Previous  |  Next



Marc Hedlund

Marc Hedlund

Fast Forward: April 25th, 2006

  • The New York Times seems to take particular interest in plagiarism stories these days -- both the Kaavya Viswanathan and William H. Swanson stories have gotten rather lengthy coverage relative to the prominence of the stories, it seems to me. Obviously the Times has been dinged for this itself in the past few years, and the "Million Little Pieces" and Jayson Blair stories have both gotten quite a lot of interest with the public at large. I have to wonder, though, where this issue is coming from, and where it's going. It seems like Google (and Google Print) and the like will only make these "finds" more frequent, and that authors should all be aware of that by now. I would have hoped! The Swanson story was of interest to me, though -- I'd just ordered his book from the Raytheon site a couple of weeks ago (they'll send it to you for free) after reading the same story that prompted the find. I bought the source book mentioned in today's story, The Unwritten Laws of Engineering, and will be interested to see if the two texts are similar or different in tone or wisdom, outside of the duplicated pieces. (Man, Amazon has a lot of "Unwritten" books!) I also liked the similarly-themed "Little Nybbles of Development Wisdom," which I found through a link to the story somewhere (not crediting the link seems only right, given the topic...).
  • I hadn't seen "Smart Crash Reports" before -- man, what a great piece of software. I loved reading Chris Pratley's blog on Dr. Watson a couple of years ago, and thought at the time, "Everyone should have that." FogBugz has a very cool if unpronouncable feature, BugzScout, to give you this sort of tool at the bug system level, and I think that's much more practical than asking every user to install Smart Crash Reports as a separate binary. But, I love the open reporting system Unsanity has built. More like this, please!
  • 37signals is taking "vertical integration" to new heights -- now they not only make the software everyone is using, write the books everyone is reading to know how to use the software, sell the PDFs everyone is reading to know how to sell the software they're writing, and design the interfaces everyone is copying, they're also putting the butts of the developers they've trained into seats at the startups they've inspired with their new job network. Good googly-moogly. Do I get a secret decoder ring with that, or a badge for my sash or something? Soon, their army of the night will swarm the land and make scaffolds out of all of us.

tags:   | comments: 3   | Sphere It


0 TrackBacks

TrackBack URL for this entry:

Comments: 3

George Hotelling   [04.25.06 05:36 PM]

Authors being aware of being found out for plagiarism through Google only works if the authors themselves are aware of the plagiarism. Read up on cryptomnesia, where people believe they are having an original idea but are actually remembering something.

Dharmesh Shah   [04.25.06 07:46 PM]

37signals now creating a job network. Was bound to happen, I guess.

Now where's that part about "focus" again?

Though I guess if you have the visibility and elite status in the community, might as well monetize it.

What's Next?: Create a coffee bar that caffeinates the developers that they placed at startups that read the book, attended the seminars and paid for the product.

Dharmesh Shah   [04.25.06 08:26 PM]

Despite my above comment, I ended up posting a job (couldn't resist).

I have to (grudgingly) admit, these guys at 37s are brilliant business people.

Post A Comment:

 (please be patient, comments may take awhile to post)

Remember Me?

Subscribe to this Site

Radar RSS feed