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Comment Re:Missing option: None (Score 1) 155

Yeah... Try that in a multilingual environment.... I dare you. I routinely work with five languages in a day, but my phone only knows one. Okay, it knows four of the five, but I have to select one.

It also assumes it does understand what you said. My experience is: it doesn't even when I do talk English to my phone. Obviously that is my fault. I'm not going to deny that.

Where I live, you see/hear no one use these systems.... For good reason.

On a decent keyboard, all of those are -by the way- faster than what you say. You conveniently omit the "Sir/Alexa/OK Google/Cortana" detection phrase, then your inquiry, then the processing, then the verification of what has been detected, then the acknowledgement of the fact that detection has worked correctly. Otherwhise you get such things as "When date LGBT closet tonight". Not really acceptable.

Comment Re:Fortran (Score 1) 628

My father showed me basic when I wanted to use the computer as a calculator (basic arithmetic). I discovered programming.

He then saw talent in me and bought me a Turbo Pascal book (in my mother tongue... English would not have worked at that age) and a copy of Turbo Pascal (I presume from work, but... I don't know where exactly he got it from).

... and that's how he awoke my interest in computers and ultimately the profession I would choose.

Thanks dad...

Education

Slashdot Asks: What Was Your First Programming Language? (stanforddaily.com) 628

This question was inspired by news that Stanford's computer science professor Eric Roberts will try JavaScript instead of Java in a new version of the college's introductory computer programming course. The Stanford Daily reports: When Roberts came to Stanford in 1990, CS106A was still taught in Pascal, a programming language he described as not "clean." The department adopted the C language in 1992. When Java came out in 1995, the computer science faculty was excited to transition to the new language. Roberts wrote the textbooks, worked with other faculty members to restructure the course and assignments and introduced Java at Stanford in 2002... "Java had stabilized," Roberts said. "It was clear that many universities were going in that direction. It's 2017 now, and Java is showing its age." According to Roberts, Java was intended early on as "the language of the Internet". But now, more than a decade after the transition to Java, Javascript has taken its place as a web language.
In 2014 Python and Java were the two most commonly-taught languages at America's top universities, according to an analysis published by the Communications of the ACM. And Java still remains the most-commonly taught language in a university setting, according to a poll by the Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education. In a spreadsheet compiling the results, "Python appears 60 times, C++ 54 times, Java 84 times, and JavaScript 28 times," writes a computing professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, adding "if Java is dying (or "showing its age"...) it's going out as the reigning champ."

I'm guessing Slashdot's readers have their own opinions about this, so share your educational experiences in the comments. What was your first programming language?

Comment Re: But Windows surveillance (Score 1) 84

Microsoft makes their money in commercial software and services all other experiments notwithstanding. Google make some money advertising to people and building profiles and people to better Target than advertising all the other experiments notwithstanding. Can you see the difference?

Not really, no. Sorry.

Microsoft makes really complete profiles on individual persons.
Google makes really complete profiles in aggregate for demographic markets.

Microsoft makes business decisions based on profile data telling them how many people they can reach with a given product.
Google makes business decisions based on profile data telling them the size of each demographic their advertiser can reach with their product.

Microsoft makes a lot of products that fail, when they try to do something new.
Google makes a lot of software and services with the intent of delivering advertising that fail, when they try something new.

Microsoft makes a lot of money, when they stick to their core competencies (a small range of OS and office productivity products).
Google makes a lot of money when they stick to their core competencies (a small range of advertising services, search, and mail).

Microsoft loses money when they step outside their core competency, and try "charge for service" models.
Google loses money when they step outside their core competency, and try "charge for service" models.

Kinda not seeing the difference, Bruno...

Comment Steve Case is high. (Score 2) 35

Steve Case is high.

The article starts out claiming AOL was there at the start of the Internet, and helped pave the way -- but really, "MeTooLand" (AOL) only connected itself to the Internet through a number of large VAX machines, in a last ditch attempt at to maintain relevance, in the face of educated kids asking their parents why they are paying so much money to AOL for what amounts to Internet access. AOL was the sugary cereal "adjacent to this complete breakfast".

He states that "innovation can happen anywhere" (it can) and that "we should be funding outside traditional central areas" (debatable).

And then his three examples are Sweetgreen, Framebridge, and OrderUp, which are all within one hour driving distance of each other in the DC/Baltimore metroplex.

In other words: he's funding outside of "traditional central areas" by declaring a new central area, and then claiming it's not central.

My interpretation of this, and the specific mention of these there portfolio companies for Revolution Growth, where Steve Case works, is that the VC is starting to see that a VC needs multiple VC's when it invests in a risk company, in order to spread the risk, and that no one is coming to their party.

Comment Re:But Windows surveillance (Score 2) 84

This is a nice reminder of who and what the REAL threat is. Windows 10 data collection is not the problem. Microsoft doesn't define it's existence on profiling and targeting people, but Google does.

Microsoft doesn't do it because they can't make a cell phone that people want to buy, to save their lives.

It's not like they haven't tried, many times, including buying most of a company that was capable of making cell phones, only to have the parts drift through their fingers, like sand at a beach.

Microsoft would definitely do it if they could work it out, or buy a company that doesn't dissolve as a result of being bought by them.

Comment Re:IMAP & SMTP (Score 2) 70

That is because you assume that "Apps" are the same as "Applications" or "Programs". That isn't really the case: "Apps" come from the mobile space and are usually touch optimized dumbed down versions. Often they are just fronts for web applications, instead of full native applications. Applications or programs like Thunderbird are not "Apps", they stand on their own and talk SMTP and IMAP and are compatible with all servers that speak these open protocols. That is inherently superior than proprietary "Apps" that do not talk open protocols.

Comment Re: How to copy? (Score 1) 169

Doesn't work that way.

*of course* it doesn't... That's was the whole point of the thought experiment.

They may store a copy of the account balance on the card. This is only for your convenience - so the card can report "out of money" and reject the offline transaction.

That would be a reasonable assumption. I wouldn't count on it... Overdraft fees are the bread and butter of banks ;-)

Comment Re: How to copy? (Score 1) 169

Last time I was in Val Thorens (basically the highest ski resort in France, maybe Europe), I could use my cellphone everywhere... including Internet. Hell, the *first* time I went there, I surfed on the internet using my Psion Revo connection using IR to my Siemens 35i using GRPS. Given the hardware, you can basically guess when exactly that was.

Besides, all it needs is a phone line.: Classic POTS for the terminal base to be connected (the handsets can be wirelessly connected to it), and if those people had a phone, they had a connection.

Comment Re: How to copy? (Score 3, Interesting) 169

From my understanding, in Europe, the chip and pin does make a connection. Terminals generally do have a connection. For a while a lot of them were GPRS or POTS, so you can guess how long this has been used. I remember a few restaurants that had horrible cell reception, and you were pretty much asked to come chip and pin at the counter where reception was acceptable.

I do think that below a certain threshold amount, making the connection isn't mandatory. That's usually when it goes quickly and it doesn't say "connecting". I've only seen it happen on small amounts. Do note, that this is what I conclude from the behaviour. It would be better if someone who actually knows how this works to chime in.

If anything, I do not think that it's the card that stores the transaction. It would not make any sense at all. Imagine I do a 1000€ purchase, and it would be store-on-card. At that point, I destroy the card or never use it again. My card never gets the chance to "synchronize" with anything. Now, perhaps I misunderstood what you meant with "the balance would be kept on the card", but it definitely doesn't involve storing anything on the card. It's the terminal that must store and forward the transaction. Granted, it doesn't change anything in your scenario, but given European chip 'n pin do connect, I doubt you attack would be feasible (ignoring the fact you need a 1000 unconnected terminals, which is doing to be very hard to find).

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