[M]any current and former U.S. officials have come to see Singapore as a model for how they’d build an intelligence apparatus if privacy laws and a long tradition of civil liberties weren’t standing in the way.
Today, young programmers and entrepreneurs in the valley are encouraged to drop out of college, or not pursue higher education at all, so they can focus all their attention on writing code or learning how to run a company. What value is Shakespeare, Beethoven, or Manet to someone who spends twenty hours a day on a computer? Apple’s products are beautiful to many because they are not only useful, but strive for something transcendent in their design and concept.
Rod Bauer, What Silicon Valley refuses to learn from Steve Jobs, VentureBeat
Modern surveillance is not primarily about an evil big brother figure watching from above. Modern surveillance is about classifying and sorting people. It is about ‘statistically rational’ automated discrimination, nudging and enforcement of norms. Modern abuse of power is not a cop beating someone up. It is about your life chances being determined by some correlation and that doesn’t show up on video.
An open letter to Glass explorers attending the canberra #GLASSMEETUPS event, Stop The Cyborgs.
There’s youth, and there’s youthfulness.
In the longer term, victory in the disk-drive industry appears to have gone to the manufacturers that were good at incremental improvements, whether or not they were the first to market the disruptive new format. Companies that were quick to release a new product but not skilled at tinkering have tended to flame out.
Jill Lepore, What the Theory of “Disruptive Innovation” Gets Wrong, The New Yorker.
The cultural effect of all these laws is to encourage a kind of hypervigilance that’s simultaneously paranoid and arrogant. It encourages armed citizens to seek confrontations and escalate them, confident that they can end them definitively.
Technology leadership is not defined by patents, which history has repeatedly shown to be small protection indeed against a determined competitor, but rather by the ability of a company to attract and motivate the world’s most talented engineers.
Capitalism is based on the idea that people buy shit they don’t need
Chris McDougall, Chris McDougall: I Never Meant To Start A Barefoot-Running Fad, Fittish.
[I]f we are to test the truth of officials’ claims, we must first give them an opportunity to make those claims.
Edward Snowden, Vladimir Putin must be called to account on surveillance just like Obama, The Guardian.
A large fraction of the flaws in software development are due to programmers not fully understanding all the possible states their code may execute in. In a multithreaded environment, the lack of understanding and the resulting problems are greatly amplified, almost to the point of panic if you are paying attention. Programming in a functional style makes the state presented to your code explicit, which makes it much easier to reason about, and, in a completely pure system, makes thread race conditions impossible.