It sounds a bit pedantic but I get rather perturbed when I hear people referring to every IT system as ‘software’. I work in an area that mainly develops internal business systems and, frankly, I don’t believe this is software: Internal business systems are – well, Internal business systems. As far as I am concerned, ‘software’ is something you either go out and buy or download.

You might think this distinction isn’t very important, but I think it is fairly obvious that if you are producing ‘software’ in the true sense of the word (e.g. working for Adobe on the next version of Photoshop), this is quite different for working for an internal IT operation on their expenses claim system and that furthermore, both these environments will need different skills,techniques and methods. For one thing, in one case you are creating something directly for users that you quite possibly know, and can visit and talk to, and in the other you are dealing with someones abstract view of what the users might want. The whole culture is different.

« »