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Re: The Carl & Bob show

> I remember the first time I called my friend Ted Johnston at SLAC (Stanford
> Linear Accelerator Center).  I got someone who knew a lot about vacuum
> systems and very little about computers.  He was friendly and transferred
> my call.
> I also have several friends named Dave Smith.  Also there is the Bob
> Johnson Society.
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Bill Frantz       | One party wants to control | Periwinkle -- Consulting
> (408)356-8506     | what you do in the bedroom,| 16345 Englewood Ave.
> frantz@netcom.com | the other in the boardroom.| Los Gatos, CA 95032, USA

And my brother-in-law is named Robert Oppenheimer.  Imagine the hilarity
several years ago when he called Oak Ridge...  indeed he was calling to talk
to Dr. J. Robert Oppenheimer:
  "hello, may I please talk to Dr. Oppenheimer?"
  "I'm sorry, he's not in; who may I say is calling?"
  "This is Robert Oppenheimer."
  "No, I meant who is calling?"
  "Robert Oppenheimer."
  "No, I mean, who are *you*?"
  "*I'm* Bob Oppenheimer."
  "Is this some kind of joke?"

I had a fairly lengthy missive preparing about all this, but couldn't
bring myself to post it.  The essence of it, however, is merely that in
anything like a free society, people choose whom they trust, and
economies are more self-organizing systems than anything that one can
architect from scratch.  Success will find the products and systems
that acknowledge the basic autonomy of the individuals involved and
allow them to make the choices they believe to be in their interest.
Centralized, hierarchical controls will not work; the history of
nations and of corporations has proven that in dramatic ways in recent
history.  Power will devolve, as it always has, to those who are
perceived to have something to offer, not necessarily to those who have
thought the longest and hardest about how things should be done.  It is
up to the designers of these systems to build robustness into systems
that will be used in ways they did not intend.  Keeping it simple is,
in my opinion, the only way we can ever hope to accomplish that.

I am also certain that all the admirable efforts on the part of legal
and technological experts to predefine what has historically only been
defined in the presence of lots of prior experience and legal precedent
is ultimately doomed to fail.

Oh well...


Brian Thomas, CISSP - Distributed Systems Architect  bt0008@sbc.com
Southwestern Bell                                    bthomas@primary.net
One Bell Center,  Room 34G3                          Tel: 314 235 3141
St. Louis, MO 63101                                  Fax: 314 235 0162