Steven D'Aprano steve at pearwood.info
Sat Oct 9 08:12:36 CEST 2010

On Sat, 9 Oct 2010 03:15:35 pm you wrote:

> > You should use that. It works, it is tested and thoroughly
> > debugged, and it is powerful.
> Certainly so, but not as powerful as the individual's ingenuity in
> solving the problem at hand without foreknowledge of the 'known'
> solution.

I suppose you made your own computer, smelting your own ores to get the 
metals and creating your own plastics from oil you dug up yourself, 
right? And then you wrote your own operating system, and wrote your own 
programming language which just happened to be exactly the same as 
Python in every possible way.

My uncle once went to the doctor complaining about general ill-health. 
The doctor sent him to a specialist, who examined him for five minutes, 
ran a blood sample through a little hand-held device, and two minutes 
later said "You've got such-and-such a disease. Here's my bill for 

My uncle got all indignant. "$500? You've hardly done anything! Why 
should you get so much just because you've got a tool that does the 
work for you?"

The specialist replied "The bill is $10 for my time, and $490 for 
knowing which was the right tool to use."

Steven D'Aprano

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