Things I Can't Find a Better Label For

Two main sections: programming-related and non-programming-related. (the latter defined as "things that might be of interest to people who don't hack code dayly"). The latter section has a large subsection on hypertext.

Somehow related to CS and/or Programming

(21.01.96) John Reeke's musings on User Interfaces.

(04.10.95) Computing As Compression: The Sp Theory and the Sp System. After reading this summary, I have still no idea what they are talking about. If _that_ ain't an indicator of a new paradigm!

(26.09.95) Futurist Programming: Manifesto (a joke), Background (a critique), and Notes (a good reading list, some cheap slogans, fun exercises that should be part of any "introduction to SE" curriculum, a scathing application of OO design methodology to a real-world example, a good priorities list)

My very own on-going rant on Bad Software.
"Larry Wall should be shot. Along with Bill Joy and Eric Allman."
-- Daniel Finster, comp.lang.lisp
"Why, just because you guys frittered away a 20-year headstart?"
-- Larry Wall, comp.lang.perl
ichard Gabriel's Essay "Lisp: Good News, Bad News, How to Win Big" is really on the clash of LISP vs. C/UNIX and the unterlying design philosophies. You don't have to agree with him (I know I don't), but that rant was quite influential in its time -- everyone has read it, and the term "worse-is-better" is no firmly entrenched in designers' minds all over the world. (I keep around a local copy; british readers might consider this copy.)
(02.05.95) The Literate Programming Library. With the advent of WWW, and especially HTML as a simple, human-readable, plain-ASCII interchange format, a new medium can be employed for the writing of literate programs.

A first step into that direction is that Noweb (Regrettably, the sources in Stuttgart are without the nice HTML doc of the bellcore site) ``now comes with a simple LaTeX-to-HTML converter''.

Mark Weiser's page on Ubiquitous Computing.

What is an Agent?

Carl Hewitt recently remarked that the question what is an agent? is embarrassing for the agent-based computing community in just the same way that the question what is intelligence is embarrassing for the mainstream AI community. The problem is that although the term is widely used, by many people working in closely related areas, it defies attempts to produce a single universally accepted definition.

quoted from:
Mike Wooldridge and Nick Jennings, 1994
Intelligent Agents: Theory and Practice

(Haven't read it myself yet. I know that Hewitt's actors and agents are historically important to the development of Scheme, Smalltalk, Self, and all those others funky modern experimental languages that try to go beyond the classical paradigms. (In case you didn't know, think about what an "object" is: something with a state, that reacts to messages by sending out a replay, maybe by sending out other messages, maybe by changing state. Now think about what a closure is: a thing that has state (lexically bound variables), that accepts messages (function calls), that returns a value (except when it doesn't terminate, as with continuations), and that may call other closures. Now what is an actor? A thing with a state, that can accept messages (or events), ... you see the picture. Except that actors (or agents) can be "autonomous", i.e. their execution can be in parallel, and they can act on their own. But the latter can be explained away by a global clock to which every actor is connected, and the former is nothing new to pure functional evaluation methods.) I really should read the HOPL (I,II) proceedings one of these days.)

Not only related to CS and/or Programming

(04.03.95) Yet another Magna Carta For The Knowledge Age, at least from somewhat-known authors (Esther Dyson, George Gilder, Jay Keyworth and Alvin Toffler). the usual "we live in historic times" (the "Knowledge Age") stuff, the emergence of a "Third Wave economy", etc.pp. Maybe I am just getting old and cynical, but what's new about that?
The Right Side of the Web: ``At last, a place on the Web to give equal time to make up for all of the socialism and moral anarchy (God bless 'em) you find on the Net.'' They Kid You Not! Contains links to places like D.C. Metro Prolife News/Events Line and The ProLife News.
(18.04.95) My musings on Joyce, Machine Translation, and AI.
(17.04.95) The Meme Factory

``Wow. True Hypertext.''

Many people writing "true" hypertexts try to find new paradigms of telling stories, or presenting technical ideas. "Fake" hypertext uses links only for traditional purposes (footnotes, quotations, cfs, indices) within an otherwise linear text flow. IMHO, nobody has yet shown that "true" hypertext at the "micro level" (below the "article" or "chapter" unit size) is a good thing.

The School of Communications Design and Institute for Language, Technology, and Publications Design is home to hypertext authors Nancy Kaplan and Stuart Moulthrop. They are also initiators of CREW (FAQ, Signatories) (Compact for Responsive Electronic Writing), a ``non-binding, strictly symbolic agreement among World Wide Web authors promising to open their documents to links proposed by others in the community''. The list of signatories is a good starting point if you search people interested in THT.

Kia Mennie's page on hypertext and literary things

(02.05.95) Amongst its many other attractions, the Seven by Nine Squares now features a collection of emblems (aka icons, aka pictograms). Some of them are obivous, some not (architecture, cinema, concept/conception, continuity, critique, memory, system, trace), some I don't get at all (absence, arrogance, auto-reference, contemporary-colonial, work, writing), and some are funny once you know them (censorship, commemorative place, curiosity, installation).

This page is part of the Trash Heap.