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+ - CPAN as a webservice?

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Consider some very large software archive/library — e.g. http://openjsan.org/ (Javascript), http://rubygems.org/ (Ruby), http://cpan.org/ (Perl), http://mvnrepository.com/ (Java), http://pypi.python.org/ (Python), http://github.org/ (various). Lets say you want to automatically generate wrappers that enable remote subroutine invocation (say, some sort of web service call) for the majority of software in this library. What language would you target? Where would you start?

The aim here is a baby step towards language-agnostic reuse of code developed over decades at great collective effort.

My thoughts so far: the only code suitable for exposure are functions and methods that accept and return basic types (int, char, string) — or data structures or objects made up purely of basic types. Introspection/reflection capabilities in a language — including the ability to examine method signatures — are important. Languages like Perl (whose subroutine parameters passed in the @_ array, but without formal subroutine signatures) are a bit of a puzzle."

Comment: Re:Missing Option: I HATE fireworks. (Score 2) 340

by metlin (#47386677) Attached to: On 4th of July:

Yes, because anyone who cannot afford to pay for a baby sitter should forego ever eating out or watching a movie.

And the reason you find more babies out is for a few reasons:

1. Families are smaller and there is less of grandma and grandpa living 'round the block. As such, you are left with no family help.

2. Economic realities make childcare extreme expensive, even in double income families.

3. Single parents are also a lot more common, and the single parent already has someone taking care of the kid during the day. They can't magically "leave" the kid behind for everything that they do, just because other assholes in public find them to be an inconvenience.

If I can't get a sitter, I'll do my best to calm my baby when I'm out in public. If you don't like it, you can bugger off.

Comment: Re:Missing Option: I HATE fireworks. (Score 1) 340

by metlin (#47385865) Attached to: On 4th of July:

You know, I cannot understand the recent cultural backlash against babies.

Yes, babies cry. They cry at night, they cry in restaurants, and they cry on airplanes. They cry when they are hungry, when they are tired, when they're pooping, and when they need a diaper change. And often, they cry for apparently no reason at all.

As a father of a four month old, I can tell you that we parents aren't exactly pleased to hear our babies cry, either. We don't want our kids to be in pain, and we want them to be happy. We are acutely conscious of bothering others, and we feel helpless about the whole thing.

But you know what's worse? Assholes who cannot stop complaining about crying babies. Guess what? It's how human beings are. You cried too. So did every human being who's ever lived.

So, get over it. Babies cry. Live with it. If you don't like it, find a place without any humans who procreate. And show some empathy, for crying out loud.

Comment: Re:Write your name with a pen? (Score 2) 82

Yes, clearly I was unaware of this fact when I made this comment. Because, you know, it's an all-or-nothing world where people offering product features tell their users to do it their way or stick it.

If you cannot offer a helpful suggestion when someone questions something they aren't comfortable with, perhaps you should cut down the snark and just ignore the comment.

Comment: Write your name with a pen? (Score 4, Insightful) 82

Really? Some of us really enjoy our books -- as someone who has a personal library with ~4,000 books, I would be appalled if I had to write on any of their pages with a pen.

Not because I am planning on selling any of them, but because to me, I just see it as damaging the book.

A good many of them are autographed or antiquarian books, and the last thing I'd ever want to do is sign them with a *pen*.

I find the whole deal oddly disturbing -- maybe it's just me as a bibliophile, but writing on a book sounds like a sacrilege.

Comment: Re: Let them drink! (Score 2) 532

by metlin (#47332181) Attached to: NYC Loses Appeal To Ban Large Sugary Drinks

WHO recently halved its recommended sugar intake for adults, from 10 percent of total daily calories 5 percent. For an average adult, that's about 25g.

Your average (12 oz) can of coke contains 39g of sugar. Your 44 oz coke or Pepsi contain about 154g of sugar. That is not 150% of your recommended daily amount -- that's more than six days' recommended daily intake.

Comment: Re:But people forget what MENSA concluded (Score 1) 561

by metlin (#47327055) Attached to: Match.com, Mensa Create Dating Site For Geniuses

I am going to offer a slightly different perspective.

I work for a management consulting firm, and we hire (arguably) some of the smartest people in the world who are usually good with both critical thinking and with the soft skills. It sounds like an easily accomplished task, but it really is not. Some of the most analytical and quantitative people in the world also come with personality quirks that makes them unsuitable for most client facing professions.

I have also had my fair share of experience interacting with CEOs, both big and small. And it has been my experience that among successful people (the way society values success today anyway), there are two key elements to being at the top.

One is strategic thinking. Not everyone is capable of it, no matter what people may think. Some people are great at focusing on one problem; others are capable of bringing in disparate problems together and finding holistic, long-term solutions. This is a non-trivial task, and one with incredibly devastating consequences in the event of failure (and people do focus on failure, which is understandable, but discounting the success of social, political, and economic progress is disingenuous and silly). A good doctor is great at one problem, but cannot bring to bear the breadth of their experience to handle a disease outbreak, which has much wider consequences.

The second is capital. Modern society runs on capital. You would be staggered at just how much day-to-day credit companies use to run. If the cogs in the wheel were to stop, they will close their doors in a week. Take away the access to capital and you will be stuck at status quo. And identifying which ideas and which cogs in the wheel deserve capital is also one of onerous responsibility.

And that is the real reason executives and people in financial services (capital) get paid as much as they do. It doesn't matter whether or not you are in private or public sector -- those jobs are incredibly demanding, not the least because the burden of responsibilities demands a far more diligent performance.

An entrepreneur can create new ideas, but to bring them to bear on market and to make a company successful requires a different kind of expertise. There's a reason even Google brought in Eric Schmidt as a CEO from the outside -- from having an IPO to exploring growth strategies, running a company is a rare and valuable expertise.

And I am pretty egalitarian (in that y'all muggles look the same), and yet, I would say that the value society places on strategic thinking and capital allocation is justified.

Now, is this sometimes done blindly, without regard to performance? Of course, and that is a structural problem (e.g. Wall Street). And are there other professions (e.g. scientists) who should get similar incentives, but do not? Of course, and that is a perception problem. But neither of those really discount the importance of the jobs many executives play.

And at the end of the day, there is certainly a trade-off. People in those jobs work with little sleep, work brutal hours, and find it difficult to make time for their family, let alone anything else. Most successful CEOs I know wakes up at brutally early hours (~4 am) and are stressed beyond repair. They trade a relatively structured, stress-free life for one that offers great risk with great rewards. And ultimately, that's what society rewards. No guts, no glory doc.

For every Associate at McKinsey or Goldman who burns through 80 hour weeks, there are others who settle for a 9-5 job with a cute barista girlfriend and play pool on the weekends. For every 20 year old who partied through college with debt, there are many, many others who scored perfect GPAs and had clearly defined goals in life. For every geek who started coding in middle school and dropped out and played Counter Strike, there is a kid who busted ass and made it in life. Intelligence only goes so far -- structure, planning, and hard work go a lot farther.

Whether or not you like it, success is cumulative -- and course correction is a lot harder later in life than it is earlier.

Refreshed by a brief blackout, I got to my feet and went next door. -- Martin Amis, _Money_

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