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Comment Re:depends on what you're going into (Score 1) 656

I should probably point out that my intent wasn't to attack functional languages. Also, I feel the need to mention that points 1, 2, and 3 aren't in any way restricted to functional languages.

Anyhow, my point wasn't that functional programming is bad, just that it's currently a fad. (Not a new one, of course, we've been down this road before.) In general, functional languages are really neat, but terribly impractical. Closures are all the rage right now (a result of the current functional hype) even though they're poorly understood, difficult to read / identify (in many modern languages, that is) and have extremely limited utility. To call them essential, particularly in this case, is more than a little silly!

Just for fun: If you want to see a really neat functional language, check out Joy. It's a purely functional language, but it's not based on lambda calculus. It's very cool.

Comment Re:depends on what you're going into (Score 1) 656

GoF is, well, worse that nonsense. (Ask Dijkstra) I have no idea why people treat that waste of time like the damn bible. (This is to say nothing of the many, many, problems that terrible tome as caused!) Closures? No one cared about them for years, despite how long the concept as been around. Their use in mainstream languages is extremely limited (in terms of utility). They're best avoided -- even in languages like Javascript. Take a look around. You'll find most people don't understand them, often confusing them with anonymous functions! Functional programming is a bit of a fad right now, which has spawned this recent ridiculous interest in closures. It'll pass, just like the last time, and for the same reasons.

On topic, the parent is studying computer science, where math is essential. CS is math, after all. Quoting Fellows & Parberry:

Computer science is no more about computers than astronomy is about telescopes, biology about microscopes, or chemistry about beakers and test tubes.

See, the parent (for reasons beyond my comprehension) wants to write software for a living. He clearly has no interest in CS. This confusion isn't necessarily his fault as CS programs have been turning in to trade schools at an alarming rate.

Comment Re:You're the one who needs to wakeup (Score 0) 330

People who think that ANYTHING they get on a COMEDY channel from two Democrat SATIRISTS (Stewart and Colbert) is actual NEWS are fools.

Probably. I should point out, however, that those fools are still far better informed that Fox News viewers. Sad, isn't it?

Study Finds Fox News Viewers Least Informed Of All Viewers

Comment Re:He built an Alpha in 30 days (Score 4, Insightful) 266

I had a project featured in PCWorld and NetworkWorld last month. While I'm not the parent, I think I understand his point and can speak from a better position.

Why all the hate? It looks like a brag on the part of the developer, intended only to impress people who don't know anything about development.

Considering the long list of bugs, missing features, and (lofty) promised utility, it's pretty obvious that this guy is a long way off from completing the project. He didn't write an office suite in 30 days, he started writing an office suite 30 days ago!

It doesn't look like Network World put the spin on the project. The arbitrary 30-day time frame was clearly a goal of the project -- not for extra challenge, but to make it appear more impressive. It's deceptive and dishonest.

As many Slashdot users know, it's not difficult to tell when a personal project is going to get some press. This looks like it was tailored specifically to get that kind of attention. That really bothers people.

So, we've got a not-that-impressive project from a less-than-respectable arrogant press-monger.

A lot of people here also think that they could do a *better* job given the same constraints. A cool project should make you go "how'd they manage that?" not "I could easily do better."

I don't know that "envy" is the right word for that so much as "injustice". After all, we've seen tons of cool personal projects on Slashdot that get little other than praise. If envy were driving the hate in this case, wouldn't we expect to see a similar reaction to other personal projects?

Submission + - Apple 1 sells for $671,400, breaks previous auction record (

hypnosec writes: What is believed to be one of the six working Apple 1 computers has fetched a whopping $671,400 for its current owner at an auction in Germany. The Apple 1 system was built by Steve "The Woz" Wozniak back in 1976 at Steve Job’s parents’ garage and is probably either from the first lot of 50 systems ordered by Paul Terrell, the owner of Byte Shop chain of stores or part of the next lot of 150 systems that the Steve duo built to sell to friends and vendors. The retail price fixed for the Apple 1 at the time was $666.66 with a 33% markup.

Comment Re:What?? FTA (Score 1) 105

So, every one of those 650,000 people aren't drinking enough orange juice?

Sure, why not? Pretending that drinking enough OJ will cure or prevent TB for the moment, it's possible that there would have been many more people with multidrug-resistant TB, but a glass of tasty juice stopped those other cases cold.

I get the incredulity, but 650,000 doesn't seem so big when you consider the population of the entire world.

Comment Re:There are problems with new languages (Score 1) 312

I wouldn't say that. Neither would Linus Torvalds, as it turns out.

Not that it didn't have it's share of problems. (Of course, I would say the same for any language.) It certainly wasn't broken in some fundamental way. It's apparently fun to bash, but you'll find that most criticisms are either empty or pitifully shallow.

The REAL problem people have with VB is that it was absurdly easy to learn and use. This caused two problems:

  1) A Lot of crummy amateur code was produced that needed to be maintained by more experienced staff. That's not the fault of the language. Being easy to use is a good thing, after all! Of course, dealing with all that crummy code didn't exactly inspire a lot of good will from those who had to clean up the mess.

  2) As it was so simple that an absolute beginner could learn the basics of computer programming near instantly (and produce real, working, programs) it became a real threat to a large and vocal group of insecure developers. Believe it or not, some people actually believe that the ability to write computer programs requires a "special mind"! Having that skill makes them feel special, smart, and important. Having no other skills, they rightly felt threatened by VB. Never mind that half of Slashdot taught themselves to program between the ages of 8-12. (Hell, back in the 80's, computer programming as a hobby among pre-teens was so popular that there were tons of children's books that included type-in programs. Some, like the Magic Micro series, were targeted at early readers. Other books had type-ins that the reader had to modify or debug to solve the protagonist's problem and progress the story. There were many others aimed at teaching computer programming directly to the 8-12 set.) They've got a lot of their ego wrapped up in a skill that the average child can learn on their own VB, aimed at professionals, threatened more than their jobs; it threatened their ego. Can you really blame them for spreading FUD?

The remaining hate seems to come from the same kind of people who believe GOTO to be inherently evil. They don't really know why VB was horrible, only that "everyone" says that it is. It's an easy meme to put out there as they're likely to get a good bit of praise for their comments and unlikely to get much (if any) criticism for restating their borrowed opinion. It makes them feel like part of the community. It also makes them feel smart for holding the majority opinion, even though they didn't form it on their own.

Comment Re:There are problems with new languages (Score 1) 312

But why call it "void" and why call it a "function" if it doesn't return something?

This is something VB got right: distinguishing functions from subroutines. I don't know that it was ultimately helpful beyond the obvious pedagogical benefits, but it the distinction is valid and reasonable.

To be honest, I kind of see his point.

Even a blind squirrel gets a nut once in a while. Try as he might, he can't be wrong all the time.

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