> So I guess a moral of the tale might be:
> Don't go loopy, unless it's one you can stop.
> (Good advice for programmers at least.)
This reminds me of Gerald Weinberg's "banana principle". The banana
principle is so called because of a little boy who said: "Today we learned
how to spell 'banana,' but we didn't learn when to stop." Generalizing this
statement Weinberg concludes that, "Heuristic devices don't tell you when to
stop." Which means that for instance "Mechanics alone cannot say which
system will yield to mechanical analysis. Mathematics cannot tell us the
range of successful application." So sense-making alone cannot tell you when
to apply sense-making nor when to stop applying it.
Geral M. Weinberg, An introduction to General Systems Thinking, Wiley 1975,
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