Computers in Context: The Philosophy and Practice of System Design
October 1993, Wiley-Blackwell
Dahlbom ande Mathiassen advocate a different approach to these
problems: pausing and reflection. Surprisingly little time in the
education of systems developers is devoted to a consideration of
the methods, goals and politics of computerization. The core of the
book is an examination of the notion of quality itself. The
effective computer professional must arrive at his or her sense of
what quality can and should mean in a particular situation in order
to resolve the inevitable creative tensions between the nature of
people and that of computers, between structured systems and the
process of change.
The authors draw on a rich range of literature from philosophy, organizational theory, and technology and social change to support their points. But, adducing many real-life examples they avoid jargon and presuppose no formal background. Computer in Context will help students, computer professionals, and managers alike understand better what it is they are trying to do with computer systems, how and why.
Part I. Systems.
Part II. Development.
Part III. Quality.
Part IV. Practice.
Computers and People.
Systems and Change.
From Philosophy to Practice.
Notes for Instructors.
"Dahlbom and Mathiassen have written a pathbreaking book
about software development in a meaningful human context. They
examine key assumptions about the role of software developers, and
their relationship to culture and work in a way which touches
everyday practice and which can subtly transform it. It should be
read by every practicing software developer." – Rob
Kling, University of California, Irvine
"I enjoyed this book. It is both more amusing and more challenging than the usual books on system design." – Joseph A. Goguen, University of Oxford.