No Return

Beyond transactions in software and in life

Abstract

At the root of catastrophes in both code and life lies a pervasive fallacy: the attempt to model processes as if they were transactions. Join me for an honest, sometimes raw retrospective on two decades of building a software development career. We’ll examine how personal philosophy impacts software design—and vice-versa. We’ll encounter the Transactional Fallacy, and how it can hinder our attempts to build resilient systems. And we’ll explore how a narrative-oriented mindset can lead to both better code and a more joyful life.

References

If you’ve just watched a version of this talk and you’re looking to follow up on some of the ideas or technologies I mentioned, you’re in the right place. I’ve collected a list of further recommended reading/viewing below.

Also! If you liked the talk, you might like my newsletter: SIGAVDI. I do a lot of musing at the intersection of life, philosophy, and code there, and I also respond to replies! 😁 You can sign up here.

Reactions

I actually can't get this talk out of my head. I'm personally comprising my own list of people "I want to be the person they'd want to have a beer with".

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Joshua Bryant

My husband came back a changed man.

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Tricia Steele

Great talk on “The Transactional Fallacy”. I’ve rarely seen a talk touch on so many topics (OO design history, architecture patterns, philosophy, health, empathy, success, living life well...) and still hang together so well as a talk. Lots to follow up on!

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Justin Jones

This is a beautiful talk by @avdi - thanks for your honesty and deep dive into how interwoven this stuff can be with our operating philosophies. Excellent.

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Jonathan Cutrell

The talk you gave... left me thinking on a completely different level.

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Dominic Santo

I don't normally stan talks/speeches, but this one from @avdi is really, really good

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--

This talk was amazing in a technical and personal way.

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Rodrigo Serradura

Likely the best talk I have ever seen @avdi Thank you so much for sharing. 🍻

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Chase Southard

🎥 @avdi's keynote at @keeprubyweird is worth a watch! His ideas around how our worldview affects the code we write and vice versa have my brain gears turning.

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Nick Holden

Thanks @avdi for moving me to tears with his closing keynote to Keep Ruby Weird

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Marcello Rocha

Remembering to not get obsessed about the goal and enjoy life with @avdi. Recommend his keynote at @keeprubyweird when it's posted

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countingtoten

Your talk at @rubyconf was really cool. Connecting code narratives with our life narrative was a new way of looking at development.

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Andrew Goodnough

@avdi’s closing keynote really resonated with me.

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George

What an Awesome way to connect life with OOPS!!

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Anubhav Jain

some talks really can change your life. I am getting the feeling this is one of those.

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Ruberto Paulo

@avdi’s talk was exactly what I always want: a challenge to look at programming - and life - through new eyes.

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Erik Ostrom

This talk but @avdi at “Keep Ruby Weird” about how the broken parts of Object Oriented Design seep into your IRL life and hurt you is worth your time

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Seth A. Roby

An exceptional, evocative talk!

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Tushar Saxena

Thank you @avdi for your amazing talk at @nordicjs!

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Davi Busanello

@avdi’s 2019 RubyConf talk got me over here re-examining my life and my programs 😳 great stuff

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ヽ( ͡ಠ ʖ̯ ͡ಠ)ノ

His keynote at @keeprubyweird was absolutely fantastic and I highly recommend you watch the video when it comes out. Enjoy the process of life and stop thinking so transactionally, as programmers are oft to do.

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Chris Arcand

This was an *amazing* talk. It harmonized the tech (OO fundamentals) with the life lessons with grace and power.

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Noah Gibbs

Part tech talk and part life & motivational talk at #keeprubyweird. 🙌

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Isabelle Giuong

An amazing talk about living life and programming

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Mark Starkman

The best talk of the day hands down is about the Transactional Fallacy (in life and in software) by Avdi

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Mike Polischuk

I really think it was one of the best talks I have seen in a while.

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Martin Öbrink-Hansen

Transaction vs process, goal vs direction, narrative oriented mindset and how writing code relates to how I’m “writing” my life and vice versa. Your talk really spoke to me @avdi. Thank you!

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Gustavo Matias

Feeling grateful to have thoughtful people like @avdi in our community who can be honest and vulnerable about his personal situation while imparting poignant wisdom about programming philosophy. You made a huge impact today.

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alex levine

I feel so lucky to be in the front row of @avdi ‘s very personal keynote to wrap up @southeastruby #seruby

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Brittany Martin

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