Minor ramble and aside. The Tao.

September 7, 2007

For various and sundry reasons, I tend to steer clear of the Intelligent Design debates. I have no skin in the game, dog in the fight, or end to the metaphors. What has interested me, though, are the rhetorical gymnastics employed by those on each side. Richard Dawkins amuses me more than he angers, so I got a tiny kick out of this book review, courtesy of Arts & Letters Daily.

Otherwise – and I say this in all frankness – I can think of things that would better occupy my time. Little odds and ends like:

Have I frustrated the working of the Spirit this day? Have I preached the Gospel in deed and word? Have I worked faithfully in the office of my vocation of husband and father? Do I recall even a single sentence of the Psalms I prayed this morning?*

Anyway, the work week is nearly at an end. I ought to sign off with something a little light, so here’s something from the classic geek humor files: The Tao of Programming. You will find it funny if you’ve been a programmer (or an unrepentant Unix admin, as was your humble scribe). It will be funniest if you have some familiarity with the Tao Te Ching of Lao-tse.

A manager went to the master programmer and showed him the requirements document for a new application. The manager asked the master:”How long will it take to design this system if I assign five programmers to it?”

“It will take one year,” said the master promptly.

“But we need this system immediately or even sooner! How long will it take if I assign ten programmers to it?”

The master programmer frowned. “In that case, it will take two years.”

“And what if I assign a hundred programmers to it?”

The master programmer shrugged. “Then the design will never be completed,” he said.

* – In fact, now that I think about it, I can. Friday’s Morning Office contains the penitential 51st Psalm. (updated with a link)

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