If you’re so smart, why aren’t you rich? Turns out it’s just chance

Innovative Companies and Innovative Products

“Innovative”, a term frequently used by companies to describe themselves and their products.

You Keep Using That Word, I Do Not Think It Means What You Think It Means
— Inigo Montoya, in The Princess Bride (movie, 1987)

To me, it means they’re just using some buzzword – it has no real meaning in that context, but it does manage to give me an instant negative impression of the company that uses it.

Similarly, a person or company declaring themselves as “cool” is by definition uncool.  Others can say you’re cool, but saying you’re cool yourself is a definitely no-no.

On a related note, have you noticed that any country that has the word “Democratic” in its name actually isn’t [democratic] ?

The Judge’s Code | The Verge

Meet the judge who codes — and decides tech’s biggest cases

Judge William H. Alsup of the northern district of California.  He’s a particularly interesting person, because he has a clue about programming.  He taught himself, decades ago, for hobby.

And my goodness does it come in handy nowadays.  I found the (long) interview an interesting read.  The difference between artistic work and functional matter is highly relevant, but difficult to discern for someone without a clue about coding (most lawyers, judges and juries).

I also noted his middle name is Haskell, whereas he does his pretty nifty programming in QuickBASIC.

On the Complications of Choosing Customers

Most companies choose their customers. Some merely do so as a side-effect of their cost structure and the priorities their  sales people apply, other (particularly service-oriented) companies might review during the initial contact whether their way of working suits the structure of the potential client.

Some also choose on the basis of their beliefs.

Cloudflare posted an article after dropping the daily stormer as a client, explaining the trigger reason, their process, and the overall issues with considering such things. It’s very thoughtful.


Theresa May wants to ban crypto: here’s what that would cost, and here’s why it won’t work anyway | Cory Doctorow

Yes, facepalm.

Cory Doctor writes:

It’s impossible to overstate how bonkers the idea of sabotaging cryptography is to people who understand information security. If you want to secure your sensitive data either at rest – on your hard drive, in the cloud, on that phone you left on the train last week and never saw again – or on the wire, when you’re sending it to your doctor or your bank or to your work colleagues, you have to use good cryptography. Use deliberately compromised cryptography, that has a back door that only the “good guys” are supposed to have the keys to, and you have effectively no security. You might as well sky-write it as encrypt it with pre-broken, sabotaged encryption.


P.S. I should note that the King Canute reference in the title is wrong. King Canute explicitly set out to demonstrate to his people that he wasn’t all-powerful. He was wise. Theresa May is not King Canute.