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Comment Re:Tactical Move (Score 2) 302

This is actually a big part of Trump's plan for his presidency. Tax holiday, bring back the billions Apple and Microsoft have stashed overseas, and put the money to work inside of America as well.

It's well known that they're just waiting for a tax holiday to do this, so Obama could theoretically steal some of Trump's fire in the unlikely event it looks like he's going to win and do it early.

Comment Re:Its really the library not the language (Score 3, Informative) 232

> Also we went recently through a phase in computer science education where people were really only taught java. Its the only tool in their toolbox.

Yep. I went through the curriculum of the top 10 computer science universities in the country, and all of them teach either Java or Python in their introductory programming classes.

Only a single one (Stanford) even offered C++ as an alternative.

Which is why I'm working on a tool that will hopefully make C++ more appealing to educators, by replacing the traditionally horrendous error messages with an easy to read paragraph targeted at newbie programmers. I'll be presenting it at CppCon next month.

Comment Re:And what is AMD doing? (Score 2) 56

I can't tell if you are serious or not, but their Zen architecture should be dropping soon, and they at least in theory have caught up with the Intel CPUs of a generation or two ago.

If they have a good price point, they might start actually giving Intel some competition, which is good, since Intel has done next to nothing very interesting since the Ivy/Sandy Bridge days.

Comment Pi Desktop (Score 1) 134

Hi Eben,

I teach classes using the Raspberry Pi 2 (soon to be switching to 3, I hope) in a variety of contexts, such as with students wanting to learn ARM assembly and to K-12 teachers who want to do physical computing in their science classrooms.

It feels to me like the RPi is focused a little too much on Python and Scratch. I understand that it's called the Pi because of Python, but ARM assembly is my favorite assembly language, and bare metal assembly in particular is just a really natural fit for physical computing due to how easy it is to turn GPIO pins on and off. But the lack of documentation for the newer Broadcom SoCs has made it difficult for my students to write bare metal projects. So this leads to my question for you: are there any plans on rolling out better documentation / support / code examples for assembly on the RPi 2 and 3?

Despite this sounding like grousing, I would like to assure you that I love everything you've done with the Raspberry Pi and the notion of physical computing in general. Everyone who takes an assembly class or science technology workshop with me this year will get a free RPI3 and a bunch of sensors, wires, and motors to do hands-on, open ended projects. And I've been doing this for a while and it works really well. Thanks again for all of your vision and tireless effort you've spent in this arena.

Comment Re:How to advocate for desktop dev in a phone worl (Score 1) 515

>A lot of tech people tend to forget that for most people, a computer is not an end unto itself. It's just another tool for getting their real work done. Why "advocate" a desktop if people can get their work done on a tablet or phone? A desktop system has a lot of complexity that, for most people, probably tends to get in the way of actually getting their work done as much as it helps them.

Tablets and phones are consumption devices, not creation devices. They are a hideously bad match for trying to do any sort of serious development work, or even your bog standard PowerPoint deck. A Surface is about as tablet-y as you can get while still being able to do reasonable work, but a Surface is still a real computer under the hood. Anyone who works with touch-only systems could probably give you a long list of design decisions that slow them down when trying to do anything serious.

>I'd argue that very few people's productivity is measured in how efficient their file operations are. It's sort of like believing you're going to be vastly more efficient as a programmer if you memorize a bunch of keyboard shortcuts or type 60wpm instead of 30. Unlike the movies, programming isn't about how fast you type.

I think his point isn't just doing file operations, but rather that everything from the CLI is going to be faster and more powerful than a GUI when you know what you're doing. GUIs are great when doing graphical stuff, but for text-based work, text-based interfaces work better. UNIX is an operating system that is also an integrated development environment.

And typing fast really does make a difference. I mean, sure, Amdahl's Law and everything, but when you know what you're going to do, your typing speed will linearly translate into productivity.

Comment Re:Impressive (Score 1) 106

>False. What telecoms â" correctly â" object to, are efforts by local governments to compete with them. Private businesses, individuals, or non-profits are fine...

No. They lock up the last mile and do everything they can to stop private competition as well. If you're lucky enough to live in a densely populated and affluent area, you might be able to get high speed internet through microwave (the pricing is actually pretty competitive), otherwise you're going to be stuck choosing between the two horribly shitty options of either AT&T or Comcast.

It's a duopoly, and enforced by our legislators that are bought and sold by them.

http://www.politico.com/story/...

Comment Re:Thanks for the great answers (Score 1) 167

>There is a saying in the C++ community, that many language features are intended to protect against Murphy, not Machiavelli.

And yet as C++ progresses, it becomes easier and easier to write simple and performant code that can't be exploited. We're a long way from the strcpy() days. I can, for example, uppercaseify strings without ever using a pointer, iterator, square bracket, or at(). And the strict typing of C++ stops every one of the exploits detailed in those Perl Jam videos, with -Wall being there to watch for anything you can do that is technically legal, but a bad idea.

>Unlike Java, Perl does not even try to protect you from malicious programmers. Being a scripting language, Perl also doesn't try hard to protect you from careless programmers. Nonetheless, these particular examples of brokenness would be hard to encounter by accident. You can't say that of PHP.

Very true. You will definitely encounter more accidental weirdness in PHP. But long past are the days where it was common practice in PHP to pollute your variable namespace with parameters passed in by the user. But the point of those videos is that even if you are a security conscious programmer, following established language patterns, the weirdness of Perl - the language itself - works against you in your goal of trying to write secure code.

Submission + - SPAM: The LHC discovers new tetraquarks, but what does that mean for physics?

StartsWithABang writes: The Standard Model is great at describing all the known particles we’ve ever observed and how they interact, but there are a number of important hints that it isn’t all there is in the Universe. The existence of dark matter, dark energy, neutrino masses, the matter-antimatter asymmetry, the strong-CP and hierarchy problems all tell us that this collection of quarks, leptons, their antiparticles and the bosons we know are only part of the story. The LHC at CERN is currently producing the highest energy collisions at the largest rate ever seen on Earth, making it the best tool to discover new, never-before-seen particles. In a news release just a few days ago, they announced the discovery of multiple new particles – tetraquarks – that had never been seen before. Here's what that means for the Standard Model and our understanding of physics.

Comment Re:How long until the cheaters take over? (Score 1) 46

The way the system works is that the first time you take an action, it creates a virtual sphere that grows at a certain rate (something like 15 miles per hour?). If you take any actions outside of that sphere, then you get locked out for 15 to 30 minutes.

So catching a flight isn't an issue, the sphere will have expired by the time you land. Driving on the interstate could potentially be problematic if you hit a portal, speed to another place, and then hit another portal within 15 minutes.

The common case that it fails on the most, though, is the jitter you get right when you turn on GPS. If you are close to two portals when you turn it on, the jerking around as it tries to pinpoint your location can move you faster than 15MPH according to the app, and lock you out.

Comment Re:Really? (Score 1) 983

>The cops around me start at only $32k-38k max out at less than $70k unless they make at least watch commander, get only 50% pay for pension, and the minority of the pension fund comes from payroll deductions.

Here's rates for California:

$74,700 to start, 5% raises annually, capping at $92,640. Plus full benefits, plus other bonuses (worth probably another 10k or so) that you can go through here:

https://www.chp.ca.gov/chp-car...

That's more than they pay software engineers working for the department (I just went through their job listings).

Retirement is based on 90% of their highest three years of salary, plus health and dental.

Comment Re:It's bullshit is what it is (Score 1) 1010

>The way politics is in this country, Hillary could shoot someone in broad daylight on the National Mall and not only would she not be prosecuted, many of her supporters would still vote for her. "What difference does it make?"

The actual quotes are even more hilariously depressing. Let me grab some from the NPR thread on this:

"I suggest a ban on the following words until election day: email, server, Benghazi. She is acquitted, we are done. (some Americans seem to forget innocent until proven guilty tenet our country was built upon....) We can HOPEFULLY focus on education, infrastructure, health care, environement [sp], global policy and equality. Somehow, it feels like a lofty goal to make those things relevant in this election." -Christiana Schweitzer

"The right wing has (once again) been told that Santa Claus is not real. Add it to the list of things like Birtherism, the IRS, Benghazi, Planned Parenthood, and Death Panels. When will people on the right hold those that lead them down rabbit holes accountable for wasting their time?" -Edward Long

"GOP has done nothing to help Americans except waste millions on useless investigation...IRS, VA, Benghazi, Emails.... A bunch of unpatriotic clowns is what they are." -Edwin Johnson

"OK, so can we put this to bed already? For the gazillionth time? And for a GOP that wants a smaller gubmint intruding in people's lives, I'd like to see how much of my taxes paid for this absolute charade of an investigation." -Samantha McColeman

"Despite an 800 page, $7 million Benghazi investigation, and an FBI investigation - which allegedly involved "dozens" of investigators, they all found NOTHING. What will the trolls now have to write about? "Hillary for Prison" is now dead. As a country, can we all now focus our resources and energy on larger issues such as climate change, terrorism, race relations, and the economy." -David Archibald

Comment Re:Not again (Score 0) 54

>Everyone must learn to code or you'll starve to death in the new economy!!

Well, computer science IS everywhere these days.

But I see it more as an attempt to solve the rather difficult problem of how to get people started on programming. The people who do best in computer science classes in college are almost universally people that have done coding before as a hobby or something. This would be another way of providing that knowledge.

Do you get equally upset at science museums for trying to teach students about electromagnetism prior to AP Physics?

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