Paul Graham released his much haussed programming language Arc some time ago. The general reaction was very negative, people had had very high expectations and were very disappointed. Defending himself, Paul Graham writes that this reaction is to be expected, the stuff he makes is often so ground breaking that people don't realize there is something important there. And he goes on to explain his six principles for making new things:
I like to find (a) simple solutions (b) to overlooked problems (c) that actually need to be solved, and (d) deliver them as informally as possible, (e) starting with a very crude version 1, then (f) iterating rapidly.

This got me thinking about how I tend to make new things. I agree completely with points a and b. Point c doesn't always apply for me. Sometimes I do things just because they're fun, intellectually stimulating.

As for points d, e and f I usually do the opposite. I try to find the perfect solution from the get go and I usually don't release things until I'm completely satisfied with them. This is not how I would like to work though. I think they way Paul Graham does things is much better. I guess I'm afraid of the critique I will get from delivering imperfect solutions, especially to problems that don't seem important. I have to work a bit on my trust issues.

In the end, Paul Graham's article doesn't explain what important and overlooked problem Arc solves. I'd really like to know because I don't think it looks that impressive either. So please, mr. Graham, instead of just calling us dumb, please explain why your solution is such a stroke of genius.


Kim Hartman

It's the second week in a row with a major snooker tournament. A feast for all snooker fans. I thought it appropriate to write about something snooker related. So I'm going to say a few words about the man who singlehandedly has popularized snooker in Sweden.

Kim Hartman is the Swedish snooker commentator for Eurosport. He has a very unique way of commentating sport. Most of the time he is simply silent and when he talks it's in a very gentle paced baritone voice. It's simply music to the ears to hear him talk. On top of that he come up with the most colorful and sometimes whimsical expressions to describe the play. This has even rendered him an own fan site containing quotes from him. Here's a translation of one of my favourites:

To play snooker with a pool cue is like playing golf with a shovel.

Kim Hartman's style has become very popular; papers start recommending watching snooker to listen to Hartman, I've heard of seniors who have no interest what so ever in sport watching snooker all day long and he has been chosen the most popular commentator on Eurosport. So, without any real effort, just commentating the sport he has done an amazing job of popularizing snooker in Sweden. Quite a remarkable feat. I wished you all could have a chance to hear him.

An extra bonus is that Hartman has started writing comments on Eurosports Swedish homepage eurosport.se so we all get even more colorful quotes from him that way.

Brilliant short animation