Wednesday, December 24, 2003

Scale free networks in immunisation programmes

'Six Degrees of Immunization' Strategy Proposed article on Scientific American. What a great idea.


Some developers in Propylon will probably be interested in pydiction for the VIM editor. As an Emacs bigot, I will have to pass. BTW, what's with the 22/7 rating? PI in the sky?

Tuesday, December 23, 2003

Comment capability added - gingerly

I have added comments capability to this blog using haloscan. If it slows down page rendition or gets spammed or otherwise ill-used I'll be taking it down again PDQ. Hopefully, that won't happen.

On the Internet, nobody knows you are a process

The non-distinction between 'actions' and 'things' on the Web/Internet is the chewy stuff in the center of this tidbit ITWorld, e-Business in the Enterprise article.

The Point and Click Preservation Society - a festive ITWorld article

Is the simplicity of the point and click web interface threatened by the growth in non-browser based web applications? Is the simplicity worth the cost in terms of inefficiency/lack of power UI features? Santa answers "yes" and "no" respectively in this ITWorld, e-Business in the Enterprise article.

Monday, December 22, 2003

OpenOffice in Government

OpenOffice is a very, very capable office suite on Windows and Linux. This article talks about a couple of government users in Israel and Texas.

Python 2.3.3 (final)


Inevitable Technology Illussions

In this business, you can be wrong in one of two ways. (a) you can be wrong and outvoted by a majority who are right. (b) you can be right but outvoted by a majority who have fallen for a fallacy.
Inevitable Technology Illusions is an ITWorld article on this subject.

Inappropriate Abstractions

As regular readers of this blog know, I'm not a big fan of object abstractions for distributed systems. Part of my mission at the moment is to promote a vision of loosely coupled systems that gets most of its power from starting with asynchronous XML messaging as its primary abstraction.
Its hard work. There is a lot of wishful thinking out there that just hopes against hope that XML/Web Services is the magic sauce that will make distributed objects work. It won't. This interview with Anders Hejlsberg of C# (and Turbo Pascal and Delphi) fame contains some gems.
    "The problem with that type of programming [OO] is: it works great in a single process; it works quite well across processes; it works fairly well in a small intranet; but then it completely sucks thereafter."

    "If you hide the fact that messages go across a network, and don't know when they go across, you end up with chatty conversations. And all of a sudden, the speed of light can become a big problem for you."

    "...Whereas, we know precious little about how to scale CORBA systems in a geo-scalable fashion. We just don't. There's just no knowledge about it, and I've never heard of anyone being particularly successful doing it."