"I have a mind like a steel... uh... thingy." Patrick Logan's weblog.

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Friday, October 14, 2005

The Cathedral is the Bizarre (Too)

Jon Udell points out that the cathedral and the bazaar have much in common, perhaps most of all would be their respective ongoing evolution. They are equally bizarre.

To the point about Sed and Awk... I am not sure the cathedral or today's bazaar is more coherent. I am not sure they need to be. We've been postmodern for some time and we should not expect that to change. Embracing the chaos is almost the goal itself.

Innovation implies chaos. Sometimes the cathedral can be too limiting for innovation, or at least timely innovation. Look at the back and forth on schedules and dependencies among the new work coming out of Microsoft's dotnet and longhorn team. When was WinFS avalable again? What platforms? How does that line up with the LINQ query capability again?

In the bazaar there is much less control over the chaos. I'm fine with that because generally people find or make ways to get from one place to another within the bazaar. Here's some postmodern glue I have been working with lately...

I wanted to use Erlang with the Berekeley XML database as well as with the Clips rules engine. After a little consideration of my options for integration, for my purposes the easy answer was Python. Running SWIG for Python on Erlang's C-based erl_interface creates the glue that gets me into Python from Erlang (with all the desired Erlang node management capabilities). From there Python already has Berkeley XML DB integration and the PyClips interface to Clips. Plus I can send Python code from Erlang over the distributed process connection and have it executed dynamically in those Python "agents". On the front end, Erlang sends JavaScript, XML, JSON, and CSS to the browser. These combinations make Sed, Awk, and various shells look downright homogenous.

Bizarre combinations gathered from the bazaar. But when you begin to piece together all the different MSFT components you get something equally as bizarre.

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Portland, Oregon, United States
I'm usually writing from my favorite location on the planet, the pacific northwest of the u.s. I write for myself only and unless otherwise specified my posts here should not be taken as representing an official position of my employer. Contact me at my gee mail account, username patrickdlogan.