The programmer's paradox is a situation we all find ourselves in at one point or another. Every project has a moment where the coder has to decide if it's more important to just finish a project or spend more time refining and perfecting it. The paradoxical part is that, in our efforts to refine or add functionality, we inevitably cause new problems to arise. Too often programmers are trapped by the seductive illusion of "perfect code", and the belief that a clearly defined finish line awaits us. For example, re-engineering a block of already functional code to execute faster often leads to the realization that other similar blocks of code could benefit from the same treatment.
HOW did human same-sex attraction come to be? At first glance it seems to be an evolutionary paradox. For a trait to evolve, it has to be passed on to children to whom it confers some sort of advantage. But as gay sex, of itself, cannot yield offspring, we should expect same-sex attraction to go extinct. Evolutionary biologists have long struggled with this paradox, but my colleagues and I believe that if you come to the puzzle from a different angle, the apparent contradiction disappears.
Many public and private efforts in coming years will focus on research in precision medicine, developing biomarkers to indicate which patients are likely to benefit from a certain treatment so that others can be spared the cost--financial and physical--of being treated with unproductive therapies and therapeutic signals can be more easily uncovered. However, such research initiatives alone will not deliver new medicines to patients in the absence of strong incentives to bring new products to market. We examine the unique economics of precision medicines and associated biomarkers, with an emphasis on the factors affecting their development, pricing, and access.
While procedural generation eases some elements of the design process, that resulting specificity imposes difficulties of its own. When something went wrong for a player--and in the bug-infested Daggerfall, it too often did--it was often difficult for Bouma to determine who or what was at fault. Because he couldn't re-create their experiences on his own, he would have players literally send him their save game files, and he would try play through the problematic section in an attempt to discern what had gone wrong. I would literally have to activate invulnerability mode in seconds--otherwise I would be killed," he told me.) He and his collaborators had, in other words, created a game too complex to be managed on its own terms, a digital land that they could only explore by peering through the eyes of those who were traversing it.