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Comment: Re:Null Terminated Strings (Score 1) 729

Too bad that Computer Scientists are a bunch of elitist Haters who only know COBOL from legend.

It's cheap to knock a language with a huge installed base as COBOL, mostly because the syntax and the conventions are slightly awkward for "modern" eyes. (I say modern but the elitist dislike for COBOL I believe started in the 70ies.) COBOL is damn good at solving the kinds of problems it was designed for. I have even seen a shop that had/has a COBOL backend to the web applications it offered/offers.

Comment: Re:Null Terminated Strings (Score 1) 729

The problem is that you usually don't know where the the allocated memory is finished.

I understand the rationale behind the pointers like they are, but I'd still prefer if pointers could keep both address and size of the buffer. But it's too late now for such kind of redesign or upgrade.

I understand what you mean. For most projects I do I share your desire to be slightly more casual with memory management. Although I am in the fortunate position to be able to choose a different language (I'm happy to use Java's StringBuilder to append ad infinitum), I cherish the basics I learned when I programmed C. Being able to think in the most basic elements is yet another perspective.

Comment: Re:Null Terminated Strings (Score 1) 729

You can't have a string longer than the amount of memory that is reachable by a pointer.

Did you reread what you wrote? A pointer is nothing more or less than a memory address. A string pointer points to the first character in the string and the string can have any length (theoretically.)

Do you mean, perhaps, that you can't have a C string that doesn't fit into memory all at once? Let's assume you do. That would be an academic limitation. I have never ever encountered a string so big. If you have the need to handle such enormous strings then you probably should study streaming (of characters or bytes.)

You don't say. Sounds like this is relatively new to you.

That's a silly tone you'd better ditch buddy.

The former must be very concise

That's complete nonsense. Source code size has nothing to do with object size, let alone suitability of a language for different problem domains. C's conciseness was useful in the 1970s and 80s, where memory used for source code whilst editing and compiling was a significant factor. Nowadays 10s or hundreds of K of source code is irrelevant in GB sized PC memories. The conciseness is worthless.

I give to you that concise was the wrong word to use. However, well abstracted problems result in concise code and object, while at the same time the code remains readable. Beating the optimizer is foolish, but shouldn't be mistaken with well analyzed problems. Simply punching away in order to scratch the itch is a guarantee for revisiting the code unnecessarily.

Comment: Re:Null Terminated Strings (Score 4, Insightful) 729

I believe none of you actually programmed in C. A string terminated by \0 can be represented by a single pointer and an have any length. You can also easily let the string keep growing (until the allocated memory is finished.) That is the epitome of KISS. If you use an 8 byte character at the beginning then you are limited to a string length of 255. A structure with a length and a string pointer (or a character array) is much more complex and that would reflect in more complex library functions.

C was invented by exceptionally bright people. For a language that was primarily designed to program kernels its remarkably versatile. If you are seeking a language to write administrative applications then you should look further. COBOL back in the days or Java nowadays would suit you better. And yes, there is a difference in programming prowess between kernel / library programmers and application programmers. The latter "just" have to get the business logic going and are allowed to use every trick in the book. The former must be very concise and consider that their code will be used by a huge amount of other programs.

Comment: Re:Will download (Score 1) 67

by SpaghettiPattern (#47798813) Attached to: Post-Microsoft Nokia Offering Mapping Services To Samsung

You're forgetting that even if you have cached the maps in detail (e.g. by beforehand zooming in to all the parts you really need on your trip) the navigation still doesn't work without being on-line.

After having toyed around with cached Google maps for years, this year I finally got a (2nd hand) car with navigator built in. No more mucking about when crossing country boundaries. Bliss at last.

For my usage (EU, frequent border hopper), Google maps is excellent for planning a trip. Not so much for actual moving between destinations.

Comment: Is he a scientist? (Score 2, Interesting) 179

Is he an actual scientist? Did he do any scientific research? Did he merit a the title of university professor? Sure, he did make money, but that doesn't automatically mean he should earn a title that few people get after working very hard, usually without extreme luxury or profit.

Comment: Re: Passwords don't need to be killed (Score 1) 383

by SpaghettiPattern (#47655901) Attached to: DARPA Wants To Kill the Password
The device almost by definition must be autonomous. You wouldn't want your phone to setup a session which attackers could misuse. I'd be fine with using a key like my bank uses whereby the application sends me a challenge which the device encodes and which the application recognises as such.

Comment: Re:Passwords don't need to be killed (Score 1) 383

by SpaghettiPattern (#47650909) Attached to: DARPA Wants To Kill the Password

First decent reaction I see here on /.

Open hardware key where a private key is held and which cannot be extracted (yes, that is possible.) Access to hardware through small keyboard, requiring a PIN/password. Open protocol to challenge private key. Everything is already available. Openness is the key and I think DARPA could apply strong influence in making this possible.

Comment: What happened at the road exit? (Score 1) 163

by SpaghettiPattern (#47592397) Attached to: Fooling a Mercedes Into Autonomous Driving With a Soda Can

If you watch the navigation screen you see the guy approaching a an exit and the video stopping right there. What happened there?

A few observations more.

  1. Considerable effort went into the work around. A redundant device was prepared as cold standby.
  2. Why was the driver listening to Bavarian (Bavaria is the B in BMW) radio?

Comment: Imagine managing a corporation without vision (Score 1) 468

It's Monday and you arrive at work. Somehow you feel you're being managed bin a bunch of cretins but you attribute this to your negative outlook on life. But today is different. In a Tommy-esque way, starting from middle management going up, everyone wares ear, eye and mouth plugs. You think, at first, that your outfit is going to the hounds because vision now truly can no longer be. However, well before the 2nd coffee break, you realize you were wrong. Stuff suddenly works. You feel at ease to communicate with your peers. Stuff that would have take weeks of meetings is agreed upon immediately. Stuff requiring well thought considerations actually gets these. You even start greeting the cleaner at the end of the day. The strangest day of your life passed and you became absolutely convinced that the magic potion for the shop was found. A new and effective way of managing a bunch of developers leaves them enthused. It is patented of course. Magic, sheer magic was cast upon everyone in the company. That night you sleep calm and sound knowing the pointy headed bosses suddenly got a clue and that in "vision without seeing" will be the next hot thing. The deaf, dumb and blind bosses sure play a mean pinball.

Comment: Re:What a shame, but... apk (Score 1) 206

Don't be naive. The only reason Russia and other oppressive nations pass laws like these is so they can better monitor what their 'citizens' are doing and saying. It's a lot easier to lock up whoever wrote "Putin Sucks" online if the data is in a Russian server.

And having data reside in the USA at the whims of the NSA is how much better?

Comment: It depends (Score 1) 282

by SpaghettiPattern (#47392573) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Often Should You Change Jobs?
It depends. No exact numbers apply here. If you take full control and responsibility for your actions, change when you cannot add value to the company you work for and once you have the opportunity to do so elsewhere. The term "adding value" I chose deliberately. You can only add value (and generally make sense) if you're happy and progressing in the fields you find desirable. IMHO anyway. If OTOH building a career only has to do with knowing people and babbling a lot without going fully into something, then WTF are you doing on /.?

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