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Ideas about what happened to Sidekick run wild - nil.enroll(aetheric_username, quantum_class_id)
yljatlhQo'! QIch lo'laltbebej!
adric
adric
Ideas about what happened to Sidekick run wild
After reading http://www.roughlydrafted.com/2009/10/12/microsofts-sidekickpink-problems-blamed-on-dogfooding-and-sabotage/ ... I'm partly willing to believe this is the answer, perhaps running in cron every month:
* * 2 * /usr/gnu/bin/ruby -w /exports/home/user/apoc_check.rb
#!/usr/gnu/bin/ruby -w
## apoc_check : not a misnamed time check function, 
## but a preparation for the apocalypse

def unthinkable_has_happened?
  ## various checks to determine if world has ended, 
  ##  company has been sold to Microsoft,
  ##  stock price has dropped beyond a certain $
  ##  or your favourite unthinkable catastrophe has occurred
end

def destroy_all_data_irrevocably
  ## write pseudorandom data to the disk blocks 
  ##   that used to contain the master database control files,
  ##   indexes, backups, and other good stuff
  ## low level format the SAN, and any system drives, 
  ##   and replace the bootloader code
  ##   with something fun of your choosing. 
  ##   Remember, ASCII art is fun.
end

destroy_all_data_irrevocably if unthinkable_has_happened?
## eof
Although it probably wasn't written in Ruby or even in cron. I think my oversimplified example could represent an explanation, as suggested by Mr Dilger in the article linked at the top. Sadly that's not the most interesting thing in his writeup. I twittered this logic lesson quote to tease:

Asserting that it’s a ridiculous supposition is in no way disproving it.

and you'll just have to look at his piece to find out the topic or relevance and whether it has anything to do with meteorology.
eta: This one has some juicy hearsay including the name of a vendor: http://www.hiptop3.com/archives/what-caused-the-sidekick-fail/, but be warned the comments are almost unreadable.

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Comments
warsop From: warsop Date: October 14th, 2009 04:03 am (UTC) (Link)
ObDisclaimer: I know absolutely nothing about the Sidekick thing.

That said, I'm immensely hard-pressed to believe anything off of the keyboard of Dilger with regards to Microsoft. He's massively anti-Microsoft, and generally either can't be bothered to do fact-checking. It's also interesting to see that Dilger is still astroturfing, pointing to his own previous articles on AppleInsider as proof. I'm sure that he's been posting links to this story elsewhere as one of his sock puppets like Prince McLean.

It's highly entertaining to see that Dilger doesn't even understand what "dogfooding" is. It's not about "[s]triving to rid the company of foreign technology," but rather about internal employees doing pre-alpha testing of products before they ship to users. "Dogfood" is both a noun and a verb, and is short for "eating your own dogfood" -- that is, if you expect other people to use it, you damn well better use it yourself.

Dogfooding occurs in stages. First the technical team starts using it, and then it widens to the whole product team. When you've even got the marketing guys using it without a problem, then it opens up further to volunteers outside the product team, generally by invitation.

For a project that was, according to Dilger, flying under the radar, there's no way that dogfooding could have brought down the external service -- not only are dogfood servers kept sandboxed, there wouldn't've been enough people dogfooding to bring anything down.
adric From: adric Date: October 14th, 2009 04:17 am (UTC) (Link)

Quite right.

I agree on all points and appreciate you taking the time to explain. I don't know the fellow from Adam so I was hoping someone could tell me who he is :) Cheers!

The eta link has a better gossip storyline that is much more believable. I left the post as is because I think the idea of startups coding in anti-apocalypse easter eggs is an interesting plot device and a obvious ethical hazard ... so much so that it must have happened quite a few times by now ...
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