||[Jul. 12th, 2008|04:03 am]
I was watching BBC's "Chinese Food Made Easy" earlier in the week, and the presenter waxed lyrical about how cooking for a Chinese person is about striving to achieve the perfect balance between Yin and Yan in their food. I'm not sure whether I'd be one to take it on faith that all Chinese people believe this, just as I don't expect it to be true that all modern Greeks would have altars to ancient Greek gods - I'm sure a not-insignificant portion do, but I do wonder as to how many.
That said, despite having worked alongside people from China for a year, I don't know that much about their beliefs. All I know is that they prefer not to eat cold food, and the Screen Toucher believed a number of things about how serving the whole fish is healthier holistically, and that the little meat dumplings were to be eaten whole (although that was more for flavour than tradition). When it comes to cooking for himself, or for others, I don't know much more. That said, I've seen how tradition can heavily influence Chinese life, so this may be a bigger number than one might expect in Western culture.
What I really want to know, though, is if there are any attitudes like that brought into computer programming? Actually, I wonder a lot of things about computers and other cultures: Is programming more of a science or an art? Do their rules of science/art influence programming differently to Western culture?
The biggest question in my mind is if those who strive to balance Yin and Yan in their life also strive to balance it in their programming, or is work with computers/programming too unbalanced within itself to make such efforts meaningful?