Learning from the Amazon technology platform: Many think of Amazon as 'that hugely successful online bookstore.' You would expect Amazon CTO Werner Vogels to embrace this distinction, but in fact it causes him some concern.
As authors of the seminal textbook, <em>Computer Architecture: A Quantitative Approach</em> (4th Edition, Morgan Kaufmann, 2006), John Hennessy and David Patterson probably don’t need an introduction. You’ve probably read them in college or, if you were lucky enough, even attended one of their classes. Since rethinking, and then rewriting,… (More)
Technology is a catch-22. It makes our lives easier and more productive, but in doing so it also makes us more vulnerable to the elements that can make our lives very difficult. Need to contact a friend or colleague? Send an e-mail, but beware of those return messages with viruses that can infect your system and turn it into a heap of useless… (More)
This month <em>Queue</em> tackles the problem of system evolution. One key question is: What do developers need to keep in mind while evolving a system, to ensure that the existing software that depends on it doesn’t break? It’s a tough problem, but there are few more qualified to discuss this subject than two industry veterans now at Sun… (More)
I hate my car. I really do. Not because it’s a minivan—that was a lapse in judgment on my part that I can (and do) smack myself for, but that’s not the car’s fault. I hate my minivan because it is poorly made.
When I was growing up I used to have these frightening dreams in which I had no use of my arms or legs. I was helpless to do anything for myself and could only watch the world walk by. Armchair psychoanalysts and dream interpreters would have a field day with those dreams, especially since they occurred during the height of my adolescent/teen years,… (More)
Sometimes, the undertaking of a task leads to a result far different from the expected. Any homeowner can attest to that. Case in point: About four years ago, after living in my cozy little cape for about two years, I decided to replace the toilet in the upstairs bathroom because it had not been installed properly, which made me nervous each time it was… (More)
Jordan Cohen calls himself 'sort of an engineer and sort of a linguist.' This diverse background has been the foundation for his long history working with speech technology, including almost 30 years with government agencies, with a little time out in the middle to work in IBM's speech recognition group. Until recently he was the chief technology officer of… (More)
One of the industry's go-to guys in performance improvement forbusiness systems is Jarod Jenson, the chief systems architect for aconsulting company he founded called Aeysis. He received a B.S.degree in computer science from Texas A&M University in 1995,then went to work for Baylor College of Medicine as a systemadministrator. From there he moved to… (More)
As I type this, the debate rages on whether the BlackBerry service will cease to exist as we know it. As of press time, a judge had refused to issue an order of injunction against BlackBerry maker RIM (Research in Motion) in its ongoing patent infringement battle with NTP Inc., giving users at least another 30 days to feed their addiction.