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Comment I'm sorry but... (Score 2) 435

there's no way "the best tool for the job" can justify any of:

Java's badly designed core class library, with its lack of logical consistency and its abuse of structured exceptions.
C's preprocessor. There are better ways to implement constants and macros.
Multiple inheritance and operator overloading in C++. *
PHP semantics changing with each configuration.
Perl's horrible syntax. *
SQL's numerous security vulnerabilities.
LISP's non-procedural pretensions, and the contortions that result.

Nearly every language's dependence on its own class libraries, because interoperability is unthinkable. What's the point of living if you can't reinvent the wheel?

* "Well, just don't use those features!" Go tell that to the guys who wrote the code I'm expected to debug. If you can manage to track them down somehow. They're long gone.

Comment All I want is one GOOD programming language. (Score 1) 435

A programming language that doesn't have any irritating flaws or omissions, that's all I want. Am I asking too much?

Okay, maybe two. One optimised for system programming to replace C, and another, higher level, for applications. Give them both very similar syntax and semantics, except where differences are called for by their different purposes.

Instead, we get dozens upon dozens of languages that are distinguished only by their various flaws, limitations and arbitrary differences in syntax and semantics. Why? Is no one even TRYING to get it right?

Comment So why TEXT at all? (Score 1) 728

Source code is chock full of inherent structure. Why confine ourselves to flat text that has to be parsed? If we're going to invent yet another new programming language that forces us to throw out all our old code, then we may as well go for broke. Make it some binary format that encapsulates all the structure, work with using an IDE that understands the format and represents it visually. We don't even to all agree on the visualization.

Comment This sort of thing can backfire. (Score 1, Insightful) 696

Sometimes satire ends up revealing more about the satirist than the target. And if the public turns out to be on the target's side, then the satirist ends up being perceived as mean-spirited and out of touch. Satire always draws blood, it's just a question of whose.

Never forget that Air America was a dismal failure.


Morphing Metals 121

aarondubrow writes "Imagine a metal that 'remembers' its original, cold-forged shape, and can return to that shape when exposed to heat or a magnetic pulse. Like magic out of a Harry Potter novel, such a metal could contract on command, or swing back and forth like a pendulum. Believe it or not, such metals already exist. First discovered in 1931, they belong to a class of materials called 'shape memory alloys (SMA),' whose unique atomic make-up allows them to return to their initial form, or alternate between forms through a phase change."

Woman Wins Libel Suit By Suing Wrong Website 323

An anonymous reader writes "It appears that Cincinnati Bengals cheerleader Sarah Jones and her lawyer were so upset by a comment on the site that they missed the 'y' at the end of the name. Instead, they sued the owner of, whose owner didn't respond to the lawsuit. The end result was a judge awarding $11 million, in part because of the failure to respond. Now, both the owners of and are complaining that they're being wrongfully written about in the press — one for not having had any content about Sarah Jones but being told it needs to pay $11 million, and the other for having the content and having the press say it lost a lawsuit, even though no lawsuit was ever actually filed against it."

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