The V Manual Genesis

Monday, 18 January, Year 8 d.Tr. | Author: Mircea Popescu

[ Introduction ]:

Heralded as "a most important milestone in the evolution of computer programming", V is in fact the necessaryi implementation of some fundamental principles.

These principles are profoundly contradictory to what has become commonly accepted through social practice by the layman these days, but nevertheless they are absolutelyii true, universallyiii valid and fundamentallyiv correct. Let's list them, and review some basic implications (or, more properly said, some of the closer branches of their implication trees).

0x00] Software is the property of people running it, and part of the systems running it. This implies that the author holds no rights over software, nor could ever hold any rights (the common view correctly identified that authors hold no responsibility over software, but for historical reasons committed the perhaps forced mistake of creating imaginary property interests that obviously can not hold), and is also the direct cause (if not clearly understood at the time) of the peculiar license TRB employs. This also implies that "grep" is an improper name for the various individual greps running on everyone's system, just as "linux" is an improper name for the various, specific, individual linuxen running on everyone's system, and for that matter that the expectation of a unified existence of "the same" software, or even of the property of names in this context (such as the concept of "version") is purely psychogenic and devoid of any support in reality (which is why "dependency hell" and why it can't be fixed ). Note also that "software" as used here probably does not reduce to merely meaning what you wish it meant.

0x01] Identity is constructed, upon a fixed supportv, by others' view. As such identity is immediately inaccessible to the subject! Only through the mediation of always partial, erroneous and fragmentary mirrors can one review his own identity, and the process comes with a guarantee of the subject never recognising his own idea of himself in the reflection (which is counterintuitively a good thing), as well as never being able to construct a complete, or to reconcile a consistent image of the self. Also the layman's interpretation of certification ("I am a Harvard graduate") dissolves into a much different "to this identity attaches a property called «graduate» in any trees which import «Harvard» as a valid signature", which necessarily spells the end of the existence of the state even as a possibility - it is no longer feasible to guarantee uniformity of treatment of such attached properties enough to put forth the pretense to substitute identity that justifies their expense in the first place.

The practical implementation of these principles comes as an algorithm which imports a list of identities as provided by the owner, scans the world for relevant pieces of software signed by those identities and assembles them into a finished

[ Implementation ]:

  1. It's true that while said principles guided its construction, they were nevertheless not yet properly formulated anywhere, and perhaps not all too clearly understood ; yet it's not true to affirm that they are just as much its product as it is theirs. That's what this necessary means. []
  2. Unlike axioms, which are conventionally true, these principles are absolutely true. The difference is that an axiom is necessarily true for its domain to hold, but since that domain is not universal their invalidation can be contemplated meaningfully. Meanwhile these principles' domain is universal, and as such their invalidation can not be meaningfully contemplated - which is to say that should any formal effectively generated theory T including basic arithmetical truths and also certain truths about formal provability also includes a statement contradicting either principle then T is inconsistent. []
  3. This means that for any domain defined as outside their applicability it can be shown that either the domain definition is inconsistent or the domain is included in the null set. []
  4. This means that any construction invalidating their correctness also invalidates correctness altogether, and necessarily. []
  5. The best implementation of that "fixed support" currently known is provided by asymmetric key ciphers, but it's altogether unclear whether a better implementation could, at least in principle, exist. []
  6. This would seem, superficially, to reduce to a CVS of some kind, perhaps better, or more securely implemented - but by the same sort of superficial view it could be said computers reduce to "clockwork of some kind, perhaps better or more securely implemented", a view which is similarily correct and equally unproductive. You might as well call it "a sort of DNS", which in pointed point of fact it already is. []
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12 Responses

  1. Since you elevated software to some meta level beyond bag of bits with label, and beyond "piece of art" with identifiable origin even, what is it then?

  2. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Monday, 18 January 2016


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