Duck typing

Imagine you have a duck. Imagine you have a wall. Now imagine you throw the duck with a lot of force against a wall. Duck typing means that the duck hitting the wall quacks like a duck would.

ps. Replace wall with API and duck with ugly stupid script written by an idiot. You can leave quacks.

Scrum is (best done) like a soccer team

As a freelancer I saw many companies, many situations and worked with many Project Managers, Product Owners, Scrum Masters and god knows what names the HR department came up with.

What is most important, in my experience, is that the people leading the team try to focus the people in the group on as few common goals as possible during one sprint. The more stories or goals the team has to finish, the more individualism and the fewer things will get done (with done being defined by your definition of done).

Differently put you should try to make your team work like how a soccer team plays. You try to make three, four or five goals per sprint. But you do this as a team.

Example: When a story isn’t finished at the end of the sprint; it’s the team’s fault. Not the fault of the one guy that worked on it. The team has to find a solution. If it’s always the same guy being lazy, that’s not the project’s or the team’s results. You or HR deals with that guy later. Doing so is outside of Scrum’s scope. It’s not for your retrospective discussion. But do sanction the team for not delivering.

Another example is not to put too much stories on the task board and yet to keep stories as small and/or well defined as possible. Too much stories or too large stories will result in every individual picking a different story (or subtask of the larger story) to be responsible for. At the end of the sprint none of these will be really finished. And the developers in the team won’t care about the other features being developed during the sprint. So they will dislike having to review other people’s features. They’ll have difficulty finding a reviewer. They won’t communicate with each other. They’ll become careless and dispassionate.

Your planning caused that. That makes you a bad team player. The coach is part of the team.

Onlife, Hoe de digitale wereld je leven bepaalt

Moraal filosofe Katleen Gabriels presenteerde gisteren haar boekOnlife, Hoe de digitale wereld je leven bepaalt’. Ik ben dus maar eens gaan kijken. Ik was onder de indruk.

Haar uiteenzetting was gebalanceerd; ze klonk geïnformeerd. Het debat met oa. Sven Gatz, Pedro De Bruyckere en Karel Verhoeven was eigenlijk ook wel cava. Ik ben dus erg benieuwd naar het boek.

Na een Spinoza-kenner hebben we dus nu ook een moraal filosofe die zich met oa. Internet of Things dingen zal gaan bezig houden. Ik vind het dus wel goed dat de filosofie van’t land zich eindelijk eens komt moeien. De consument gelooft ons, techneuten, toch niet dat al die rommel die ze gekocht hebben dikke rotzooi is. Dus misschien dat ze wat gaan luisteren naar s’lands filosofen? Ik denk het niet. Maar slechter zal de situatie er ook niet van worden, hé?

Enfin. Medeneurdjes contacteer die Katleen en vertel over wat je zoal hebt meegemaakt wat onethisch is. Wie weet verwerkt ze je verhaal in een uiteenzetting of volgend boek? Je kan dat nooit weten he. Je moest trouwens toch eens van die zolder afkomen.

De afspraak

Den NV-A vandaag in De Afspraak (onze eigen dezinformatsiya):

Het kinderrechtenverdrag versus de vrijheid van meningsuiting van de prinses van België. Dat, om de liefde voor het koningshuis van een liberaal, Herman De Croo, te pareren.

Het vrije debat, het is toch iets mooi.

Niet waar?

The Internet of crap – The Ioc. Now In Store!

Like I mentioned a few months ago, here we are again. More things equals more crap on the Internet. Not more utility. No. More crap. It’s only crap. With lower case ‘c’. The crap of the crap programmers of the crap is not worth wasting an expensive capital letter on.

Time to require CE marking for all that crap. Enough is enough.

It never ends

Allereerst, na Brussel blijf ik hier bij:

[over encryptie] Allereerst zolang er geen nood is moet men niets doen. Want ik zie niet meteen een echte noodzaak om alle mensen hun elektronica te kunnen kraken. Dat was vroeger niet nodig; vandaag zijn er niet meer of minder gevaarlijke gekken en elektronica voegt maar weinig toe aan hun wapenarsenaal. Dus is dat nu niet nodig.

Ik sta ook hier achter:

Oh, and to our security services: well done catching those guys from Molenbeek and Vorst. Good job

Niet gestresseerd geraken. Zoals alle mensen presteer je slecht wanneer je gestresseerd bent. Hold the line. Molenbeek en Vorst was trouwens prachtig werk. Goed gedaan.

We vinden die balans wel.

Hey guys

Have you guys stopped debating systemd like a bunch of morons already? Because I’ve been keeping myself away from the debate a bit: the amount of idiot was just too large for my mind.People who know me also know that quite a bit of idiot fits into it.

I remember when I was younger, somewhere in the beginning of the century, that we first debated ORBit-2, then Bonobo, then software foolishly written with it like Evolution, Mono (and the idea of rewriting Evolution in C#. But first we needed a development environment MonoDevelop to write it in – oh the gnomes). XFree86 and then the X.Org fork. Then Scaffolding and Anjuta. Beagle and Tracker (oh the gnomes). Rhythmbox versus Banshee (oh the gnomes). Desktop settings in gconf, then all sorts of gnome services, then having a shared mainloop implementation with Qt.

Then god knows what. Dconf, udev, gio, hal, FS monitoring: a lot of things that were silently but actually often bigger impact changes than systemd is because much much more real code had to be rewritten, not just badly written init.d-scripts. The Linux eco-system has reinvented itself several times without most people having noticed it.

Then finally D-Bus came. And yes, evil Lennart was there too. He was also one of those young guys working on stuff. I think evil evil pulseaudio by that time (thank god Lennart replaced the old utter crap we had with it). You know, working on stuff.

D-Bus’s debate began a bit like systemd’s debate: Everybody had feelings about their own IPC system being better because of this and that (most of which where really bad copies of xmms’s remote control infrastructure). It turned out that KDE got it mostly right with DCOP, so D-Bus copied a lot from it. It also opened a lot of IPC author’s eyes that message based IPC, uniform activation of services, introspection and a uniform way of defining the interface are all goddamned important things. Also other things, like tools for monitoring and debugging plus libraries for all goddamn popular programming environments and most importantly for IPC their mainloops, appeared to be really important. The uniformity between Qt/KDE and Gtk+/GNOME application’s IPC systems was quite a nice thing and a real enabler: suddenly the two worlds’ softwares could talk with each other. Without it, Tracker could not have happened on the N900 and N9. Or how do you think qt/qsparql talks with it?

Nowadays everybody who isn’t insane or has a really, really, really good reason (like awesome latency or something, although kdbus solves that too), and with exception of all Belgian Linux programmers (who for inexplicable reasons all want their own personal IPC – and then endlessly work on bridges to all other Belgian Linux programmer’s IPC systems), won’t write his own IPC system. They’ll just use D-Bus and get it over with (or they initially bridge to D-Bus, and refactor their own code away over time).

But anyway.

The D-Bus debate was among software developers. And sometimes teh morons joined. But they didn’t understand what the heck we where doing. It was easy to just keep the debate mostly technical. Besides, we had some (for them) really difficult to understand stuff to reply like “you have file descriptor passing for that”, “study it and come back”. Those who came back are now all expert D-Bus users (I btw think and/or remember that evil Lennart worked on FD passing in D-Bus).

Good times. Lot’s of debates.

But the systemd debate, not the software, the debate, is only moron.

Recently I’ve seen some people actually looking into it and learning it. And then reporting about what they learned. That’s not really moron of course. But then their blogs get morons in the comments. Morons all over the place.

Why aren’t they on their fantastic *BSD or Devuan or something already?

ps. Lennart, if you read this (I don’t think so): I don’t think you are evil. You’re super nice and fluffy. Thanks for all the fish!

nrl:maxCardinality one-to-many ontology changes

I added support for changing the nrl:maxCardinality property of an rdfs:Property from one to many. Earlier Martyn Russel reverted such an ontology change as this was a blocker for the Debian packaging by Michael Biebl.

We only support going from one to many. That’s because going from many to one would obviously imply data-loss (a string-list could work with CSV, but an int-list can’t be stored as CSV in a single-value int type – instead of trying to support nonsense I decided to just not do it at all).

More supported ontology changes can be found here.

Not sure if people care but this stuff was made while listening to Infected Mushroom.

Mr. Dillon; smartphone innovation in Europe ought to be about people’s privacy

Dear Mark,

Your team and you yourself are working on the Jolla Phone. I’m sure that you guys are doing a great job and although I think you’ve been generating hype and vaporware until we can actually buy the damn thing, I entrust you with leading them.

As their leader you should, I would like to, allow them to provide us with all of the device’s source code and build environments of their projects so that we can have the exact same binaries. With exactly the same I mean that it should be possible to use MD5 checksums. I’m sure you know what that means and you and I know that your team knows how to provide geeks like me with this. I worked with some of them together during Nokia’s Harmattan and Fremantle and we both know that you can easily identify who can make this happen.

The reason why is simple: I want Europe to develop a secure phone similar to how, among other open source projects, the Linux kernel can be trusted. By peer review of the source code.

Kind regards,

A former Harmattan developer who worked on a component of the Nokia N9 that stores the vast majority of user’s privacy.

ps. I also think that you should reunite Europe’s finest software developers and secure the funds to make this workable. But that’s another discussion which I’m eager to help you with.