Skip to main content

(Insert Your Encryption Key Here)

I'm not going to post The Number, but I'm going to talk about it.

What another big shouting match the interwebs have found themselves in. Is it wrong to post The Number on public sites? I don't think so. Anyone who can use it already has to write software that the regular Joe will grab. The Number is just a political/social status symbol now. Publishing is the The Number is the anti-crypto1 parallel to the eye-liner high schooler shopping at Hot Topic. The point is making the point, more than what point exactly is being made.

So did the lawyers overreact? Of course they did, and consulting their clients before making moves on their behalf might be a decent idea. Maybe someone at the companies would actually realize the PR mess they might be stepping into. Maybe someone would say "Is the new technology stable enough to shake up our customers, yet?" Blu-Ray and HD-DVD are a techy's toy at this point, alongside wealthy status symbol usage. So, the large portion of the consumers who even use the technology are precisely those who know of and care about this story. When your ratio of Geek to Joe is that high on the Geek side, you need to act a little differently. Joe didn't even notice.

We sure noticed. Some of us noticed too much. I wish Joe noticed more.

Does anyone else mentally picture the AACSLA as Gollum and the The Number has their precious?

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Respect and Code Reviews

Code Reviews in a development team only function best, or possible at all, when everyone approaches them with respect. That’s something I’ve usually taken for granted because I’ve had the opportunity to work with amazing developers who shine not just in their technical skills but in their interpersonal skills on a team. That isn’t always the case, so I’m going to put into words something that often exists just in assumptions.
You have to respect your code. This is first only because the nature and intent of code reviews are to safeguard the quality of your code, so even having code reviews demonstrates a baseline of respect for that code. But, maybe not everyone on the team has the same level of respect or entered a team with existing review traditions that they aren’t acquainted with.
There can be culture shock when you enter a team that’s really heavy on code reviews, but also if you enter a team or interact with a colleague who doesn’t share that level of respect for the process or…

CARDIAC: The Cardboard Computer

I am just so excited about this.


CARDIAC. The Cardboard Computer. How cool is that? This piece of history is amazing and better than that: it is extremely accessible. This fantastic design was built in 1969 by David Hagelbarger at Bell Labs to explain what computers were to those who would otherwise have no exposure to them. Miraculously, the CARDIAC (CARDboard Interactive Aid to Computation) was able to actually function as a slow and rudimentary computer. 
One of the most fascinating aspects of this gem is that at the time of its publication the scope it was able to demonstrate was actually useful in explaining what a computer was. Could you imagine trying to explain computers today with anything close to the CARDIAC?

It had 100 memory locations and only ten instructions. The memory held signed 3-digit numbers (-999 through 999) and instructions could be encoded such that the first digit was the instruction and the second two digits were the address of memory to operate on. The only re…

How To Care If BSD, MIT, or GPL Licenses Are Used

The two recent posts about some individuals' choice of GPL versus others' preference for BSD and MIT style licensing has caused a lot of debate and response. I've seen everything as an interesting combination of very important topics being taken far too seriously and far too personally. All involved need to take a few steps back.

For the uninitiated and as a clarifier for the initiated, we're dealing with (basically) three categories of licensing when someone releases software (and/or its code):
Closed Source. Easiest to explain, because you just get nothing.GPL. If you get the software, you get the source code, you get to change it, and anything you combine it with must be under the same terms.MIT and BSD. If you get the software, you might get the source code, you get to change it, and you have no obligations about anything else you combine it with.The situation gets stickier when we look at those combinations and the transitions between them.

Use GPL code with Closed S…