I hiked Half Dome from the valley floor back in June 2008. After 7 hours, I got to the very last part, the cables, and had some serious reservations. This is basically a wall of granite that you walk up. If the person above you slips they could fall to their death, taking you out, and everyone below you. There is nothing safe about this. I wasn't properly prepared, so I decided to skip the cables part. If I had a climbing belt, with multiple carabiner clips, so that I could be constantly locked to the cables, and high tech climbing gloves, then I might have attempted it. I was equipped for hiking, not climbing.
"After the first glass, you see things as you wish they were. After the second, you see things as they are not. Finally, you see things as they really are, which is the most horrible thing in the world."
--Oscar Wilde on Absinthe