There are costs to taking specific actions, there are risks, and there may be benefits.
Here is an example of a risk (or cost)
Q: what do you get when you spar (e.g. fight in a controlled manner so as to work on technique) with a 3rd dan (3rd degree blackbelt), and then mess up on a kick block?
A: a broken middle finger on the right hand
So typing is now hunt and peck. And yes, it does look like I am flipping people the bird
What is the benefit or reward? In this case, I now know what not to do when blocking a kick …
Learning is about making mistakes and recovering knowledge from these mistakes by analysis. If the costs or risks are too high, its possible that no benefit may be obtainable to offset them.
In the HPC market, there are people taking a variety of bets. Some of the benefits they get for these bets are pretty good. Some incorporate huge risks. Think of the last customer to take delivery of a SiCortex machine and pay for it. They were good machines. The risk was entirely operational.
Look at dependence upon Sun for HPC bits. Or in the past to SGI.
There are no sure bets. But its important to note that much of our progress comes from these bets. So we need to keep taking them.
I am not going to stop karate because of the bet I took resulted in a broken bone. I’ll take the time I need to heal, and get right back in the saddle. There is much I have learned from this, much I am learning now, and much more to learn in the future.
As long as not all of the failures are fatal, we can advance in this market.