Subject: Re: rocket science
From: Laurent GUERBY <laurent@guerby.net>
Date: Sun, 27 Feb 2005 21:15:18 +0100

On Sat, 2005-02-26 at 18:48 -0800, Brian Behlendorf wrote:
> And having only one customer makes life pretty easy, too.

Most of the world programmers (in the 90% range, including me) formally
work for only one "customer", that doesn't make software development
choice any easier because of the "one customer" internal politics which
recreates its own small market for feature selection and planning,
but without the benefits of real market sales to see wether you're right
or wrong.

BTW, automatic trading software in the banking area ("one customer"
class) has also a potentially very high cost of failure:

http://tfc-charts2.w2d.com/forum/index.cgi/noframes/read/323172

I had a chance to look at the option data for this day at work,
and more than 2 billion USD of option contracts on QQQQ premium were
exchanged in less than 20 seconds (about three times the total daily
average in option volume for QQQQ in all 6 option markets). Hopefully
the trades followed a pattern that limited citigroup exposure and
liquidity was here, so the price tag for the failure (to validate third
party input change) wasn't that high, in the several millions USD range
according to the WSJ.

Most of the time in this sector, negociation is able to reduce the bill
so it's a bit less clear cut than rocket fireworks when it come to
losses.

Laurent