P. Graham's "What you can't say" & Joel's "Résumé"
Might fulfill each other :)
Mmmhhh... I don't know. I think Graham's article is more about the philosophy behind the ideas that reign in a particular society at a particular time, and Joel's is a small rant against people that can't express well with written words.
I thought P.Graham's article was more about saying things like "All H1-B indians smell like curry." How does it relate to the resume?
It reminds me of a great TV serie from 10+ years ago: "The Day the Universe Changed". It was a very interesting and thought provoking show about some paradigm shifts in human knowledge (earth circling around the sun, etc.)
"When you find something you can't say, what do you do with it? My advice is, don't say it."
I think Paul Graham's articles are *usually* very insightful, but this is not one of them. He kind of skirts around some concepts without using colorful analogies or any examples from the post-galileo era. I got the feeling that he was trying to blurt some heresy out, but was afraid to, so he wrote this uninspiring prose instead.
I read it that way, too. Something like
well maybe he is someone who has said unfashionable things; and maybe he is hinting that he wishes he hadn't?
i like i
It reminds me of a high school essay on conformity, normality, etc. that teachers like to assign.
Yeah, this was not one of Paul Graham's better articles.
Paul Graham and Philip Greenspun suffer from the same problem: obtaining a PhD in computer science seems to stunt your intellectual growth in every other intellectual area. They may be wise beyond their years when it comes to LISP, but when it comes to philosophy they read like junior high school students.
So will it now be popular to say that there are just certain things you can't say in polite society (the internet laughingly being polite society?)
Not only is it long-winded and everything else, but his conclusions are just plain bizarre. Take, frex, the idea that if we consider something shocking, but lots of other cultures think it's OK, we're probably wrong. Does this apply to slavery? Child labor? The list goes on...
I haven't read "What you can't say", but the quality of his other articles seems to be directly proportional to how much they have to do with LISP.
Heh. Couldn't have said it better, semi.
Oh, I get it! All the negative responses are just trying to "Think the Unthinkable"!
David B. Wildgoose
Here are some things not to say in public unless you want to get into a long discussion that you can't win:
Not giving my usual id...
Follow the link at the bottom labeled "A Civic Duty to Annoy", an essay by Wendy Kaminer. It is a bit more interesting read. PG essay was interesting but too much theory and not enough examples.
Here's something interesting that actually agrees with Graham's article: I live in Mexico, so items 2 (Hitler - Bush) and 3 (Patriot Act) are perfectly common here and nobody would complain if you brought them into conversation.
See http://paulgraham.com/resay.html for why he didn't include specific examples. (Briefly, because then all the discussion would be about the examples, instead of about the subject.)
I'm impressed how he managed to string out "people are sheep" into such a long essay. I doubt such insight, such pure unadulterated wisdom will be seen again within our lifetimes, Paul Graham is a god of our time.
The vacuity of Graham's article illustrates why Physics PhD's would not do well in French PhD programs.
I like beaches
> Now if only he wrote management books.
Pinku Surana made some interesting comments, which were then read by Paul Graham himself - it was funny.
As a couple of people have mentioned, Graham's arguments are basic philosophy. Still, there are plenty of programmers who haven't studied any philosophy, and the essay will expose them to some worthwhile ideas.
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