One of the strategies of the Ruby on Rails community is described as “convention vs configuration.”   The idea is that a complex framework can be built in a lot of different ways, and it makes sense to resist the instinct of designers to keep things general.  The designers create convention by picking ONE out the dozens or thousands of ways that a thing could be done. That choice might be a bit wrong and might require correcting, but it accelerates the process and gives people a target to work with or contest. It has been one of the reasons for the great success of RoR.

Word processing as a vehicle for legal docs can be seen as the ultimate in configuration.  One is free to change any character, any order, any format.  In fact is should be called character processing.

As a reader, one is endlessly reprocessing old ideas in new configurations.  

Modularity provides us with a way to use convention as the default and configure only as needed.  

Odd that agreements, which are known in French as “conventions,” so often are done by configuration.

Advertisements