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View Diary: A partial response to Bill Gates' op ed about teachers (247 comments)

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  •  Bill Gates changed the landscape of (12+ / 0-)

    software development.

    Before Bill Gates and Microsoft, software was developed slowly and carefully.  Bugs were BAD things, and having to provide fixes and patches was a sign that a development group didn't do its job very well.  Yearly updates were common, and provided mostly feature enhancements.

    Bill Gates brought a new model of software development into the world -  go fast, ignore non-critical bugs, release the "beast", and then patch patch patch.  No longer was it embarrassing to release a product with many flaws, it became the new normal, and patching became a weekly occurrence.

    We lost a lot of quality in this process, but perhaps the bigger thing we lost was stability.  Now we live in an era of endless churn with constant hands tweaking critical pieces of our infrastructure.  (And those hands now being reduced to the lowest paid workers regardless of training)

    This is something to think about as we review Bill Gates' ideas for education -  the idea that quicker is better, damn the torpedoes, full speed ahead...fix it later.  Except this time, it is students that will need to be patched.  Get ready for the world of johnny.4.1

    •  If We'd Been Able to Break Up IBM Into Rational (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:

      sized companies, maybe the crappy PC and DOS would've had enough competitors that something good would've prevailed. But even before Reagan we'd already had enough cutting of top end taxes and various market deregulation that big money was on track to take back its country.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Mon Feb 28, 2011 at 05:48:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Marketing kicked in to (1+ / 0-)
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      involve the public in the process encouraging them to buy the latest and jazziest, when least buggy more stable and fewer features would have been better.

    •  V1.0 of any Microsoft product (0+ / 0-)

      =complete unmitigated disaster. They have never, ever gotten anything right with a version 1.0.

      I am not surprised that Gates' first attempt with the 'Small School' hype was a flop. It's just so in keeping with his entire history of foisting 'not-ready-for-prime-time' products on the american public.

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