Price Wang's programmer was coding software. His fingers danced upon
the keyboard. The program compiled without an error message, and the program
ran like a gentle wind.
Excellent!" the Price exclaimed, "Your technique is faultless!"
"Technique?" said the programmer, turning from his terminal, "What I
follow is the Tao -- beyond all technique. When I first began to program I
would see before me the whole program in one mass. After three years I no
longer saw this mass. Instead, I used subroutines. But now I see nothing.
My whole being exists in a formless void. My senses are idle. My spirit,
free to work without a plan, follows its own instinct. In short, my program
writes itself. True, sometimes there are difficult problems. I see them
coming, I slow down, I watch silently. Then I change a single line of code
and the difficulties vanish like puffs of idle smoke. I then compile the
program. I sit still and let the joy of the work fill my being. I close my
eyes for a moment and then log off."
Price Wang said, "Would that all of my programmers were as wise!"
- -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"