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Comment Re:The Hunting of the Snark (Score 1) 157

My problem is (and always has been) that Larry Has Opinions. And lots of those are expressed in such a heavy-handed manner: the language syntax, the intrusive keywords, the proudly gnomic and condescending tone that early on propagated down through Perl user groups, that they are off-putting ...

You see, this don't sound like a technical dispute to me.

Spoken like someone who's never managed a software development project bigger than themselves.

Of course it's a technical problem. Why buy into a tool and ecosystem with warts that piss more people off than the next tool's?

Comment Re:The Hunting of the Snark (Score 1) 157

Folks like me? No-one in the Perl community was ever mean to me. But I had half a dozen languages under the belt before I had the need for a quick-n-dirty scripting language in the mid 90's and fairly quickly made what I'm happy to this day to call an astute technical judgement that a language and community that was so ostentatiously opinionated would be a risky choice for team work; to say nothing of the languages's technical deficiencies at that time. It wasn't a hard decision. If you want to drive The Homer and gloat online about the fur-lined glove compartment that's fine by me. I'll take the fleet of Camrys and have fun going cool places with the team.

Comment Re:The Hunting of the Snark (Score 1) 157

Respect where it's due for Perl's historical achievements - I've hacked enough HGP Perl scripts to know what's what - but they're not per se an argument in favour of using that tool now - any more than the existence of the pyramids are an argument for indentured labour. My problem is (and always has been) that Larry Has Opinions. And lots of those are expressed in such a heavy-handed manner: the language syntax, the intrusive keywords, the proudly gnomic and condescending tone that early on propagated down through Perl user groups, that they are off-putting for anyone that doesn't happen to want to join the club. Which would be a pity if there were no other good options out there, but... there are plenty! And they're not hanging shit on Perl because... why bother? So folks have voted with their feet. Frankly I read a lot of Wall's comments in that interview as the posturing of the second-smartest-kid-at-school. Smart, just not smart enough to shut up long enough for the other kids to get to like him.

Comment The Hunting of the Snark (Score 0) 157

I understand you're proud of Perl 6: that's great, but I'd be more convinced as a developer or manager of developers to take a deeper look if you could demonstrate with examples how teams of mixed experience and aptitude have built complex, performant, maintainable software with it, rather than throwing ill-judged stones at the competition (the Python and Java comments in particular). There are just so many panes of glass around... and I find myself strangely uncompelled by a cute factorial one-liner. And as roll-my-own guy, I'd be more convinced if you could demonstrate elegance surpassing Haskell or LISP.
"A last programming language" is a neat turn of phrase that a) is hard to reconcile with the claim that you're "thinking generationally" and b) much like the original TIMTOWTDI motto, though doubtless sprung from your own formidable brain, ironically reads to me like the exasperated marketing department's spin after realizing that "shit, Larry's written another language for Larry".

Comment Re:the weight is the impressive part (Score 5, Informative) 93

Clearly a lot of uniformed upvoters here if this gets a 5. The article says the test was done with an M2 AP (not ball) round and a half inch of even armour steel is not stopping one of those, let alone "thousands of shots with virtually no wear". See for yourself:

Comment Not engineering (Score 1) 140

Don't oversell what you're doing as "introductory software engineering". If your students are high school level and "new to logic and computer science" then what you should be doing is teaching them an introduction to programming. That is a fine and worthy goal right there. Software engineering is usually a college-level subject or even a degree in itself, teaching already-capable programmers how to design and build complex and robust real-world systems; much of the material revolves not around programming at all but SDLC process and other things that will be irrelevant (and boring) to computer-naive high schoolers. Not to be too precious about it, but the terminology matters; would you advertise an introductory high-school physics course on friction and statics as an "introductory civil engineering"?

Submission + - Google Hosts Special Demo Day for Female Entrepreneurs (

An anonymous reader writes: Wednesday Google hosted a special edition of their annual "Demo Day" event featuring 11 early-stage startup companies founded by women from eight different countries. More than 450 women from 40 different counties applied for a spot, and the winner of the competition was Bridgit, a fast-growing Canadian company which provides a mobile communications platform for construction teams. Online voters also awarded the "Game Changer" title to KiChing, a startup that's actively addressing Mexico’s unique e-commerce challenges. But all of the startups at Wednesday’s event were already actively raising series-A funding, and "We aim to help connect them to mentors, access to capital, and shine a spotlight on their efforts," said Mary Grove, the director of Google for Entrepreneurs, addressing the Demo Day audience in San Francisco.

Submission + - Untangling the Tale of Ada Lovelace

theodp writes: To commemorate the 200th birthday of Ada Lovelace, Google's CS Education in Media Program partnered with YouTube Kids on Happy Birthday Ada! for Computer Science Education Week. For those seeking (much!) more information on The Enchantress of Numbers, Stephen Wolfram has penned a pretty epic blog post, Untangling the Tale of Ada Lovelace. "Ada Lovelace was born 200 years ago today," Wolfram begins. "To some she is a great hero in the history of computing; to others an overestimated minor figure. I’ve been curious for a long time what the real story is. And in preparation for her bicentennial, I decided to try to solve what for me has always been the 'mystery of Ada'." If you're not up for the full 12,000+ word read, skip to "The Final Story" for the TL;DR summary.

Submission + - MIT Creates Tor Alternative That Floods Networks With Fake Data (

An anonymous reader writes: MIT researchers create an alternative to Tor, a network messaging system called Vuvuzela that pollutes the network with dummy data so the NSA won't know who's talking to who. First tests show a 44-seconds delay, but the network can work fine and keep anonymity even it has more than 50% of servers compromised.

Comment Likely not criminals. (Score 5, Insightful) 101

Lots of comments here about the foolishness of paying off criminals. Indeed. But in fact I tip my hat to ProtonMail for their clever strategy for illuminating the likely identity of their attackers. The thing is, when you pay off blackmailers they typically don't then carry through with the initial threat because that's bad business. They may make further demands based on their new knowledge of you being an easy mark, but to carry out the initially threatened action after being paid simply sends the message to you and other potential targets that paying is a waste of money because the threat will be carried out anyway. The profile of the target (encrypted email service) alone combined with analysis of the second attack as having the hallmarks of a state actor would suggest a three-letter agency. The fact that they got hit after paying just clinches it.

Comment Re:Sharks don't kill very many people (Score 2) 49

Although the U.S. has more historically documented shark attacks in total, Australia is some way out in front when it comes to fatal shark attack: Over the last few years there have been around 3 fatal attacks per year in Australian coastal waters. Not a great many, but more than "every other year". When it comes to numbers per head of population, it's not even close! We like to swim and surf, and share our waters with relatively large numbers of potentially dangerous sharks (as well as box jellyfish, and crocodiles...)

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