The DBA said “Dave, …”

Sometimes, it's a case of not so much needing a guru as you do someone who exposes information for the smart people you already have. Like the DBA. Introduction Some years back, when Sun was still alive, I was part of a big capacity planning project with an industrial customer. The economy wasn't super good,… Continue reading The DBA said “Dave, …”

Composing an “Arbiter of Truth”

William Gibson once said The future is already here—It's just not very evenly distributed. That also applies to the solutions to problems, like that of finding out who's telling the truth in widespread discussion. By Gibson's dictum, we should expect to find different parts of the solution, but not together, and likely in all sorts… Continue reading Composing an “Arbiter of Truth”

There are two kinds of tests, but lots of names

“reverse transcription–polymerase chain reaction” tests RT-PCR tests PCR, or polymerase chain reaction tests dna tests rna tests nucleic acid tests tests using DNA and RNA, that recognize the virus directly, usually from nose and throat swabs blood tests serology tests antibody tests IgM-IgG tests Immunoglobulin tests tests where one detects antibodies in the blood, from… Continue reading There are two kinds of tests, but lots of names

Errors, as if they were in a safety-critical system

In some systems, errors are really evil. Trains running into cars at railroad crossings, for example. In computer programs, the errors aren't of that seriousness, but what if we looked at them from the viewpoint of someone doing safety-critical systems? Many moons ago, I attended Jonathan Ostroff's course on safety-critical systems, which studied things like… Continue reading Errors, as if they were in a safety-critical system