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Comment: Re:Yes, but not for the sake of playing (Score 1) 168

by JustNiz (#49755455) Attached to: Video Games: Gateway To a Programming Career?

Sweet. Now you come to mention it I do remember reading in the US computer magazines that we used to get in the UK that there was an amazing culture of user groups springing up all over the US and Radio Shack and some other stores used to run free after-hours sessions on their computers. I was very jealous of such stuff, since most UK stores were far more about keeping the kids off the computers than welcoming them in, and there wasn't even one computer user group at least in my town.

Comment: Re:Yes, but not for the sake of playing (Score 1) 168

by JustNiz (#49753833) Attached to: Video Games: Gateway To a Programming Career?

I grew up very close to an amusement arcade and my mind was blown when a Space Invaders showed up one day in 1979. I couldn't afford to play it as often as I wanted (i.e. 24x7) and there was always a queue to play it, so a version of Space Invaders was also my first attempt at an even slightly complex program from scratch too.
I didn't have anything as stylish/expensive as a TRS-80, mine was a Compukit UK101:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C....
I even had the same performance issues as you, so had to directly poke everything into video ram. Later on I got an Atari 400, and then wrote my own Pacman for it for much the same reasons.

Comment: Re:Old fart's claims finally justified. (Score 1) 163

>> BTW, your windows directory is small compared to mine.

Yeah the 15gb is right after a clean install and before patches (i.e. minimal to the point of the smallest its ever going to be).

I think my windows partition is using about 120GB now, but in all fairness that includes some small apps I also installed and a few documents on the desktop.

Comment: Re:Well, perhaps you should look at features (Score 2) 163

You're right everything is all about whcih compromises you're prepared to make.

It seems that ease of development and time to market are now the carte-blanche excuses to mercilessly bodge an architecture, consider memory/disk/cpu resources to be infinite, and throw in dependencies on every bloated toolkit and library instead of writing a few lines of well-crafted code.

In fact I'd say that ability to write well-crafted code is now a dying art. Most so-called developers these days are basically just package integrators and any coding they're obliged to do is sloppy and just glue logic between packages, and they're lost if its in a langauge that doesnt have a garbage collector.

Comment: Re:Old fart's claims finally justified. (Score 1) 163

you are right. there is no more dicking about with hardware jumpers and maybe 2 parameters in config.sys and autoexec.bat

I remain convinced that all the extra bloat that modern windows has (registry, hidden system backups, useless control panels, uninformative error messages, retarded menu and filesystem hierarchies etc etc) is NOT the right direction to make a step forward though.

Comment: Old fart's claims finally justified. (Score 4, Insightful) 163

This story seems to confirm my ongoing claim that a minimal Windows install taking 15Gb+ of disk space and using over 1GB of ram just to run is BEYOND crazy. ...but then I'm also old enough to remember when a bootable MsDOS environment used up about 1/3 of a 1.2mb floppy.
Now get off my lawn.

Comment: meh get off my lawn. (Score 1) 360

by JustNiz (#49694369) Attached to: What Happens To Our Musical Taste As We Age?

I gave up on pop music years ago when rap came out.
Even though rap must still be VERY popular (because thats pretty much all I hear when listening to what's coming from other peoples cars at least here in AZ), I have absolutely no respect for and nothing at all in common with the prison/drug/gangasta culture or their values, so don't like the mindset that produces or likes rap, so I get literally nothing out of listening to it other than a stress headache.
The problem is there appears to be almost nothing new that isn't rap, a derivative of it, or heavily inspired by it, except blatant commercial crap obviously targetted solely at teen girls.
Furthermore the advent of technology in mainstream music has completely deemphasised the importance of skilled musicianship, and replaced it with a sound that is completely overproduced rather than live/natural.
  I'd go as far to say that even 80's punk had far better musicians on average than any of todays rap bands, and they were often trying to sound crap on purpose.

That as much as anything is why I keep listening to the same old rock bands, even though I am myself bored with the lack of anything new to listen to.

Comment: Re:Controversial because? (Score 1) 284

by JustNiz (#49683313) Attached to: Bill Gates Still Trying To Buy Some Common Core Testing Love

Yes it does.
It defnes both what to teach and the testing that ensures it was done. The only thing it doesn't speicify is how to teach that stuff, which is basically irrelevant compared to the what.

http://www.corestandards.org/a...
>> Teachers know best about what works in the classroom. That is why these standards establish what students need to learn, but do not dictate how teachers should teach.

Comment: Re:Controversial because? (Score 1) 284

by JustNiz (#49682641) Attached to: Bill Gates Still Trying To Buy Some Common Core Testing Love

You're missing the real point here. I don't think anyone here is seriously against raising standards or having common standards as a principle in itself.
The actual issue is, do you really want to continue with something that even Gates himself has admitted is a failed experiment? ... Or even worse... to put the responsibility for defining the actual content of lessons, and the criteria by which students get lablelled for the rest of their lives, into the hands of a businessman who's priorty is continually proven to be corporate profit and social engineering to that end (regardless of how well he hides it behind a facade of charity)?. I sure as hell don't.

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