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Comment: Similar beginning, for sure try Python (Score 1) 466

by JoeSilva (#47242937) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Rapid Development Language To Learn Today?

Back in the school days it was List and C for me too.

They also taught some machine/assembly languages, Fortran, Cobol, Ada, and one functional programming language they called "FP".

Since then I've been paid to work in C++ and then Java when that came along, plus a smidgen of perl and bash/csh scripts. Java cleaned up the syntax and brought us closer to pure OOP (hey there smalltak!). It also gave us a very nice class library. Others have built some very useful frameworks in Java. You might find Java interesting but for rapid development no.

Last year I had the opportunity to learn and use Python (urgently!) on the job. That was a very rewarding experience and I think it makes for a great rapid development language. The syntax is clean. The semantics are powerful. Just like Perl and shell scripting it's interpreted so you can try things out very quickly.

So do try Python but (and you know everyone has a big but), to really achieve rapid development you need to leverage good code libraries and frameworks. Start with the standard python stuff, a good way to go is "Dive Into Python" which is available free online.

Javascript for rapid development? Not convinced, have not tried it beyond some very simple browser funness.

If performance with Python will not meet your needs, maybe Java. And if that is not good enough (shiver) back to C++.
There may be an interpreted language leveraging the JVM, dunno but it might be a good way to go too.

Best and do enjoy the journey.

Comment: It's about experience surviving beyond LEO (Score 4, Interesting) 444

by JoeSilva (#33422648) Attached to: The Best Near-Term Future of Space Exploration?

I think the mining idea misses the point. This NASA plan is all about gaining experience surviving outside of low earth orbit.

1: Surviving without the massive radiation shield that earth's magnetosphere provides.
2: Surviving without an option for quick Earth return.
3: Surviving without near instantaneous communication with ground control, Major Tom.
4: Surviving extended exposure to zero-g (muscle and bone loss)

Well #4 has already been worked out a lot at ISS though the amount of exercise needed is significant (less mission time) and not perfect (still need to get strong again when back on earth).
Shall we start debating the need for artificial G via rotation?

Also #2 has been somewhat worked over with ISS, specifically the need for lot's of spare parts, redundant systems, and design for easy repair. What's not so well covered is, wetware repair. MedBay anyone? Is there a doctor in the house?

Comment: Binocular Vision overrated? (Score 1) 124

by JoeSilva (#28726395) Attached to: World's First 3D Webcam Tested

I've had Strabismus (wall eyed version) my whole life. Maybe I'm missing something (you insensitive clod) but I get the impression this 3D Imagery stuff is just a gimmick, as I seem to do just fine judging distance without it. Still it probably gave a survival advantage at one time else why bother? Maybe it was just advantages to have a backup eye and the binocular ability came along from that, anyone know of research on that?

Comment: Maybe another way to do it? (Score 2, Interesting) 161

by JoeSilva (#26443951) Attached to: IBM Creates MRI With 100M Times the Resolution

I totally agree with kebes's comments and this reminds me, back when I was working with a team developing DNA Sequencers (I was doing the software, though hardware and Physics have always been an interest), I got to alternative ways to sequence DNA and one of them was nano-scale MRI. At the time there was some research on micron scale MRI of live samples and looking at some papers the equation for spatial resolution was dependent on temperature so it seemed to suggest one could maybe get to nano scale by greatly cooling the apparatus in addition to shrinking the sample/coils/probe.

Has anyone else looked into this? Is it really feasible?

Comment: Light Blue but DPI is probably more important (Score 1) 763

by JoeSilva (#24052889) Attached to: Best Color Scheme For Coding, Easiest On the Eyes?

Based on the fact the sky is light blue and some vauge memories of that color being used in buildings as a calming background, I gave it a try for my VIM windows and it was more agreeable.

However I think DPI could be more important as it certainly is harder to read smaller print and scalling fonts is not practical when switching from the old typical 72dpi to the 92dpi like I saw on a recent Dell Ultrasharp 25". I found a 25.5" Samsung LCD that has the same resolution is closer to the 72dpi and is alot less strain on my eyes.


+ - pawnd

Submitted by JoeSilva
JoeSilva (215173) writes "I went looking for cool space news. Instead I got a good laugh at their hacked main page with proclaims proudly "Hacked by Body", and goes on to note "Arabian 1337 h4x0r Ownz j00 f00!". ROFL!!!"
United States

+ - Driving 'privalege' unconstitutional?

Submitted by JoeSilva
JoeSilva (215173) writes "If one accepts that the US Constitution affirms Government only has the powers that it's citizens grant it, then what is this claim by the states that driving is a privalage granted by them? There is certainly good cause to grant the government regulatory powers over the use of motor vehicles and over our rights of way, for the common welfare, but government claiming driving is a privalage it grants to it's citizens seems to me counter to our constitutional ideals. What say you?"

Comment: Re:flip.... flop (Score 1) 8

by js7a (#15631764) Attached to: Go, McCain!
I wish being a POW made him less likely to send kinds on deadly adventures, but in 2000 he ran on a platform of "rogue state rollback" promising to give military-backed ultimatiums to four countries: North Korea, Iran, Iraq, and Lybia. (Why not Cuba, I wondered at the time.) Either it was an empty promise, and he's just another politician, or he's worse than W.

Journal: The Photo-Ops: What Could They Have Been Thinking?!? 3

Journal by js7a

Perhaps the greatest disappointment stands at the breached 17th Street levee. Touring this critical site yesterday with the President, I saw what I believed to be a real and significant effort to get a handle on a major cause of this catastrophe. Flying over this critical spot again this morning, less than 24 hours later, it became apparent that yesterday we witnessed a hastily prepared stage set for a Presidential photo opportunity; and the desperately needed resources we sa

"Gotcha, you snot-necked weenies!" -- Post Bros. Comics