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Comment Re:Future of Programming (Score 2, Interesting) 326

It's quite something isn't it, how so few people on even slashdot seem to get this. Old habits die hard I guess.
Years ago a clever friend of mine clued me into how functional was going to be important.

He was so right and the real solutions to concurrency (note, not parallelism which is easy enough in imperative) are in the world of FP or at least mostly FP.

My personal favourite so far is Clojure which has the most comprehensive and realistic approach to concurrency I've seen yet in a language ready for real world work.
The key thing to learn from it is how differently you need to approach your problem to take advantage of a mutli-core world.

Clojure itself may never become a top-5 language but they way it approaches the problem surely will be seen in other future FP langs.


Comment Re:Just build nuclear power plants already... (Score 1) 393

"It is only expensive because of the NIMBY crowd and the ear of government that they have."

This isn't true. Construction costs are by far the greatest costs. See this actually quite good summary

I'm not against nuclear power per-se but every time I read about the economics of it I remain unconvinced.

The only people who estimate figures we could live with are the people who build them. Then the costs of every single real world project blow up. There are, as of yet, no good arguments to believe this will change.

Submission + - GCC 4.5.0 released. (

jamesswift writes: "The GNU project and the GCC developers are pleased to announce the release of GCC 4.5.0.
This release is a major release, containing new features (as well as many other improvements) relative to GCC 4.4.x."

The changes are too numerous to list but the additional C++0x work is particularly encouraging.


Submission + - 450,000 iPads sold but how many returned? (

Kitkoan writes: From the article:

Apple announced that it had sold 300,000 iPads by end of day Saturday, and now we’re hearing that more than 450,000 have been sold. What’s most interested about that stat, though, is that I heard from a source that there’s a tremendous amount of buyer’s remorse with the iPad, and people are coming in droves to return them.


Submission + - Maybe the Aliens are Addicted to Computer Games

Hugh Pickens writes: "Geoffrey Miller has an interesting hypothesis in Seed Magazine that explains Fermi's Paradox — why 40 years of intensive searching for extraterrestrial intelligence have yielded nothing: no radio signals, no credible spacecraft sightings, no close encounters of any kind — all the aliens are busy playing computer games. The aliens "forget to send radio signals or colonize space because they’re too busy with runaway consumerism and virtual-reality narcissism," writes Miller. "They don’t need Sentinels to enslave them in a Matrix; they do it to themselves, just as we are doing today." Miller says the fundamental problem is that an evolved mind must pay attention to indirect cues of biological fitness, rather than tracking fitness itself and that although evolution favors brains that tend to maximize fitness (as measured by numbers of great-grandkids), no brain has capacity enough to do so under every possible circumstance. "The result is that we don’t seek reproductive success directly; we seek tasty foods that have tended to promote survival, and luscious mates who have tended to produce bright, healthy babies. The modern result? Fast food and pornography," writes Miller. "Once they turn inwards to chase their shiny pennies of pleasure, they lose the cosmic plot." Miller adds that most bright alien species probably go extinct gradually, allocating more time and resources to their pleasures, and less to their children until they eventually die out when the game behind all games—the Game of Life—says “Game Over; you are out of lives and you forgot to reproduce.”"

Comment What's in the minds of the mods around here? (Score 1) 691

I don't mean to antagonise the parent, but I have to remark how it's fascinating to watch the parent post go from +5 Insightful to +5 Interesting and all the while I and other posters have provided citations showing that the parent post is, in fact, neither Insightful nor Interesting.

I'd love to see time series graphs of mod points for these posts.

Comment Re:Hmm (Score 4, Funny) 691

M: I came here for a good argument.
A: No you didn't; no, you came here for an argument.
M: An argument isn't just contradiction.
A: It can be.
M: No it can't. An argument is a connected series of statements intended to establish a proposition.
A: No it isn't.
M: Yes it is! It's not just contradiction.
A: Look, if I argue with you, I must take up a contrary position.
M: Yes, but that's not just saying 'No it isn't.'
A: Yes it is!
M: No it isn't!

Submission + - Low support for Australian Internet Filtering (

ThinkOfaNumber writes: Results from Whirlpool's 2009 Australian Broadband Survey are in with (not-so?) surprising results about the Australian Federal Government's mandatory internet filtering. Only 7.4% of over 23,000 validated unique surveys supported the idea. Of course, Whirlpool is a large forum with many IT-savvy readers, and the survey doesn't represent a broad selection of Australians, but they state this bias and the results are interesting nonetheless.

Submission + - Ubisoft's new DRM system cracked within a day (

mobby_6kl writes: The previous article on this topic got even more attention from slashdot posters than the original confirmation of Ubisoft's new draconian DRM system, but one of the first games to implement this has been released recently, and, perhaps to the surprise of few, was cracked on the very same day, according to Eurogamer and many other sources. Silent Hunter 5: Battle of the Atlantic was supposed to implement the system under which a constant connection to Ubi's servers was required in order to play the game, but contrary to the article linked in the previous submission, it appears to have been much more vulnerable than expected.

So far Ubisoft denies that the game has been really cracked, and while it is indeed too early to tell which part of the protection was circumvented, and whether it was a weakness in the specific implementation, it is hard to argue with the ability to play the game after the rather standard process of installing the game and then overwriting the executable with the one provided. It should also be noted that the patch which was rushed out to address some of the game's technical issues fared no better than the original release.

Submission + - California to Create Public Animal Abuser Registry ( 1

An anonymous reader writes: California legislators are moving forward with plans to create a public, online, animal abuser registry identical in function to the public sex offender registry. Is this the slippery slope to further government mandated lists and registries?

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