“Calculations kids are forced to do are often so developmentally inappropriate, the experience amounts to torture,” she says. They also miss the essential point—that mathematics is fundamentally about patterns and structures, rather than “little manipulations of numbers,” as she puts it. It’s akin to budding filmmakers learning first about costumes, lighting and other technical aspects, rather than about crafting meaningful stories.
In hotel lobbies, conference rooms, panels and coffee shops, American executives and government officials were seen and heard having tortured conversations with their international counterparts as executives tried to convince their clients that their technologies did not contain legal or virtual back doors for the National Security Agency.
I’d bypass “incestuous” too, but I can’t noting that in a private discussion someone suggested I meant the “startup/VC/tech-press Human Centipede”. Well yeah, and I wish I’d thought of those words.
Comcast was the first last mile provider to recognize this and move peering from the realm of network engineers to the MBAs and started systematically refusing to upgrade existing private interconnects and in some cases systematically de-peering in other cases. Comcast neatly side-stepped the entire net-neutrality debate by degrading service to everybody who wasn’t willing to pay for a private interconnect. Comcast has had a relatively free hand because their customers are blissfully unaware of the politics of global peering and instead will just go somewhere else when a website is ‘slow’.
This has put a lot of pressure on companies like Amazon who know that a 100ms delay in the order process can result in a 1% decrease in sales. Since private interconnect arrangements aren’t public my guess is a lot of companies have caved and are paying Comcast to peer.
I still get as annoyed as ever by “use the right tool for the job” — the bland truism meant to shut down critical discussion and engagement with the tasks and choices in software engineering, replacing it with a weak passionless technical fatalism.
A vast majority of algorithmic developments occurs in one of two places: either private Research and Development programs (e.g., Microsoft Research, Google, etc.) or in one of more than320 academic institutions with computer science departments around the world. The output of these types of research and development is almost always private white papers or academic papers.
The least that this generation can do, your Honor, is to give the next generation all the facts, all the available data, all the theories, all the information that learning, that study, that observations has produced — give it to the children in the hope of heaven that they will make a better world of this than we have been able to make it. We have just had a war with twenty million dead. Civilization is not so proud of the work of the adults. Civilization need not be so proud of what the grown-ups have done. For God’s sake let the chidren have their minds kept open — close no doors to their knowledge; shut no door from them. Make the distinction between theology and science. let them have both. let them both be taught. Let them both live.
Work you can show off, though, is prima facie evidence of your skills. After your portfolio includes it, your ability to sell your skills gets markedly better. Given that most people’s net worth is almost 100% invested in their personal capital (i.e. if you’re a young engineer the net present value of all future salary absolutely swamps everything in your bank account), this is a fairly radical improvement in your present situation for not a very radical change in how you go about things.
It was sometime after that presentation that I finally realized the obvious: code is not literature. We don’t read code, we decode it. We examine it. A piece of code is not literature; it is a specimen.
This morning I spent an hour in a closed room with six Members of Congress: Rep. Logfren, Rep. Sensenbrenner, Rep. Scott, Rep. Goodlate, Rep Thompson, and Rep. Amash. No staffers, no public: just them. Lofgren asked me to brief her and a few Representatives on the NSA. She said that the NSA wasn’t forthcoming about their activities, and they wanted me — as someone with access to the Snowden documents — to explain to them what the NSA was doing. Of course I’m not going to give details on the meeting, except to say that it was candid and interesting. And that it’s extremely freaky that Congress has such a difficult time getting information out of the NSA that they have to ask me.
Two articles both advocating the exact same policies. But one of them thrilled liberals and infuriated conservatives. The other infuriated liberals and thrilled conservatives.
Oftentimes when we think we’re engaged in reasoned policy discussion we’re actually engaged in complex efforts to rationalize the direction in which our tribal affiliations are pushing us.
What are the chances of the Fed forcing America’s banks to get with the 21st Century? Very slim, I’d say. The banks have been extremely good at squealing very loudly whenever anybody has attempted to implement any new regulation, even regulations designed to safeguard the entire national economy.
I don’t mind dynamic typing and the possibility of runtime errors, Python is fun to program in just like Haskell. But Go is imposing all the pain of static typing with pretty much none of the benefits.
With public key cryptography, there’s a horrible, fundamental challenge
of finding somebody, anybody, to establish and maintain the
infrastructure. For example, you could enlist a well-known
technology company to do it, but this would offend the refined
aesthetics of the vaguely Marxist but comfortably bourgeoisie
hacker community who wants everything to be decentralized
and who non-ironically believes that Tor is used for things
besides drug deals and kidnapping plots.
Decriminalization and legalization of medical marijuana seem, if we are to trust the statistics in (I) saying they do not increase use among youth, like almost unalloyed good things. Although there are some nagging hints of doubt, they are not especially quantifiable and therefore not amenable to analysis. Without a very strong predisposition to try as hard as possible to fit the evidence into a pessimistic picture, I don’t think there’s a great argument against either of these two propositions.