TLA+ Community Event
October 2020

On Advocacy and Instruction

Hillel Wayne

Why don’t people write specifications? Well, why should they? Programmers have no more reason to believe us than they do any of the 10,000 movements that promised to help and miserably failed. Many programmers believe two things about specification: it is hard, and it is useless. These are not myths we can undo overnight. But addressing them is profoundly important for convincing people to bother learning TLA+. This talk will cover some of the challenges seen in both advocating and teaching TLA+, and the techniques we can use to overcome them.

Audience Takeaways

  • Why people are skeptical
  • How to persuade people about the benefits of FM
  • Learning challenges
  • Business challenges
  • How we can improve accessibility

Talk Outline

  1. Intro, About
  2. The Importance of Outreach
  3. On Convincing People
    • Viable demos
  4. On Teaching TLA+
    • TLA+ vs PlusCal
    • Programmers and Math
  5. Essential Challenges
  6. Incidental Challenges
  7. Conclusion