[Seaside] A new critical blog discussing Seaside

Michael Niessner michael at niessner.us
Sat Apr 18 20:28:33 UTC 2009

Mr. Cucumber,

You present yourself as someone who values logic and ideas over  
everything else. As such, I would like you to consider the following.

A person has a finite amount of time to think about stuff. On average  
it's about 75-80 years. Since no single person knows everything, they  
will have to filter which ideas they choose to think about.

There are a number of different algorithms that could be used for this  
idea filter. Random selection, fifo, lifo, etc. Attempting to reduce  
waste (time spent thinking about worthless ideas), most people have  
settled on what I'll call a credibility filter.

A credibility filter works by setting a credibility threshold,  
assigning people a credibility value, and then filtering out any ideas  
that come from a source that does not meet the credibility threshold.  
For example, if someone tells me that computers should receive a bath  
every week. I will assign them a low credibility value, stop listening  
to them, and begin thinking about something else.

Often times people will assign complete strangers a credibility value  
below their credibility threshold. They will only listen to ideas if  
the stranger has a university degree or some other indicator that  
person values.

Other people are more generous and will assign complete strangers a  
credibility value above their threshold. This is great. These people  
will think about your idea, until you display that you are no longer  

In general you lose credibility by making statements the other person  
thinks are false. After enough of these false statements you will  
eventually fall below that person's threshold and they will ignore  
anything else you have to say.

I've been following the seaside mailing list for a few months. I read  
every post from the past year. I watch people ask questions or post  
ideas and see prompt responses from people like Lukas Renggli,  
Stephane Ducasse, Randal Schwartz, Phillipe Marschall, and countless  
others. In fact, I ask a rather uninformed question and get a response  
from Philippe within a day. Phillipe 's act was very selfless. He  
received no compensation from using his time to answer my question.  
Naturally, I view these people as kind and generous.

Now I see your post. I start you off above my credibility threshold.  
You seem think seaside has some implementation issues. Don't know  
enough about seaside's implementation to disagree with you. Still  
listening. You think Lukas Renggli doesn't listen to people and  
immediately dismisses them. Hmm. That's strange I've observed  
completely the opposite. You lose credibility points. You think Avi  
Bryant is not open minded. Hmm. That's strange. I've seen Avi speak at  
multiple ruby conferences and he was very open minded and receptive to  
ideas that were presented from the audience. Now you've dropped below  
my threshold. I'm no longer listening. You don't appear to know what  
you are talking about so thinking about what you have to say is likely  
a waste of my time.

If you really want your technical ideas to be considered by people. I  
strongly suggest that you just post your technical ideas on the  
mailing list and your blog. Because your ideas related to the open  
mindness of Avi and Lukas are flat wrong and damage your credibility  
in the same manner that claiming smalltalk would be a better language  
if it didn't have blocks or that computers need a bath every week.

To summarize:
   1) People don't have unlimited amount of time
   2) It is logical and pragmatic to filter idea sources by credibility
   3) Your claims about Lukas and Avi make you look like a fucking idiot

Michael Niessner

On Apr 17, 2009, at 2:30 PM, TheSmalltalkBlog at gmx.ch wrote:

> I would like to point the members of this mailing list to my new  
> blog on Seaside and Smalltalk: http://thesmalltalkblog.blogspot.com
> The background is in:
> 1) the complete absence of documentation in the Seaside library
> 2) the many violations of proper Smalltalk encapsulation
> 3) the frequent lack of "good Smalltalk" programing style
> 4) the many wrong and misleading class names, method names and  
> instance variable names
> 5) the extreme ignorance that I had to encounter when offering my  
> assistance to improve Seaside to Lukas Renggli.
> I invite everybody to build a little community to document and  
> improve Seaside, which will save all of us and all future users a  
> lot of time.
> There is never ever any excuse for not documentation code! Even in  
> Smalltalk!
> I also invite other critical writers to join in to publishing  
> concrete engineering proposals on my blog in order to improve Seaside.
> -- 
> Psssst! Schon vom neuen GMX MultiMessenger gehört? Der kann`s mit  
> allen: http://www.gmx.net/de/go/multimessenger01
> _______________________________________________
> seaside mailing list
> seaside at lists.squeakfoundation.org
> http://lists.squeakfoundation.org/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/seaside

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