I think this lovely quote, originally about scientific research, probably explains a lot about how trends come and go in software engineering. after a new paradigm is proposed, the [publication]process is tilted toward positive results. But then, after a few years, the academic incentives shift—the paradigm has become entrenched—so that the most notable results are… Read More

[Note: regular readers of this blog will notice the title of this post is waaay off topic. But bear with me. There’s a tenuous link to the usual subject matter.] At the bus stop, reading Twitter, I was struck by the antagonism of political tweets.  Are the actions of the Right ever actually influenced by… Read More

I tried the Dvorak keyboard layout in late 2000.  Hated it. It’s definitely designed for mechanical typewriters not electronic keyboards, since it attempts to maximise alternating between left and right hands. That’s great with physical levers moving around in a typewriter, but is counter productive in an electronic keyboard. Back in 2000, there were very few other… Read More

Bayes’ Theorem is an important tool when analysing probabilities.  It helps us to avoid cognitive traps and make better decisions.  However, it is usually presented as something difficult, or even controversial.  The typical article on Bayes’ Theorem stresses how difficult it is, and then goes on to bemoan the fact that its not more widely… Read More

[Note: this post is now many years out of date.  Some of the links and technical details are now out of date, and modern javascript applications are making the whole premise out of date too… but I still kind of miss rich clients ;-)] Why does everyone want web applications?  What happened to old fashioned… Read More