When
· Naughties
· · 2005
· · · December
· · · · 20 (4 entries)

Language Landscape · As the year winds down, the programming-language news keeps flowing; at this point I wouldn’t be surprised by major New Year’s Eve announcements. Bruce Eckel wrote The departure of the hyper-enthusiasts, a lengthy riff on Beyond Java, giving Bruce Tate a hard time on some issues and ranting away informatively on Ruby & Python & Zope & EJBs & Rails & lots more; he’s a little less enamored of Ruby than others. Speaking of Rails, David Heinemeier Hansson responds at length. If you’re going to read these, do not fail to read the comments, which are even more interesting and informative; Bruce Tate turns up in both conversations. The other item that caught my eye was Cameron Purdy noting that Caucho claims to have a module that compiles PHP to bytecodes and runs it on the JVM four times faster than mod_php (first benchmark, but on a real app not synthetic). It’s GPL’ed. This is more than a little surprising. I’ve been campaigning heavily in the Java community at large and here at Sun specifically to make dynamic languages on the JVM a major priority, but I’d never really focused on PHP, because I didn’t know anyone was even working on the problem. (Well, to be honest, also because PHP has always made me nervous.) This changes the “On Beyond Java” picture. [Late addition: last word to Steve Jenson.]
 
New Technorati Stuff · Dave’s posted a note about the new results list, and it’s an improvement all right. But I’ve been paying more attention to the Explore thing they’re working on over in the kitchen; for example, Politics. There’s a real interesting combination of tag and link-rank and relatedness processing lurking in here somewhere trying to get out. [Disclosure: I’m on their advisory board.]
 
Disclosure · For some time, I’ve been appending “Disclosure: I may have a conflict of interest with respect to Technorati” whenever I mention them. I’m happy to report that, as of this week, I do have a conflict of interest; the approval process worked its way through multiple levels of executive committees and I’m officially allowed to be a member of the Technorati advisory board. Who knows, maybe they’ll start taking my advice. While I wish I could see how this whole Web-as-living-data-stream thing is going to turn out, I can’t. But it’s clearly a world-changer.
 
What the Spooks Know · There’s this wiretapping scandal swirling around Washington; the politics of it are easy to understand, but it’s got some interesting technology dimensions. Herewith a look from the prospective of a search-technology professional who’s got a decent layperson’s understanding of intelligence capabilities ...
 
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