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Foxconn Replacing Workers With Robots

Stele Re:Foxconn beings?! (530 comments)

And don't forget your towel.

about three weeks ago
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Study: People Would Rather Be Shocked Than Be Alone With Their Thoughts

Stele Re:! news for nerds (333 comments)

Like thinking about watching Dancing with the Stars, or how many likes the picture of their breakfast might get.

about three weeks ago
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X Window System Turns 30 Years Old

Stele Amiga - SIGGRAPH `89 (204 comments)

I was a senior in high school and wound up at SIGGRAPH in Boston in 1989. I was doing graphic design and programming for a small company that did medical imaging on the Amiga and we were in the Amiga pavilion. Nearby were some guys who had developed an X11 server and tools to build common X11 programs, with an optical three-button mouse. I think it was Dale Luck's company - I found a relevant announcement:
https://groups.google.com/forum/#!topic/comp.sys.amiga/ks3jiuCT5oQ

In 1992 I went to work for a company doing graphics software for the film industry. I was supposed to be writing Amiga software, but when I showed up they pointed to a $30K SGI 3000 system they had just bought and said "learn that". That began my crash course all things UNIX, X11, Motif, and gl. One of the cool things about SGIs was their gl api (the precursor to OpenGL) that integrated with the X server, so you could log into another SGI box and run 3D graphics programs with amazing speed remotely.

about a month ago
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Apple WWDC 2014: Tim Cook Unveils Yosemite

Stele Re:A new programming language (411 comments)

I like it. It seems to lose some of the annoying features of objective-c and bring in some of the nice features of python.
E.G. for i in 0..3 { stuff }; or: for i in list_of_things { stuff }; like python.
and tuples allowing multiple return values, like in python
and getting rid of the need for semicolons, like python

Too bad they didn't just invest their energy into compiling Python to their runtime.

about 2 months ago
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Who controls the HVAC at work?

Stele Missing option (216 comments)

I do. I work at home.

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Should Every Programmer Read?

Stele Writing Solid Code (352 comments)

This was the book that opened my eyes to defensive programming. It's pretty old now, but apparently there a newer version.

about 2 months ago
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Russia Bans US Use of Its Rocket Engines For Military Launches

Stele Re:Duck and cover (522 comments)

Last orders please!

about 2 months ago
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Russia Bans US Use of Its Rocket Engines For Military Launches

Stele Re:Duck and cover (522 comments)

Shouldn't we lie down, put a paper bag over our head or something?

about 3 months ago
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Apple Reportedly Buying Beats Electronics For $3.2 Billion

Stele Re:Beats sound like garbage (198 comments)

Now THAT I would pay extra for.

about 3 months ago
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Drone Camera Tornado Coverage Raises Press Freedom Questions

Stele Re:Bunk (143 comments)

Interesting article over at the FAA concerning drones:
http://www.faa.gov/news/updates/?newsId=76240

about 3 months ago
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C++ and the STL 12 Years Later: What Do You Think Now?

Stele Re:I think it's great (435 comments)

To tell the truth the only thing I'm still using from boost is intrusive_ptr (an intrusive reference-counted smart pointer), which I use practically everywhere to help automate memory management and make integration with Python easier.

But with boost you can mix/match as needed, and use only as little of it as you need.

Transitioning some of the os-centric stuff (like threading primitives) from boost to C++11 just avoids having to add boost to your dependency chain. It's nice to only have to rely on what's in the language or the standard library, since you'll know it'll always be there - and presumably, is as efficient as possible.

about 3 months ago
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C++ and the STL 12 Years Later: What Do You Think Now?

Stele Re:Simple (435 comments)

Okay, I'll bite.

What overhead, specifically?

about 3 months ago
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C++ and the STL 12 Years Later: What Do You Think Now?

Stele I think it's great (435 comments)

Unlike a lot of commenters here, I actually use C++ every day, and have been for about 20 years. I think the evolution of the language has been great.

I write software for the digital visual effects industry, and it has to be fast, portable, and adaptable. To that end I tend to write as light-weight low-level code as possible, strongly separated from the UI, since I never know where I may end up needing to use it. For instance, when we decided to put a bunch of our filters on iOS, it pretty much worked as-is.

One key to writing nice clean portable code is to avoid dragging in too many dependencies. At the lowest level, about the only external dependencies I used are a few things from boost. But with C++11, a lot of that functionality has moved into the core language (or the standard library). Threading and synchronization primitives such as atomic_int, thread, and mutex are now part of the language, and no longer need to be brought in from boost. This makes everything much cleaner, especially with build/test integration.

lambdas are another thing I really like. Instead of writing messy functors (for auto-threading image processing kernels for example) I can drop the code in-line using a lambda. Much more readable and cuts down on complexity.

The new move-semantics have also made nice improvements to code design and performance, allowing you to move whole objects around with practically zero cost as if they were references.

On the UI side of things I usually use Qt, and there have been C++11-related improvements there as well, such as signals and slots now being type-safe.

about 3 months ago
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New Shape Born From Rubber Bands

Stele Re:New? (120 comments)

But it's on the Internet...

about 3 months ago
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The Best Way To Watch the "Blood Moon" Tonight

Stele Re:Trollolololol! (146 comments)

Wait, which East Coast?

about 3 months ago
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Will Living On Mars Drive Us Crazy?

Stele Space Madness (150 comments)

Oh my beloved ice-cream bar! How I love to lick thy creamy center!

about 4 months ago
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Your Car Will Tell You How To Hit the Next Green Light

Stele Re:Auto-move on green (364 comments)

I was specifically thinking of the people behind the first car in line, in this case. There is always some dumb delay after each car starts moving - obviously this would only kick in after the first car starts moving. When I'm first at a light, I always spend the entire time scanning for people and cars doing dumb things, as well as anticipating the light turning green.

about 4 months ago
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Your Car Will Tell You How To Hit the Next Green Light

Stele Auto-move on green (364 comments)

On the flip side, I was sitting at a light the other day (in Florida, which has the longest lights in the world) thinking how great it would be if all cars sitting at a red light were somehow forced to start moving at once when the light turns green. It seems I'm the only person who understands that eventually the red light will turn green. This would allow many more cars to make it through each cycle.

about 4 months ago
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Religion Is Good For Your Brain

Stele Stress relief (529 comments)

One way to reduce stress is through prayer.

Sex and alcohol work pretty well too. And they are arguably a lot more fun.

about 4 months ago

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