How To Shut Down Tolkien

04:15 PM - 05:15 PM on August 17, 2014, Room 701, Room 702, Room 704

Brandon Rhodes

Audience level:
Core Python


While Tolkien had friends who could devise ingenious ways to critique his work without sounding critical, he had others whose remarks were merciless and direct — to the point that Tolkien simply stopped sharing new chapters as he wrote The Lord of the Rings. As programmers we share many of the struggles of writers and artists, and we often react just as badly to critique of our code. From Tolkien’s experience we will draw lessons about how to make critique generous instead of damaging, and actionable instead of personal.