Dealing comfortably with the confusion of tongues

That's the title of my invited talk at CHOOSE Forum 2010.

See the abstract below.

I just realized that I am going to meet some esteemed colleagues there: Jean Bezivin, Jean-Marie Favre, Uwe Zdun.

Abstract: Yahweh brought the confusion of tongues upon the people in the plain of Shinar because he did not like their efforts of building the Tower of Babel with its top in the heavens. In IT, we brought the confusion of tongues upon ourselves with the continuous aggregation of ideas for programming (languages), modeling (languages), domain concepts and domain-specific languages, design patterns, APIs, and so on. All this diversity makes a nontrivial software system look like the Tower of Babel—in terms of the involved complexity. That is, a nontrivial software system involves multiple technical spaces, technologies, bridges between them, and harmful amounts of software asbestos. How can IT personnel acquire the relevant skills more effectively? How would we want to prepare an undergraduate in CS for such toughness? These are the questions that we address in this talk. We put to work a combo of technology modeling, metamodeling, and megamodeling—plus a suite of well-designed examples in any lingo that we could think of. (Contrary to this abstract, the talk is going to be very technical; target audience: software engineers.)

Acknowledgment: This is joint work with Dragan Gasevic and Jean-Marie Favre. Further, I acknowledge contributions by some of my students—most notably Thomas Schmorleiz.

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