresses, justifies, and leaves unresolved two well-founded questions: What is the future of software? What does the future hold for the software professional? His prognosis is evasive, incomplete, and unsatisfying: the future will be good for some, not so for others. Given Yourdon's extensive experience in the real world of computer usage, as proven by the problems he has observed, it is easy to see why he feels that soft-ware's future is uncertain. But he does not point to a solution to this uncertainty, nor does he indicate what can be done to achieve the best possible outcome for software professionals. More importantly, Yourdon's analysis does not indicate what should be done to ensure the security, well being, and survival of society, which depends increasingly on software. For more than a decade now, there have been those in the software engineering community who have accepted that the need to continually change and evolve software is a fact-a fact addressed through activity that is planned, executed, and controlled by humans. Thus, the software development and maintenance processes, which I prefer to unify and call software evolution, are key to managing computerization. In my view it is key to our survival in this computer age.
M.m. Lehman, "Software's Future: Managing Evolution", IEEE Software, vol.15, no. 1, pp. 40-44, January/February 1998, doi:10.1109/MS.1998.646878