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Comment Yes (Score 5, Interesting) 141

Also, is there any evidence whatsoever that these "graphical" languages are easier for people to learn?

My kid is 5, and he spends hours writing little programs in Scratch. The click and drag aspect of the graphical language makes it much easier for him. If he had to rely on his nascent typing skills to write code, he'd be stuck in the frustration of Syntax Error Hell, as I was for years when I first started pounding out Basic code on the Apple II.

Comment Re:If you don't know, you can't do it (Score 4, Insightful) 333

Any decent programmer should be able to write a secure program. Read your input, reject it if it's not what you want.

Writing a secure program is relatively easy. Building a secure system is difficult. This is largely because any system that performs any non-trivial task in this day and age will necessarily entail running large amounts of code written by someone else.

Comment Re:Of course it looked dangerous (Score 1) 437

we have a generation afraid to take risks

I always see people praising risk takers. And the same people who praise risk-takers treat failure like leprosy.

But the thing about risks is that they involve a high probability of failure due to circumstances beyond the control of the risk-taker. If they don't have that high probability of failure, they aren't really risks, are they?

So, if you take a risk and you are lucky enough to succeed, you are held up as a fine example of the kind of person that everyone should be. If you take a risk and succumb to the probability that you will fail, then its "fuck off, moocher, you're on your own".

Comment The cost is not the worst problem (Score 1) 394

Alternative albuterol inhalers cost almost three times as much as the $20 epinephrine inhalers sold by online retailers."

The worst part is that epinephrine you can get any time you want (like, say, in the middle of an asthma attack), but albuterol requires a prescription, which means schlepping to a doctor with all the associated costs and inconveniences.

Albuterol works a lot better, sure, but sometimes - when you need an inhaler and you need it NOW - its nice to know the good old Primatine Mist is available over the counter at the nearest drugstore.


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