All of Thomas Colthurst's Comments + Replies

Nice post!  I think though that there is an important class of exceptions to scope matching, which I'll refer to as "well-engineered systems".  Think of for example the "The Wonderful One-Hoss Shay" described in the Oliver Wendell Holmes poem where all of the parts are designed to have exactly the same rate of failure.  Real world systems can only approach that ideal, but they can get close enough that their most frequent error modes would fail the scope matching heuristic.

I bring this up in particular because I think that crime rates might ... (read more)

I enjoyed that poem, thanks for the recommendation! However, I found some of the old English really hard to understand. To anyone who shares that predicament, I found a great spoken version of the poem on Youtube [], which e.g. makes it clear that the "one-hoss shay" is something like a one-horse carriage.
Thanks. Yes this is a good point, and related to @cousin_it []'s point. Had not heard of this poem, nice reference.
Just a quick friendly critique - in the poem, the shay’s parts are meant to fail simultaneously, not at the same rate. Keep that in mind for accurate interpretation!

Chad Ellis wrote a good blog about negotiation for many years at