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"The path of the righteous man is beset on all sides by the inequities of the selfish and the tyranny of evil men..."

At certain moment, some ideas get "indexed". Such ideas get a single name, single label and it is enough to say just that name and the right rings are going to bell in heads of all listeners. You do not need to repeat the whole joke, it may be enough to say just the name of the main character in it. You may not repeat the whole story, it is enough to say "life is like a box of chocolate, you never know what you gonna get" and it is clear what is the story about. Or, just refer to "Ezekiel 25:17" and you can bet that most of your listeners will know what you are referring to. These sentences became "indexes" for their whole stories.

The trap that every author of a book shall be aware to not fall into is to become a generator of indexes for his own books. This is inevitable, at the end the author spend last few months reading again and again the same book. Reading own sentences over and over, changing words to make them better, more expressive, more sharp and exact. It is natural that for the author to see nothing more real than the book and its content. It is easy to fall in the trap of believing that this is so also for every other human being one meets.

As a result authors sometimes use sentences like "should you read the xyz book, you would know that...". Or refer to their work using "I have described uvw in Chapter 33, please read it". This is explainable, yet very annoying. I've faced that behavior once and I was quite up set and I knew I should restrain from doing the same after publishing TheAPIBook. I knew that, but I could not stop myself from doing that! It was so tempting to refer to chapter 11, Runtime Aspects of APIs instead of explaining that getting ready for reentrant calls is important. It was so easy and tempting, yet it was also quite annoying for people around me. At least that is my guess from seeing their unusual reactions to my speech or email in not so recent weeks.

Please take this as my public apology for using Jarda 15:13 or Jarda 7:3, etc. "indexes". I could always understand how it feels to get such self-reference. Sorry for that and I promise not to use it anymore.

PS: In case of need refer to this text as Jarda 24:9.


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