uncertainty, snape puff

Paging madlori (and anyone who knows her)

An interesting thing just happened on Facebook chat.

Lori Summers [2:29:44]
Got my message ?

Brent Royal-Gordon [2:33:45]
I did.

Lori Summers [2:34:03]
Can you help me ?

Brent Royal-Gordon [2:34:43]
Who was the Chancellor in 'Hero'?

Brent Royal-Gordon [2:37:37]
If you are yourself, I have a hard time believing you wouldn't know.
Of course, I could be wrong—perhaps someone who knows better could confirm or deny this apparent account hijacking? (I'm just an attentive fan, after all.)
amused, silly, ha ha only serious

guest post

kate is the best

better than the rest

the best the best

haikus about kate:

kate's my favourite
i want to lick her ballsack
it would taste so great

i suck at driving
kate is good at everything
driving, unlike me

kate's good at haikus
i never do them: too cool
just fucking kidding

she sleeps in my bed
nothing is better than that
i snore all the time

i write iphone apps
am definitely a jew
conspiracy yay

love creamy pasta
but i hate guacamole
yes, i have problems

there is a file
currently on my desktop

have unfriendly cat
he is covered in long fur
his name is mocha

i looked on facebook
my sister is not a skank
however, camwhore

no, kate is nauseous
someone, please rescue her now
most important girl

stuffed camel on shelf
i don't know why it is there
two humps on its back

just now kate hiccuped
like everything else she does
it was the cutest
angle brackets, fed up, html


This December, I will have been practicing programming seriously for ten years.

That will mark the tenth anniversary of me starting to learn Perl. I have been programming ever since: websites, scripts, tools, projects, assignments, apps. I've written web templating systems and mailing lists. I've written data-converting tools and room-planning tools. I've written utility functions and testbed systems. I've written hundreds of unit tests, thousands of tags. I've designed, written, tested, tweaked, and marketed five iPhone applications. I've probably written a hundred thousand lines of code. Maybe a lot more; web pages can be pretty verbose.

And lately I've been feeling ready.

Ready to stop doing this for entertainment, for education, for practice. Ready to do it for real. To work on products, not projects.

I've already started doing this with my apps (or at least some of them—Meticulous is more project than product). And I'm finding that products are more satisfying than projects are. That last five percent—the spit and polish, the usability testing and attention to detail—makes you ache, but having done it you're infinitely more satisfied with the result.

And so for my final year project at university, I asked to do a lovely product: a location-based shared note-taking system. Something I thought would be interesting and challenging, but very doable, and likely not commercially viable (so I wouldn't want to do it with my Architechies time).

I thought I had this plan approved, but my partner and I messed up and never got things formalized, and we had to shop it around to other professors. (Or rather, he and the other guys we've recruited had to do it while I was convalescing.)

And the word was this: it's too small. It doesn't have the scope to be a year-long project.

I think the professors misunderstood what we (or at least I) were trying to do, though. I don't think they understood that we wanted to write a product. That the goal wasn't to turn in something that barely met the specific parameters laid out at the beginning of the project; it was to produce something robust and complete and right that fit those parameters.

So we're doing a different project instead, one off their list of suggestions, so we know who will want to supervise it. I'm upset, not just because I've been looking forward to doing this for months, but also because of what I'll be doing instead. It's basically a clone of Dropbox, a file synchronization service.

I feel like I could write it in a month of weekends: one to get my brain wrapped around FSEvents and the equivalent folder-monitoring tools on various OSes; one to write a tool that figures out which side has changed files and update the other side; one to make server-side change signaling efficient (instead of polling); and one to make transfers efficient (differential) through the application of something like the rsync protocol. There you go, Dropbox. No creativity required.

It's a project, not a product. And when I'm done, it'll belong to the university, so there's no point treating it like a product.

It makes me want to drop out right now, fly home, and spend the rest of my life avoiding having a boss who can veto my product ideas.

Oh well. I guess I just have to get through the damn year.

I just wanted it to be better than this.

(P.S. I'm screening comments because my parents are likely to see this post. Don't worry, I'm still reading them.)
amused, silly, ha ha only serious

(no subject)

If it can be broke then it can be fixed
If it can be fused then it can be split
It's all under control, it's all under control, it's all under control, it's all under control
If it can be lost then it can be won
If it can be touched then it can be turned
All you need is time, all you need is time, all you need is time, all you need is—
  • Current Music
    Bloc Party - Pioneers
intelligence, smarter than you, ravenclaw

Why This Trekkie Is Thrilled That Abrams Junked Canon

After I got home from watching the new Star Trek, I enthused to two friends about it on the phone (as I finished packing for the flight to England I'm writing this on). With each description, though, they became more and more confused. J.J. Abrams, after all, didn't just skirt the edges of canon the way Enterprise did; he went in and actively, knowingly, even gleefully shattered it. How could I, a longtime Trek fan (I have childhood Halloween photos somewhere of me in a Starfleet uniform—in several years—and Star Trek was pretty much my first fandom), not only accept, but applaud this?

Collapse )
intelligence, smarter than you, ravenclaw

Don't Panic: Nothing's changed in the developer contracts.

A lot of people are freaking out about the refund term in their new App Store contract. If you don't know, it says that users can get a refund from Apple, and that they'll be refunded the full price—and that all of that falls on the developer. That is, if someone buys Converter, I get 70¢, but if they then complain to Apple and get a refund, I lose 99¢. This policy is causing fear and loathing as App Store developers imagine a world in which everybody returns their apps and they end up losing money.

This policy is also nothing new.Collapse )
for enemies


This began as a reply to a post on bgmaster's journal that outgrew its playpen.


To have any sensible discussion about inflation and deflation, you need to decouple two concepts that a lot of people jumble up: price level and money supply. The money supply is the quantity of money in circulation, taking into account the multiplicative effects of banks. The price level is how much goods cost. The price level is partly dependent on the money supply, but it's also based on the aggregate supply and demand for goods.

Inflation and deflation are terms relating to the supply of money, but they're often measured by looking at the price level. That's a nice, easy measure, but we must remember not to confuse the force with the instrument. Inflation is not rising prices, though rising prices may be caused by inflation. Deflation is not falling prices, though falling prices may be caused by deflation.

Inflation and deflation are both bad because they represent a disruption in the unit of account and store of value. They're bad for the same reason bad accounting is bad: they distort expectations and hide economic truths. But rising prices and falling prices aren't necessarily so. They're bad if they're caused by inflation or deflation, but not if they're caused by shifts in aggregate supply and demand.


Armed with this understanding, we can now take a look at what's happening today.Collapse )
amused, silly, ha ha only serious


Great quote:
It seems that you've got your way. GM and Chrysler will die a brutal death as will the American Auto Industry. Ya happy?

When the zombie stops moving, does that count as dying, or do we count from where it would have stopped moving without supernatural aid?