· Naughties
· · 2003
· · · July
· · · · 31 (2 entries)

The 1975 Idea-Futures Market · There’s been much ado in recent days over DARPA’s notion of setting up a futures market where people could speculate on the likelihood of geopolitical events: terrorism, rebellion, death, and so on. The oscillating waves of opinion were kind of amusing: initial puzzlement, followed by reflexive horror and denunciation, with recently a few quiet voices saying “Maybe this wasn’t such a bad idea.” This note is to point out that the idea goes back at least as far as John Brunner’s 1975 scifi novel Shockwave Rider, which some of you might enjoy reading for its own sake ...
Perl Angst · Perl is such a great language, except for when it’s not. There’s this problem, which is best illustrated by example: a colleague came into my office with a testy expression and said “You wrote this; what the $#@!%! does it do?!?” I told him I’d get right back to him. [Update: I get spanked.] ...
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