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Comment Re:Missing option: None (Score 1) 173

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) 630

I'm not quite old enough to have used FORTRAN.

What does age have to do with anything? I took a computational linear algebra course in the late '90s that used FORTRAN nearly exclusively.

That said, I started out, like most kids in the '80s, with BASIC and assembly language (6809 and 6502, in my case). I started college early enough that the introductory computer-science courses were still in Pascal, but pretty much every course that needed to do real work used anything but Pascal...lots of C, with a systems-programming course splitting time between 8086 assembly and VAX assembly and a database course that introduced us to SQL (of course).

The computational linear algebra course mentioned above was a math course specifically for computer-science majors; other engineering students took a different linear-algebra course.

Comment Protect you against SQL injection? Really? (Score 3, Insightful) 96

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:Fortran (Score 1) 630

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) 630

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:I'm curious (Score 1) 50

I'm very apolitical and don't care about Trump or Clinton. Trump is the elected president and therefore it makes no difference to me if he has a low approval rating or if his approvals were to spike to the highest levels on record. The American people wanted him as their president. Russia poured a lot of money into his campaign, it is reported, but they could easily do that to anyone running so I see it as a fair playing field under the current rules.

If Americans lack critical thinking methods to distinguish between astroturf or genuine appeal, then their democracy will extend that lack of intelligence and eventually it will cost them their place in the world as the #1 superpower because the only decisions that weaken the USA in the long run are the ones anyone voting should be concerned with.

I may disagree with all of Trump's policy but my opinion is not important. Only facts are important, which Trump's people are certainly deadset against; they say anything they want and deny factual accounts consistently.

This won't help the USA in the long run and they will certainly pay a high price for this administration's ineptitude in lost GDP and lost global relationships.

But at the end of the day, USA elected him and I believe in democracy.

If I place my hand in a fire and it hurts and my reaction is to place my other hand in the fire so that I notice my first hand's pain less, well then I certainly deserve the consequences of that stupidity.

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 Competition (Score 2) 388

...its not the developers of the software rejecting the suggestions -- its users of the software that often react sourly to improvement suggestions that could, if implemented well, benefit a lot of people using the software in question.

When you arrive to some forum and post a suggestion, you are in competition with other people who use the software and might not want to divert developer attention away from bugs or improvements already slated. Another probable reason is competition between suggestions by users vying for developer time. These people shooting down your ideas probably made some other suggestions and had them shot down by other users, or alternatively have some suggestions still pending, so they view your suggestion as a threat.

There could be technical reasons why your suggestion shouldn't be implemented and users may instinctively know this because they are often experts on that particular piece of software as they use it daily.

However, as a developer myself, I can assure you that I always dig deeper to determine if the users have valid feedback or if their feedback is only playing politics.

Good ideas always influence me, even if they are imperfect ideas and would need some adjusting to become viable.

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