Life Codecs @

Ruminations. Reflections. Refractions. Code.

Sep 28, 2015 - Uncategorized

The Second Law of Thermodynamics

Often simplified and paraphrased (mostly by software folks, like yours truly, and pop sci crowds) to “everything tends towards entropy”, the law is surprisingly applicable to wide range of scenarios. Which, I suppose, should not be surprising given the universe and humans forming the ecosystem are simply bags of vibrating, heat-producing molecules. The last statement was not meant to be cynical, nor do I subscribe to the view that consciousness is a purely emergent physical phenomenon, but I am abstracting for the sake of this post. But, I digress.

In software we see the law in the phenomenon known as Software Rot or Bit Rot, or some variation thereof. But, “as above, so below”, the same law applies to groups of people, to companies, to relationships. When a group stops making an effort to be better, then it does not simply stay in place, it tends towards a rotting state. Complacency is bad not because it stops you from progressing, it’s bad because it regresses you. Sometimes, I wonder if there is such a thing as a state of true rest.

Consider now, that if the ‘natural state’ tends towards entropy, what the effect of catalysts towards that state is?

“Is there a point to this post?”, I hear my readers (I should have at least two…) say. Sort of, just one of those days when you wonder why you are in the industry you are. I rarely drink, but, days like this I sympathise with the wise words of jwz, “This is why I sell beer“. People, including myself, simply do not learn.