Sunday, May 10, 2009 

Interesting paper

While looking for something else, I stumbled on a paper with an intriguing title: The Ambiguity Criterion in Software Design by Álvaro García and Nelson Medinilla.

I encourage readers interested in the concepts of design and form to take a look. Although I don't really like the term "ambiguity" (it makes for a catchy title, but it's commonly used with quite a different semantics) I think the paper is dealing with an interesting, pervasive attribute of software.

If you have read my previous posts on software design, you may recognize (although not spelled that way) the [almost] fractal nature of "ambiguity". Actually, as I spoke of "n-degrees of separation" in a previous post, I had some overlapping concepts in mind. Curiously enough, subtyping is also mentioned in another article I've recommended time ago about symmetry and symmetry breaking.

I think there is something even more primitive than that at play here, something more fractal in nature, something that has to do with names and identities or (as the authors note) abstractions and instances. I also mentioned a problem with compile-time names in the post above, so there is a lot of stuff pointing the same direction!

I have to think more about that, but first I'll have to write down what's left about frequency...

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