My rules

  • Lemire’s creativity rule: Originality is overrated. It is often believed that an idea is only worth pursuing if it is original. Why do something that others have already attempted? Though it is true that you should not enter a crowded market, Google was not the first nor the last search engine. Apple did not produce the first personal computer, nor even the first smart phone. Originality of its own sake is probably overrated.
  • Lemire’ definition of science: Reality trumps fantasy… especially when the fantasy is popular or promoted by someone with authority, or even yourself. Another way to put it: Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts (Richard Feynman) Or yet: “Science is a way of trying not to fool yourself. The principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool.” (Feynman again)
  • Lemire’s benchmarking rule: Never benchmark on a laptop. Most programmers use laptops. Laptops are designed with a limited thermal envelope which means that they may frequently switch to lower-power modes, making it harder to run accurate benchmarks. It is also a broader concept: you should not evaluate an idea in a constrained setup and make broad claims from it.
  • Lemire’s political rule: it is not going to end the way you think it will. Naive players often assume that they have won when their opponents are getting ready for an offensive.