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Comment Re: Just take it in (Score 1) 479

For me, $5/mo to rent the cablemodem from Comcast. $80 to buy the router. So it pays for itself in a little over a year. Definitely worth it.

When I got Comcast, I had previously had DSL, and the plan there was they gave you the DSL modem after the first year or something, so they did not charge a per-month fee. I stupidly thought this was true as well for Comcast, and never checked the bill. When I noticed the charge, I went right out and bought my own and haven't looked back.

Comment Re:call me skeptical (Score 2) 190

The article says:

Roberts had been sitting in seat 3A and the SEB under 2A, the seat in front of him, “was damaged.”

So he tried to get at the one under his seat (which was "tampered with"), but since he couldn't get it opened, he tried the seat in front of him (which was "damaged"), and he succeeded.

Comment Re:Very different code (Score 2) 225

No. Just because something is legal according to the specification does not make it "right". The specification _should_ be restricted, but it cannot because there are a _lot_ of lines of code out there that would suddenly stop compiling. It _IS_ wrong to do 'if (a = b)' for a few reasons:

1. Someone else won't necessarily know that this was intended unless you have a comment telling them. That comment would take up just as much space as putting an 'a = b;' line before the 'if (a)' line.
2. If your compiler is not capable of optimizing and figuring out that 'if (a=b)' and 'a=b; if (a)' should generate the same machine code, then your compiler is a piece of crap and should be upgraded or replaced.
3. If you get in the habit of doing those kind of 'shortcuts', you are more likely to accidentally do the wrong thing. And since you're so used to that kind of programming, you're more likely to miss it when trying to track down the bug that you introduced. If 'if (a = b)' just looks wrong to you because you never use it, it is more likely to jump out at you when you're debugging, whether it's your own code or someone else's.

The same thing is true for casting ints to pointers, having fall-throughs in switch statements, signed/unsigned mismatches, and a myriad of other "legal" but "just-as-wrong" things.

Comment Re:Very different code (Score 3, Insightful) 225

There is a reason for warnings -- it's because you're doing something wrong. Unfortunately, the compiler lets you do it anyway, probably because there is a ton of legacy code that would suddenly "break" if they were errors by default. But that doesn't mean that you should stop trying to fix these issues. Many of these issues only appear to be benign until you stumble upon the exact issue the warning was trying to warn you about. Static code analysis tools are also your friend. That doesn't mean you can blindly trust them -- static analysis tools do have false warnings. But they're way better than inspecting the code yourself. You'll miss something way more times than the analysis tools will give you a false positive.

Comment Re:Very different code (Score 4, Informative) 225

This is why all code should be compiled with highest warning level enabled, and all warnings should be treated as errors. The compiler can have a very hard time guessing at what you meant, so it's best to be as explicit as you can. If, for some reason, you're positive the code needs to be a certain way that is, and it is correct, you can always use a "pragma warning(disable)" (with appropriate push/pop semantics) to keep your code compiling clean.

Comment Re:Jerry Was A Man (Score 1) 641

Chimps can and do understand, they just have never been observed to understand it in the wild.

Elephants in the wild can understand human pointing.

So, sure, chimps may not natively understand human pointing, but dogs only got that way because of thousands of years of selection of offspring that cohabit better with humans. Take a wolf and point, it won't understand.

Comment Re:Agile is about commitment, not flexibility (Score 1) 221

I like that yardstick analogy, mind if I use it?

Over the past few months, my org has moved from waterfall to scrum, and while the transition is painful for some people, I think it's really simple to grasp. We no longer have the 3-day meetings of adds/cuts to figure out what features we think we'll be able to ship in the next 2 years, we just have an idea of the bigger items we want to accomplish. Things that we need to do sooner rather than later are more detailed, such that we know whatever work we think we'll be doing over the next 2 sprints is very clear and detailed, with increasing fuzziness the further out we go.

We only work a sprint at a time (2 week schedule), make sure everything is as tested as we can before calling it complete. If we find gaps in our coverage before the sprint is complete, we fix them then and there (no checking in things with "known issues"). If we find gaps after the sprint was completed, we add them into our backlog for handling in the future, so we don't context switch out of our current work to service code. It's actually quite a blessing.

We're not a well-oiled machine yet (will take a while), but I think people are getting it more and more.

I don't think agile is necessarily the right tool for everyone or everything (I know some agile purists would disagree), but for the way we were doing waterfall before and all of the problems we felt year after year, I feel agile development is exactly what our org needed.

How many Bavarian Illuminati does it take to screw in a lightbulb? Three: one to screw it in, and one to confuse the issue.