Dec 31 2022

Descended from the Prince of Darkness?

File this factoid from a MeFi Fanfare discussion about Tracy Kidder’s The Soul of a New Machine under #ThingsIHaveLearnedToday :

[…] Tom West’s daughter is Mefi’s own Jessamyn West, the current owner of Metafilter! Jessamyn has written about her relationship with the book, most recently here, so I don’t think this is a secret at all.

posted by adrianhon at 11:04 AM on December 9

I had somehow not consciously registered the fact that Jessamyn West’s dad was that Tom West. I suppose that’s mostly down to the fact that when I read the book in 1982 or so there was no such thing as MetaFilter, so I just never made that connection in later years.

For the record, I re-read The Soul of a New Machine just over a year ago. While it’s very much a picture of a time and place in an minicomputer industry that was in the process of being overtaken - at least in terms of unit sales - by microcomputers, it’s still a first-rate picture of what it takes to build something as downright complicated as a functional computer.