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Comment I couldn't get past "how do you write a game"? (Score 3, Interesting) 153

When I was learning about functional programming in college, I got about as far as learning about the avoidance of side effects, at which point I started asking myself, "how would one write a video game in an FP language if you're not supposed to e.g. update the player's on-screen position in response to a keystroke"? The answer I got was to either generate an entire new game-state for each update (which seemed unwieldy), or work around the problem using monads, which admittedly I never really understood. I went back to procedural programming since that looked like the more straightforward way to implement the kinds of programs I wanted to write.

My question now is, do people ever actually write video games using functional programming? And if so, how would an FP-based arcade-style video game realistically handle things like updating the state of the player and the monsters at 60fps, as the game progresses?

Comment Protect you against SQL injection? Really? (Score 2) 73

I would love to hear the explanation of how a general purpose language would protect you against attacks like that, clearly called out in the article.

You're doing the snowflake thing, blaming everyone else for the coders' incompetence and unsuitability for the job. Some dweeb wrote a tutorial and because it's not ready to be cut and pasted into production code, that's the tutorial writer's fault.

NB: Not everyone can code.

Comment Re:Logic and Reason, or lack thereof (Score 0) 172

England was paying for information, paying informants, paying propagandists, jailing and killing people who spoke out publicly against the Crown's control

Citations would've been most helpful here, but let's stipulate, it is all true.

So, in the 18th century Britain was already doing all of that. And in the 20th it did too — and we still regard Alan Turing's efforts as nothing but heroic and decisive in turning the war in the Allies' favor and saving thousands of lives.

Why, then, are so many folks — yourself included — denouncing Turing's descendants at CIA, NSA and their British equivalents in the 21st century? Yes, they could spy on their own citizens illegally and it, likely, does happen — including political opposition. But they do, unfortunately, have a vast number of legitimate targets and their secretive efforts continue to save lives... To sabotage all of their efforts because they could sometimes be abusive is like banning cars because some times people die in them.

It is most refreshing to have a mainstream media outlet call the "leaker" a "traitor", but, when he is found, we are likely to discover, that he was lead to these actions by the Western public's suicidal attitudes towards earlier traitors — Snowden and Manning.

Comment Re:Fortran (Score 1) 525

Yep, me too... I was in fifth grade, our new Astronomy teacher — I'm about twice older now, than she was then (darn!) — offered the class to write a program for her for extra credit (I am pretty sure now, she needed it for her own class in college).

I took my dad's Fortran book and coded the thing up — something really simple, a loop doing something with an array... I never got to test it on anything, but I did get the extra credit...

Submission + - Second parchment manuscript copy of Declaration of Independence found (

Okian Warrior writes: Two Harvard University researchers announced Friday that they have found a second parchment manuscript copy of the Declaration of Independence in a tiny records office in southern England.

The only other parchment copy is maintained by the National Archives in Washington, D.C., researchers Emily Sneff and Danielle Allen said in a statement.

The newly discovered document — which the two have dated to the 1780s — was found in the town of Chichester archives, and is believed to have originally belonged to Duke of Richmond who was known as the “Radical Duke,’’ for the support he gave to Americans during the Revolutionary War, the researchers said.

Comment Re:Impeding the West's intelligence efforts (Score 1) 98

As if the the fact that intelligence agency could possibly use a preinstalled microphone of an electronic device, is in any way non-obvious or as if it's problematic that the 'intended' knows about this.

If it really were as trivial as you imply:

  • the spooks would not have used it,
  • the leaker would not have leaked the details of it,
  • Wikileaks would not have found it publication-worthy,
  • Slashdot-editors would not have put it on the front page,
  • Slashdot-users would not have gone to discuss it as much.

Since all of the above did happen, it is not as trivial as you imply. More than likely, some of our enemies have been eavesdropped upon with this tool. And, just as likely, most of them will now make it impossible — endangering lives on our side. Our efforts to thwart them have been impeded and the millions spent on this efforts — wasted. Thanks to the traitor.

Truth is that all terrorists so far used unencrypted normal SMS services and burner phones, or the unencrypted chat services of various Playstation games.

Those are means of communications. When communicating a person may wonder, who else is listening. TVs are used primarily for entertainment — it does not occur to most people, an adversary can spy on them in their living room.

This leaker can only be defended by people, who view NSA (and Britain's equivalent) as the adversary. Presumably, you aren't one of them, are you?

What, you want to make it a secret that intelligence agencies can see the chatlogs of Playstation games, too?

If a dumber among the enemy is still unaware of it, yes, I'd like to keep them ignorant. Even if only 5% of the enemies have a Samsung TV today, I would've liked them to keep on using it — so that my employees at the NSA can be privy to their conversations.

Comment Impeding the West's intelligence efforts (Score 1) 98

Whoever leaked this is a traitor. It is no different from informing Kriegsmarine, their Enigma codes have been broken.

Yes, the "Weeping Angel" could be used against civilians. But the same was true about Alan Turing's crypto-breaking machinery and their listening for any and all radio-traffic as well.

Like any other weapon or tool It could be abused, but publicizing it defeats its effectiveness against the intended — and perfectly legitimate — targets and is thus bona fide treasonous.

Comment Re:Money stores value (Score 1) 123

The American Revolution is proof that you are wrong, as they won the war using only paper money.

Nope. They tried using fiat money and quickly realized, that's a losing proposition. Hence the gold standard, which lasted until Roosevelt.

One need only read Plato's Laws to understand how money was always recognized as political, and the gold fetish was alien to Civilization.

Ah, I see, where you are confused... You took my post as advocacy for "gold standard" — which it was not. I merely objected to the GP's claim, that money is: a) inherently corrupting; and b) its importance is somehow new — he used the word "nowadays". The historical examples we both are citing defeat that claim handily — money always was important. Was it always dangerous? Yes — much like an energy-storing battery can explode and/or cause fire, the value-storing money can cause bad things to happen.

Money is not a store of value.

BZZZ, wrong. Whether fiat or backed by some medium (such as gold), money is a way to store value — among other things.

It is a unit of political capital, the value of which is entirely dependent upon the power of the sovereignty that issued it.

Here you are talking about a government's fiat money, which does indeed have the drawbacks you list. But that's irrelevant to my original point.

Comment Re:Light Sail vs. EM-propulsion (Score 1) 162

With an onboard em source you would need to carry your own fuel and have a massive em emitter.

That's not necessarily a problem — even a kilo of material contains enormous amounts of power (m*c*c), we just don't yet know, how to extract it...

It would seem, the first such craft — if any are built — will have both. The sail for long distance travel, and EM for shorter-distance maneuvering, when nearby stars may not be sufficiently "bright". Not at all unlike the first coal-powered ships, which still used sails too.

Heck, maybe, Alpha Centauri can be reached first, contrary to TFA, if the breaking is assisted by an EM-drive — with each kilo of its fuel burned, the breaking becoming easier and easier to achieve...

Comment OT: discussing grammar (Score 1) 162

because we're not ugly, and we're not social reject losers. like you. but thanks for letting us know you know 2nd grade grammar

Talking about unrelated flaws of someone, who pointed out your mistake, reveals nothing other than your own acute need of Vaseline...

Correct the mistake if you can and, perhaps, even thank for pointing it out. Or just keep quiet and apply the ointment where it hurts (and you do know, where that is, don't you?)

Comment Money stores value (Score 0) 123

You see the influence of money, and the power it commands, everywhere nowadays.

Did you say "Nowadays"? The colonies nearly lost the war against Britain for lack of money — in the 18th century.

Over two millennia before that, in 5th century BC, Periclean's Athens — industrious and skilled in commerce — were prevailing against Sparta's famous warriors skilled in little other than battle thanks to wealth . It took Persian money for Sparta to win at the end...

"Nowadays" my tail... No, money — a store of value — has always been as influential as the value it stored.

The corruption of science we are observing stems not from the money itself, but from the government being in charge of so many more things, than it was even 100 years ago. When those funding and those deciding, how to spend the funds, are distinct groups — that's, when you get either sincere mismanagement and outright corruption.

Keys directly libelled and slandered Yudkin, with the result that his work was disgracefully neglected

Even in the way you tell this story, it has nothing to do with money... Our misguided "war on fat" was due to the government deciding to expand into dietary advice — which it never should have done.

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