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The Power of the R Programming Language

BillWhite Re:Not a language, really (382 comments)

Sorry, I'm a jerk. I replied to the wrong comment.

more than 5 years ago

The Power of the R Programming Language

BillWhite Re:Not a language, really (382 comments)

I hate to pile on, but this comment is in error.

In one of Dana Scott's papers from the 1980s, he presents a programming language which is equipolent with Turing Machines but which consists entirely of the letter G. It's syntax was just the ability to apply expressions to other expressions, and it's operational semantics was some rewriting rules. It was very cute.

more than 5 years ago

Learn a Foreign Language As an Engineer?

BillWhite Re:Do it, and do it now or regret it forever. (1021 comments)

I second this. I waited until I was 50 to learn a language seriously. I started out with esperanto, which no practical value, but which is really really easy. Now at 55 I'm looking to learn Mandarin and Spanish. I'm sure I have no financial future for either of them, as I'm not likely to move to China, but I'm fascinated by the possibilities nonetheless.

The thing I learned from EO is that there are words which have multiple meanings in English which we don't naturally distinguish. For example, the word "for" can mean "designated for" or "because of". One says "This Bud's FOR you" and "Can't see the forest FOR the trees." These are different meanings. In EO they are different words. Trying to get them right at conversational speed is, for me, quite challenging.

more than 6 years ago


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