shows you how computer algorithms can be represented visually, leading to better understanding of how the algorithms work:
"Have you ever implemented an algorithm based on formal description? It can be hard! Being able to see what your code is doing can boost productivity. Visualization does not supplant the need for tests, but tests are useful primarily for detecting failure and not explaining it. Visualization can also discover unexpected behavior in your implementation, even when the output looks correct."
Scott Aaronson on building a 'PageRank' for (eigen)morality and (eigen)trust
- "Now, would those with axes to grind try to subvert such a system the instant it went online? Certainly. For example, I assume that millions of people would rate Conservapedia as a more trustworthy source than Wikipedia—and would rate other people who had done so as, themselves, trustworthy sources, while rating as untrustworthy anyone who called Conservapedia untrustworthy. So there would arise a parallel world of trust and consensus and 'expertise', mutually-reinforcing yet nearly disjoint from the world of the real. But here's the thing: anyone would be able to see, with the click of a mouse, the extent to which this parallel world had diverged from the real one
." [more inside]
"Arabic programming languages with the honest goal of bringing coding to a non-Latin culture have been attempted in the past, but have failed without exception. What makes my piece قلب different is that its primary purpose was to illustrate how impossible coding in anything but English has become
Two of these Java class names from the Spring
framework are made up. One of them is real. Can you guess the real one?
Computers are providing solutions to math problems that we can't check
- "A computer has solved the longstanding Erdős discrepancy
problem! Trouble is, we have no idea what it's talking about — because the solution, which is as long as all of Wikipedia
's pages combined, is far too voluminous
for us puny humans
to confirm." (via
. For when you have a game that needs grids that are made of hexagons.
Using computer systems for doing mathematical proofs
- "With the proliferation of computer-assisted proofs
that are all but impossible to check by hand, Hales thinks computers must become the judge." [more inside]
This is just the top 30, what I consider to be the most likely candidates for actual new programming jargon based on community upvotes, not just "funny thing that another programmer typed on a webpage and I felt compelled to upvote for hilarity". Because that would be Reddit.
Coding Horror presents the top 30 Stack Overflow New Programming Jargon entries.
The Codeless Code. An illustrated collection of (sometimes violent) fables,
concerning the Art and Philosophy of software development [more inside]
Following a jury finding that Google had not infiringed upon Oracles patents, a development described as a near disaster
for the database company, Judge William Aslup
has ruled that the Java APIs cannot be copyrighted
. That leaves Oracle with only the 9 lines of rangeCheck code
and a handfull of decompiled test files to show for the massivecourt case. CEO Larry Ellison remains confident, claiming that the aquisition of Java creator Sun has still paid for itself
"Vitamin R goes straight to the head. Ruby will teach you to express your ideas through a computer. You will be writing stories for a machine. The language will become a tool for you to better connect your mind to the world." Slate compiles the mystery of _why
offers similar interactive tutorials that will teach you the basics, and hold your hand along the way. Perhaps you'd rather learn at a more even pace; CodeAcademy's CodeYear
will introduce you to one new concept every week throughout 2012. [more inside]
Want to be a coder? Productivity-porn site Lifehacker has posted its 4.5-part "Learn to Code Nightschool Course
." [more inside]
Why Johnny can't code
- David Brin
asks how to get kids hooked on programming.
A Few Billion Lines of Code Later: Using Static Analysis to Find Bugs in the Real World.
A frank account of the technical, social and commercial challenges encountered while turning an academic research tool into a business.
Feel guilty about some of that terrible code you've inflicted on the world? Worse Than Failure
(formerly the Daily WTF) introduces bad code offsets
for purchase to atone for your crimes. [more inside]
Songs in (computer) code
(you can also see the Twheat seperated from the Tw-chaff over at Favrd
"The avionics system in the F-22 Raptor, the current U.S. Air Force frontline jet fighter, consists of about 1.7 million lines of software code. The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter...about 5.7 million lines of code...Boeing’s new 787 Dreamliner...about 6.5 million lines of software code.
These are impressive amounts of software, yet if you bought a premium-class automobile recently, it probably contains close to 100 million lines of software code
What real-life bad habits has programming given you?
"This has actually really happened to me. I was trying to hang a glass picture frame on the wall and accidentally dropped it. And in the shock of the moment, I loudly yelled 'Control Z!' Then the glass hit the floor and smashed."
Getting to the source of 5 beautiful lines of Quake 3.
Rys Sommefeldt traces the history of a very quick (and now infamous) inverse square-root function used in Quake 3. (via
) [more inside]
"This is the story of when I re-wrote the Lotus Notes Formula Engine....
So here was I was, offered this position that I clearly wasn't qualified for. I had no experience with language runtimes or compilers, I knew very little about C and didn't know anything about C++, I had never dealt with platform byte ordering and packing and all the other issues associated with writing something for eight different operating systems, I had never even used proper version control. But none of that mattered to me. It seemed to me like an amazing opportunity and I would be doing exactly the kind of stuff I enjoy most..."
Time commenting could be time coding.
Day in, day out, you pull off star moves: gnarly algorithms
, wicked refactorings
, stunning optimizations
. Why should you stop and explain? Yes, you've got plodders
on your team, but hey — youAreAStar
. Time spent explaining, documenting, commenting — dude!
— that's time you could be using to crank out yet more mind-altering code
Welcome The Commentator
is a "Programming Bloopers" repository and forum, collecting, dissecting and making good fun of badly written code. Programmers can appreciate their fellow coders' strange
or plainly funny
problem solving techniques. Sometimes programmers will square the wheel
while reinventing it. Or take the best practices
to the insanity level.
Some programming knowledge required.
The Daily WTF
features braindead code samples. High-larious to a nerd like me.
CSS on Demand
allows users to set several preferences for how they want to see your site, rather than just using one of your themes via a switcher. Kind of like Matt lets you do here.
Perl. Free. Try it out
, a new exhibition at Whitney Artport, forces us to view the scripts and codes that generate software art before seeing the “art.” The other aspect of the curatorial premise: each artist's code must create art that connects three points in space. [via rhizome]
While poking around today, I found a link to Treefold
, which isn't all that
impressive in and of itself. The reason for my interest was that it's the first use I've come across of the Proce55ing
language, which is a sort of continuation of John Maeda
's teaching language, DBN
(Design by Numbers). While still not ready for general release, it's grown a lot since the last time I looked at it.
Competition to "reverse engineer" mystery program.
Another cool thingy from the HoneyNet Project
; they're inviting people to convert a binary file into its original source. So, who's participating?
Assembler is back -- at least, in its latest, frozen form. Score one for indie content makers. (thanks to Zeldman
; his exit page
notes the new URL.)
Assembler.org ("making art with machine code") is no more. Quoth the Zeldman
: "Lately we feel like Smokey the Bear - and the forest fires are winning."
Weird Programming Languages
All the info you wanted to know about obscure programming languages
Article on New Scientist
about "software that turns everyday language into computer code".
XHTML is in the spotlight.
The specs were announced
months ago, and on December 19th the w3 reccommended it as the new web language.
Is computer code a form of expression
and therefore protected by the First Amendment? That's something being considered in the MPAA's case against Eric Corley and DeCSS.