(Inter)Network Effects

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excerpt If I use Python 3 and can convince everyone else to use Python 3 rather than 2, regardless of how much the Python 3 improvements themselves actually matter to them or how dishonest my arguments are, I am much better off. The path of a programmer who uses the most common language is a blessed path: libraries abound, bugs programmers of lesser languages routinely encounter daily will mysteriously fail to occur in relatively bulletproof codebases, documentation always addresses his use-case with helpful snippets to copy-paste, APIs miraculously return data formatted in a way convenient for his default data structures, which their rich featureful IDE will tab-complete the code for them, Stack Overflow will overflow with tips & tricks for any glitches (which come almost as fun puzzles, bagatelles between the real work), for all is for the best in this best of all possible worlds… While those who venture away from the beaten path quickly discover that how many of their own libraries they will have to write, how under-specified many standards are, how many assumptions their OS or API makes (the better to stab them in the back), how few signposts there are or fellows to ask advice, how quickly the yak shaving kills the beast by a thousand cuts (and the more diligent they are about filing bugs or patches, the deeper they are sucked into the mire), and in their darkest moments, their faith waver as they wonder if perhaps their favorite language is not the best programming language in the world. on 7/7/2020, 5:52:05 AM