Archive for August, 2016

University computer science libraries have fallen into a sad and tragic state. I went by the University of Washington Engineering Library. When I was at Isilon, that library was a kind of miracle; if we needed to know anything interesting going on in the world of data management, you could go to the library and […]

I can’t remember where I found it, but there was a brilliant explanation of how functional code maps value. Remember, in a functional program, the basic notation is x → y, that is, for every function, it maps value x to another value y. Things like map() map an array to another array, while reduce() maps […]


Menders, Makers, Mentors

Posted by Elf Sternberg as chat

Andrea Goulet is giving me an existential crisis. The CEO of a software development consultation shop, she recently wrote an article called Menders vs. Makers, and something happened this week that makes me think, maybe I’m in the wrong line of work. I’m starting to suspect I’m a mender in a business that only values […]


Programmers need a class in aesthetics.

Posted by Elf Sternberg as chat

The three kinds of code: 1. It’s clear what this does. 2. After much thought, it’s clear how the developer got here. 3. WTF. — Eλf Sternberg (@elfsternberg) August 8, 2016 Sometimes it’s a little hilarious to read the back-and-forth of academics. My favorite is this exchange from Roman R. Redziejowski and Brian Ford over […]

“I really should commit to [project]. I’m just afraid of it becoming popular.” — Garrett Wollman (@garrett_wollman) August 11, 2016 This feels like something that deserves clarification. It’s not that I fear any and all of my projects becoming popular. I would love for some of them to become very popular. Polyloader would be […]


What comes next?

Posted by Elf Sternberg as chat, programming

After publishing The Semantics of Python Import and explicating on the history and internals of how Python turns source code into running operations, I thought I had a pretty clear idea of what to do next. I extended Hy such that it was now possible to write an entire Django application in a Lisp dialect, […]

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August 2016
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