Soul > Features

I’m still stuck on the “Software needs a soul” thought. I’ll probably write about it more in depth at another time, but for today, for right now, I want to share one implication of that thought.

If having a soul is what makes us us, then it’s not the physical features of a human being that make us human, it’s the soul.

For software, features are necessary — maybe less necessary than we think they are; but they aren’t sufficient.

How many times have you seen the ‘feature checklist’? Where the software lists all of its features, as if that makes up for its lack of purpose. Lack of… soul? I have a working theory that if the software we build had a soul, we wouldn’t need to put so many features into it.

As I said, I can’t shake this thought, and I’ll spend some more time on it later, but today I’ll leave you with that one thought: If we were to cut features and focus on giving the software we work on a purpose for its users, and hone the software to excel at that purpose, would we build better or worse software than we do right now?

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