Coding places : software practice in a South American city /
Yuri Takhteyev.
Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, c2012.
xi, 257 p. ; 24 cm.
0262018071 (Cloth), 9780262018074 (Cloth)
More Details
series title
Cambridge, Mass. : MIT Press, c2012.
0262018071 (Cloth)
9780262018074 (Cloth)
catalogue key
Includes bibliographical references (p. [231]-239) and index.
A Look Inside
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2013-06-01:
Coding Places reads like a novel. In this revised dissertation, Takhteyev (Univ. of Toronto, Canada) tells the story of software development in Rio de Janeiro. There are actually many stories in this compact, easy-to-read book: the story of programming languages, Kepler and Lua; the story of individual software developers and groups of software developers living in different parts of the world; and the story of the development of open source software and whether to program in the universal programming language, English, or one's native language. Although the book focuses on programming in Rio, it really is about programming anywhere in the world. This includes the need for the development of universal programming languages, the need to follow universal software development standards, and the need for locally developed software to be documented so that local developers understand the system under development. Takhteyev discusses all these issues in the book's ten chapters, appropriately labeled for programmers as chapters 0 through 9. It is a useful reference for students and professionals, with an excellent section of chapter notes, many pages of references, and a well-formed index. A very worthwhile read. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through professionals/practitioners. J. Beidler University of Scranton
Review Quotes
"By examining software development in the 'wrong place' of Rio de Janeiro, YuriTakhteyev shows us with vivid accounts and clear narrative how individuals who work far from thegeographic hubs of their field create local connections and shape local environments even as theyembrace global culture and pursue global dreams for themselves and their locations. The concept of a'wrong place' proves an immediately beguiling and completely original approach for understandingwork in the global setting; Takhteyev's choice of Rio, in particular, is nothing short ofbrilliant." --Diane Bailey , School of Information, University of Texas atAustin
" Coding Places opens the black box of 'globalization' toshow us the pieces involved in that process -- people, technical objects, government agencies,universities, businesses -- in intimate detail: how they work, what they need to survive, what theyfurnish to others, the network of their connections, conflicts, and accommodations. We see the wholemachine in operation: how the many possible inputs generate a variety of outputs, technically andorganizationally. And we learn a way of thinking that we can apply to the arts, science, orbusiness, to any kind of activity with worldwide extension and ramifications. It does all this witha depth of vision and a clarity in telling the story seldom found in the social sciences." --Howard S. Becker , author of Outsiders and ArtWorlds
"Software development is no longer limited geographically but is expanding todifferent regions of the world. Yuri Takhteyev has produced an insightful work that provides acritical account of software developers and their role in the global knowledge economy. This is afascinating story of knowledge workers in a region that has the potential to become the next SiliconValley." --Alladi Venkatesh , Professor and Associate Director, Center forResearch on Information Technology, University of California, Irvine
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, June 2013
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Bowker Data Service Summary
The author looks at the work of software developers who inhabit two contexts: a geographical area - in this case, greater Rio de Janeiro - and a 'world of practice', a global system of activities linked by shared meanings and joint practice.
Main Description
Software development would seem to be a quintessential example of today's Internet-enabled "knowledge work"--a global profession not bound by the constraints of geography. In Coding Places , Yuri Takhteyev looks at the work of software developers who inhabit two contexts: a geographical area--in this case, greater Rio de Janeiro--and a "world of practice," a global system of activities linked by shared meanings and joint practice. The work of the Brazilian developers, Takhteyev discovers, reveals a paradox of the world of software: it is both diffuse and sharply centralized. The world of software revolves around a handful of places--in particular, the San Francisco Bay area--that exercise substantial control over both the material and cultural elements of software production. Takhteyev shows how in this context Brazilian software developers work to find their place in the world of software and to bring its benefits to their city. Takhteyev's study closely examines Lua, an open source programming language developed in Rio but used in such internationally popular products as World of Warcraft and Angry Birds . He shows that Lua had to be separated from its local origins on the periphery in order to achieve success abroad. The developers, Portuguese speakers, used English in much of their work on Lua. By bringing to light the work that peripheral practitioners must do to give software its seeming universality, Takhteyev offers a revealing perspective on the not-so-flat world of globalization.
Table of Contents
Acknowledgmentsp. ix
A Note on Translation, Quoting, and Pseudonymsp. xiii
The Wrong Placep. 1
Global Worlds of Practicep. 21
The Global Tonguep. 47
Nerds from the Baixada and Other Placesp. 71
Software Brasileirop. 93
Downtown Professionalsp. 115
Porting Luap. 135
Fast and Patrioticp. 159
Dreams of a Culture Farmerp. 179
Conclusionp. 205
Notesp. 217
Referencesp. 231
Indexp. 241
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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