Your article reminds me of what Robert C. Martin often tells during his lectures - how in the days when memory was implemented as core memory, which was persistent and kept the data when you turned power off.

So people just put their code in the memory for others to use and added information on how to use it to a long list hanging in the computer room.

That was just before dynamic libraries were invented (actually, according to Robert C. Martin - that's why dynamic libraries were invented - it was getting hard to keep track of where the code was located and move it around if needed).

Those early libraries stored in memory of early machines made people check the available code, dive deep into it, use it and improve it. Very similar to what you've described in your article.

While reading, I realised I actually do miss the times I used to read code instead of only reading documentation and consuming projects. It was the age of discovery, now it's just age of production. I'm sure I can benefit from going back to that older way of doing things.

Future dad, 9to5: tech support agent. I write about the User Experience of learning programming.