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The Life of a Software Engineer 519

Jonathan Wise writes to share with us an interesting bit of prose describing life as a software engineer. "I am, in the States, known as a Software Engineer. In Canada we're not allowed to call ourselves engineers, although the discipline is no less rigorous than any other kind of engineering. But perhaps its for the best, because 'engineering' describes only a part of what I do. A software developer must be part writer and poet, part salesperson and public speaker, part artist and designer, and always equal parts logic and empathy."

PS3 Controller Flimsy, Wii Controller Fun 222

With the advent of new input styles in the PS3 and Wii, many gamers are wondering what it will be like to actually play with the new controllers. Via Aeropause, an article on IGN says that the SIXAXIS controller is flimsy and poorly designed. Meanwhile, via Joystiq, an article on British site Entertainmentwise reports that the Wii isn't physically exhausting at all, as some people feared. After two hours of playtime, in fact, they loved the experience. From the article: "Some gamers have shown concern that the activity level required to play Wii games, especially the sporty titles, may be too high. There are concerns that you have to stand for long periods of time and use body actions such as swinging your arm above your head or at the side of your body. After playing non stop for two hours, did this happen to me? No. I'm not exactly Wonder woman in terms of fitness and I can assure you, as a regular player there was enough action to warrant perhaps making sure one has access to a tap before playing (you're going to want a drink if you play for as long as we did!) and possibly ensuring plenty of moving around space in your living room. The key to the Wii control is that even the most active title on the launch line up, Wii Sports, doesn't require you to make large body motions unless you want to."

Starting an Education in IT? 425

AriaStar asks: "It's overwhelming to start trying to learn all the different technologies needed to go into programming. It seems that every type of technology assumes knowledge of a different one, which in turn requires knowledge of another, until it's gone full circle. I am interested in everything from Unix to AJAX to Perl. Things like HTML, Javascript, and SQL are like English, but then again, they're basic. Where is the best place to start? What is a good path for someone who learns quickly and easily, but who is simply too overwhelmed, to take?"
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Journal Journal: Flow of information

Okay, a little problem that has been bugging me for the half hour since I've come back from the pub.

If I have a pole with a length of a light year, and I poke someone with it a light year away, presumably I won't receive any force telling me that I have poked that person until a year later. So, if there is a brick wall a light year and a bit away from me, what is to stop me from from moving far more than a bit with no forces opposing me until a year later?

A rock store eventually closed down; they were taking too much for granite.