Review of Geekonomics

This could be under software, since that is its focus or book reviews. In light of Scrivener’s intelligent design, excellence in execution, and the avoidance of “everything but the kitchen sink” attitude, it seemed like this was an appropriate forum to put it. I found this review interesting, challenging, and thoughtful. Now I want to read the book itself.

Stephen Few reviews Geekonomics by David Rice

“Rice is a prophet, and like most true prophets, what he is saying is something you won’t like hearing. Geekonomics warns against the dangers of software. That’s right—software—which we rely upon every day to a rapidly increasing degree. Rice is no crackpot or self-proclaimed guru looking to make a quick buck with this book.”

Ha ha @ “intelligent design.” It’s a shame that phrase has been ruined by certain people.

Perhaps I should say “from my user perspective compared to other software”

Or perhaps I should not have posted.

Or perhaps…

:smiley:

Just ignore me.

Oh man, everything on this forum is getting a bit surreal.

If you found a copy of Scrivener laying in a field, would you assume…? :smiley:

If, at the time, I am living contemporaneously with dinosaurs (because carbon dating is obviously one of Satan’s little ruses), then I . . . I’m not sure what I would think.

Clearly, you people do not understand real science. Scrivener can easily be demonstrated as being irreducibly complex. My friend and colleague, Dr. Hovel, have demonstrated that deleting, renaming, or moving things inside of the Scrivener package will cause the entire application to no longer be a cohesive, functioning creation. There is NO way you could have a partially working Scrivener by slowly moving bits of the package back in! It is either Scrivener, or a lump of useless code.

Think about it for just one minute! Your telling me that Scrivener evolved from an X Code? Ha! If you reformatted your hard drive would you expect Scrivener to just randomly be formed from the ones and zeros by chance?

And here’s the thing you people never consider: Where did X Code come from? Hmmm? And what about before that, Hmm? The THEORY of software development cannot explain the origin of original software.

P.S. And of course Scrivener co-existed with WordStar. I saw it in a museum. Fact.

I wholeheartedly and emphatically endorse everything that`s been said!..I think :confused:

Hmm, well, returning to the original thread (and veering clear of the nuttiness that has followed - and look, vik-k, you didn’t start it this time!), Geekonomics looks like a bit of a scare story: software will cause the end of the world as we know it! I do like the quote about new features vs fixing bugs, though - that is very sensible.
Best,
Keith

wots wrong wiv scarey stories Capn!!! :open_mouth: I likes em :confused:

I think that is the part that had the most impact on me. The perpetual beta distributions… without completely resolving problems/bugs. Give me something that works (like Scrivener). :slight_smile:

I remember using Word 5.1 for several years, and since then have gone through all iterations (except Word X), not a lot has changed from a writing perspective. I guess that is why many still consider Word 5.1 as the epitome of an excellent word processor (and some would say WriteNow). Bells and whistles are just that.

Just add it to the long list of all the other stuff that will end the world as we know it.

Actually, sometimes I wonder if the world ‘as we know it’ coming to an end is really such a bad thing… :wink:

That gives me an idea for a book! It’s central thesis will be that all these theories about the end of the world are hastening the end of the world. I will then refuse to publish it on moral grounds.

That’s nothing! I refuse to write it on immoral grounds! :smiley:

Is that like the latest theory that observing the universe at a distance actually shortens its lifespan? The quality of their proof is scary, yet still I remain a skeptic 8)

To add (maybe) to the problem, computer hardware appears to be advancing more rapidly than software, one consequence of which could be that programmers have ever more incentive and – potentially – power to take us down that slippery slope.

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/12/17/technology/17chip.html

Phil

Actually, I tried to avoid this bit of hyperbole in my book. To quote directly from Geekonomics:

So Geekonomics is not intended to be a bit of a scare story (though I can understand how you might think that), but an attempt to take a rational look at how to address a very serious problem that has the potential to affect all of modern civilization. Just like carbon emissions, nuclear waste, or lead in our products, insecure software is no longer simply a technology issue, but a public policy issue. As such, it requires a stronger and more comprehensive response than technology alone (such as static code analyzers, fuzzing, etc) can provide.

Thanks for the great discussion. I hope you enjoy the read.

Cheers,
.david

He has a point though. And the insecurity in software systems (Microsoft Messenger comes to mind as a classic example of risky software to run, no not because it is Microsoft but because Chatting Programs open your system and allow nasties to blow through firewalls)…

Anyhow… a nasty group of Cyber terrorists, can create all kinds of havoc. One of the first SUSPECTED cyber attacks happened in 1997 here in California where I live. There were cascade failures in the power grid and people died. That is what he is talking about. We have become very dependent on the software we use to run power plants, hospitals, et al. And a nasty virus will bring these things to a screeching halt. That could and already has caused havoc. WHy they spend oodles of money in Network protection teams.

Not that software will cause the end of the world, but think about this. If we had major failures on what have become life support systems, you think many folks will easily transition back to older ways of doing things? And how many will suffer?

Is he exaggerating? Or creating a fear scenario? I’d have to read the book, fully. What is true is that global warming is a real threat. I am not sure I’d put cyberterrorism in that category… but a nasty virus at a power plant could be lethal… think Chernobyl and complete core meltdown.

He has a point though. And the insecurity in software systems (Microsoft Messenger comes to mind as a classic example of risky software to run, no not because it is Microsoft but because Chatting Programs open your system and allow nasties to blow through firewalls)…

Anyhow… a nasty group of Cyber terrorists, can create all kinds of havoc. One of the first SUSPECTED cyber attacks happened in 1997 here in California where I live. There were cascade failures in the power grid and people died. That is what he is talking about. We have become very dependent on the software we use to run power plants, hospitals, et al. And a nasty virus will bring these things to a screeching halt. That could and already has caused havoc. WHy they spend oodles of money in Network protection teams.

Not that software will cause the end of the world, but think about this. If we had major failures on what have become life support systems, you think many folks will easily transition back to older ways of doing things? And how many will suffer?

Is he exaggerating? Or creating a fear scenario? I’d have to read the book, fully. What is true is that global warming is a real threat. I am not sure I’d put cyberterrorism in that category… but a nasty virus at a power plant could be lethal… think Chernobyl and complete core meltdown.