“The bad news is that writing clean code is a lot like painting a picture. Most of us know when a picture is painted well or badly. But being able to recognize good art from bad does not mean that we know how to paint. So too being able to recognize clean code from dirty code does not mean we know how to write clean code!”
– Robert Martin, Clean Code
“SINGLE TASKING is an anachronism. As soon as ebooks moved from the Kindle to the iPad, the magic of reading was threatened by the opportunity (‘for just a second’) to check on email, Words with Friends or an incoming text message.”
– Seth Godin, An end of books
“When writing a program, it is easy to get sidetracked into small details at every point. You come across some little issue, and you deal with it, and then proceed to the next little problem, and so on. This makes the code read like a grandmother’s tale.”
(I find that explaining a large software program is akin to giving a history lesson. –SC)
“Nobody really tries to understand those around us who are hurting, tries to figure out what’s going on inside of their heads. Nobody alive always does the right thing instead of the easy thing. Being a human is all too often about finding comfortable spots and then settling into them for the long haul, regardless of whom that leaves out in the cold.”
– Todd VanDerWerff, from a review of the Sopranos episode, “Moe n’ Joe”
Wondering if I should be less ranty and more equanimous. But ranty is a much better word than equanimous.
I saw some snarky reference the other day to the effect that “more cowbell” is played out. As if there could ever be enough cowbell, let alone too much.
YOU ALWAYS NEED MORE COWBELL.
This is an aside that you can ignore. Of course you can and should ignore anything and everything from this information source, to the side or in front or whichever.
As an aside to the aside… no. I really had nothing other than wanting to see how this looks and how it appears in my feed.
As always and forever: thank you for reading.
I received a mailing from my phone company with an extraordinary offer:
Five years of high-speed internet for $19.95 a month.
Well, maybe not that amazing. Experience tells me this would be for the slowest speed. I’d be willing to pay more for real high-speed, to escape from a cable-company-that-won’t-be-named, but experience also suggests faster DSL speeds aren’t available in my area.
But! This isn’t about my internet options. It’s about the fine print on the $19.95 offer:
“When you bundle with Unlimited Nationwide Calling.”
I laughed. It’s like they can’t let go, these phone companies. The flyer has pictures of smiling young people, and all I can think is, who under the age of 60 still has or wants a long-distance calling plan?
But then, I’m the kind of dinosaur that still has a landline. Maybe they can be forgiven for thinking this might appeal to me. They have all this data that says we haven’t had long distance in, like, forever. They must be scratching their head and saying, “How do these people stay in touch with people outside of his area code? I bet they’ll jump at this opportunity.”
Update, a couple of days later:
It was pointed out to me that not everybody lives in a major metropolitan area with good cell coverage, and that some of these people may reasonably be expected to desire long distance calling plans.
I still think it’s an odd bundling juxtaposition.
Ezra Klein pointed me to a blog, “This Is a Blog Post. It Is Not a ‘Blog.’”, quoting from the blog, “Trust me. Iâ€™m a blogger. I blog blogs all the time.”
The blog snippet entertained me, even though I disagree with the premise of the blog itself. My own preference is likewise to call these things “blog posts,” and yes, I flinched the first few times I ran across “blog” for a blog post.
But I quickly got over it. Language evolves, and who are we to set into stone so quickly all of these new words and concepts?
Then again, I’m all in favor of arguing about language and complaining about language misdeeds. I persist in my own hopeless campaign of railing against the over-utilization of the word, “utilize.” (Although I grow weary of it.)
At the same time, I actively root for the further debasement of some idioms, like, “Begging the question.”
In the case of “blog = blog post”, I’m indifferent. I don’t care who wins. The author of the Slate piece says that you’ll look dumb if you do it wrong, and nobody will take you seriously, and maybe it’s true that keepers of the blogging lexicon may look down on you, now, but I think this harsh judgement will soon be overwhelmed by common usage.
Can you imagine at one time a similar irritation when the word “letter” came to be used for the collection of letters on a page? I’m sure much angst was spilled in the verblogs* of the day.
* Verbal blogs.
Although nonpartisan in this case, I should disclose that I have my own peculiar thoughts about blog terminology.