Collaboration Constraints

by Daniel H. Steinberg

Mitch Kapor says that what makes Wikipedia work isn't the technology; it's the vision, the values, and the community. Chromatic tells us what his dream computer language would and would not have, and Chris Adamson explains why some types of television shows have long-running story arcs and others are self-contained. (DTF 05-15-2006: 27 minutes 32 seconds)

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Distributing the Future May 15, 2006: "Collaboration Constraints"

:53 Wikipedia

Tim O'Reilly showed a slide pointing out that Craigslist is a top website with twelve employees. Mitch Kapor began his MySQL users conference keynote by joking that Wikipedia has only two employees, and asked what do all those other employees do at Craigslist? Kapor, president and chair of the Open Source Applications Foundation, spoke on the vision and values of Wikipedia. (13:06)

14:09 A New Programming Language

O'Reilly online editor chromatic specializes in programming, Linux, and open source development. He's written a series of posts on what might make a maintainable programming language. For maintainability, chromatic's list includes learnability, consistency, simplicity, comprehensiveness, power, and its enforcement of good programming practices. (6:31)

20:40 Story Arcs

By day, Chris Adamson is the editor of and By night, he provides analysis and summaries for the anime series Fullmetal Alchemist in his podcast The Annotated Alchemist. In his latest review, Chris discusses some of the economic and technical reasons that story lines in anime may span an entire series, while American sitcoms tend to be self-contained. (6:10)

Total running time: 27:32

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Production Notes

The initial montage is from Tim O'Reilly, recorded at OSCON '04 and in a phone interview with Doug Kaye of IT Conversations, and is used with permission. "The future is here, it's just not evenly distributed yet" is a quote from author William Gibson that Tim used with attribution.

The credits, including special thanks to David Battino for composing and performing the theme music. David can be found at and also edits O'Reilly's Digital Audio site. David provided a lot of help and feedback getting this program launched. We used Soundtrack Pro, Bias Peak, and Audio Hijack Pro to put it together.

Daniel H. Steinberg is the editor for the new series of Mac Developer titles for the Pragmatic Programmers. He writes feature articles for Apple's ADC web site and is a regular contributor to Mac Devcenter. He has presented at Apple's Worldwide Developer Conference, MacWorld, MacHack and other Mac developer conferences.

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