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Comment: Re:Simple set of pipelined utilties! (Score 0) 305

by gbjbaanb (#47927511) Attached to: Torvalds: No Opinion On Systemd

Most old philosophies do remain true - if they've managed to stand the test of time, then its usually because they're still relevant.

Most of human nature, physics and the "way things work" are philosophies that are still true, no matter how much some people want to reform them or reinvent every wheel.

In this case, a complicated mess of overly entangled components is pretty obviously not a good thing, regardless of what the unix philosophy says about doing complex systems right.

You want an example... if you want to build systemd, you must first build dbus without systemd dependencies, then build it again after building systemd with the dependencies in place. This is because systemd requires dbus, but also exposes it as a service managed by systemd.

Comment: Re:well said! (Score 3, Interesting) 305

by gbjbaanb (#47927271) Attached to: Torvalds: No Opinion On Systemd

There's still value in understanding the traditional UNIX "do one thing and do it well" model where many workflows can be done as a pipeline of simple tools each adding their own value, but let's face it, it's not how complex systems really work

and this - complex systems *do* work this way, lots of small pieces interfacing with each other is the way complex systems work. Whether its a GUI app where each control is an independent object, or an internet where each website is independent or a business where labour is divided up into divisions or departments.

What happens when you try to make a complex system that is a tangled web of interconnections that have too many dependencies with each other is a system that does not work.

DRY, SOLID principles are all current buzzwords, but the truth behind them is that complexity is managed by standard interface protocols that allow components to be practically self-contained. UNIX got this right.

Comment: Re:Not about ease, about authority (Score 1) 230

by gbjbaanb (#47904257) Attached to: School Installs Biometric Fingerprint System For Cafeteria

and possibly more importantly (to the parents) the kids can't go tot he local fast food joint and have burger and chip for lunch every day.

For £20k though, the school could have just asked the parents to fund a lunch account of roughly the amount each kid costs to feed. Then they wouldn't have to give them lunch money and the kids would get lunch without having to bother with money.

Comment: Re:unlikely (Score 3, Interesting) 195

by gbjbaanb (#47898409) Attached to: The Future According To Stanislaw Lem

not necessarily. That just applies to us, and its a fallacy to assume that others are like us.

Imagine an alien race so super intelligent that they consider they've already invented everything, they don't actually invent it until they have a need for it, and frankly, talking to the chattering money-boys on a distant planet just hasn't been something they need, strangely enough

Comment: Re:getting high (Score 4, Insightful) 195

by gbjbaanb (#47898353) Attached to: The Future According To Stanislaw Lem

your high is different to mine.

Some people might smoke pot, others get drunk. Some gamble and others fuck as much as they can.

And some have "making money" as their high, some have "screwing other over in power games" as theirs.

But there's also going to be someone who likes doing stuff as their personal meaning. Even in a society based on self-interest and personal abuse, there's going to be a few Crazy Eddies.

Comment: Re:Kickstarter's Problem (Score 2) 211

by gbjbaanb (#47891401) Attached to: Kickstarter's Problem: You Have To Make the Game Before You Ask For Money

ok, then Kickstarter's problem is that it doesn't strongly enforce these terms.

If some of the founder projects who basically hopped off with the cash were brought before court and made to explain where all the money was in a fraud case, then we'd probably have a lot more people ready to trust KS. As it is, I don't think anyone has been fully refunded for projects that failed. Maybe KS is expecting the backers to go legal themselves, but I see it as KSs responsibility - they do the leg work (and take the fee) so they should be much more involved in all these projects.

Comment: Re: a reputable team (Score 2) 211

by gbjbaanb (#47891287) Attached to: Kickstarter's Problem: You Have To Make the Game Before You Ask For Money

I guess many people don't recognise anyone's name except for a couple of really high-profile guys like Braben, Molineux or Carmack.

He's not a complete duffer though, seems he has done stuff. That seems fair enough to me, even though I would like to see credit given for the rest of the team behind those games.

Comment: Re:How does MS get away with it in the US? (Score 1, Informative) 418

by gbjbaanb (#47890257) Attached to: Windows Tax Shot Down In Italy

many new laptops come without a cd/dvd drive. ... how do you go about installing an OS on your shiny new os-free laptop if you don't already have an os to boot to to download your os of choice, or another computer to do the same, and no place to stick an install DVD?

off a bootable USB pendrive? Something that's been available and working for many years now.

Comment: Re:Holy shit! (Score 1) 198

from the post I was replying to:

Speaking at the Technology in Government forum in Canberra yesterday, the Department's chief risk officer Gavin McCairns explained how his team rolled an application based on the 'R' language into production to filter through millions of incoming visitors to Australia every year.

I did get R confused with a general purpose language, sorry about that (but not he general sentiment on 'hobbyist' programmers in industry)

Comment: Re:Partial consistency is... inconsistency! (Score 1) 198

by gbjbaanb (#47869927) Attached to: UK's National Health Service Moves To NoSQL Running On an Open-Source Stack

Its a confusing point, but ACID is only one way of ensuring the things you want. Yuo can, for example, use a form of check-it-worked-and-compensate-afterwards to achieve the same level of reliability without actually having an ACID system.

Most banking transaction, I'm told, use this instead of traditional ACID transactions. I suppose you could say its a coarser-grained version of ACID and therefore still ACID, but I think that would confuse most people who think ACID = relational DB with integrity checking.

Comment: Re:Complex? (Score 2) 198

by gbjbaanb (#47869899) Attached to: UK's National Health Service Moves To NoSQL Running On an Open-Source Stack

Given the application, I imagine most of the data stored is of the schema:

Patient NHS ID number
Patient data.

where the ID is the standard ID we all have, and the
"data" s a huge lump of XML. This is probably why it was easy to dump Oracle for a NoSQL DB - if you only store 2 columns in each table a migration is trivial.

Comment: Re:Holy shit! (Score 2) 198

by gbjbaanb (#47869875) Attached to: UK's National Health Service Moves To NoSQL Running On an Open-Source Stack

Whilst I'm all for open source in government, I can;t help thinking every time they come out with press releases saying "we used " describes a process where being different with the technology stack is an end in itself.
You could write an open source application in C++ rather than the much less mainstream R language and you'd have lots of people ready skilled to maintain it. Using R just seems like it was the choice of the devs who persuaded the agency to adopt their tools rather than an agency who thought about what they needed up front.

I wonder in 5 years if we see headlines "Immigration Agency dumps open source for Oracle. A spokeperson said,'we used a bunch of obscure languages and tools for the old system that served us well we had difficult finding people skilled in them, so we successfully outsourced the system to our new partners who will deliver increased performance and efficiency savings over.blah blah blah". If they'd done it "maturely" in the first place, this kind of nightmare scenario wouldn't happen.

(and I speak of experience - currently discussing details with a company that has a system "built with a mix of Erlang, Scala and Ruby on Rails". You know its been cobbled together by a bunch of hacks more interested in whatever language seemed coolest at the time.

"Ahead warp factor 1" - Captain Kirk