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Language Computeer
Fists of irony

Software development is a fundamentally social process: it’s all about working together. We (software developers as a caste) have expressions like “programming by contract” and design patterns like “Delegation” that reflect how we humans work together – and we use these patterns to describe how we instruct our robot minions to function. We think about our programs with social metaphors because we’re social apes: we think well with social metaphors, and our software design patterns reflect how we think best.

But we rarely use these social metaphors to think about how we make software. We need patterns for collaboration that match our social creature wetware, the way “delegation” and “factory” and “handshake” patterns help design software.

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From John D. Cook‘s Probability Facts twitter feed, discovered the infamous RANDU, and this absolutely marvelous quote:

One of us recalls producing a “random” plot with only 11 planes, and being told by his computer center’s programming consultant that he had misused the random number generator: “We guarantee that each number is random individually, but we don’t guarantee that more than one of them is random.” Figure that out.

which in turn reminds me of this:

“RFC 1149.5 specifies 4 as the standard IEEE-vetted random number.” — Randall Munroe

Mirrored from Trochaisms.

Two weeks I saw Argo [highly recommended!] and that made me remember the 1980 October Surprise controversies, which were hecka confusing to a five-year-old at the time.  I have my own November — or possibly early December — surprise coming: I’m about to become a dad, and I’m, well, 80% enthusiastic and about 20% terrified. Reminders that most of the world does this, at half my age, are welcome.

Please send bottled sleep, if you have any around; I’m trying to stockpile.

I’ve been too busy with my not-so-new job (I’ve been there ten months, commuting all the way across greater Seattle) and other things [see below] to write anything longform here, but I swing by now and then to clean out the spamtraps.  And — as today — to free-associate a little.

I believe I’ve changed the settings to no longer post twitter-logs here. If you miss my weekly twitter-log updates (why would you?) you can read my twitter feed directly or read a mirror of it on this blog.

 

 

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  • Corollary: "computational linguist: better at linguistic analysis than software engineers, better at programming than linguists." #
  • SF peeps: last chance to help Bikes for San Francisco Youth on @indiegogo http://t.co/gSfaGytl (I just pushed it over $4k!) #
  • TIL: What I know as Golden Hammer Syndrome ("to man with h–, world looks like nail") should be dubbed Maslow's Hammer (he of the Hierarchy) #
  • Am reading: increasingly rude argument among corpus linguists over necessity of exclusive definition for "corpus" #physicianhealthyself #
  • “Eva", 2, is obsessed with our house: she saw raccoons here once. I know she's still hooked: I can hear her mom calling her out of my yard. #
  • OH: "how does a career in technical comedy END?" #

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  • "Burton Quim, founder of ex-gay ministry Overcome…" #aptronym #seriously #seriously #
  • academy is strange. “live-tweeting at conferences is a form of neoliberalism…“ why NOT share your ideas? http://t.co/VOF650uu via @Yendi #
  • At UW CSE department, waiting for Carlos Guestrin talk on GraphLab. Expected to see more peeps I know, but here's a few. #
  • Eight years ago, went on mostly-blind date with @imtboo . Today, we await our son. She's Best Thing Ever for me, among many awesome things. #
  • 7:35p C: full; grudging when pushy boarder (me) tells “yeah yer Seattleites & don't like talking to each other; MOVE BACK“ @westseattleblog #
  • Gates: "measuring software in LOC is like measuring an airplane by weight." Today I removed 40Mb of code from master. #git #airborne #
  • Co-worker just told me to change my business card to read 'Software Amputect'. #negativeLoC #
  • C line completely jammed. Not even standing room at 2nd & Columbia at 6 pm. @kcmetrobus, we need roughly DOUBLE this capacity at rush hour. #
  • Combined insights from @jim_adler & @imtboo into new insight (what probably only makes sense to me): "curiosity is the dual of play". #
  • …I got a bad feeling about this. :-[ #
  • Oh, man. I wish I could read THIS Fantastic Four. Sounds amazing & fun. (Also, Sue is the leader!) http://t.co/WxqKsKP1 #

Mirrored from Trochaisms.

  • Bay Area NLPers: Long Now seeking "Lexical Data Specialist" — sounds neat. @stuartrobinson @WWRob @mdcclv (& more?) http://t.co/fWcyWjD7 #
  • Fourth draft of project plan. Somewhat less ranty than Friday afternoon's first draft. Relaxing this weekend helped. #
  • My tech-heavy (and Y-chromosome-heavy) employer really should hire more women, if only to properly load-balance the bathrooms on our floor. #
  • Bus to west seattle has "get rhythm" performer, acoustic guitar and all, in back. Fun! #
  • OH: "some of this code has been dead so long I'm surprised it wasn't written in hieroglyphics." #
  • "… you can send me anonymous email, but first let me know you want to send me anonymous email so I can set it up" #unclearontheconcept #
  • Calling dibs : "Monty Carlo Mark of Shame" #nerdcore #shoegazer #stagename #

Mirrored from Trochaisms.

Mirrored from Trochaisms.

Mirrored from Trochaisms.

Mirrored from Trochaisms.

  • .@dresdencodak The Office (US): another No Exit remake, this time ostensibly leaving SF! (cf Truman Show, Dark City, The Matrix, The Cell) #
  • .@barbarahui I saw your name in a Shelf Life column in The Nation. You look good there! #

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