Da Rule Rant

Yeah. You know a meeting is not going to end well when someone asks "shouldn't we first come up with a good definition of X?", where X is a random technology. After this, there will be long discussions where everyone will pitch in completely unnecessarily griping about their pet peeve or pet words, and in the end you will have a definition that's so politically correct that it is useful only for putting on Powerpoint slides you can fold into paper airplanes and throw out of the office window.

Geeks don't waste their time definining words. They look at things, grab an intuitive understanding of them, hack away as fast as they can, then run away before anyone realizes what happened.

Definitions are mostly a burden: Once you have defined a technology in certain terms, you will have trouble thinking outside the box - the words tie down your thinking to that particular box... Definitions are not good for creativity or understanding. They are not even good for explaining things to newbies, because they do not comprehend the things the same way you do, or the people who defined them do.

The only good definition is in an RFC or mathematical formula: expressed in a mathematical or semi-logical language to mean one and one thing only, so that you can use a single word later on without having to write the entire explanation each time.



Reminds me of discussions on philosophy of science. How Karl Popper asserted that a scientific fact is only a fact if it can be refuted. How things live to be torn down or replaced by experimental, empirical research.

Trying to search for a definition is almost the opposite of this, in that it is the search for a truth that cannot be refuted.

It is though a very 'human' activity - to find a consensus on what pattern we are all recognising, on what we can all grasp to move forward.

The harder it is to find a definition, the more sure you can be that there is something really there!!!

--, 16-Dec-2003

Language is power. Everything is semiotics.

--J-Ko, 17-Dec-2003

Yes, words and names have power.

And like all power, it can be used for good or bad.

--JanneJalkanen, 17-Dec-2003

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"Main_blogentry_161203_1" last changed on 16-Dec-2003 16:24:24 EET by JanneJalkanen.