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Snowden Queries Putin On Live TV Regarding Russian Internet Surveillance

Vadim Grinshpun Re:Useful Idiot (396 comments)

While true, your statement also assumes he had a choice...

about 5 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Why Aren't You Running KDE?

Vadim Grinshpun Re:fvwm (818 comments)

Completely agree re: geometrically placed desktops. Gnome2's implementation was just good enough for my needs (my other required feature is the ability to 'raise/lower' a window, mapped to a key). The one reason I can't accept XFCE as a gnome2 alternative is that it seems to insist on arranging desktops linearly. I want my two dimensions, dammit.

The only thing that makes me reluctant to go back to fvwm is that configuring it was always rather unpleasant.

more than 2 years ago

Slashdot Launches Re-Design

Vadim Grinshpun please fix the blank space (2254 comments)

not to belabor the point, but the amount of unused blank space is ... astounding. Please fix that -- it looks too unbalanced and bare.

more than 3 years ago

How the Internet Is Changing Language

Vadim Grinshpun Re:To google.. (295 comments)

similarly in Russian -- "poguglit'" (effectively, "to google around"). I've not heard "vyguglit'" used yet, but it'd work as well :)

more than 4 years ago

Code Bubbles — Rethinking the IDE's User Interface

Vadim Grinshpun snippets might be useful for better diffs (198 comments)

This reminds me of an idea I had some time ago, which might be an application for something like that (I've not read the article yet, so maybe they;re doing something different; but this might be interesting anyway :)

When refactoring code, it's not atypical to move whole snippets of code around. Reviewing the results of such a change (i.e., doing a diff between the versions) is usually nightmarish, since every diff tool I've ever seen is inherently line- or block-of-lines-oriented, and cannot recognize the simple (for a human) case of "I moved this function above that other function".

If the diff tool (and/or the related version control tool?) could be sufficiently language-aware, it might be able to recognize certain semantic units (functions, scope blocks, etc), and try to keep track of them. If this could be done, a diff output could actually be much more meaningful than what we get these days.

more than 4 years ago

Darwinian Evolution Considered As a Phase

Vadim Grinshpun Re:It's still natural selection (313 comments)

Not quite. It's a different way of thinking about the same thing.
As best as I remember "The Selfish Gene", it does present the gene as the unit of selection. The organism is discussed more as a just a useful vehicle (which exists due to multiple genes working to a common effect, but only because there's an advantage on the individual gene's level). I'm simplifying, but that's the gist of it.
If you didn't get a chance to read the book yet, try it. Interesting stuff.

more than 4 years ago

Darwinian Evolution Considered As a Phase

Vadim Grinshpun Re:Here's A Tip, Folks (313 comments)

some organisms are more suited to their environment than others; better ones survive and reproduce - their traits survive.

Just wanted to point out that the most important part is not so much survival as the ability to reproduce.
A more accurate way to phrase this is that the "better" organisms get more opportunities to reproduce (e.g., by surviving longer, but perhaps for other reasons, such as being more attractive or more capable, etc.), and the "worse" ones get fewer opportunities to do so (for any of a multitude of reasons). All else being equal, over time, the "better" organism's offspring are going to outnumber those of the "worse" organism, eventually significantly so.

I think this is a more enlightening description of natural selection, as it explains why it works a little better. I think I read this in one of Dawkins's books (either "Selfish Gene" or "Ancestor's Tale". Both are highly recommended, BTW; the latter isn't as well known, but is quite fascinating).

more than 4 years ago

Human Males Evolve At a Faster Pace Than Females

Vadim Grinshpun And now we know! (454 comments)

So keeping the cell phone in a pants pocket wasn't such a great idea after all... ;)

more than 4 years ago

Amazon Kindle DX Details Revealed

Vadim Grinshpun Re:Before the FUD creeps in again: (312 comments)

you are wrong :)

Igorsk is one who's done some great work on both the Sony Reader and Kindle.
At the very least, his work allows Cyrillic books to be read, which is not supported natively. Not sure if there are other applications.

more than 5 years ago

US Adults Fail Basic Science Literacy

Vadim Grinshpun Re:Those questions seem more like trivial pursuit (1038 comments)

Understanding what a "year" is is pretty basic (how else can one interpret the fact that people don't know how long it takes the earth to go around the sun?). I wouldn't put that in the 'trivia' category.
Knowing the land to water ratio is marginally more trivia-like; I think the range they accepted as 'reasonably right' is a tad too narrow--but not by much. Anyone who's ever seen a map should be able to know it's well over 50%, but that there's still quite a lot of land -- at which point 70% would be pretty easy to guesstimate. Of course this reqiures (1) having seen (and understood to some extent) the map of the world, and (2) knowing what "percent" means. Sadly, too many people in the US would have trouble with at least one of these.

more than 5 years ago

Call For Grant Proposals In Perl Development

Vadim Grinshpun Re:Wishlist (137 comments)

no, that's only for three-digiters and better.

more than 5 years ago

(Useful) Stupid Regex Tricks?

Vadim Grinshpun Re:IP and Hardware addresses (516 comments)

I was actually not kidding :) I was blissfully unaware until it was mentioned to me in a conversation a year or so back.
As for where I got mine--well, I registered in '98 or '99 :)

more than 5 years ago

(Useful) Stupid Regex Tricks?

Vadim Grinshpun Re:IP and Hardware addresses (516 comments)

Hmmm... until recently I didn't even realize that low ID's were in vogue :)

more than 5 years ago


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