music programming text book



    This subchapter looks at innovation in computer programming.

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    NOTE: I am not even bothering to teach here. I just have to speak out on this topic.

    Mark Zuckerberg is touring the country claiming that his company (FaceBook) is seeking every innovative programmer and engineer he can find. Newspapers, including the Los Angeles Times, claim that Larry Page and Sergey Brin (Google) are in intense competition for those same prgrammers and engineers.

    Mr. Zuckerberg, I call your bluff.

    This is a case where the word innovation is used strictly for marketing purposes and has no actual meaning. if these people were really looking for innovatiion, then I wouldn’t be unemployed.

    What is real innovation?

    One could reasonably argue that the only innovator in history was imhotep (inventor of trigonometry, inevntor of the scientific method, architect of the first successful true pyramid, founder of the philosophical school claiming that mathematcis can model all of reality, inventor of the idea of medical triage, and creator of the bureaucracies and systems needed for the first nation in all of history.

    Everyone else simply has built on the work of others. Isaac Newton claimed in a 1676 letter to Robert Hooke “If I have seen a little further it is by standing on the shoulders of Giants”, calling forth John of Salisbury’s 1159 comment in Metalogicon “Bernard of Chartres used to say that we are like dwarfs on the shoulders of giants, so that we can see more than they, and things at a greater distance, not by virtue of any sharpness of sight on our part, or any physical distinction, but because we are carried high and raised up by their giant size” (Latin: “Dicebat Bernardus Carnotensis nos esse quasi nanos, gigantium humeris insidentes, ut possimus plura eis et remotiora videre, non utique proprii visus acumine, aut eminentia corporis, sed quia in altum subvenimur et extollimur magnitudine gigantea”).

    All of the technology required for maing the clipper ship was already known more than 6,000 years ago in ancient Egypt. All of the technology needed to make the paperclip was already known in ancient Egypt 5,000 years ago.

    Innovation is the act of noticing the obvious before anyone else.

    My father invented the hold button on the telephone. He used parts that had been invented decades earlier.

    I invented Quick Pick for lotteries. I used technologies that had existed for decades.

    Google recently was lampooned by David Given for its supposed innovation in the new programming language Go, which came across as a lame attempt when compared to the 41-year old ALGOL-68 (SeeOn Go

    As far as I can determine the only persons who have innovated at Google were Page and Brin, and even then they were simply implementing old ideas in a new way.

    And Zuckerberg simply refined the work of Chris DeWolfe and Tom Anderson at MySpace. I might mention (because it can be independently verified) that I personally started work on the exact same idea as MySpace (with the same mistake of thinking of it in terms of musicians) well before work on MySpace started. Unfortunately the businessperson funding my work decided to pull funding after just one week of work because he decided there was no way to make money from the idea.

    As another example, consider my work on the Electric Emperor (the CD-ROM version of Jack Herer’s famous HEMP: The Emperor Wears No Clothes). I had dozens of innovations, many of which major corporations now claim patents for, and all by myself created a multimedia programming environemnt that was significantly ahead of anything done by MacroMedia at the time (even though they had around 300 programmers working on their project). While most of my work has since been matched or no longer matters because of improved technology, my glowing buttons are still superior to those of Apple. Apple received a lot of credit and awe for supposedly introducing glowing buttons as part of itss Mac OS X user interface, but already had glowing buttons years earlier and my buttons included the reflected glow of the buttons on the surrounding brushed metal interface, something Apple still hasn’t figured out.

    My ability to innovate hasn’t disappeared. Consider such propsed projects as an entirely new paradigm for programming languages or new and more advanced capabilities for data bases or for work on quantum computers. That stuff counts as real innovation. And unlike Google, I already knew about ALGOL-68.

    Let’s be clear. Business does not like innovation (with a few exceptions, such as Steve Jobs and Mark Cuban). Business fears innovation. Business only uses the term because it makes their audience feel good and they can use false claims of innovation as a justification for bad laws and regulations on business.

    Enoguh of my rant.

    I am calling your bluff Mr. Zuckerberg. If you really want innovation, I can give it to you. And I will work for minimum wage or even match the less than minimum wage pay of outsourced labor in China, India, or Indonesia. If you really want innovation, give me a job. I’ll scrub toilets and mop floors and such and just be available when your programmers need to ask someone how to do the things they can’t figure out how to do.

free music player coding example

    Coding example: I am making heavily documented and explained open source code for a method to play music for free — almost any song, no subscription fees, no download costs, no advertisements, all completely legal. This is done by building a front-end to YouTube (which checks the copyright permissions for you).

    View music player in action:

    Create your own copy from the original source code/ (presented for learning programming).

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free computer programming text book project

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    Copyright © 2010 Milo

    Created: December 5, 2010

    Last Updated: December 5, 2010

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