From design patterns to category theory


Everyone Is Still Terrible At Creating Software At Scale – Marginally Interesting by Mikio L. Braun

This separation of work happens every time you decide who works on what within a team, but also once you define teams in a company. This will have very real effects on the software you write, also known as Conway’s law. The book “Team Topologies” by Skelton and Pais (recommended to me by Daniel Trümper ) takes this insights and applies the “reverse Conway maneuver” by designing the teams in the way you want the system to look like. But still you need to know how that should look like.

Which are the most striking elements of Monkey Pong? - Marginal REVOLUTION

  1. Where did they get that background from?
  2. Can I have some of what that monkey is drinking?
  3. Wealth concentrations are going to make IRB regulations less relevant over time.

timesketch (Google)

Timesketch is an open-source tool for collaborative forensic timeline analysis. Using sketches you and your collaborators can easily organize your timelines and analyze them all at the same time. Add meaning to your raw data with rich annotations, comments, tags and stars.

Against alcohol - Fergus McCullough

Alcohol use is one of the top five causes of disease and disability in almost all countries in Europe. In the UK, alcohol is now the leading cause of death in men between the ages of 16 and 54 years, accounting for over 20 per cent of the total. More than three- quarters of liver cirrhosis deaths, 7 per cent of cancer deaths and 25 per cent of injury deaths in adults under 65 years of age in Europe in 2004 were estimated to be due to alcohol.1 According to the government, alcohol is the third leading risk factor for death and disability after smoking and obesity.

The Demise and Potential Revival of the American Chestnut | Sierra Club

Waymo Simulated Driving Behavior in Reconstructed Fatal Crashes within an Autonomous Vehicle Operating Domain

The final dataset consisted of a total of 72 crashes and 91 vehicle actors (52 initiators and 39 responders) for simulations. Next, a novel counterfactual “what-if” simulation method was developed to synthetically replace human-driven crash participants one at a time with the Waymo Driver. This study focused on the Waymo Driver’s performance when replacing one of the first two collision partners. The results of these simulations showed that the Waymo Driver was successful in avoiding all collisions when replacing the crash initiator, that is, the road user who made the initial, unexpected maneuver leading to a collision. Replacing the driver reacting (the responder) to the actions of the crash initiator with the Waymo Driver resulted in an estimated 82% of simulations where a collision was prevented and an additional 10% of simulations where the collision severity was mitigated (reduction in crash-level serious injury risk). The remaining 8% of simulations with the Waymo Driver in the responder role had a similar outcome to the original collision.

The Shape of Rome – Ex Urbe

When archaeologists opened up the under layer, they found a Madonna, probably 8th century, which then decayed before their eyes (horror!) due to exposure to the air.  Underneath they found another Madonna (delight!) wearing this extremely strange hat.  They looked more closely: the Christ child in her lap is not original, but was painted on after the Madonna.  This is not a Madonna at all, it is a portrait, and that hat belongs to none other than the Byzantine Empress Theodora.  Someone painted a portrait of the empress here (who used to be a prostitute, I might add), then someone else redid her as a Madonna, then, a century or two later, someone else painted over that Madonna with another Madonna, now lost, who presumably had a more reasonable hat.

I’ve gone into a cafe restroom and discovered the back wall was curved because this was built on the foundations of Pompey’s theater (where Caesar was assassinated).  I’ve gone into churches to discover their restrooms used to be part of different churches.  Friends have this experience too.  During my Fulbright year in Italy I had a colleague who was studying Roman altars, half of which you could only get at by ringing the bell of strangers’ apartments and saying: “Hello!  I’m an archaeologist, and according to this list there’s a Roman sacrificial altar here?” to which the standard response is, “Oh, yes, come on in, it’s in the basement next to the washing machine.”  I have another friend who thinks he’s found a lost chapel frescoed by a major Renaissance artist hidden in an elevator shaft.  Another friend once told me of a pizza place with a trap door down to not-yet-tallied catacombs.

Demand offsetting – The sideways view (Paul Christiano)

For the last few years I’ve been avoiding factory farmed eggs because I think they involve a lot of unnecessary suffering. I’m hesitant to be part of that even if it’s not a big deal on utilitarian grounds. This is a pain since factory-farmed eggs are used all over the place (e.g. in ice cream, pastries, pasta…). I’d prefer just spend a bit of money and not think too much about what I eat. In this post I’ll describe a possible offsetting strategy that I think is unusually robust and should be satisfying for many moral perspectives. The same proposal would also apply to many other animal products and potentially to the environmental impacts of consumption.

Some opinionated thoughts on SQL databases - Made of Bugs (Nelson Elhage)

Strong agree, especially the point about it being a bad API.

  • SQL Databases have incredible storage engines
  • I dislike SQL as an API
    • String concatenation is a bad API
    • I dislike query planners
    • I don’t like the type system
    • SQL is a decent ad-hoc query and reporting language
  • Migrations are far more painful than they need to be
    • Migrations are too imperative
    • Zero-downtime migrations are way too fraught
  • SQL databases have Too Damn Many features

How many lines of code is Candy Japan? (2016) | Hacker News

(8341 lines total)

What I Did in My 40s - Econlib (Bryan Caplan)

A compelling argument for why ‘Human-centered’ design is entirely problematic and how designers and engineers should learn to fear the consequences of their work .This reminds me of Lily Irani’s argument against design thinking (covered here on 2020-08-31) , which centered around the practice of measuring a product’s design success by consumerist metrics - neglecting all other data. | Visualisation of Global Cargo Ships | By Kiln and UCL

Created by London-based data visualisation studio Kiln and the UCL Energy Institute

Prose is Bad

Claim: Many genres of writing would benefit from abandoning standard prose style for other formats like outlines.


MLJ (Machine Learning in Julia) is a toolbox written in Julia providing a common interface and meta-algorithms for selecting, tuning, evaluating, composing and comparing over 150 machine learning models written in Julia and other languages. In particular MLJ wraps a large number of scikit-learn models.

Cool Japanese wbsites

What problems do people solve with strace?

  1. where’s the config file?
  2. what other files does this program depend on?
  3. why is this program hanging?
  4. is this program stuck?
  5. why is this program slow?
  6. hidden permissions errors
  7. what command line arguments are being used?
  8. why is this network connection failing?
  9. why does this program succeed when run one way and fail when run in another way?
  10. how does this Linux kernel API work?
  11. general reverse engineering

‘Whitest ever’ paint reflects 98% of sunlight | Hacker News

Reminds me of “anti-flash white,” developed for bombers during the early years of the cold war. The theory was that the specially formulated white paint would reflect enough of a nuclear explosion’s thermal energy to allow the aircraft to survive the explosion as the bomber departed the scene.