InfoQ Homepage Presentations The Lego Hypothesis

The Lego Hypothesis



For decades, software engineering has "dreamed an impossible dream", to build software as easily as building Lego houses. In this talk, James Noble imagines a world where the dream has been realized, where software parts can be found in worldwide repositories, where most software is built by reusing existing software, and where we've finally been freed from the mundane necessity of programming.


James Noble is Professor of CS and SE at Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand. His research centers around software design and is colored by longstanding interest in OO approaches to design, aliasing and object ownership, design patterns, agile methodology, via usability, visualization and computer music, to postmodernism and the semiotics of programming.

About the conference

QCon is a conference that is organized by the community, for the community.The result is a high quality conference experience where a tremendous amount of attention and investment has gone into having the best content on the most important topics presented by the leaders in our community.QCon is designed with the technical depth and enterprise focus of interest to technical team leads, architects, and project managers.

Recorded at:

Oct 14, 2008

Hello stranger!

You need to Register an InfoQ account or or login to post comments. But there's so much more behind being registered.

Get the most out of the InfoQ experience.

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p

Community comments

  • The Lego Hypothesis

    by Emil Gottwald,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    I see nothing new. The only difference between today's Lego 'parts' and those of the future described, is that today they are much smaller - typically statements in some programming language at the lowest level of abstraction, or invocations of some framework function at a slightly higher level of abstraction. We will always be faced with the task of finding the appropriate parts and connecting them...

  • The Lego Hypothesis will be proven right

    by Rui Curado,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    That's because we are actually giving the finishing touches on a paradigm-shifting development methodology that resembles the Lego Hypothesis. And its basic building block is called an atom, just like in Noble's presentation.

    The Lego Hypothesis will be proven right, but probably sooner than James Noble expects. Fingers crossed!

  • FOSS & GNU/Linux

    by YewMing Chen,

    Your message is awaiting moderation. Thank you for participating in the discussion.

    While there are forking and duplicate projects, a typical Linux distro today is built together with large collection of softwares and libraries that has been picked and hacked together to become a working OS. So I guess this is also one example of Lego building blocks.

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p

Allowed html: a,b,br,blockquote,i,li,pre,u,ul,p


Is your profile up-to-date? Please take a moment to review and update.

Note: If updating/changing your email, a validation request will be sent

Company name:
Company role:
Company size:
You will be sent an email to validate the new email address. This pop-up will close itself in a few moments.