October 13, 2011


Google+ is a prime example of our complete failure to understand platforms from the very highest levels of executive leadership (hi Larry, Sergey, Eric, Vic, howdy howdy) down to the very lowest leaf workers (hey yo). We all don't get it. The Golden Rule of platforms is that you Eat Your Own Dogfood. The Google+ platform is a pathetic afterthought. We had no API at all at launch, and last I checked, we had one measly API call. One of the team members marched in and told me about it when they launched, and I asked: "So is it the Stalker API?" She got all glum and said "Yeah." I mean, I was joking, but no... the only API call we offer is to get someone's stream. So I guess the joke was on me.
Read Steve Yegge's full post here.

October 11, 2011

Make Install: Hazelcast

Hazelcast is a pretty interesting Java library. It basically offers distributed versions of classic Java collection types: Queue, Set, List and Map. That is, you can have, for instance, one instance of a map shared across different Java applications, and all will see that map in the same way. So if one app adds some values, they become immediately visible to all others. In addition, applications can be added and removed dynamically, and your map should stay perfectly intact and synchronized. There is a really instructive screencast which brings home the point much better than I can describe it here.

As an added bonus, the main developer, Talip Ozturk, maintains a Hazelcast related blog where you can find some technical details on the implementation.

October 06, 2011

RIP Steve Jobs

So long, and thanks for all the Apples.

Update: Everybody is sharing Steve Jobs stories, so I'll add two of my own. First is the first computer I ever saw. I was eight or so, and my dad had bought an Apple II clone. I wrote my first Apple Basic programs on it, and it was probably a life-changer.

The second is more relevant to the theme of this blog: Steve Jobs switching the core of Mac OS X from PowerPC to Intel. This was a pretty much unheard of strategy. Any software developer has to tip his/her hat to that. Not only because he managed to get it done, but the way in which he got it done. He made it look like the easiest thing ever. "Just pick the right checkbox (PPC or Intel) when you build your project. That's it. Boom. It just works." Yeah.

The world is a much less interesting place now that Steve Jobs has left it.