Unlike celebrity culture, popularity in the open source world translates to actual impact on the web. As an author of a popular library, your code plays a direct part in how other developers structure their codebase, and -- depending on the library -- the end user experience.
And, yeah, impact/change/popularity (whatever you want to call it) is certainly a main reason behind releasing and maintaining open source software. Perhaps other dominant reasons include giving users differently opionionated alternatives that better suit their workflow, advancing the technical know-how of a field, and simply experimenting for expressiveness' sake.
I like iterative development but I also really like the author's "cauldron of soup" metaphor. I've definitely worked on projects where I feel like I'm rebasing/updating more than I'm actually doing work to add any type of new value.
And it was the perfect choice, precisely for what it said about his character at the beginning of the show. Walter White, the put-upon high school chemistry teacher living in quiet desperation, driving around in a car generally perceived to be a big, swinging two-ton white flag to the world.
This op-ed does a better job at explaining how some non-tech residents of San Francisco feel about the buses.
When your experience of a big city is a seamless parade of hip restaurants
and privately funded transportation, it's easy to overlook the things that
cities need, like filled potholes and a reliable transit system. San Franciscans
feel resentful about the technology industry's lack of civic and community
engagement, and the Google bus is our daily reminder.
That article is down right stupid. It's not the rich people's job to invest in public infrastructure, it's the government's job. Wealthy people contribute to that by paying large amount of tax. All those hip restaurants and fancy parking spots in the city? Those are tax revenues.
Can't help it that the city is so poorly/corruptly run that it has one of the highest budget in the country yet still can't manage to fix a few potholes before the heat death of the universe.
Commuting by company bus rather than private car or public transit doesn't somehow make a person unaware of the world around them. If anything, I'd wager that the average Google Bus passenger is more attuned to the sorry state of public transit in this city than the average city resident, since not driving to work often goes hand-in-hand with not owning a car.
And no one's experience of the city is "a seamless parade of hip restaurants and privately funded transportation." Regardless of where they work, people who live in the city spend time here. We walk around the neighborhoods, shop at the grocery stores, and play with our dogs (or watch people play with theirs) in the park. We're also aware of the less pleasant aspects of the city: we step over the poop on the sidewalk, we hear the gunshots, our stuff gets stolen. The only aspect of urban life that shuttle commuters are relatively immune from is the snarl of rush hour traffic, but on that front, they're part of the solution more than they're part of the problem.
(And regarding the specific incident in the article that set the writer off, I don't doubt that there are people on the Google bus who push past people as they disembark. But stand next to a Muni bus as it's disgorging passengers, and you'll see the same thing. A significant chunk of the SF population, rich and poor alike, has zero regard for anyone else standing near them.)
The resentment isn't about the "technology industry's lack of civic and community engagement." It's about the rich displacing everyone else. There are more people who want to live in the city than there is housing, so no matter what schemes are in place to assist low income residents, incumbent residents, or people in particular fields, someone will be squeezed out. The rich squeeze out everyone else with their wallet, so some people feel it's appropriate to try and squeeze out the rich by making their lives unpleasant.
The Bay Area tech sector is not to blame, here. It's those opposing densification: Paris is beautiful and has a density of 21,000/km^2. San Francisco can thus clearly remain beautiful and functional while increasing its density from its current paltry 6,600/km^2.
Want an affordable San Francisco? Increase the number of housing units.
I personally think it has to do with wealthier people doing what they want regardless of what the community wants.
Similar outrage flared after the Sean Parker wedding. Regardless of what he actually did at the site, regardless that he paid a fine after the fact, regardless that it created jobs (I know a guy who worked for the lighting company) he pulled the ask-for-forgiveness-rather-than-permission stunt and did what he wanted to do, community & regulations be damned. He got what he wanted: a magical wedding in a beautiful, protected area of Big Sur.
The thing that always bugged me about rendering things in the client was...
1) supporting 2 templating systems (server & client)
2) no graceful degradation (or "progressive enhancement" depending on your opinion) (i.e. being able to get a page's content with a simple wget)
In any case, since it hasn't been mentioned in this discussion, I'd like to direct people's attention to PJAX (http://pjax.heroku.com/).
We used to live with "exceedingly inefficient" full page reloads when we had dial-up, single-core computers and slow servers. And it worked. Now we have multicore computers, mufti-megabit DSL connections, cloud-based hosting and yet you present it as if a difference of couple kilobytes (which can be reduced to nearly zero by proper design) makes a life-or-death difference in website performance.
> yet you present it as if a difference of couple kilobytes (which can be reduced to nearly zero by proper design) makes a life-or-death difference in website performance.
That's quite the stretch, given what I wrote. I only said it was inefficient.
There's also something to be said for the fact that rendering templates on the server will make any meaningful client-side caching almost impossible. And mobile is the new dial-up; while some are fortunate to have mobile broadband, it's certainly not ubiquitous, and multi-core phones certainly aren't the norm either unless you only want to consider the HN readership for your sample.