Thursday, August 30, 2007

Feed From The Frink?

... and on the 8th day The Frink said "Let there be RSS" and so there was. It came to pass, and the people saw it and said "It is good". They spake truthfully for indeed it was good and so say we all!

Chad's Open Journal

... and then, on the 9th day they said to The Frink "Yeah, and let too your favorite quotes be of RSS" and The Frink said "Hold now, what do you think? Do you think I can just extend the hours in the day?! I am not magic damn it!" and so the people bowed their heads and prayed "Maybe if we ask really really nicely?" and The Frink said "well maybe... I've been very busy... but perhaps I'll get bored on the 13th day, after I spend the 10th and 11th day fsking my drives..." and the people knew not of what he said, but nodded their heads anyways.

So say we all.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Well put Mr. Percival, well put!

Think before you code: "In a recent article about Y Combinator, Paul Graham pointed to the fact that two people had written 40,000 lines of code in three months as a sign that they were doing something right; he went on to point out that 'you never see that in a big company'. To me this number is, if anything, a sign that things are going horribly wrong: Anyone who is consistenly writing more than 5,000 lines of code per month is either (a) not working on a problem which is difficult enough to be interesting (any half-competent programmer can write binary searches, quicksorts, and depth-first graph traversals at a rate of thousands of lines of code per day); (b) utterly incompetent (we've all seen people who can replace ten lines of working code with a thousand lines of buggy code); or (c) going to have to throw out and rewrite most of their code once they realize that it doesn't solve the problem which they needed to solve -- with this realization most likely coming after their first release.
"Write code" is definitely important. "Release early", too. But more important than either of those is "Understand the problem you're trying to solve"; and most important of all: "Do it right".

Thursday, August 23, 2007

In most organizations, it's almost as if they were deliberately trying to do things wrong.

Holding a Program in One's Head: "... Good programmers manage to get a lot done anyway. But often it requires practically an act of rebellion against the organizations that employ them. Perhaps it will help to understand that the way programmers behave is driven by the demands of the work they do. It's not because they're irresponsible that they work in long binges during which they blow off all other obligations, plunge straight into programming instead of writing specs first, and rewrite code that already works. It's not because they're unfriendly that they prefer to work alone, or growl at people who pop their head in the door to say hello. This apparently random collection of annoying habits has a single explanation: the power of holding a program in one's head."

Friday, August 17, 2007

Electricity from body heat

Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft Research News 8-2007-Topic 1: "Making calls from a cell phone with no battery, using just the warmth of your hand? Perhaps that’s no more than a pipe dream right now. But new circuits are already making it possible to harness body heat for generating electricity."