15 MAR 2017 by ideonexus

 All War is Based on Deception

兵者,詭道也。故能而示之不能,用而示之不用,近而示之遠,遠而示之近。利而誘之,亂而取之,實而備之,強而避之,怒而撓之,卑而驕之,佚而勞之,親而離之。攻其無備,出其不意,此兵家之勝,不可先傳也。 All warfare is based on deception. Hence, when able to attack, we must seem unable; when using our forces, we must seem inactive; when we are near, we must make the enemy believe we are far away;when far awa...
Folksonomies: war strategy wargaming
Folksonomies: war strategy wargaming
  1  notes
 
31 AUG 2013 by ideonexus

 COBOL as a Programming Language

I worked with COBOL near the end of my last contract and found aspects of it fascinating compared to today's languages. Everything is about structures that map directly to the bits on disk, with fine grain control on precision and data types. But then the language reads as a series of macros where you don't have to remember the low level details: do this to this, put this here, if this do that. It's also a terribly difficult language to parse because it was designed for ease of use by humans...
Folksonomies: history computer science
Folksonomies: history computer science
  1  notes

Comment captures what's interesting about it historically, how early programmers needed algorithms to handle all the bit-switching.

25 APR 2012 by ideonexus

 Seeing VS Observing

I could not help laughing at the ease with which he explained his process of deduction. 'When I hear you give your reasons,' I remarked, 'the thing always appears to me to be so ridiculously simple that I could easily do it myself, though at each successive instance of your reasoning I am baffled, until you explain your process. And yet I believe that my eyes are as good as yours.' 'Quite so,' he answered, lighting a cigarette, and throwing himself down into an arm-chair. 'You see, but you d...
Folksonomies: observation mindfulness
Folksonomies: observation mindfulness
 1  1  notes

Sherlock Holmes explains the difference between taking your world for granted and observing it scientifically.

15 APR 2011 by ideonexus

 The Book Wheel

Ramelli's designs were very inventive and often required precise machining that was impossible in his day. Many were successfully manufactured and sold, two or three centuries later. Ramelli designed the "book-wheel" or “reading wheel” to present volumes of text to readers in whatever position they had last placed them. The “book-wheel,” an alternative version of the revolving bookstand, is a device designed to allow one person to read a variety of heavy books in one location with e...
  1  notes

Not a direct quote from the text, but a description of what the book wheel was in Ramelli's book.