James Robertson – If we want secure and safe software, we have to make it possible for the domain experts to create that software. Banishing them from the field sounds like 1960’s glass house thinking to me.
Patrick Logan – End user programming is to be encouraged
While I’m all in favor of securly scriptable applications, I don’t think domain experts should create software. After all, their expertise is in the domain. Creating complex software systems (not scripting software for a particular task) requires a special set of skills most “normal” folks just don’t have. And I’m not talking in-depth technical knowledge about .NET, sockets etc. here.
We (read “Software professionals”) have to come up with tools and processes enabling domain experts to fully participate in the software development process. User stories, acceptance test frameworks etc. come to my mind. Plus we have to come up with scriptability features allowing the automation of other tedious tasks.