Wednesday, April 08, 2009

Will Wright: Software Will Write Itself

Found this quote from Will Wright -- game designer extraordinaire and creator of SPORE, The Sims and Sim City -- about Software:
Most of the software that we’ve used thus far has been designed software—procedurally designed software. We’re just getting to the point where we’re getting a lot of automatically generated software—you know, CASE tools or adaptive programming, where I’m pretty convinced that in a few years a lot of the software is going to be evolved, as opposed to written by humans. So over time, we’re going to be able to understand the way the software works less and less. It’s going to become a soft biological system. But at the same time, it’ll be very robust, very fault-tolerant compared to the very brittle software we have today. Once we lose control of software design, once software can design itself, write itself, improve itself, I think we’re going to have a different relationship to it. You can take a very complex piece of software, like an airline reservation system, and there’s no one person who understands the way the whole thing works.
Maybe soon we'll be able to breed software the way we do apples, roses, or cattle.

via Dr Dobbs

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posted by Brian at 2:32 PM 0 comments links to this post

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Serato LIVE is the Atari 2600 of Digital Turntable Systems

As I start up my DJ class again (this time focusing on scratch techniques), I am pondering which of the numerous software/hardware systems -- designed to allow old-school DJ turntablists to work with digital music files on a laptop instead of crates full of vinyl -- to get.

It occurs to me that Serato LIVE is the Atari 2600, Native Instruments Traktor Scratch is the Mattel Intellivision, and M-Audio Torq is the ColecoVision of digital turntable systems. Why? The Atari 2600 was not especially pretty but it worked well, had all the great games, and EVERYBODY had one. Intellivision was technologically much more advanced but it had a quirky interface and never got as popular, while the Colecovision was even more advanced but ... well that's where my analogy may not be perfect. I don't know enough about the Torq :P

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posted by Brian at 6:36 PM 0 comments links to this post

Tuesday, June 24, 2003

Bait-and-switch Software Scheme?

A change in the upgrade path, or bait-and-switch?

A software company offers an expensive program for nearly free to professionals for 1 year use, and promises in writing that one can pay a set amount to get that same program permanently. They also sponsor training websites and a community.
Many are thrilled, sign up, tell their friends, and join this community.

Then the company sends a letter to them stating that a new version will be available, with many of the features taken out and put into the original expensive version. It also states that the only valid upgrade path now is to the apparently crippled version.

Do you agree that this is deceptive? False advertising? Or, because the offer was inexpensive, the users should just accept that it was inevitable that they would not get to have the product without paying full price (despite being told otherwise)?

Personally, I think this is Bait-and-Switch advertising, considered by most to be dubious business practice.

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posted by Brian at 2:30 AM 0 comments links to this post