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 These days, I mostly post my tech musings on Linkedin.  https://www.linkedin.com/in/seanmcgrath/

Saturday, March 15, 2003

WS-Insanity and WAP

Mark Baker rails against WS-Addressing with good reason. All these nonsense Web Service specs remind me of WAP.

A: "We need a tag to represent links"
B: "HTML uses an 'a' tag"
A: "Okay, lets create a 'go' tag!"
B: "Whats the point?"
A: "Becuase our stuff is different."
B: "Why?"
A: "Okay, whats the next question we need to resolve?"
B: "I give up...".

The WS folks are committed to creating a whole new edifice. It ain't the Web. It's an attempt to wall the garden just like WAP was. They should stop calling it the Web. That way, like WAP, it will find its niche and thrive.

Wednesday, March 12, 2003

Don Box speaks of a terrible, terrible thing

    """A "terrible, terrible thing" has happened in the past two years, he told developers here. The software industry has become so fixated on new specifications that it has lost sight of the fundamental goal: using XML to link software applications together. While some new specs that have been proposed are important and useful, others are too complex and still others will probably never be used, including some from Microsoft"""

    SOAP author says enough specs already

Yup. Yup.

Python gets an O'Reilly Nutshell Guide

Python gets an O'Reilly Nutshell Guide. Every shelf should have one.

First and last anti-war-in-Iraq blog entry

The best, most beautiful, most poignant anti-war song ever written. (Read it but listen to it if you can - at least twice.).
The Island (Paul Brady)

Lets move XML-DEV

Tim Bray on the sad state of the xml-dev mailing list and archive. Case in point, all this month (and its nearly half over) this link has been devoid of an entry for March.

Google coming to Ireland

It seems Google are coming to Ireland. I guess that demotes us to the second biggest users of Python in this country:-)

Tuesday, March 11, 2003

Book != ISBN

Five books?. Well, only three really with two "packs". I've only ever seen the packs for sale in one book shop.

Recursions - I can't resist them

I note today that the invented term googlechopped is still far from being googlechopped.
On the radio I heard that some behind-the-scenes ruminations on proposed changes to Ireland's FOI (Freedom of Information) act, are now public thanks to an invocation of - yup you guessed in, the FOI act.
I really need to get out more :-;

The Web Services Scandal

Paul Kulchenko points to an EAI Journal article well worth a read. As is this which resonates strongly with my own beliefs:

    ...That's probably why documents should be the primary focus and the way you send bytes and bits is of secondary importance. Build your vocabularies, define your semantics, structure your documents, then talk about SOAP, REST or pigeon mail to deliver them.

Think about systems in terms of data flowing through processing nodes. Decompose the problem based on how data changes with respect to time. For too long now we have been subordinating the data to the high priest of algorithms. Putting all our efforts into cleverer and cleverer ways to decompose algorithms. A momumental waste of time and money.
Its the DATA stupid! :-)
Oh, and lest we forget - there is no such thing as "the structure" or "the semantics". These are local to a process in a time and place. At each flow point, you need transformational capabilities. Zen, flow and emergence in information models.

The application configuration conumdrum

In the ITWorld archives today: The application configuration conundrum. Regardless of how much you pay for a system from 0 through to a 1 followed by lots of 0's - a ridiculous amount of time and money is spent on configuration.

Blogging goes mainstream

[via scripting.com] Blogging goes mainstream

RSS Autodiscovery

A mail from Sam Ruby pointing me at RSS Autodiscovery. My template for this site now contains :
<link rel="alternate" type="application/rss+xml" title="RSS" href="http://seanmcgrath.blogspot.com/rss/seanmcgrath.xml"/>
thus allowing smart tools to autodiscover my RSS feed. Thanks Sam.

Monday, March 10, 2003

RSS has no verbs - again

Now that I have read more on Sam Ruby's site - particularly value of uniform interfaces and the RESTlog API, I see now that I misread his take on RSS not having any verbs. I find myself in violent agreement with Sam.
Isn't this just beautiful?.

RSS has no verbs. Is that suprising?

Sam Ruby: RSS has no verbs.
But neither does HTML or XFML or LOGPIFIMAOMSM-ML (Lump Of Green Putty, I Found In My Armpit, One Mid Summers Morning - Markup Language).
Only protocols - like HTTP - need such things. Right? A big part of the RESTian world-view is that we should not roll-our-own imperatives in our applications. We have a good mechanism for doing it out of the box - HTTP. I'm delighted RSS has no verbs :-)

A simpler RDDL

A simpler RDDL. I do hope something like this reaches collective consiousness levels. I hate traversing namespace links only to get a 404 custard pie in the face.

Sunday, March 09, 2003

Javascript gets Scheme-ish stuff

Rhino doing first class continuations and tail-recursion cleverness. Interesting.