Point of View Is Worth 80 IQ Points
— Alan Kay
Sanjay had a neat trick of using GraphViz to debug his compiler by outputting and laying out various compiler graphs (e.g. CFGs). It is obvious when you think about, but a normal compiler dev wouldn't think to do that.
visibility is everything. In many cases the most effective person isn't the smartest or even the most qualified, it's the person who has visibility into the problem. Learning to make things visible gives you a superpower.
the author sees and manipulates indirect symbolic representations, and must imagine how they give rise to dynamic behavior