Monthly Archives: May 2014

Software patents, IP Seizure and the new Middle Ages (Software Patents part 1)

Imagine living in an age where the development of technology is so slow that you could wake up after a century-long sleep and find nothing significantly changed. This is conceivable in one of two eras: Earth during the Middle Ages, … Continue reading

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Software Patents, or, How to Make a Hamburger (Software Patents part 2)

I used to be a burger chef a long time ago. We made big, glorious burgers, works of art. We also assembled beef sandwiches, grilled chicken breasts, patty melts, and short ribs. Lots of fries & salads too. I worked … Continue reading

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The story: Hacked before conception

The story: Hacked before conception.

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Cuba’s Special Period and the “un” Triumph of the Revolution

Cuba’s Special Period and the “un” Triumph of the Revolution. A heartbreaking article by thirdeyemom. Can we PLEASE in my lifetime normalize relations with Cuba? One wonders what the point is now…

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On writing, one’s voice and the intimidation of virtuosity

I read a gripping story on Lightspeed yesterday (http://bit.ly/1lj69Pp), How to Get Back to the Forest by Sofia Samatar. It’s what I call a virtuoso performance—the story grabbed me right off and didn’t let go—it was like taking a deep … Continue reading

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Why space travel will have to be a mercantile monopoly, Part 1: It will need perfect software, and it will need to make money

Mercantilism used to be the norm. Countries waged economic war by launching expeditions using state-of the-art vessels (sailing and steam ships) to capture monopoly trade by whatever means possible – bribery, threats, even warfare (like the Opium Wars in China). … Continue reading

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Why space travel will have to be a mercantile monopoly, Part 2: Quality = time * $$$

There is an old saying: software can have quality, features or be on time. Pick two. Those three factors – features, time, and money – define the software development process. Features are the definitive characteristic – that defines the battleground, … Continue reading

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Why space travel will have to be a mercantile monopoly, Part 3: Competition=crap software

Why will it take a monopoly for us to conquer interstellar travel? Because software written in a competitive environment is always riddled with bugs. Note the qualifier here: a competitive environment. I could probably say all software with some confidence, … Continue reading

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Why space travel will have to be a mercantile monopoly, Part 4: No one tests enough

Complex systems require complex tests. Remember 42? Douglas Adams’ conceit that the entire world was a computer built to answer a question and the answer was 42? Adams was, I believe, quite the technologist. He even wrote a computer game … Continue reading

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Why space travel will have to be a mercantile monopoly, Part 5: bugs

Yes I’m starting at the end because the way the blog will appear to anyone who finally gets around to reading it, will be upside down. Blogs are a pain that way. Bugs, they’re not just for breakfast So, what … Continue reading

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