Intuition is a powerful tool that helps us navigate through life,
but it can get in the way of more formal processes.
HOW INTUITIVE IS
By Irit Hadar and Uri Leron
The object-oriented programming paradigm was created partly to deal
with the ever-increasing complexity of software systems. The idea was to
exploit the human mind’s natural capabilities for thinking about the
world in terms of objects and classes, thus recruiting our intuitive powers for building formal software systems. Indeed, it has commonly been
assumed that the intuitive and formal systems of objects and classes are
similar and that fluency in the former helps one deal efficiently with the
latter. However, recent studies show that object-oriented programming is
quite difficult to learn and practice [ 1, 3, 7]. In this article, we document several such difficulties in the context of experts participating in workshops on object-oriented design
(OOD). We use recent research from cognitive psychology to trace the sources of these
difficulties to a clash between the intuitive and analytical modes of thinking.