Chapter 10: Houyhnhnms vs Martians
What did Ngnghm (which I pronounce “Ann”) think of Urbit? Some elements in Ann’s descriptions of Houyhnhnm computing (which I pronounce “Hunam computing”) were remindful of the famous Martian system software stack Urbit: both computing worlds were alien to Human Computing; both had Orthogonal Persistence; and both relied heavily on pure deterministic computations to minimize the amount of data to log in the persistence journal (as contrasted for instance with the amount of data to manipulate to compute and display answers to end-users). What else did Houyhnhnm computing have in common with Martian software? How did it crucially differ? How did they equally or differently resemble Human systems or differ from them? Ann took a long look at Urbit; while she concluded that indeed the three approaches were quite distinct, she also helped me identify the principles underlying their mutual differences and commonalities.