Going to start a new thing here, by posting a weekly list of the most intersting things that caught my eye. It'll be a bit of a grab bag, but occasionally with topics.
Diversity and Culture in Tech:
Explained: Why people are angry at Paul Graham: The last couple of years have been very eye-opening for me, as I've started to pay attention to the social issues and aspects of technology. I'm still digesting thoughts on this, with about two or three drafts of blog-posts sitting unfinished. However, Danilo Campos has written a fantastic post on why people are mad at Paul Graham after his comments were posted to ValleyWag.
A particular quote I enjoyed:
I’ve pointed out why someone might disagree, but not why they’d be angry.
Here’s the issue: it’s not Graham’s responsibility to fix the inequities in tech. If he has no new ideas about how to fix the problem, though, the most productive action he can take as a prominent person is to pass the mic to someone who does. It’s easy to say “It’s a problem. I don’t know how to solve it. But I respect these folks who are trying and you should talk to them.”
Instead, his overall tone is one of resignation. The position seems expert and defeatist.
Not everyone is willing to give up the fight.
While Graham shoves his hands in his pockets, real people are trying to make their mark on the world. They’re finding their progress in technology undermined by the frustrating fact that their paths look very different from Zuckerberg’s. Graham’s success has elevated him to a position of influence. In this case that influence is, even if inadvertently, impeding progress.
Paul Graham and the Manic Pixie Dream Hacker: A parallel that I just love.
Like the Manic Pixie Dream Girl’s role of existing to serve the male film protagonist’s personal growth, the Manic Pixie Dream Hacker’s job is to embody the dream hacker role while growing the VC’s portfolio
Resolutions: Gabe from Penny-Arcade confonting his own history with bullying, and how it has left him a bully himself.
- Algorithmic Rape Jokes in the Library of Babel: A reminder that software can convey politics, even more so when it's badly QA'd.
Compilers, Programming Languages:
- C# for Systems Programming: An early discussion of a MS Research project attempting to provide both speed and safety.
- C# for Systems Programming, The Error Model: An associated discussion of the error model.