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Comment Re:Finally! (Score 1) 221

The biggest problem with C is that it mirrors how computers work.

You can complain that it doesn't do things the nice and easy way you'd want, but unfortunately the computer you're using doesn't do it that way either. Now you can wrap those constructs with something easier to use, but you've just added a layer of complexity over the top. Insist on more easy-to-use-features (eg garbage collection) and you end up with something really slow and cumbersome for a computer to process.

Fortunately we have computers that have incredible amounts of CPU and memory so we don't notice so much (well, until they pause momentarily due to GC collecting) unless you're running am environment where performance matters such as a busy server or an underpowered phone.

That's the trouble with working with things, you have to adapt yourself to the problem domain. C programmers can write very good programs, the ones who know how to write correct C programs think about what they're doing first, modularise it, decide on the interface points between modules and then start writing code. For an example, the Linux kernel (and a lot of the userland) is written in C and yet it happily churns away without crashing, leaking or all the other aspects of bad programming you complain of.

Now I've seen C# code crash regularly, and leak memory (in a system that apparently cannot leak memory) and have security bugs.

So the problem is in the workman, not in the tools.

Comment Re:Family reunification vs STEM (Score 2) 142

nearly al those programs are for the benefit of the companies. Even health care is a way of addressing the cost to business of paying health insurance, now the taxpayer pays straight off and the insurance companies are happy.

H1B has little to do with a skills shortage, its a way to help companies pay their staff much less and also to ignore training of existing staff. Microsoft could have retrained all those tech workers they laid off from Nokia, but they chose to sack them all and then complain about the lack of skilled workers (so much so they now "need" more H1B workers....)

So yes it would be good if programmes were created to care for the health and social security of the citizens, but you're not going to ever get it from either of the main parties.

Comment Re: Oracle's monopoly? (Score 1) 457

The very reason someone else uses the same API is, by definition, interoperability.

Except that Google's reimplementation was designed to be un-interoperable. They wanted the Java programmers to use their system instead of any officially-licenced Java system. They went to all this trouble deliberately, not to make something that worked with other Javas but to break them.

I don't think "interoperability" means allow people to write the same programs for. Microsoft went down that route with J++, it was interoperable with Java programs too. If they didn't want interoperability with Java, they would have made their own very-similar-but-not-the-same language and VM. This is what Google should have done, rather than poach the entire API and call it "not-Java " in the hope they could have all the Java they wanted without any of the disadvantages such as licencing.

Comment Re:Groklaw Needed More Than Ever (Score 1) 457

Yes, it means that is company x creates a language, no-one will use it unless they are explicitly told they have a free-to-use licence for it.

A bit like the existing Java licence.

What you will not get is a licence for other implementations to appear. So Google cannot take someone else's language and write their own versions of it., which may or may not be what you want - so again, if they do not release the language as an open standard, no-one will use it. Simple!

Other forms of API are exactly the same, you either get a free licence or buy a licence to access the system (exactly as it is today), you just cannot reimplement the product you're accessing without a licence.

The only difference is that it sucks to be Stallman, as this means all those GPL programs he wrote to replace the existing Unix commands would have been breaking copyright, but then, they changed things like the command arguments (eg instead of -h they use --help) which might be enough to say they are not exact replacements after all, possibly.

Comment Re: Oracle's monopoly? (Score 1) 457

if it looks like a duck, walks like a duck, quacks like a duck then its a duck, even if you artificially grew it from duck embryos in a lab.

They didn't make something that worked similarly to Java - that would have been OK, C# is similar to Java after all. They made something that was *identical* to Java. If they didn't want to be sued they should have made their own API and their own language, Oracle couldn't have done anything about that then, but Google wouldn't have been able to take Java programs and run them without change either.

Comment More junk? (Score 4, Interesting) 75

I watched the Horizon programme about space junk the other week - it was good - and one of the points raised in it was concern about cubesats not having any movement capability and being cheap and considered "disposable" and thus much more likely to become part of the junk problem that other, expensive, satellites.

4600 micro sats sounds to me like even more junk waiting to happen. Keep it up and we'll not be able to have any nice things in orbit soon.

Comment Re:I add adblockers to everyone's PC I touch. (Score 1) 528

Don't encourage him - he'll be posting about his hosts, firewall rules package that is so much better than uBlock, AB+, etc etc

There are things like this, people are complaining about Windows 10 need to send lots of data to MS, there is a WRT router script that has blocking rules set up for them, IIRC. You'll have to google for it though.. but here's a quick result to get you started

Comment Re:No, not costing anything (Score 2) 528

said PageFair boss.... this is the problem.

I remember the old days, WebHostingTalk forum in fact, that had ads, only they were embedded into the page. The site operators themselves had a pdf of the site demographics, users, visits and suchlike and would offer advertisers a number of banners or images they could send to the site in exchange for a set amount of cash. That worked - it was difficult to block those ads without blocking other parts of the site (though it was still possible, I don't think anyone did it though as the ads were not excessive).

The ads were also closely targeted towards to site demographics - no ads for lawnmowers on a forum discussing web hosting!

But then... we got Google adwords and the other middlemen who insisted that putting ads on your site was something they'd take care of for you, and you'd get loads more money as they'd be targeted at the users based on user's past preferences (ie they could charge the advertiser more because of some bull about only showing them to people interested in them) and they would only take a small cut of the proceeds, whilst the site operators suddenly find they can jut put this widget here and .. loadsamoney, with no effort required.

And this is why your damn OS phones home continually, and there are more ads popping up and flashing at you than ever before, and many of them are useless anyway (like the time I went looking for some new windscreen wipers, I bought them and for a fortnight afterwards I was bombarded with ads for wipers that I would never buy because I just had some brand new ones!).

So, too bad, I have zero sympathy. If a site wants to host adverts directly, I will typically not block them and the adblockers won't have them in their lists anyway. To the numerous rip-off ad merchants.. fuck you. Put that in your damn tracking cookies.

Comment Re:Incompetent contracting (Score 4, Informative) 190

per-client licence is 1 per user usually, and then you have several applications, each of which need a licence.. and the number quickly rockets up.

Add to that old applications that people no longer use, but somewhere in the bowels of accounting are still being renewed and you can easily get 200 per user (well, easily if you're the kind of bureaucracy like a government organisation).

I imagine they'll rationalise these Oracle licences ... by buying 200 SQL Server licences per user.

Comment Re:Good for them. (Score 4, Insightful) 249

amen. And if anyone has followed the tutorials about disabling Cortana to get rid of the "all your keypresses are sent to Bing for.. processing", you'll find that it still sends all your data to Bing anyway.

You have to block it in the firewall to get the behaviour what normal people would expect.

Fear is the greatest salesman. -- Robert Klein

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