Quinn Wilton

Watch Quinn’s talk: “Postmodern Systems” – from Aaron Swartz Day 2002 on November 13, 2022:

YouTube  –  Internet Archive

At the turn of the century, Gerald Sussman remarked that “computer science is in deep trouble. Structured design is a failure.”

Since then, our systems have only become more complex as we’ve struggled to cater to the needs of more types of people. Perhaps it’s time for us to take a page from Sussman’s book, and consider a post-structuralist interpretation of computer programs?

Doing so means reconceptualizing of software to eschew objective and totalizing experiences in favor of the intersubjective perspectives of our users: a goal that requires rethinking how we build interconnected software entirely.


Quinn is an applied researcher at Fission, where she spends her time experimenting with new ways of building and composing systems together.

Lately, that’s meant building a decentralized edge database for supporting end-to-end encrypted applications over IPFS.

In her free time, she watches way too much film, and occupies her nights with archaeological dives into dead and forgotten programming languages.

November 12-13 2022 at the Internet Archive