quotes from "Dreaming in Code"

The realization came over me with full force that a good part of the remainder of my life was going to be spent in finding errors in my own programs.
Maurice Wilkes, in 1949, at the dawn of the age of debugging computer programs.
The hard thing about building software is deciding what to say, not saying it.
Frederick Brooks
Is it possible to do great work without great pressure, or is pressure an indispensable part of genius?
Michael Toy
Joy is an asset. It may well turn out that one of the most important effects of open source’s success will be to teach us that play is the most economically efficient mode of creative work.
Eric Raymond
All programmers are optimists. Perhaps the hundreds of nitty frustrations drive away all but those who habitually focus on the end goal. Perhaps it is merely that computers are young, programmers are younger, and the young are always optimists.
Frederick Brooks
Front ends are supposed to be elegant, intuitive, versatile; back ends are supposed to be invisible, efficient, rock-solid. The front end talks to people; the back end talks to bits. In Star Wars terms, the front end is the butlerish C3PO; the back end is the unintelligible R2D2.
Scott Rosenberg
We are still building our software cottage-industry-style today.
Brad Cox
"There's a difference between transparency aimed at giving visibility and transparency that is aimed at producing collaboration.”
Ted Leung
If it takes the typical programmer more than two minutes and twenty-seven seconds to find something, they will conclude it does not exist and therefore will reinvent it.
Larry Constantine.
Yes, but:
The price of learning and configuring and tweaking a large system that almost does the required job - and could be similarly battered into shape of handling lots of other tasks- is often larger than the cost of making an original, smaller bit of code that just handles the matter at hand. and, that is also more fun. Or as Rosenberg puts it later in the book: "There is almost always something you can pull off the shelf that will satisfy many of your needs. But usually the parts of what you need done that your off-the-shelf code won’t handle are the very parts that make your new project different, unique, innovative--and they’re why you’re building it in the first place."

Or as he even later refines it:

Rosenberg’s Law: Software is easy to make, except when you want it to do something new. And then, of course, there is a corollary: The only software that’s worth making is software that does something new.
Scott Rosenberg, "Dreaming in Code"

Wanna be less of a lollygagger starting with getting back to my iPhone as an alarm clock. I kind of hate though that its wake up alarm STARTS with a (loudish) vibration and THEN adds the more pleasant sound I picked out.

I have mixed feelings about Jerry Seinfeld but I liked these lines:

Why did I get married? A lot of people ask me that. For one thing, I'm 47 years old. Jesus Christ! But also, that was 26 or so years of dating. That's a lot of acting fascinated. I was tired!
But let us make no mistake. The only reason these babies are here is to replace . . . us. You just have to look in any baby's eyes, and you see it: `It's only a matter of time, my friend.' Am I drooling? Yeah, I'm drooling. I'm drooling looking at all your stuff.
(I heard the "That's a lot acting fascinated" line and hunted for context...)
Why do we like sports or movies? It's just incredible that a trillion-synapse computer could actually spend Saturday afternoon watching a football game. It's a colossal phenomenon that needs to be explained, and I'm not joking.
Marvin Minsky
Birds can fly, unless they are penguins and ostriches, or if they happen to be dead, or have broken wings, or are confined to cages, or have their feet stick in cement, or have undergone experiences so dreadful as to render them psychologically incapable of flight.
Marvin Minsky (dealing with the problems that knowledge systems face.)
I just found out he died this week. RIP! I liked the fisherman's vest he wore- our tools make us smarter, so being able to carry around a lot of digital helpers was putting him ahead of the evolutionary curve.
Hunger is Psychological, and Dieting Makes It Worse Like Yogi Berra on baseball: "[it's] 90 percent mental and the other half is physical."
I measure out my days in DD iced coffee cups, my weeks in HONK band rehearsals, and my years in Apple product launches.