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Comment C Primer Plus (Score 1) 799

Buy him a copy of C Primer Plus (5th Ed) by Stephen Prata and work through it with him. In my opinion it is one of the best introduction to C books available, if not the best and very friendly to first time programmers. Another option is Java: A Beginner's Guide (4th Ed) by Herbert Schildt.

I too believe that learning the lower level things such as memory allocation is the best way to make yourself a better life long programmer so I would advise C over Java however I know a lot of people who only know Java (or C#) and do just fine however they knew next to nothing about what I consider to be "real" programming. Everything they do is drag and drop then writing some logic to handle an event and letting the runtime deal with the "nitty gritty" stuff.

Comment Re:This is why they were prosecuted (Score 4, Insightful) 574

I saw some movies worse than that! This dude keeps kidnapping people and hooking them up to machines that they can't escape from. The only way to survive is to admit something about yourself and sacrifice part of yourself or do some kind of other horrible act like cut the key out of somebody elses stomach. The worst one for me was a reverse bear trap on somebodies head which ripped their head in half when the timer went off. Needless to say I don't think anybody actually ever survived any of it.

Oh yeah these movies were called Saw. And I saw it in the cinema. The realism and gore was extreme. If these people were put away for making similar movies and selling them on the net then how can Amazon and sell the Saw movies? Surely every horror movie should be illegal and the directors and distributors arrested?

Comment Re:Google hates ? (Score 1) 640

While I understand Google's problems with Theora quality it is surprising for them to be against it (which is what I assume is their official position for Theora support in the video tag?). By the time HTML5 is all finished I am sure Theora will be good enough and if they are unsure that it will be why can't they help it along with a few $$ or directly helping with development for it?

Comment Re:Why do the vendors have a say? (Score 3, Interesting) 640

I agree. Mozilla have supported Ogg Vorbis and Theora as of 3.5 and it works pretty good from the demos I have used. The W3C needs to ignore everyone and push forward with Ogg support in the spec. If hardware acceleration is a problem then work with companies to get it supported in hardware. I know it won't be easy but saying "ugh that is gonna be too hard, lets just drop it from the spec" is stupid, work with Nvidia and ATI and Intel, etc. to get h/w support for Ogg. I am not a specialist so I have no idea how hard it would be to get h/w support for Ogg up and running but I know that my iRiver H10 mp3 player had Ogg support back in 2003 or so, so I am sure it is possible without _too_ much work.

Comment Why do the vendors have a say? (Score 5, Insightful) 640

Perhaps it is a stupid question but why do the vendors have a say what goes into the spec and what doesn't? Isn't it up to them to choose to implement the spec fully or not? FFS just make it Ogg Vorbis/Theora and if Apple doesn't want to support it then Safari can just not support that part of the spec. It isn't like any of the browser are 100% complient anyway.

Comment Re:Oh for crying out loud (Score 1) 352


I am getting fed up with all the BS about Windows 7 being posted on /. A few years ago the MS bashing was valid due to what they were actually doing however now people just posted a load of crap that they half read on some blog 6 weeks ago and can't remember 90% of it anyway so just make it up.

So thank you for posting that :)

Microsoft are trying to "do the right thing" by listening to customers but when they do everybody changes the topic from the good (the removal of the crappy 3 app limit) to limitations which are there because it is designed for a netbook (i.e why have DVD playback on a netbook when not one netbook has a DVD drive?!, also DVD playback isn't free, if you want DVD playback get VLC not that hard). Windows 7 is looking to be a pretty decent upgrade. I am still not that crazy about the taskbar in 7 but Homegroups are really nice and the other UI changes like desktop peek are great.

Anyway I just wanted to say thanks :) have a good weekend!

Comment So (Score 1) 578

I see believing the earth is flat as no more crazy than believing some supreme being create the universe and everything in it in 6 days with no evidence what so ever*

*No the bible is not evidence. It is a collection of stories which cannot be validated as real. It is like saying, in 2000 years, that Harry Potter is "the truth".


Submission + - Solid-State Notebook has Full Linux OS Detailed (

Vigile writes: "The Asus Eee PC 701 is a solid-state hard drive notebook computer that uses a custom Linux operating system that boots in about 15 seconds. Though the hard drive is only 4GB, thanks to not relying on any Windows OS there is more than enough space for the applications necessary for most mobile users. The hardware features a small 7" LCD screen with an 800x480 resolution, Celeron-M 900 MHz CPU, 512MB of system memory and an integrated webcam and microphone all at just about 2 lbs. A full review of the Eee PC 701 is now available that details the functionality of the hardware in general as well as showing 100+ screenshots of the custom Linux OS."

What Does the 'Next Internet' Look Like? 283

Kraisch writes with a link to the Guardian website, which again revisits the subject of reconstructing the internet. This time the question isn't whether it should be done, but what should the goals of a redesign be? From the article: "'There's a real need to have better identity management, to declare your age and to know that when you're talking to, say, Barclays bank, that you're really doing so,' said Jonathan Zittrain, professor of internet governance and regulation at the Oxford Internet Institute. At the moment we are still using very clumsy methods to approach such problems. The result: last year alone, identity theft and online fraud cost British victims an estimated £414m, while one recent report claimed 93% of all email sent from the UK was spam ... Many ideas revolve around so-called "mesh networks", which link many computers to create more powerful, reliable connections to the internet. By using small meshes of many machines that share a pipeline to the net instead of relying on lots of parallel connections, experts say they can create a system that is more intelligent and less prone to attack."

Submission + - Experts find vulnerabilities from voting machines

Jari Arkko writes: "A security analysis of voting machines used in California reveals that the machines from all tested vendors have significant vulnerabilities. A team of outside security experts analyzed the machines. As their report states: "security of all three systems could be compromised." They found that voting machine firmware could be overwritten, test mode and election day made to produce different results, some vendors use well-known static keys for cryptographic operations, etc. The experts also say that an even larger number of vulnerabilities would have been discovered, had there been more time and if all the requested tools had been delivered."

Star Trek "DeMastered" Video Service to Launch 84

slashdottit! tm
lopy writes "The Star Trek franchise has partnered with the little known DuroSport Corporation to launch a new video download service. The service will offer 'DeMastered' versions of classic Trek episodes. The new releases roll-back the quality enhancements of recent years and attempt to replicate the experience viewers had while watching the original series on TV in the 1960's. Medialoper was given a preview, and they've just posted a scathing review of this odd new service."

Submission + - UK teachers will be able to discipline pupils

moranar writes: "The BBC and others report on a new law that will give teachers in UK schools the power to use force to break fights, and to sequester cellphones if they've been used to bully other students. It also allows them to punish students with Saturday detention without consulting the school board or the parents."

Microsoft Getting Paid for Patents in Linux? 377

kripkenstein noted an Interview with Jeremy Allison where the interviewer asks 'One of the persistent rumors that's going around is that certain large IT customers have already been paying Microsoft for patent licensing to cover their use of Linux, Samba and other free software projects.' and Jeremy responds "Yes, that's true, actually. I mean I have had people come up to me and essentially off the record admit that they had been threatened by Microsoft and had got patent cross license and had essentially taken out a license for Microsoft patents on the free software that they were using [...] But they're not telling anyone about it. They're completely doing it off the record."

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