Paul's Mantra


Paul has left Sun for The Echo Nest and he appears to be having a good time so far (Toto's "Rosanna" notwithstanding.) I've had a great time working with Paul over the past few years, and I think I've now internalized one of Paul's mantras: "What's the simplest thing that could possibly work?"


This is a good way to get over the hump on a new project when you want to get something started and you're not sure what the best way to do it would be, but you're pretty sure that you know one way that might work (probably). It's surprising how far you can get using this technique.


Today's example of this comes via Good Math, Bad Math, wherein Mark discovers that a gap buffer implementation for a text editor works quite well enough that it's not necessary to use a rope, even though a rope has better theoretical properties.


The annoyance for me in this one is that Mark seems astonished that a Java implementation of the gap buffer could be fast enough to obviate the need for a rope. When is this "Java is Slow!!1!" meme going to die?


Also annoying: I now have Rosanna stuck in my head.

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This is Stephen Green's blog. It's about the theory and practice of text search engines, with occasional forays into recommendation and other technologies that can use a good text search engine. Steve is the PI of the Information Retrieval and Machine Learning project in Oracle Labs.

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