Monthly Archives: July 2014

Daily links for the end of the week.

  • Founder Confidence

    “Unfortunately for entrepreneurs, the market doesn’t reset next season. The place you sit and the trajectory you are on, can be very, very difficult to change. Shifting expectations from winning to justifying your place in the market, rarely re-instills confidence.”

    That applies to everyone!

  • Q: Why are banks organised in product silos? A: McKinsey
  • Reasoning, responsibility and run off

    “For my money, Circuit Paul Ricard has had things right for the last decade. High abrasion run-off. But take it up a notch. Coat the run-off areas in such a high abrasion surface that it will not cause punctures or deflation, but will scrub enough rubber off as to ruin that set of tyres. Put a wheel off, let alone all four, and you’ve got to come in and get them changed.


    No more keeping your foot in. No more making up positions. No more taking just a few inches more than you should. Keep it on track, inside the white lines.”

    This applies to more than just F1. The environment you set up (whether physical or otherwise) governs what people will do. As Clinton/Deming would (sorta) say: “It is the system, stupid.”

  • Exacto demonstrates first ever guided .50 calibre bullets – remote control bullets from DARPA!
  • Everyone is obviously right – you have to look at this. I am obviously right.
  • Wolfram Programming Cloud
  • What qualities make a good startup engineer – the first line is important:

    “Not every good engineer makes a good startup engineer.”

    I guess that will be counter-intuitive to many, especially those who simply see “resources” instead of “people” and who think engineers are fungible.

Daily Links: 7-1!!!!!

Daily Links: p2p insurance, a driver and “ethics”

  • Hey Guevara – peer to peer insurance. Just like it used to be in the old days of the Lloyds first coffee house. Shame the site is a bit too hipsterish for me: lots of cool UI, just a shame it doesn’t show me what I want to know straight away. The typo’s all over the place aren’t great either. That said, I LOVE the concept!
  • British Grand Prix: It was a really tough day – Susie Wolff – great to see Susie Wolff being given the chance to have a go in an F1 session. Real shame the car had issues.
  • Research ethics – couldn’t have put it better myself. I don’t have a facebook account because I made the decision, years ago, that I did not want someone else to curate my feeds for me. I find it genuinely astounding that people don’t realise that “their” facebook (or pretty much any other site) is being manipulated on a daily basis for a multitude of reasons.

Daily Links – 3rd July 2014

  • Putting teeth in our public cloud – building out OnMetal @ Rackspace.
  • Challenges in Designing at Scale: Formal Methods in Building Robust Distributed Systems – I think it is the law to post anything James Hamilton puts out!
  • Use of Formal Methods at Amazon Web Services – the stuff that James is talking about in the previous link.
  • The Scientific Problem That Must Be Experienced – turbulence.

    “This transition to turbulence doesn’t happen at the same flow speed for all fluids—more viscous ones can be “kept in line” at higher speeds than runny ones. For flow down a channel or pipe, a quantity called the Reynolds number determines when turbulence appears. Roughly speaking, this encodes the ratio of the flow speed to the viscosity of the fluid. Turbulence develops at high values of the Reynolds number.”

    What is the equivalent concept to viscosity in the product development “flow”? Is there one? If you can find an organisational construct that allows product and engineering teams to be more “viscous” then does that mean that they will have a higher flow (i.e. product delivery) rate?

Daily Links – 2nd July 2014

  • Machine Learning Communities
  • The Elephant was a Trojan Horse: On the Death of Map-Reduce at Google

    “If we are in a data revolution right now, the computational advance that made it possible was not the ‘discovery’ of Map-Reduce, but instead the realisation that these computing systems can and should be built from relatively cheap, shared-nothing machines (and the real contribution from Google in this area was arguably GFS, not Map-Reduce).”

    I think people forget what it was like to be arguing for cheap, shared-nothing machines a decade ago. You were looked on as if you were mad. More than mad. Delusional. It was the talk of crackpots because everyone “knew” how you built “proper” systems. Except they didn’t. On the plus side I got to see what being thought of as a crackpot was like for a decade!