Monday, January 10, 2011

You Know You're a Dog Owner When... accept the fact that walking in your stocking feet through the kitchen means that you're at risk for getting wet socks.  Because the dogs, when they drink from their waterer, dribble gallons of water all over the kitchen floor, of course...

Something to Keep an Eye On...

The Obama administration is apparently moving forward with some kind of “Internet ID” program.  I've not been able to find any details about this, anywhere. 

If this turns out to be some sort of optional ID that would provide trusted identification when the user desired it, then I think that's at least possibly a net good thing.

On the other hand, if the use of this ID becomes mandatory for any purpose, then we've got a potential problem.

Let's all watch what develops here...

Akins' Laws of Spacecraft Design...

Here's a list of design principles that will ring true to any experienced engineer, in any field.  Here are a few that are just as applicable to software design as they are to spacecraft design:
Design is an iterative process. The necessary number of iterations is one more than the number you have currently done. This is true at any point in time.

Not having all the information you need is never a satisfactory excuse for not starting the analysis.

There is never a single right solution. There are always multiple wrong ones, though.

Don't do nuthin' dumb.

Schedules only move in one direction.

A designer knows that he has achieved perfection not when there is nothing left to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.

It Begins...

Most of us are still recovering from the shock of the attack on Congresswoman Gabby Giffords.  The more calculating political class is falling over over themselves to take advantage of the moment.  The winner for first strike: Congresswoman Carolyn McCarthy is preparing gun control legislation, continuing our apparent national obsession with blaming the tools rather than the perpetrator.

Glenn Reynolds (aka “The Instapundit”) has a piece in today's Wall Street Journal on another manifestation of the left's “Don't let a good crisis go to waste!” tactics.  He's disgusted with the left's instant blaming of the Giffords shooting on Sarah Palin and the Tea Party.  His conclusion:
Where is the decency in blood libel?

To paraphrase Justice Cardozo ("proof of negligence in the air, so to speak, will not do"), there is no such thing as responsibility in the air. Those who try to connect Sarah Palin and other political figures with whom they disagree to the shootings in Arizona use attacks on "rhetoric" and a "climate of hate" to obscure their own dishonesty in trying to imply responsibility where none exists. But the dishonesty remains.

To be clear, if you're using this event to criticize the "rhetoric" of Mrs. Palin or others with whom you disagree, then you're either: (a) asserting a connection between the "rhetoric" and the shooting, which based on evidence to date would be what we call a vicious lie; or (b) you're not, in which case you're just seizing on a tragedy to try to score unrelated political points, which is contemptible. Which is it?

I understand the desperation that Democrats must feel after taking a historic beating in the midterm elections and seeing the popularity of ObamaCare plummet while voters flee the party in droves. But those who purport to care about the health of our political community demonstrate precious little actual concern for America's political well-being when they seize on any pretext, however flimsy, to call their political opponents accomplices to murder.

Where is the decency in that?