Guy 1: I am so efficient I can fold 100 parachutes in a hour.

Guy 2: I am so effective I can fold 100 parachutes and every single one of them will open right.

Would you rather give your parachutes to the efficient or to the effective guy?

Now what I’d like to know is why all these programmers we interview pride themselves on being efficient?

I’m so sick of their industrial strength bug generating skills… :/

Comments from long ago:

Comment from: Thierry

The guy who accepts to jump in the parachute he has just folded is the effective guy.

2005-09-24 17-26

Comment from: François Planque

Well, trust me, too many guys think they’ve done it right as long as it doesn’t fail… they may only realize after 50 jumps they have been doing it wrong all along.

Sadly enough, when it comes to programming, the cost of failure doesn’t impact as much on the indivual as it does in skydiving… Yeah yeah okay I am JUST KIDDING! :)

2005-09-27 14-47

Comment from: Kochise

Hmmm, if a skydiver crash, it costs, say, 1.000.000 euros to the insurance.

I used to work for the automotive industry. If a coder made a mistake, say, in the dashboard which control the speed regulation, that leads to a crash, 2 died consumers, several injuried people, many broken cars, and all cars from the same brand have to return back to the manufacturer for fix. Do you think it cost less than a lone lazy folder skydiver ?

Better be careful when you code in some places. Really…


2005-09-28 09-26

Comment from: François Planque

Still… the guys who made the mistake doesn’t die himself… at most, he might get a blame along with the other guys in QA…

2005-09-28 13-00

Comment from: Kochise

Still, from your own example, you compare skydivers with coders’ “industrial strength bug generating skills”. So in general the coder cannot die from his own code, only generate accidents… The skydiver could fold somebody else’s parachute as well…

But if he is the driver of the car or one of the astronaut of Challenger ?


2005-09-30 11-15

Comment from: Karen

and if it takes a month for the effective guy to fold the parachutes, they’d be out of business.

a healthy blend of both attributes is required…

2008-11-25 19-35

Comment from: Jay Martin

This reminds me of the old verbage, “don’t confuse motion with progress”.

2009-08-04 14-01

Comment from: Anis

“The skydiver could fold somebody else’s parachute as well…

Still if he falls over somebody else walking, he would cause death to others too as the coding guy. LOL

Conclusion we better be effectivly effecient.

2009-11-13 21-01

Comment from: mobile phone

Unfortunately, I think the reason why everything has become much more efficient, so to speak, is because of technology as well as how fast it is becoming. Since technology is allowing us to get work done at an astonishing speed, so must our work effort be increased as well to meet demands. Personally, I would say that Guy 2 would get my vote, but I would love to see Guy 1’s skills be tested

2010-06-24 23-34

Comment from: Graphic Chick Brisbane

I agree with you Karen. I think a little of both would be ideal. Too much of anything is an imbalance and that just wont work … long term anyway.

2010-07-05 05-55

Comment from: jack

Life is all about balance. The Yin and the yang.

2010-12-15 07-20