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Comment I wrote a bash script once... (Score 1) 145 145

Yeah, no big deal I guess. Except that this bash script generated a keystroke file that was input to a DOS-based key injector program to automate some proprietary conversion software to convert thousands of files that were being done manually (keystroke, enter, enter filename, choose option, press go, wait for return, lather rinse repeat - you know the drill).

Comment Re:Almost (Score 3, Informative) 263 263

I've written Python for years and have never used any special editor. The one problem I've had is when commenting out several lines of Python code -- you need to add a # character to the beginning of each line. It's a minor inconvenience.

What about using the """ triple-quote format? That works for multi-line comments, but may be "special" in that it's interpreted by other tools.

Comment Re:Python/C++ Combo (Score 1) 757 757

This. I use python usually when I need the language features (libs etc), and C for my embedded stuff. I don't bother with C++; I find C to be more than adequate for my needs. Most of the "C++" I've seen written in the small embedded space is basically C with a bit of C++ syntactic sugar (Arduino, I'm looking at you). Why not just use C??

Comment Re:One of the best card games... (Score 1) 171 171

My friends and I play a variation of this where all players bid at the same time - close your hand, pump twice and on three then show the number of fingers that is your bid. If the total matches the exact number of tricks, the dealer must change their bid up or down by one. This method stops players from reconsidering their bid based on other players. It also leads to some occasions where we are overbid or underbid by several tricks.

...But IMO this is one of the best aspects of trick-based card games, and part of the overall strategy. By rotating the dealer every hand everybody gets the chance to be the first and last bidder.

Comment Re:It isn't only Windows 8 (Score 1) 304 304

I like linux, I run linux exclusively at home, but I don't believe that this could be purely Windows' fault. If the computers truly are identical, swap hard drives and see if the 'good' computer now suddenly develops faults while running windows, or if it's a hardware problem.

Comment In the middle of a Gold mine in Lihir, PNG (Score 1) 310 310

1. I had to fix a script to unattended write a CD of data every day. The script was being run on a computer literally in the middle of a gold mine in Papua New Guinea. I wrote the script in the same location, which was a small (1mx2m) hut plonked right in the middle of the gold mine, with the acquisition system and 2x computers (one linux file server, one MS-DOS acquisition controller) running off a generator. This was for a system designed mid-late 90's and deployed in this instance in 2004.

2. We had borrowed a different acquisition system to acquire some data for a research project in an underground coal mine in NSW, Australia. We had some of the data in the supplied format we'd taken that day, I gave it to my boss and he then started to convert it into the format he could use for analysis. However, it was taking a minute to process each file using the supplied dos-based utility to convert the data, but each conversion needed a user to type the input file name, output file name, file type etc. Then wait for the conversion to run. Note that we had in the hundreds of files, so it would have taken hours to convert the data manually. I wrote a bash script to generate a keystroke-input file which I fed into a keyboard simulator running under dosbox to convert the files in one process. It worked first time, so instead of sitting there feeding the conversion program with input, my boss was able to go out to dinner instead...

3&4. Probably not so unusual, but the above was a strange combination: writing a bash script under linux to write a program to run under a keyboard-emulator in dosbox.

Get hold of portable property. -- Charles Dickens, "Great Expectations"