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Building Microservices by Sam Newman
airport security, Amazon Web Services, anti-pattern, business process, call centre, continuous integration, create, read, update, delete, defense in depth, don't repeat yourself, Edward Snowden, fault tolerance, index card, information retrieval, Infrastructure as a Service, inventory management, job automation, load shedding, loose coupling, platform as a service, premature optimization, pull request, recommendation engine, social graph, software as a service, source of truth, the built environment, web application, WebSocket, x509 certificate
We need to embrace the idea that a microservice will encompass the lifecycle of our core domain entities, like the Customer. We’ve already talked about the importance of the logic associated with changing this Customer being held in the customer service, and that if we want to change it we have to issue a request to the customer service. But it also follows that we should consider the customer service as being the source of truth for Customers. When we retrieve a given Customer resource from the customer service, we get to see what that resource looked like when we made the request. It is possible that after we requested that Customer resource, something else has changed it. What we have in effect is a memory of what the Customer resource once looked like. The longer we hold on to this memory, the higher the chance that this memory will be false.
These systems allow you to store information about principals, such as what roles they play in the organization. Often, the directory service and the identity provider are one and the same, while sometimes they are separate but linked. Okta, for example, is a hosted SAML identity provider that handles tasks like two-factor authentication, but can link to your company’s directory services as the source of truth. SAML is a SOAP-based standard, and is known for being fairly complex to work with despite the libraries and tooling available to support it. OpenID Connect is a standard that has emerged as a specific implementation of OAuth 2.0, based on the way Google and others handle SSO. It uses simpler REST calls, and in my opinion is likely to make inroads into enterprises due to its improved ease of use.
Other tools offer everything up to and including rate limiting, monetization, API catalogs, and discovery systems. Some API systems allow you to bridge API keys to existing directory services. This would allow you to issue API keys to principals (representing people or systems) in your organization, and control the lifecycle of those keys in the same way you’d manage their normal credentials. This opens up the possibility of allowing access to your services in different ways but keeping the same source of truth — for example, using SAML to authenticate humans for SSO, and using API keys for service-to-service communication, as shown in Figure 9-2. Figure 9-2. Using directory services to synchronize principal information between an SSO and an API gateway The Deputy Problem Having a principal authenticate with a given microserservice is simple enough. But what happens if that service then needs to make additional calls to complete an operation?
Marx: A Very Short Introduction by Peter Singer
Chapter 1 A Life and its Impact Marx’s impact can only be compared with that of religious figures like Jesus or Muhammad. For much of the second half of the twentieth century, nearly four of of every ten people on earth lived under governments that considered themselves Marxist and claimed – however implausibly – to use Marxist principles to decide how the nation should be run. In these countries Marx was a kind of secular Jesus; his writings were the ultimate source of truth and authority; his image was everywhere reverently displayed. The lives of hundreds of millions of people have been deeply affected by Marx’s legacy. Nor has Marx’s influence been limited to communist societies. Conservative governments have ushered in social reforms to cut the ground from under revolutionary Marxist opposition movements. Conservatives have also reacted in less benign ways: Mussolini and Hitler were helped to power by conservatives who saw their rabid nationalism as the answer to the Marxist threat.
Martin Kleppmann-Designing Data-Intensive Applications. The Big Ideas Behind Reliable, Scalable and Maintainable Systems-O’Reilly (2017) by Unknown
active measures, Amazon Web Services, bitcoin, blockchain, business intelligence, business process, c2.com, cloud computing, collaborative editing, commoditize, conceptual framework, cryptocurrency, database schema, DevOps, distributed ledger, Donald Knuth, Edward Snowden, ethereum blockchain, fault tolerance, finite state, Flash crash, full text search, general-purpose programming language, informal economy, information retrieval, Internet of things, iterative process, John von Neumann, loose coupling, Marc Andreessen, natural language processing, Network effects, packet switching, peer-to-peer, performance metric, place-making, premature optimization, recommendation engine, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, self-driving car, semantic web, Shoshana Zuboff, social graph, social web, software as a service, software is eating the world, sorting algorithm, source of truth, SPARQL, speech recognition, statistical model, web application, WebSocket, wikimedia commons
This aspect of system-building is often overlooked by vendors who claim that their product can sat‐ isfy all your needs. In reality, integrating disparate systems is one of the most impor‐ tant things that needs to be done in a nontrivial application. Systems of Record and Derived Data On a high level, systems that store and process data can be grouped into two broad categories: Systems of record A system of record, also known as source of truth, holds the authoritative version of your data. When new data comes in, e.g., as user input, it is first written here. Each fact is represented exactly once (the representation is typically normalized). If there is any discrepancy between another system and the system of record, then the value in the system of record is (by definition) the correct one. Derived data systems Data in a derived system is the result of taking some existing data from another system and transforming or processing it in some way.
See the discussions of read skew in “Snapshot Isolation and Repeatable Read” on page 237, write skew in “Write Skew and Phantoms” on page 246, and clock stored procedure A way of encoding the logic of a transac‐ tion such that it can be entirely executed on a database server, without communi‐ cating back and forth with a client during the transaction. See “Actual Serial Execu‐ tion” on page 252. stream process A continually running computation that consumes a never-ending stream of events as input, and derives some output from it. See Chapter 11. synchronous The opposite of asynchronous. system of record A system that holds the primary, authori‐ tative version of some data, also known as the source of truth. Changes are first writ‐ ten here, and other datasets may be derived from the system of record. See the introduction to Part III. timeout One of the simplest ways of detecting a fault, namely by observing the lack of a response within some amount of time. However, it is impossible to know whether a timeout is due to a problem with the remote node, or an issue in the network. See “Timeouts and Unbounded Delays” on page 281. total order A way of comparing things (e.g., time‐ stamps) that allows you to always say which one of two things is greater and which one is lesser.
A Pattern Language, Benevolent Dictator For Life (BDFL), Berlin Wall, c2.com, call centre, collaborative editing, conceptual framework, continuous integration, Donald Knuth, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, Dynabook, en.wikipedia.org, Firefox, Ford paid five dollars a day, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, George Santayana, Grace Hopper, Guido van Rossum, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Howard Rheingold, index card, Internet Archive, inventory management, Jaron Lanier, John Markoff, John von Neumann, knowledge worker, Larry Wall, life extension, Loma Prieta earthquake, Menlo Park, Merlin Mann, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Norbert Wiener, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, Potemkin village, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Stallman, Ronald Reagan, Ruby on Rails, semantic web, side project, Silicon Valley, Singularitarianism, slashdot, software studies, source of truth, South of Market, San Francisco, speech recognition, stealth mode startup, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, Therac-25, thinkpad, Turing test, VA Linux, Vannevar Bush, Vernor Vinge, web application, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K
Or you could avoid conflict in the first place through “locking,” which allows a user editing a document to make sure that no one else has access to it until the work is done and the changes are saved. If WebDAV could do it, why was it so hard for Chandler? Chandler’s peer-to-peer approach meant there was no central server to be what developers call, with a kind of flip reverence, “the source of truth.” WebDAV’s server stored the document, knew what was happening to it, and could coordinate messages about its status to multiple users. Under a decentralized peer-to-peer approach, multiple copies of a document can proliferate with no master copy for users to rely on, no authority to turn to. Life is harder without a “source of truth.” For programmers as for other human beings, a canonical authority can be convenient. It rescues you from having to figure out how to adjudicate dilemmas on your own. After just a few weeks at OSAF, Dusseault became convinced that the peer-to-peer road to Chandler sharing was likely to prove a dead end.
The Great Turning: From Empire to Earth Community by David C. Korten
Albert Einstein, banks create money, big-box store, Bretton Woods, British Empire, clean water, colonial rule, Community Supported Agriculture, death of newspapers, declining real wages, European colonialism, Francisco Pizarro, full employment, George Gilder, global supply chain, global village, God and Mammon, Hernando de Soto, Howard Zinn, informal economy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, joint-stock company, land reform, market bubble, market fundamentalism, Monroe Doctrine, Naomi Klein, neoliberal agenda, new economy, peak oil, planetary scale, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Project for a New American Century, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, sexual politics, source of truth, South Sea Bubble, stem cell, structural adjustment programs, The Chicago School, trade route, Washington Consensus, wealth creators, World Values Survey
This contest has raged in the West since the beginning of the scientiﬁc revolution. 253 254 PART IV: THE GREAT TURNING Religion of the Strict Father By the time of the early scientiﬁc revolution in the sixteenth century, prevailing Christian theology had fallen into a distrust of the human intellect and its ability to perceive truth from observations of the material world. Indeed, excessive concern with material phenomena was considered a sign of a neglected soul. Religious authorities maintained that divine revelation as enshrined in scripture and interpreted by themselves was the only valid source of truth and that the universe is governed by forces beyond human knowing. The prevailing Western worldview of that time, particularly as deﬁned by the Catholic faith, • viewed the human relation to God as one of a child to a father who demands strict loyalty and obedience; • ascribed to God both human emotions and the power to create and destroy whole worlds by an arbitrary act of will; • held humans to be both the purpose and center of God’s creation; • venerated a pantheon of saints with powers to intervene in matters of the heart and ﬂesh; • attributed physical and mental afﬂictions to possession by malevolent spirits; and • claimed for religious authorities the power to guarantee a place in heaven.
Unfortunately, however, the scientiﬁc revolution brought not only a rejection of the magical fantasies of the lowest order of consciousness but also a denial of the spiritual foundation of reality and a deep alienation from life. Science of the Aging Clock In sharp contrast to the belief systems of most religions, the ideological frame of standard Western science steadfastly maintains that the physical world is the only reality and that the disciplined observation of Beyond Strict Father versus Aging Clock 255 physical phenomena is the only source of truth. That stance began with the theories of Nicolaus Copernicus (1473–1543) and the proofs of Galileo Galilei (1564–1642) that the sun is the center of the solar system and Earth is but one of its several orbiting planets. The conventional scientiﬁc wisdom of that day held that nature functions with the predictable precision of a mechanical clock and that its mechanisms are fully amenable to human understanding.2 Unable to explain the origins of the complex machine postulated by their theories, the early philosophers of the scientiﬁc revolution conceded that territory to the theologians, suggesting that the universe was created and set in motion by a master clock maker who then left it to wind down as the embodied energy potential of its wound-up spring was depleted.
WikiLeaks and the Age of Transparency by Micah L. Sifry
1960s counterculture, Amazon Web Services, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Bernie Sanders, Buckminster Fuller, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, Climategate, crowdsourcing, Google Earth, Howard Rheingold, Internet Archive, Jacob Appelbaum, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Network effects, RAND corporation, school vouchers, Skype, social web, source of truth, Stewart Brand, web application, WikiLeaks
The government’s failure to tell a truth that the public already knew damaged its authority. In the second case, real news was released by ordinary people, in the face of the desire of the authorities to maintain an oﬃcial but false narrative. The government’s failure to tell the truth that the public found out despite its eﬀorts damaged its authority. In both cases, free 144 MICAH L. SIFRY agents are the sources of truths more credible than anything the government oﬀers. And in both cases, it is the same human impulse to share the truth that shines through. Now, think about Bradley Manning and what motivated him. In the networked age, where the watched can also be the watchers, what is at stake is nothing less than the credibility of authority itself. Western governments presumably rest on the consent of the governed, but only if the governed trust the word of those who would govern them.
Pulling Strings With Puppet: Configuration Management Made Easy by James Turnbull
External nodes provide the capability to store our node definitions in a data source external to Puppet, for example, generated by a script or drawn from a database. An extension of this functionality, LDAP nodes, allows you to store your node configurations in a LDAP server. This externalization of data provides a number of advantages when managing our configuration information, especially in providing a single source of truth and a centralized repository for asset and configuration information. As discussed in Chapter 1, the Puppet client-server model is not yet fully scalable to large installations, for example, the management of thousands of nodes. In this chapter, I’ll examine using the Mongrel web server in combination with an Apache proxy running the mod_ssl and mod_proxy_balancer modules to enhance Puppet’s scalability and allow you to run multiple master daemons.
Shipping Greatness by Chris Vander Mey
corporate raider, don't be evil, en.wikipedia.org, fudge factor, Google Chrome, Google Hangouts, Gordon Gekko, Jeff Bezos, Kickstarter, Lean Startup, minimum viable product, performance metric, recommendation engine, Skype, slashdot, sorting algorithm, source of truth, Steve Jobs, Superbowl ad, web application
I like dumb questions because when I answer them, I feel like I’ve made progress without expending much effort. It’s a rare and delightful feeling for me. If I think a user may ask the same question that I receive, I write the question in an “External” section of the same document. I also continue to update the document with new questions as they arrive, so the document becomes a “living” source of truth for people with questions. When I get a question I can’t answer, it goes into the FAQ too, along with the hope that someone else will answer it. Worst case, you can use the FAQ just like a personal bug list or source of topics for discussion with your team. When the number of open issues approaches zero, you’re ready to write a quality one-pager or product requirements doc. There are two major benefits of building an FAQ document.
Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Bernie Madoff, Black Swan, British Empire, carbon footprint, corporate governance, credit crunch, double entry bookkeeping, full employment, Gordon Gekko, income inequality, invention of movable type, invention of writing, Islamic Golden Age, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Joseph Schumpeter, means of production, Naomi Klein, Ponzi scheme, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, source of truth, spice trade, spinning jenny, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, trade route, traveling salesman, upwardly mobile
It also marked the beginning of the demise of Latin as the universal language of Europe and its gradual replacement by the language of science, which, as Italian astronomer and philosopher Galileo pointed out in 1623, ‘was neither Latin nor the vernacular, but numbers and figures, circles, triangles and squares’. It is worth noting just how radically the printing of multiple copies of reliable charts and figures influenced the course of western civilisation. For a start, as Galileo understood, it made possible the triumph of science and the rise of mathematics as the universal language. Simultaneously, it brought about the demise of the Bible and religion as the ultimate and uncontested source of truth. As historian Elizabeth Eisenstein argues, the changes printing brought ‘provide the most plausible point of departure for explaining how confidence shifted from divine revelation to mathematical reasoning and man-made maps’. It turns out that what Leon Battista Alberti thought he was seeing in the early fifteenth century—the introduction of mathematics to the arts, to painting, sculpture and architecture, as expounded in his 1435 treatise on painting, De pictura—was in fact merely one localised example of the spread of mathematics through every sphere of life.
The Techno-Human Condition by Braden R. Allenby, Daniel R. Sarewitz
airport security, augmented reality, carbon footprint, clean water, cognitive dissonance, conceptual framework, creative destruction, Credit Default Swap, decarbonisation, facts on the ground, friendly fire, industrial cluster, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jane Jacobs, land tenure, life extension, Long Term Capital Management, market fundamentalism, mutually assured destruction, nuclear winter, Peter Singer: altruism, planetary scale, prediction markets, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, Silicon Valley, smart grid, source of truth, stem cell, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, the built environment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transcontinental railway, Whole Earth Catalog
The strongest critics of the Enlightenment have been its children-Rousseau, Marx, Freud, postmodernists of all stripes. For these revolutionaries and critics, not only has the Enlightenment tradition been the source of the negation; it has itself been transformed, transcended, and made more universal and encompassing by the dialectic generated by the negation. Indeed, the Enlightenment framework succeeded-persistedonly to the extent it was able to continually negate itself as a unique source of "truth." But this process of self-negation was largely carried out in the domains of science and social theory, and largely in reaction to what had come before, not in anticipation of what might be coming. Institutions and Anticipatory Self-Negation What we want to suggest now is that the challenges of rapid and continual technological transformation require an acceleration 174 Chapter 8 of the life-giving process of self-negation that has allowed the Enlightenment, as a way of explaining and justifying certain types of human activity (especially the creation of knowledge and the accumulation of wealth), to flourish.
Thinking in Pictures: And Other Reports From My Life With Autism by Temple Grandin
He went on to say in the same paper: “The road to this paradise was not as comfortable and alluring as the road to the religious paradise; but it has proved itself trustworthy, and I have never regretted having chosen it.” But my favorite of Einstein's words on religion is “Science without religion is lame. Religion without science is blind.” I like this because both science and religion are needed to answer life's great questions. Even scientists such as Richard Feynman, who rejected religion and poetry as sources of truth, concede grudgingly that there are questions that science cannot answer. I am deeply interested in the new chaos theory, because it means that order can arise out of disorder and randomness. I've read many popular articles about it, because I want scientific proof that the universe is orderly. I do not have the mathematical ability to understand chaos theory fully, but it confirms the idea that order can come from disorder and randomness.
The Irrational Economist: Making Decisions in a Dangerous World by Erwann Michel-Kerjan, Paul Slovic
Andrei Shleifer, availability heuristic, bank run, Black Swan, Cass Sunstein, clean water, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, complexity theory, conceptual framework, corporate social responsibility, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, cross-subsidies, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, endowment effect, experimental economics, financial innovation, Fractional reserve banking, George Akerlof, hindsight bias, incomplete markets, information asymmetry, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, Isaac Newton, iterative process, Kenneth Arrow, Loma Prieta earthquake, London Interbank Offered Rate, market bubble, market clearing, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Pareto efficiency, Paul Samuelson, placebo effect, price discrimination, price stability, RAND corporation, Richard Thaler, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, source of truth, statistical model, stochastic process, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Bayes, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, too big to fail, transaction costs, ultimatum game, University of East Anglia, urban planning, Vilfredo Pareto
There are honest brokers in the world of deeds, eager for scientifically sound proposals that they can carry forward. But there are also practitioners with foregone conclusions, looking for experts whose work they can invoke, in order to justify positions that they have already adopted. They may care little about the quality of our work, as long as it points in their direction and can be cited as a “neutral” source of truth. If our fame advances their cause, then they may help us to find better speaking engagements, better luck with our op-eds, and better consulting opportunities. But we are just means to their predetermined ends. How can we tell whether we are being “kept” by the powerful, rather than getting well-deserved audiences? One positive sign is finding that our supporters have followed a discovery process paralleling our own, independently discovering a behavioral regularity that we have documented and explained.
Doctored: The Disillusionment of an American Physician by Sandeep Jauhar
Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, delayed gratification, illegal immigration, income inequality, Induced demand, medical malpractice, moral hazard, obamacare, profit motive, randomized controlled trial, source of truth, stem cell, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Yogi Berra
“Why doesn’t he protect everyone?” I asked. “Because we are in his inner circle,” he replied. Then he quickly added, “You must have faith, Doctor. It all depends on faith.” As a boy I’d had faith. I’d believed there were people who possessed special knowledge that I could not access. When I was in trouble, I prayed. But this all had changed. I no longer believed in prayer. I no longer trusted there was a greater source of truth than the thoughts in my own head. I was now apt to ignore the pronouncements of those in authority. Still, I missed that time when I thought others knew more than I about how to live my life. As much as the need for their approval had once unnerved me, my lack of faith was just as unsettling. Since Sonia’s family was playing host, I was accorded a coveted seat next to Guruji in the living room.
In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts: Close Encounters With Addiction by Gabor Mate, Peter A. Levine
Albert Einstein, Anton Chekhov, corporate governance, epigenetics, ghettoisation, impulse control, mass immigration, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Naomi Klein, phenotype, placebo effect, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), source of truth, Yogi Berra
The sacred fire through which Moshe (Moses) experienced the presence of God on Mount Horeb did not annihilate the bush from which it arose: And YHWH’s messenger was seen by him in the flame of a fire out of the midst of a bush. He saw: here, the bush is burning with fire, and the bush is not consumed!3 Passion is divine fire: it enlivens and makes holy; it gives light and yields inspiration. Passion is generous because it’s not ego-driven; addiction is self-centred. Passion gives and enriches; addiction is a thief. Passion is a source of truth and enlightenment; addictive behaviours lead you into darkness. You’re more alive when you are passionate, and you triumph whether or not you attain your goal. But an addiction requires a specific outcome that feeds the ego; without that outcome, the ego feels empty and deprived. A consuming passion that you are helpless to resist, no matter what the consequences, is an addiction. You may even devote your entire life to a passion, but if it’s truly a passion and not an addiction, you’ll do so with freedom, joy and a full assertion of your truest self and values.
Such a person wants someone else to guarantee that he’s right — no matter what happens. You are responsible, because you will experience the consequences of your own acts, and those consequences are the final judge of whether you’ve been right or wrong. They provide a verdict from which there is no appeal. The insecure individual hopes somehow to bypass that verdict. He looks for a way to believe he’s right, no matter what consequences he experiences. He looks for a source of “truth” that he can believe in. When he finds it, he accepts it totally. He feels that this gives him the security to know that he’s right, and he prefers that kind of security to the need to rely upon his own ability. The philosophy be finds usually contains three basic ingredients. They are moral rightness, a leader, and an enemy. These ingredients arm him with an assurance that allows him to disregard the test of consequences.
The Voice of Reason: Essays in Objectivist Thought by Ayn Rand, Leonard Peikoff, Peter Schwartz
affirmative action, Berlin Wall, British Empire, business process, cuban missile crisis, haute cuisine, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, laissez-faire capitalism, means of production, medical malpractice, profit motive, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, source of truth, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transcontinental railway, urban renewal, War on Poverty
Freud was merely one of his many heirs, as are the modern skeptics who distort Einstein’s findings to rationalize their viewpoint, as are the rhetoric professors at Berkeley and all their like-minded colleagues. In countless forms, Kant’s rejection of reason is at the root of our modern colleges. Question, debate, dispute—the founding fathers urged men—because by this means you will reach answers to your questions and discover how to act. Question, debate, dispute—our Kantianized faculty urges today—not to find the answers, but to discover that there aren’t any, that there is no source of truth and no guide to action, that the Enlightenment viewpoint was merely a comfortable superstition or a naivete. Come to college, they say, and we’ll cure you of that superstition for life. Which, unfortunately, they often do. “On the first day of classes,” a student from Kent State University in Ohio wrote me, “my English professor said the purpose of college is to take a high-school graduate who’s sure of himself and make him confused.”
Chaos Monkeys: Obscene Fortune and Random Failure in Silicon Valley by Antonio Garcia Martinez
Airbnb, airport security, always be closing, Amazon Web Services, Burning Man, Celtic Tiger, centralized clearinghouse, cognitive dissonance, collective bargaining, corporate governance, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, death of newspapers, drone strike, El Camino Real, Elon Musk, Emanuel Derman, financial independence, global supply chain, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, hive mind, income inequality, information asymmetry, interest rate swap, intermodal, Jeff Bezos, Malcom McLean invented shipping containers, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Maui Hawaii, means of production, Menlo Park, minimum viable product, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Network effects, Paul Graham, performance metric, Peter Thiel, Ponzi scheme, pre–internet, Ralph Waldo Emerson, random walk, Ruby on Rails, Sand Hill Road, Scientific racism, second-price auction, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Snapchat, social graph, social web, Socratic dialogue, source of truth, Steve Jobs, telemarketer, urban renewal, Y Combinator, zero-sum game, éminence grise
To continue my (now perhaps stretched) nautical analogy, they’re merely the container cranes that shuffle boxes around. But in fact they play a much more important role. Look: the advertiser doesn’t trust its agency, the agency doesn’t trust its trading desk, the trading desk doesn’t trust the ads-buying software it’s using, and the ads-buying technology company doesn’t trust the exchanges. The only thing that keeps this dishonest world honest is the existence of an agreed-upon source of truth. That oracle is the ad server. If a marketer wants to reach a million people in the eastern United States, showing each person no more than four ad impressions between the hours of four and ten p.m. on Thursday (a common buy for movies, incidentally, which always launch on a Friday), then that marketer will be satisfied only if the ad server report says that’s what he got. The ad server isn’t merely a data server spewing forth pixels on demand; it’s also the accounting system that decides what gets delivered when, to whom, how often, and where on the Internet.
A History of Western Philosophy by Aaron Finkel
British Empire, Eratosthenes, Georg Cantor, George Santayana, invention of agriculture, liberation theology, Mahatma Gandhi, Plutocrats, plutocrats, source of truth, the market place, William of Occam
There is a very sympathetic account of Plato, whom he places above all other philosophers. All others are to give place to him: “Let Thales depart with his water, Anaximenes with the air, the Stoics with their fire, Epicurus with his atoms.”* All these were materialists; Plato was not. Plato saw that God is not any bodily thing, but that all things have their being from God, and from something immutable. He was right, also, in saying that perception is not the source of truth. Platonists are the best in logic and ethics, and nearest to Christianity. “It is said that Plotinus, that lived but lately, understood Plato the best of any.” As for Aristotle, he was Plato’s inferior, but far above the rest. Both, however, said that all gods are good, and to be worshipped. As against the Stoics, who condemned all passion, Saint Augustine holds that the passions of Christians may be causes of virtue; anger, or pity, is not to be condemned per se, but we must inquire into its cause.
The subject was a thorny one; Augustine had dealt with it in his writings against Pelagius, but it was dangerous to agree with Augustine and still more dangerous to disagree with him explicitly. John supported free will, and this might have passed uncensured; but what roused indignation was the purely philosophic character of his argument. Not that he professed to controvert anything accepted in theology, but that he maintained the equal, or even superior, authority of a philosophy independent of revelation. He contended that reason and revelation are both sources of truth, and therefore cannot conflict; but if they ever seem to conflict, reason is to be preferred. True religion, he said, is true philosophy; but, conversely, true philosophy is true religion. His work was condemned by two councils, in 855 and 859; the first of these described it as “Scots porridge.” He escaped punishment, however, owing to the support of the king, with whom he seems to have been on familiar terms.
The Collected Stories of Vernor Vinge by Vernor Vinge
anthropic principle, Asilomar, back-to-the-land, dematerialisation, gravity well, invisible hand, Machinery of Freedom by David Friedman, source of truth, spice trade, technological singularity, unbiased observer, Vernor Vinge
It put him in a cold sweat to think how casually he published new twists on traditional themes, or allowed small inconsistencies into story cycles. And just few days ago, he’d looked forward to testing the Hrala skit with these people! The tall priest’s tone remained friendly: “You have come at an appropriate moment, Master Guille. We have confronted blasphemers—who may be harbingers of the Final Battle. Now is a time when we must consult all sources of Truth.” Another priest, an older fellow with a limp, interrupted with something abrupt. The tall guy paused, and looked faintly embarrassed; suddenly Guille knew that he was more than an interpreter, but not one of the high priests. “It will be necessary to inspect both your boat and your persons. More blasphemers may come in fair forms … . Don’t be angered; it is but a formality. I, we recognize you from before.
Bernie Madoff, the Wizard of Lies: Inside the Infamous $65 Billion Swindle by Diana B. Henriques
accounting loophole / creative accounting, airport security, Albert Einstein, banking crisis, Bernie Madoff, break the buck, British Empire, centralized clearinghouse, collapse of Lehman Brothers, computerized trading, corporate raider, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, dumpster diving, Edward Thorp, financial deregulation, financial thriller, fixed income, forensic accounting, Gordon Gekko, index fund, locking in a profit, mail merge, merger arbitrage, money market fund, Plutocrats, plutocrats, Ponzi scheme, Potemkin village, random walk, Renaissance Technologies, riskless arbitrage, Ronald Reagan, short selling, Small Order Execution System, source of truth, sovereign wealth fund, too big to fail, transaction costs, traveling salesman
But the current Fairfield account statements still showed options trades. There did not seem to be any explanation, other than that Madoff was lying to someone. Since Madoff’s feeder funds all believed he was still buying options for them, it would be devastating if the SEC started suggesting that he wasn’t. Still, even the discrepancy over his use of options did not suggest to the SEC team that relying on Madoff as a source of truthful information was a bad idea. He remained an extremely reputable figure on Wall Street, as far as they knew. Reflecting on the case later, one investigator wrote a colleague that there wasn’t “any real reason to suspect some kind of wrongdoing.” In December 2005 the chief risk officer at Fairfield Greenwich confirmed in an SEC interview—conducted after the SEC gave him permission to consult with Madoff before testifying—that options remained part of the Madoff strategy.
Coming of Age in the Milky Way by Timothy Ferris
Albert Einstein, Albert Michelson, Alfred Russel Wallace, anthropic principle, Arthur Eddington, Atahualpa, Cepheid variable, Chance favours the prepared mind, Commentariolus, cosmic abundance, cosmic microwave background, cosmological constant, cosmological principle, dark matter, delayed gratification, Edmond Halley, Eratosthenes, Ernest Rutherford, Gary Taubes, Harlow Shapley and Heber Curtis, Harvard Computers: women astronomers, Henri Poincaré, invention of writing, Isaac Newton, John Harrison: Longitude, Karl Jansky, Lao Tzu, Louis Pasteur, Magellanic Cloud, mandelbrot fractal, Menlo Park, Murray Gell-Mann, music of the spheres, planetary scale, retrograde motion, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, Searching for Interstellar Communications, Solar eclipse in 1919, source of truth, Stephen Hawking, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas Malthus, Wilhelm Olbers
One reason for his reluctance to publish was that Copernicus, like Darwin, had reason to fear censure by the religious authorities. The threat of papal disapproval was real enough that the Lutheran theologian Andreas Osiander thought it prudent to oil the waters by writing an unsigned preface to Copernicus’s book, as if composed by the dying Copernicus himself, reassuring its readers that divine revelation was the sole source of truth and that astronomical treatises like this one were intended merely to “save the phenomena.” Nor were the Protestants any more apt to kiss the heliocentric hem. “Who will venture to place the authority of Copernicus above that of the Holy Spirit?” thundered Calvin,12 and Martin Luther complained, in his voluble way, that “this fool wishes to reverse the entire science of astronomy; but sacred Scripture tells us that Joshua commanded the sun to stand still, and not the earth.”13* The book survived, however, and changed the world, for much the same reason that Darwin’s Origin of Species did—because it was too technically competent for the professionals to ignore it.
Albert Einstein, Andrew Wiles, asset allocation, availability heuristic, backtesting, Black Swan, capital asset pricing model, cognitive dissonance, compound rate of return, computerized trading, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, distributed generation, Elliott wave, en.wikipedia.org, feminist movement, hindsight bias, index fund, invention of the telescope, invisible hand, Long Term Capital Management, mental accounting, meta analysis, meta-analysis, p-value, pattern recognition, Paul Samuelson, Ponzi scheme, price anchoring, price stability, quantitative trading / quantitative ﬁnance, Ralph Nelson Elliott, random walk, retrograde motion, revision control, risk tolerance, risk-adjusted returns, riskless arbitrage, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Sharpe ratio, short selling, source of truth, statistical model, systematic trading, the scientific method, transfer pricing, unbiased observer, yield curve, Yogi Berra
They tell us how to act (ethics), how governments should rule (political philosophy), what is beautiful (aesthetics), and of greatest concern to us, what constitutes valid knowledge (epistemology) and how we should go about getting it (philosophy of science). The scientiﬁc revolution was, in part, a revolt against Aristotelian science. The Greeks regarded the physical world as an unreliable source of truth. According to Plato, mentor of Aristotle, the world was merely a ﬂawed copy of the truth and perfection that existed in the world of Forms, a metaphysical nonmaterial realm, where archetypes of the perfect dog, the perfect tree, and every other imaginable thing could be found. When the revolt against this view of reality ﬁnally arrived, it was harsh and unremitting.19 The new school of thought, empiricism, resoundingly rejected the Greek paradigm.