Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:Tried to slip that one by us (Score 1, Insightful) 197

If you're a naturalized citizen, you're as much of a citizen as the Founding Fathers. Don't let anyone tell you different.

Except for those who say that their allegiance is to Islam and not America, and that they don't recognise the courts, rights of women, or anything else not based on "god's" law.

Comment Re:learn the knowledge! (Score 2) 224

learn the knowledge

Or buy a satnav. I'm the first to admit that a properly qualified London cabbie will do better than a satnav. They will be able to tell you things like - "it's one way, I can drop you off at the corner here and it's two minutes walk down there, or in this traffic I can drop you off at the door in ten minutes". The thing is that a satnav is 95% as good with a lot less investment, meaning much cheaper prices from a larger pool of drivers

Comment Re:when coders don't have a broad understanding (Score 1) 395

A business rule that had been modified a number of times by requests from the business;

And right there is where you are misunderstanding this. Not only was the rule changed a number of times, but the programmer was almost certainly asked to implement the change on the fly ("We need this new rule in place by Monday."). Further they were almost certainly never given the time to go back and fix the kludge they had created to get it out the door ("Why are you working on that? It works. We have this other project that we need finished. Work on it. You can go back to that later.") And, BTW, needing the new rule in place by Monday was often a real requirement, failing to meet that deadline might cost the company significant fractions of their yearly revenue.

Really, how much longer would it take to write it out in boolean algebra and simplify it? Ten minutes perhaps. If you don't what are the chances that your change won't apply in all circumstances that it should and none that it shouldn't? You could easily spend longer if it fails tests. If you are suggesting that applying a change to an expression that you don't understand is the best approach to editing a business rule that could cost the company a significant portion of their revenue then maybe you should have gone to college.

Comment when coders don't have a broad understanding (Score 4, Funny) 395

A degree guarantees a broad understanding of computing related issues. Of course some people without a degree may have this, but these are a few of the things I have seen:

A business rule that had been modified a number of times by requests from the business; "do X when Y", "do X when Z but not A", "Assume A is false when not Y", and so on for many years. The result was a huge condition with brackets that could not easily be understood. Writing it as a boolean expression and simplifying it revealed that several of the variables in the conditions were not relevant (it did the same thing when they were true or false), much of the complexity was because some test was being applied in multiple conditions and the whole lot simplified down to a short clear expression.

A coder had produced a phenomenal amount of code, counted by lines. In peer review it turned out he didn't understand how to call library classes, and copied the library code into every module which used it

A coder defined a macro defining the boolean "or" "|" as "and"! It turned out that he was totally confused by an expression opening a file as F_READ | F_WRITE, and thought that the compiler writers and everyone else in history had got "or" and "and" the wrong way round.

A definition which was obviously a finite state machine written as spaghetti code, where all that was needed was a table of state, event, action, new-state

This is a legend in our company. An Array copy function defined, despite one being available as
# This function only works on arrays up to size of three elements
A[0] = B[0]
if (B.size > 1)
A[1] = B[1]
if (B.size > 2)
A[2] = B[2]
if (B.size > 3)
A[3] = B[3]
And yes, the language had loops and a built-in array copy function.

Slashdot Top Deals

Systems programmers are the high priests of a low cult. -- R.S. Barton