Just fired up my 2600 only to find out it no longer works.. at least I still have Stella (2600 emulator). My Atari 130XE with 1050 disk drive still works and the floppies from 1980s are still booting... amazing.
Amiga was really the next generation Atari machine, the guy who designed it was the same guy who worked on the Atari 400/etc. I have written code for Atari 8bit/16bit, Commodore 8bit/16bit and I can tell you that Atari 8bit -> Amiga and Commodore 64 -> Atari ST from the architecture and hardware design point of view.
Check out the history of Atari on WIkipedia, interesting read.
This is battle.net for textbooks, how is this patentable?
Link to Original Source
First you should learn the language that seems the most fun to you as that will make you use it more. But here is my brief experience with languages over last 30 years.
C/C++: low level, complex syntax, compiler based, good for really anything but development can be a bit lengthy. Very mature IDEs and good debugging.
java: very popular in corporate world, in my opinion best suited for large teams or server side programming, lots of libraries, can be overwhelming. Easy to profile and debug. IDEs are very mature. Android development.
ASM: only if you are hand optimizing some non-portable code or for fun or for some embedded cases, not very useful otherwise given efficiency of C compilers.
python: nice scripting language I prefer using for writing tools and deployment scripts, got burned a few times when team grew big. Can be hard to debug, IDEs not mature yet.
ruby: has a large faithful community.
PHP: another scripting language that can be hard to scale on large sites, great way to get started in web development. Easier than writing CGIs. Can be a pain to debug. Good IDEs cost money, free IDEs not as mature as they should be. Large community. Good compilers not available (Facebook is not releasing theirs as far as I know), so runs interpreted.
perl: good for string processing, can produce extremely difficult code to read and support. Rabid fanbase that has been poached by ruby and python lately.
C#: similar to java (some people feel it is better some do not), Visual Studio is a nice IDE.
ObjectiveC: iPhone development.
This is from my experience, YMMV. It all depends on what you want to do. Pick the right language for the job and you should be fine.
If I was to recommend languages to you: python for scripting and java for everything else... again, this is my opinion, others have presented compelling cases for their choices.
So from "quite good" to "stunning" is a 0.3 rating on a 1 to 5 scale? That's quite a non-linear scale.
I think the problem is that people are always trying to reach the max level without actually having fun and when they get to max level people complain that there is nothing to do. 60-70 are very interesting levels if you spend time on the Outlands, there are like 10 zones with hundreds of quests that have a lot of story behind them. I did 6 levels in 2 zones by turning off the XP bar and actually reading the quest text and trying to have fun doing quests rather than just trying to get 70 so you can move to northrend and repeat.
The grind is your choice, try to stop and smell the flowers, there is a lot more to WoW than getting to max level in the shortest possibly time.
At the time of the Skype purchase, eBay was desperately trying to break into the China market against TaoBao (or something like that) that was beating them. Meg The CEO, in yet another display of ineptitude, after a long business trip (a.k.a vacation) in China got a hold of a rumor that Chinese auctioneers preferred to talk on the phone rather than email via anonymous email (which is how eBay was able to keep potential gray market auctions low) and that Skype was going to allow the buyer and seller a better route of communication and allow eBay to dominate China. How no major executive foresaw that once the buyer and seller could communicate by Skype then would just close the auction and negotiate offline and avoid seller fees; everyone but the powers that be saw this coming.
The asking price of 2.8 billion + 2 billion (or something ridiculous like that) if they met some internal goals (it was as insane as it sounds and at the time every blog, publication, news source was laughing outloud). Needless to say Skype missed their goal gloriously, did not get 2 billion and at that time it came out that in yet another stroke of brilliance by Meg the underlying technology was not part of the 2.8 billion. The only people who benefited were the founders of Skype who must still be laughing.
If I am buying a chat program for 2.8 billion I better be getting everything... anyhow, all this is public knowledge and a sad chronicle of how incompetent CEO can keep making mistake after mistake and be seen as successful because the company was hugely profitable despite their best efforts. For the record I sold my stock in eBay as soon as I read about this mess and it was at 44$usd at the time, it fell to almost 20$usd when Skype was reported as a write-down (a.k.a. complete loss) in the 10Q and never quite recovered.
I am a solo developer on several projects and run into this often. I find that switching to another project for a bit or exploring new technologies and how they can be used helps, then after a short time you will get the urge to go back. You can also see what new feature you can add that requires doing something completely new (embed a scripting engine, add an exotic data structure, write a new parser, whatever fits) and see if that re-ignites it.
I bet if they rewrote the CPU intensive parts in C/C++ (from PHP) they could reduce the overall machine count and stop worrying about which CPU manufacturer lied to them that week
You must be popular with the ladies.
I monitor http traffic and server logs and majority of the attacks coming from bot attacks have IE 7.0 as the user agent. They are also relentless in the volume of requests to random sites looking for some PHP proxy exploit. On a side note, why can't many of these PHP applications put their admin modules in a zip file and not into the public site by default (not an attack on PHP, rather on bad developers who use it without understanding what they are doing), I see 100s of attacks on some proxy.php every single day (and yes with IE7 user agent most of the time).