Monthly Archives: August 2010

Too Few Women In Tech? Stop Blaming The Men.

Instead I’m going to tell it like it is. And what it is is this: statistically speaking women have a huge advantage as entrepreneurs, because the press is dying to write about them, and venture capitalists are dying to fund them. Just so no one will point the accusing finger of discrimination at them.

Arrington touches the (overly) sensitive subject of gender in tech community. Good read.

Programming will never be “easy”

As for the argument that programming languages are too cryptic, this is just a misunderstanding of what people really want. What people really want, is magic.

An issue well explained by Frederick Brooks in his famous Mythical Man Month book: difficulty of software development comes from analyzing and modeling the problem. Translating it into a programming language is an easy part.

Silicon Valley’s Dark Secret: It’s All About Age

The harsh reality is that in the tech world, companies prefer to hire young, inexperienced, engineers. And engineering is an “up or out” profession: you either move up the ladder or face unemployment. This is not something that tech executives publicly admit, because they fear being sued for age discrimination, but everyone knows that this is the way things are.

While the data quoted in the article comes from electric engineering, I expect that in programming the reality is even harsher.

Avoiding the Uncanny Valley of Interface Design

There are a few side affects to this surge of realism. I think that there is an Uncanny Valley in interface design that some Websites and applications have landed themselves in through approaching interface design in the wrong way. The Uncanny Valley of interface design might not cause something disturbing, but the user experience can be compromised
more on getfinch.com

Inconclusive post about the realism in user interface design.

Round Rects Are Everywhere!

Bill fired up his demo and it quickly filled the Lisa screen with randomly-sized ovals, faster than you thought was possible. But something was bothering Steve Jobs. “Well, circles and ovals are good, but how about drawing rectangles with rounded corners? Can we do that now, too?
more on folklore.org

Cute story of how rounded corners were introduced to Macintosh.

An update on JavaOne

Like many of you, every year we look forward to the workshops, conferences and events related to open source software. In our view, these are among the best ways we can engage the community, by sharing our experiences and learning from yours. So we’re sad to announce that we won’t be able to present at JavaOne this year. We wish that we could, but Oracle’s recent lawsuit against Google and open source has made it impossible for us to freely share our thoughts about the future of Java and open source generally.

Oracle’s efforts to kill Java are fruitful indeed.

Apple’s Attention to Detail

In July 2002, Appled filed a patent for a “Breathing Status LED Indicator” (No. US 6,658,577 B2). They described it as a “blinking effect of the sleep-mode indicator in accordance with the present invention mimics the rhythm of breathing which is psychologically appealing.”

Truly impressive little detail.