writes: Given that Wolfram is coming out with a programming language I suggest a poll asking how (or if) people use Wolfram Alpha:
- I've never touched it
- I've tried it but don't use it
- Once in a great while (a handful times per year)
- Occasionally (say a couple times per month)
- Regularly (at least once per week)
- Often (once per day or more)
- It's my home page
- Wolfram Alpha, isn't that a star cluster?
writes: Game theory seems to be applicable to so many subjects (foreign policy, environmental politics, business, and even interpersonal relationships) but I know little about it and I want to change that. Many of the books I've seen seem to be more about the mathematical theory than the real-world applications, would anyone recommend a book on game theory that has not only the history and mathematics but what it means in the wider world?
writes: I'm an American living in the UK for the past few years so I have a unique perspective on the US healthcare. I've experienced both the US private insurance based system and the UK state-run healthcare system and I do feel that people in the US are missing the point.
I'm an IT contractor but in the past I have had a several permanent jobs both in the US and UK. In the US one of the primary concerns anyone has is healthcare for themselves and their family. Insurance is a huge concern for those who are self-employed and in many cases the costs involved for private coverage are exhorbitant enough to prevent people from starting their own business. And if you lose your job you have the unenviable choice of either paying way over the odds to keep your old policy or taking a huge gamble and going without. I know American Ex-pats who can't move back to the states because they have pre-existing medical conditions and would be denied health coverage. Can you imagine being exiled from your own country because you have diabetes or MS? What does that say about America?
In the UK it's completely different. If I lose my job I don't have to worry about being covered until I get a new one because I pay into the system and therefore I'm entitled to the benefits. I won't have to worry about being denied cancer coverage because I forgot to mention I broke my wrist when I was 8. When looking for a job I don't have to think about insurance, I can chose the best job for me. I can start a business, quit work for 6 months and write a book or iPhone apps all without a second thought.
Some people are saying that state-provided healthcare makes one less free, but that couldn't be farther than the truth. For me it's given me freedom from worry and the freedom to pursue my own career goals.
I've seen both sides and I wouldn't take the US system over the UK system for all the RAM in Taiwan.
writes: In my career as a network/security architect I've managed to develop some decent perl coding skills after having written everything from billing systems to network management tools to scripts that write custom excel reports, whatever was needed at the time. I'm enjoying the coding side of my work more and more and I'd like to learn a programming language that will allow me to shift my career into more of a developer type of role, but I'm not sure which one to go for. I don't want to spend a great deal of time learning a programming language only to realize just as I'm getting good that it's old and busted and I should have gone with the new hotness so I put it to the slashdot community: If I want to be able to write both web and mobile apps in a language that still is going to be used many years down the line what should I learn?
writes: According to The Register SCO has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection. "With less than $10m cash left to call on, SCO said that Chapter 11 protection and reorganization would protect assets as it addresses, ahem, "potential financial and legal challenges"." See the full story here.