Hybrid-Level Programming

Day 2 - Systems Programming (Thu) • 09:30 • Duration: 45m

It’s possible to spend an entire programming career doing exclusively high-level programming, never interacting directly with OS APIs or anything closer to the metal. For awhile I assumed that’s how my career would go, and I had a mental model of lower-level programming as existing in a different world – where people (wizards, perhaps) worked on completely different categories of problems from what the rest of us did in the land of garbage collection.

Only later did I realize how common it is for low-level and high-level programming to mix. It took me even longer to realize that we’d collectively make better software if those worlds mixed even more often than they already do. This talk uses the term “hybrid-level programming” to discuss the surprising benefits of explicitly planning to do a mix of high-level and low-level programming - not just over the course of a career, but over the course of individual projects as well!