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Comment I'm seeing a resurgence in C (Score 5, Interesting) 285

I'm seeing a resurgence in C. It seems to be coming from several different directions.

The first is from people like Mike Acton:
CppCon 2014: Data Oriented Design
https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

The second is from all the new languages like Go, Rust, Swift. All these new languages need libraries so they all built in good C interoperability so they could be useful immediately without requiring ground up new implementations of everything. So I'm seeing more new pure C libraries being created now than I've seen in a very long time. Library developers know that their libraries will be usable from every language if they write it in pure C.

The third is from IoT. Embedded developers never left C. Now with IoT growing, C lives on.

In all of these cases, they might fly under TIOBE's radar. Most of these people probably don't need to search for C. They already know it and are too busy working on their projects.

Comment RIP Gary Owens (Space Quest, Space Ghost) (Score 1) 93

Damn it!
"The man with the golden pipes", Gary Owens passed away last year. He is best known for Laugh-In, Space Ghost, and the Space Quest narrator.

If he just lasted a little longer, his voice could have been preserved forever with this kind of technology.

And a product that gives snarky, sarcastic, yet funny responses in an awesome sounding voice would be fun.

User: "What is the weather like today?"
Gary Owens response: "The air smells damp and oppressive, like a wet nun."

RIP Gary Owens

====
A Tribute to Gary Owens
https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

Funny Radio Liners By Gary Owens - Comedy Commercials
https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

Ways to die Space Quest 4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

Memorable Moments and Lines from Space Quest 4
https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

Memorable Moments and Lines from Space Quest 6
https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

Comment Re:Interesting... (Score 4, Informative) 28

Apple also has sandboxing for Mac apps and every Mac App Store app is required to use it. Non-MAS apps can enable it when signing with Developer ID (which also makes GateKeeper happy).

The Mac file browser is now a special process that is designed to work with the sandbox. When you user uses the system file panels in a Mac app, it is treated as an explicit opt-in to tell the sandbox that the user has granted permission to access the file.

For most apps, this sandboxing system works very well and everybody should be using something like this.

Building a sandboxed Tor browser on Mac should be a straight forward thing and I hope is a short-term goal for Tor.

Comment Re:What about stop making stuff super thin? (Score 1) 289

Though I should say that it would be a good idea for Samsung and other manufacturers to come up with their own game.

Largely ignored by everybody is how good Apple's OS engineering team with respect to battery consumption and performance. Apple invested a lot of resources to keep their software stack very efficient. This is how they can get away with shipping ultra-thin phones with long battery life with relatively boring/conservative battery specs.

Comment Re:False Equivalence, anyone? (Score 1) 98

Apple support has always treated me well.

When I had a problem with my Mighty Mouse ball (out of warranty), they gave just me a new one on the spot at the Apple Store.

When they made a screwup with my developer account, they gave me a free peripheral of my choice (I asked for a second Macbook Pro charger).

When I had a problem with my iMac (under warranty) they sent me boxes and shipping labels and offered to have it picked up to my house.

Apple has given me among of the best customer service of all the companies I've ever done business with.

Comment "Ignored Again" (Score 3, Interesting) 20

For all the hype about being a Mac event, seems like a massive disconnect that there is no Mac support for the TV app. (AppleTV, iPhone, iPad)

They even showed a Macbook Pro with 3 displays during the event. (Hello? How about putting TV on one of the displays?)

Come on Apple. I expected better from you.

Comment Re:Because consumer hype passes quickly. (Score 1, Interesting) 85

Unfortunately for Samsung, the problem may have crossed the threshold of marketing disaster. While the typical hype might be forgotten quickly, this problem turned into a federal offense to carry these phones on a US carrier.

The fact that air travelers must now suddenly be aware of their phone's make and model, and explicitly be aware of the Galaxy Note brand as "the banned one", is a PR disaster.

Most people don't know or care about these details which is why most of these events blow over after a few months. But this time, you are inconveniencing *all* air travelers to check their phones and become aware of the Samsung Galaxy Note brand in a bad way. So it's not just Samsung owners who have to pay attention to this. And the threat of breaking US federal law by not paying attention to this forces people to actually pay attention and inconvenience themselves, which helps drill in the bad brand connotation in a longer term way.

Then Samsung setting up recall kiosks at airports, while the right thing to do, is also a negative reinforcement of the brand image.

Samsung's saving grace is that they seemed to try to handle the problem in an honest way, without any coverup. (YouTube takedowns notwithstanding.) This helps keep the trust with their customers. If it later comes out that that Sansumg did something questionable, then they will have another PR disaster and I bet they will ditch the brand for sure.

Comment Re:Non-issue? (Score 2) 159

Most people aren't using a data cable any more. Remember when Apple finally allowed people to "cut the cable" and the rest of the world said, "about damn time"? Also, remember that the majority of people have Windows PCs, not Macs, and iTunes on Windows is a favorite past time for everybody to bash. Hence, the vast majority of people are using their iPhones in cordless mode, and presumably real world Wi-Fi on the iPhone is not enough to saturate the write limit.

And for those who do still transfer by cable, the vast majority of them are copying data back to their PC, not the other way around. The 32GB storage is too small. People are trying to offload pictures and videos they recorded on the go to free up space. So the write speed on the iPhone isn't significant for this case.

The most mainstream, intensive, data writing operation I can think of is video recording with the phone. As long as the iPhone's storage can keep up with how fast it can encode/dump bits, that is all that is needed. That was probably Apple's internal target spec, and paying any more for faster write performance is throwing money down the drain for both Apple and the customer they pass the cost on to.

Comment Re:But what is it used for? (Score 5, Informative) 252

Go was created by Rob Pike and Ken Thompson to solve real problems Google was having with its massive C++ code base.

The domain they work in is huge scalability, server backends.

You are right, it is a boring language, and that's just how they like it because Google is trying to solve their very specific problems without creating nightmares of new ones.

Go is designed to address many of the scale complexity problems they faced with C++, in both human terms and machine terms. In human terms, C++ is a very complex language. In machine terms, the joke was that Go was invented while waiting for a C++ compile job. (Google's build times are frequently measured in hours.)

Go also addressed scaling problems for other languages. Java, C#, Python, Ruby, NodeJS, etc. consume a lot more resources to spin up their virtual machines. At Google scale, this adds up to needing a lot more hardware, and a lot more power to run the data center, and a lot more cooling needed.

And since most of Google's server requests have no dependencies with each other, they could build directly into the language mechanisms to support concurrency. (And they make it a point to distinguish between concurrency and parallelism in computer science terms.)

In the end, Go is a fairly simple language that people from scripting languages can pick up reasonably, while getting pretty decent native performance, and also getting concurrency features which are optimized for their domain.

Comment Re: But what is it used for? (Score 1) 252

Be aware that coroutines are not the same as threads. They are much lighter and you can have a lot more.

Also remember, concurrency is not the same as parallelism. The Go literature tries very hard to remind people of this computer science fundamental.

Go's primary domain is server backends. The workload is basically handling many thousands of requests per second that are completely independent of each other (embarrassingly parallel). You are absolutely correct that you don't want zillions of threads. Coroutines can be very effective here.

Comment Re: But what is it used for? (Score 1) 252

> Go billed itself as a systems programming language.

They backed off on this claim a while ago. It's popularity and main use case has been as a server backend language.

Because the language compiles to native code and is closer to the hardware, everybody lumped it in with "systems" programming languages.

As a server language, it meets its objectives well. The native aspects give it an advantage over languages like Ruby (Rails), JavaScript (NodeJS), Python with smaller memory footprints and ability to take advantage of multiple cores/processors.

The built in design for coroutines makes it easier to do concurrency easier than other native languages which only have threads, and coroutines are much lighter weight than threads. (Please note, concurrency is not the same as parallelism. The Go literature tries very hard to remind people of this computer science fundamental.)

Comment Re: Surprised? (Score 1) 140

Dude, don't get me started on first world problems. We're about to get either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump as President. Cut me some slack.

"Desperately needed" in the sense that Metroid 2 is the hardest game to play *legally* now and the longest in tooth technology-wise. Most people aren't going to casually go to eBay and pick up a working GameBoy.

The original Metroid got remade as Zero Mission. Super Metroid can be played on Wii U Virtual Console, and at least that game has color. Metroid 2 can be played on 3DS, but the low resolution monochrome graphics are a hard sell in today's modern world of retina displays and GPU in your pocket that are more powerful than the supercomputers of that era.

Comment Re:Surprised? (Score 0) 140

We just went through this a week and a half ago with the fan Metroid 2 remake AM2R. Nintendo shut that down in 2 days.
http://www.ign.com/articles/20...

It is a brilliant remake, which was desperately needed because Nintendo seems to constantly ignore Metroid. If Nintendo shuts down something like this, Pokemon doesn't have a prayer.

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