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Comment Re:Why stay away from Perl (Score 5, Insightful) 140

- Hard to read code with multiple '$'s and '@'s on every line

I prefer to have variables differentiated (scalars, arrays and hashes) and clearly identified from other syntax or text. It makes code more readable IMHO.

- In-place string modification is asking for bugs

You mean string interpolation? This in fact is one of Perl strengths

$str = "There are $num apples".

is clearer and less busy, easier to remember than

str = "I have {a} apples".format(a=num)

- Clumsy OOP

Specifics? There are some valid criticism of Perl's 5 OOP but the success of CPAN and a long list of highly successful reusable OO modules highlights its practical side.

- Poor selection of publicly available libraries; some have critical bugs that have not been fixed for years

Now you are well into troll territory or you really haven't used Perl much. DBI, CGI, LWP, IO::Socket, HTML::Parser, GetOpt::Long, Devel::NYTProf (not really a module but a totally awesome profiler) the list goes on.

Comment Kuhn and paradigms (Score 1) 575

It sounds like you're claiming that Kuhn didn't believe that a new paradigm offers more accurate results than the last, which he almost certainly didn't.

If he said something controversial along those lines, he might have meant that our perceptions don't actually reflect reality as it really is, so as we are trying to mold science into our reality, we aren't necessarily molding it into a model of actual reality.

Sokal may have been correct that Kuhn didn't make the distinction, but that doesn't mean Kuhn didn't have a valid concern that our scientific reality is socially-constructed. Again, I don't know if Kuhn actually believed this, I'm just guessing based on my reading of Kuhn that he wouldn't have said something as controversial as what you've implied.

Kuhn did not deny that sciences progresses, however he did subtlety deny that we are progressing toward anything - such as closer approximations to the truth or objective reality.

Read Weinberg criticisms here

Comment Re:Not again (Score 1) 575

From what i know of Thomas Kuhn he believed that science is social construct and that the new paradigms don't fit reality any better than the last. To which is think is a load.

As Alan Sokal pointed out in his recent book the discovery aspect of science is a social construct but the justification part is not and this distinction is where Kuhn missed the boat.

Comment Re:It's unclear why this is a bad thing (Score 1) 1164

Why are clam fossils at the top of very young mountains?

Because the earth is very old, continent uplift and subsequent erosion.

ID addresses such an issue?

BTW some ignorant and misinformed floodist think sea shells on top of mountains is evidence of a flood - sorry to say it actually falsifies a flood. Take for example the Grand Canyon, on the Kiabab plateau, there are sea shell fossil that sit on top a geological column that contains fossilized foot prints, rain drops, ripple marks, mud cracks, etc. So just how did these dense organisms find their way to the top?

  I think you deserve D- for not showing any work and confusing YEC with ID.

Comment Social, curious and empathetic (Score 1) 774

As a species we're violent, irrational, deluded, greedy and self interested.

The occasional deviations from this norm in no way redeem us.

If I had a choice not to be involved with this disgusting species then I wouldn't either.

We are the product of evolutionary forces, while we may be violent, irrational, deluded, greedy and self interested we are also social, curious and empathetic.

I would suspect that any other life form that is a product of the same evolutionary forces would share a similar mix of these attributes.

Comment Re:Rational (Score 4, Insightful) 807

I'm of the opinion that all driving while intoxicated laws are inappropriate. Either you're driving recklessly or not. If you are, go to jail. If not, go home and sleep it off.

Really! Sometimes the indication that someone is driving recklessly is when they plow into the side of a car, killing and maiming the occupants.

Drunk driving laws and enforcement do save lives and prevent many needless tragedies as they statistically highlight those that are most likely to be involved in an accident - they should be tougher if anything.

Be careful when a loop exits to the same place from side and bottom.