Commercial Software

James R has an interesting summary of the DabbleDB talk at STS (actually he and others have done several - sounds like a great conference), but has a couple of asides which I find a bit questionable.....:

[ed. I'll interject at this point - you could use commercial software all the way down, like Cincom Smalltalk, and not pay a dime until large amounts of revenue arrives].
Sure you could, but why not use a free one until you "have to" change - I'd prefer to negotiate from a position of no dependence on a vendor's features. With Squeak you know the deal; but what does "large aounts of revenue" actually mean? When do you sign this contract ( which will be earlier, I assume, than paying money)? In startup mode I can't imagine taking the time to ask these sorts of questions.

"Fascinating little side note when someone asked about using Gemstone. The Squeak connection to Gemstone is not maintained, which would mean moving to VW and getting a license. Which actually demonstrates the value of commercial software - you get support for various things you might want at some point :)"

You get the support which the vendor thinks is commercially viable! Right now Cincom evaluates support for Gemstone to be in its best interests.....

As always there are an array of options for the startup, which is excellent for the market - it will encourage the Smalltalk ecosystem ; but I'm with Avi on the "late binding" commercial approach!


Quote Details: John Adams: In my many years... - The Quotations Page:
"In my many years I have come to a conclusion that one useless man is a shame, two is a law firm, and three or more is a congress."

John Adams
US diplomat & politician (1735 - 1826)

I feel software firms and industry analysts are missing from this for a modern version.


The Future of Programming: An Interview with Paul Graham: "When we hired hackers at our startup, this was practically the whole interview: what have you built on your own, outside of school or work?"


Damn, she's probably right!

Chocolate and Vodka :: Main Page: "Bollocks to that. I'm staying self-employed."
Scripting News: 4/19/2006: "Fortune called me a 'notorious curmudgeon' today."


Dangerous driving

Google Reader:
"The guy with the cell phone in his ear bothers me a lot less than a number of things. For instance, the guy one lane over eating a Big Mac. Or the other guy doing 70, but who seems to be reading a book. Or, the woman coming up from behind who's applying mascara. Or the guy two lanes over who's shaving.

What I want to know is, in what way are cell phones worse than any of the examples I just gave? Or tons of others I'm sure you can think of?"

I agree with James. This is a slightly diferent take on a discussion I had with a lawyer about the way laws a drafted. Why is it that we don't have laws drafted with a set of criteria which are not dependent on particular technologies ( sometimes other specifics). If you are driving and voluntarily doing something which distracts yor attention, uses up one of your hands, obstructs you vision etc. it is dangerous driving - oh, by the way, using a mobile is an example, so is fiddling with the car radio.

As far as the law goes, it takes upvalable tie of legislators, makes life more difficult for the police ( and the public). It also means we are late in tackling the effects of technology introduction.

How about principles, folks?


Enterpisey is a quest for total flexibility?,#

? Hard problems and the Temple of Complexity : Pensieri di un lunatico minore:
"I call it the Temple of Complexity: a religion so ingrained in the IT industry that it has slipped from a conscious behavior to a subconscious assumption. We are programmed by the industry—and society to a lesser extent—to proclaim our littlest accomplishments as comparable to the great works of the world."

The complexity of a “solution” becomes asymptotic as you approach total flexibility.

A great post - read it all. I think that the quest for flexibility ( or more normally the absence of good requirements) is a problem; also the thinking about potential problems which have never actually occured; or if the did occcur it was a design error which is too hard to admit and fix......


Blog Posting

A test blog entry from Writely

Well I have had an account for some time but had not spotted that you could do Blog entries - so here goes a test!!

Critical success factors: 1)Use Blogger.com (even though they are hosted on blogspot), 2) Select the "Include the document title when posting (if supported)"

Red Hat endorses Java

redhat.com | Home: "Red Hat Signs Definitive Agreement to Acquire JBoss"

I don't want to be mainstream!

Loud Thinking by David Heinemeier Hansson:
"As a developer, look around you. Would you rather be part of the mainstream or a smaller community with critical mass? Going mainstream usually means slowing progress until it resembles a complete stop and dealing with a whole other level of secondary concerns."

I'm with David on this one - if you are mainstream you are not on the leading edge!!

Great Amazon review

Amazon.com: Sunbeam Heated Mattress Pad QUEEN Size: Kitchen & Housewares:
"I guess it takes more than a warm mattress pad to make a relationship work."

ViaPhilip Greenspun


Jython goodness

Frank Wierzbicki's Weblog: Migration to Subversion: "The good people at SourceForge now provide Subversion repositories. I just used their migration tool to move the Jython repository data from CVS to Subversion, and the new repository is located at https://svn.sourceforge.net/svnroot/jython/. If all went well this will be the Jython repository from now on. Soon I will finally be able to re-arrange the repository with no loss of project history (something that would have been very hard with CVS)."


Lucky someone else paid for my MBA

Josh Kaufman: Inside My Bald Head | The Personal MBA: " “
You wasted $150,000 on an education you coulda got for a buck fifty in late charges at the public library.”
- Will Hunting (played by Matt Damon), Good Will Hunting

The Personal MBA (PMBA) is an experiment in educational entrepreneurism. This manifesto will show you how to substantially increase your knowledge of business on your own time and with little cost, all without setting foot inside a classroom.

The PMBA is more flexible than a traditional MBA program, doesn’t involve going into massive debt, and won’t interrupt your income stream for two years. Just set aside some dedicated reading time, pick up a good book, learn as much as you can, and go out and make great things happen."
PBS | I, Cringely . March 30, 2006 - Prisoner of Redmond: "There’s an irony in that stock differential, and it is that Gates argued HE was working 100 percent for Microsoft while Allen was working for both Microsoft and MITs, Microsoft’s only customer, and therefore deserved less stock because of his divided duties. The irony is that shortly after they divided the shares, Gates went to MITs founder Ed Roberts asking for a job, too, which Roberts gave him, paying $10 per hour. A more aggressive Paul Allen would have demanded a share adjustment at that point, but the real Paul Allen let it slide. “I made out okay,” he told me when I asked about it.


Eiffel Studio gets a dual license - how about the compiler?

Eiffel Software press release:
"Eiffel Software today announced that the latest version of its cross-platform IDE EiffelStudio? is now available under Dual Licensing, enabling users to choose between a license for commercial development and a license for Open Source development."
I feel that many communities of less popular languages would benefit from going Open Source: Ruby and Python come to mind as success stories. Smalltalk and Eiffel have multiple proprietary implementations - which I would have thought made life difficult for all the incumbents. I wonder what would happen if the companies made the commodity parts of their offerings open source, as in pooled their resources? Difficult to achieve ! Andd each incumbent is at least comfortable with the status quo.....

Lisp meanwhile has a few proprietary products and so many open ones it makes your head spin - definitely time for some consolidation there - why waste so much effort on duplicated effort - it is not as if there aren't other things to do, such as improving the libraries in newer areas .


Google Reader: "Sounded better than 'MSN Virus and Spyware Client'."