Archive for October, 2009


Monday, October 19th, 2009

Dear Logan,

I just read this blog post written by the guy who created GMail.  He somehow manages to tie programming, creating a business, politics, and religion all together, talking about how there’s always a short-cut that can be exploited by taking advantage of the difference between the intended rules and the actual reality of any system.  I thought that he was going to continue to take the analogy into physics, but he didn’t go that far.  Here’s my favorite part of the post:

“The entire process of building a business and having other people and computers do the work for you is a big hack. Nobody ever created a billion dollars through direct physical labor.”

Put another way, I think you could sum up this whole post as “the way to achieve success is to be creative”, but I like his spin on it.  I’d probably revise that to “The way to achieve success is to be creative AND persistent.”


Sunday, October 18th, 2009

Dear Logan,

When you set out on your journey to Ithaca,
pray that the road is long,
full of adventure, full of knowledge.
The Lestrygonians and the Cyclops,
the angry Poseidon — do not fear them:
You will never find such as these on your path,
if your thoughts remain lofty, if a fine
emotion touches your spirit and your body.
The Lestrygonians and the Cyclops,
the fierce Poseidon you will never encounter,
if you do not carry them within your soul,
if your soul does not set them up before you.

Pray that the road is long.
That the summer mornings are many, when,
with such pleasure, with such joy
you will enter ports seen for the first time;
stop at Phoenician markets,
and purchase fine merchandise,
mother-of-pearl and coral, amber and ebony,
and sensual perfumes of all kinds,
as many sensual perfumes as you can;
visit many Egyptian cities,
to learn and learn from scholars.

Always keep Ithaca in your mind.
To arrive there is your ultimate goal.
But do not hurry the voyage at all.
It is better to let it last for many years;
and to anchor at the island when you are old,
rich with all you have gained on the way,
not expecting that Ithaca will offer you riches.

Ithaca has given you the beautiful voyage.
Without her you would have never set out on the road.
She has nothing more to give you.

And if you find her poor, Ithaca has not deceived you.
Wise as you have become, with so much experience,
you must already have understood what Ithacas mean.

Constantine P. Cavafy (1911)