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UNIX Capitalism

Published February 10, 2022

Do One Thing And Do It Well”

Earlier this week I ran a brew upgrade bats-core1 to get my copy of bats caught up to the v1.5.0 release. This let me use the --print-output-on-failure flag to, as expected, print output on failure. The timing of this feature is good—but not the focus of this post.

The command took surplus of 10 minutes to complete. Much of the upgrade process is, well, downloading2 the correct versions. At some point3 Homebrew began using GitHub’s Container Registry as the backend for their artifacts. It’s a pretty slick service that I have personally used—again, not the focus of this post.

The point: DOTADIW.

I’ve noticed what amounts to reinventing the wheel to be a common occurrence. Sometimes it’s the (side) effect of a an acqui{sition,hire}. Point being, many companies now have the same, or at least similar, competing products.


Both GitHub and Cloudflare started with tightly scoped products. The motivation to grow is really the relationship between growing market share and increasing revenue. Plus, a culture of not invented here. Read: capitalism.

But at what cost? For me, personally, decision paralysis.

At a larger scale?

Data has gravity”
— my manager, re: AWS

AWS has over 2004 products. Once you’re in it’s difficult to get out. Hence, the pull of gravity.

  1. I should really set HOMEBREW_NO_AUTO_UPDATE: https://docs.brew.sh/Manpage↩︎

  2. I stared at many ghcr.io artifact URLs as the terminal scrolled↩︎

  3. This appears to the commit that migrated GitHub registries: https://github.com/Homebrew/brew/commit/8d07f4f15c082ca9b138a06053b45ba76731c3d6↩︎

  4. The number I heard most recently was 236 or 237↩︎

Last modified February 10, 2022   #programming     #words  

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