Spaghetti Code

A meal can look appetizing but when it comes to Spaghetti Code it isn’t. Photo by D. Ramos

I’ve been assessing a client’s FileMaker database and boy is it rough. I quickly realized I’m jumping into a bowl of Spaghetti Code. If you’re not familiar with that term, just imagine you’ve found one end of a strand of pasta but you have to find the other end in a big bowl of pasta. That’s what I’ve done and still do when troubleshooting computers and programs.

If you’re reading this you know how to use a program (on the computer or an application on your phone). When you type in on your web browser, you’re telling the application to go to my website. Pretty simple concept right? Well underneath the interface you’re using, there’s the application, the operating system, and then the programming code. I won’t dive further into it, but where you type your URL on a browser, that’s the beginning of the spaghetti strand and it can take a journey to find the other end.

Although, Spaghetti Code sounds like a cute name, it’s a headache for a company who is seeking to be scalable and sustainable. It also leaves the company vulnerable to losing knowledge. A lot of the thought process has a high chance of being lost in the sauce that makes the company successful. Turnover happens, instructions are lost, different individuals interpret documentation differently, and the only person who knows how it works is the programmer (callback to my previous post on Legacy Systems).

Have you faced anything like Spaghetti Code that just didn’t make sense? Need a fresh set of eyes that will give you perspective? Let’s talk story, give me a holler.

New Haircut and Fresh Air

Like hair, experience needs to be trimmed when it grows. This is the barbershop my grandfather would bring me to get a haircut. Mr. Sakamoto retired quite a while ago however memories stick around and influence. Photo by D. Ramos

Periodically, I visit my hometown of San Jose, CA to catch up with colleagues, family, and friends. This last trip was really productive. A lot has changed since I moved to Hawaii so I appreciate all the people who were able to slice out a little bit of their time to give me some extra perspective.

I got a meeting with Tim Hill, one of my professors from San Jose State’s College of Business. It’s been ten years since we seen each other. One of the more interesting things we talked about was changes to the business technology classes. They’ve been able to implement Salesforce as a tool for labs. By minimizing the technological demands and shifting the class’s focus to more case studies based on stories, students are learning how to apply technology without being forced to learn how to program. I really appreciated that change and approach.

Hammer Theatre Center in San Jose, CA. Photo by D. Ramos

On this same trip, I was fortunate to attend the City of San Jose’s Cornerstone of the Arts Award Ceremony at the Hammer Theatre. It was inspiring to learn how much the art scene has grown and how involved local businesses such as Applied Materials have made an effort to be a part of the community. During the ceremony I was reminded of the environment I was born into. Silicon Valley is where you find individuals who question the status quo, apply our creativity, and solve the world’s challenges.

There is a deep connection between innovation and the arts. The Arts Commission of San Jose has done a wonderful job of identifying leaders who continue to be stewards of my hometown’s unique environment. I’m excited to see what’s next.

As the world continue to change, it was refreshing to see the possibilities. If there was no fear of repercussions, how would you improve your organization? How do you think those changes would affect the community? Would love to talk story so feel free to holler @ me.