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4 March 2008—Lost amid the shuffle of Microsoft’s unprecedented offer to acquire Yahoo is the fact that Yahoo has been a standard-bearer for many of the new technologies with which the next generation of the Web is being developed. Whether it is support for the acronym soup of RSS, OPML, OpenID, or trends like ”tagging” and user-generated content, Yahoo has found itself, either through its own efforts or its carefully chosen acquisitions, at the center of the Web 2.0 world.

Tagging is one particularly prominent example of Yahoo’s leadership. The company has quietly encouraged its many users to add descriptions to content in an unstructured way. The resulting pools of content, called ”folksonomies” to contrast them with the strict taxonomies of a structured database, are less expensive to maintain, as they rely on users to define the structure. Yahoo’s lead in the space is due to key acquisitions such as del.icio.us, one of the largest bookmark-sharing services, and Flickr, the Web’s lead photo-sharing site.

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Why Functional Programming Should Be the Future of Software Development

It’s hard to learn, but your code will produce fewer nasty surprises

11 min read
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A plate of spaghetti made from code
Shira Inbar
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You’d expectthe longest and most costly phase in the lifecycle of a software product to be the initial development of the system, when all those great features are first imagined and then created. In fact, the hardest part comes later, during the maintenance phase. That’s when programmers pay the price for the shortcuts they took during development.

So why did they take shortcuts? Maybe they didn’t realize that they were cutting any corners. Only when their code was deployed and exercised by a lot of users did its hidden flaws come to light. And maybe the developers were rushed. Time-to-market pressures would almost guarantee that their software will contain more bugs than it would otherwise.

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