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Actual DeVops HowTo: Configuration Flags: A Love Story by Noah Sussman

Veretax Dark Code for the Win (1 comments)

I think there can be a lot of value in releasing Dark Code. It may not entirely remove all branching in a source tree, but it will significantly reduce the places to where it is needed to very explicit reasons. I like the idea of also taking a code flag file and using it to choose what tests need to be run upon deployment as well.

about 9 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Good Homeschool Curriculum For CS??

Veretax Re:Dietel & Dietel (364 comments)

I'm pretty fluent with C#, and competent with VB. I just worry about giving a youngster too much of an environment to play in off the bat, and since I came to C# from Basic->C->Ada->C++/Java->PHP->C# the experience I have with it gives me some confidence. However, I also wonder whether it might be too much for a younger child, even one as intelligent as my son is. I've been contemplating HTML, then throwing in some CSS and JS. I haven't decided yet. Part of me is interested in Ruby, Python, or PHP as a starter for him. I don't know Ruby or Python, but I know I could pick it up. I just wonder whether it is better to shoot from something I know pretty well, or if I should be more concerned with how terse the language is to start.

I decided yesterday that I could start with just some basic logical ideas, maybe flow charting type stuff, just to get him thinking about how control structures might work. 4th Grade might be too soon though.

more than 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Good Homeschool Curriculum For CS??

Veretax Re:Bravo. Sierra. (364 comments)

Some colleges still have so called CS 1 or CS 5 courses (or whatever they number them) that teach just that. I'm not sure where other universities put such training, if at all, but don't assume all Universities are the same. I never took the course, and I tutored a couple of folks who did as a Computer Engineering student. I don't think the issue is about devising a curriculum, but having a good quality text, even if its a tiny one can be a great help to a home schooler. You can have the child read and work through exercises on the computer or whatever. When I was in HS they had a text that fit onto the stands they used to use for keyboarding. Very nice actually. We basically learned to type, and then learned to use the word processor and type.

more than 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Good Homeschool Curriculum For CS??

Veretax Re:Dietel & Dietel (364 comments)

C could be a good Language, Ada is an interesting one also, but I wonder if VB or VBA is more useful? The other thing for home schoolers that I wonder, is what environment we let them run in. We home school our son, and he's starting 4th Grade, and i want to give him something small to whet his appetite. If he likes it then I'll provide more. If he hates it, I may still provide him more, but in lower dosages, LOL. I feel programming may become a skill like working on cars, where a lot of people will do it in their spare time, or in parts, without it being the focus of a career.

The real question I have about home schooling and programming is what environment to setup. For us we have windows machines so that limits us. I want to get him some basic ideas about programming, but I'd also like to keep him from offing my desktop that he would be using as well. So given that I'd like to give him a little protection as he starts to learn this, what do you guys recommend as a language that provides a lot of the basics. I'm less concerned about OO right now, as procedural style programming? Would you go VB? VBA within say excel or access? Would you use C or C#? Things like that are questions that really need to be answered before you begin a course like this I think.

more than 3 years ago
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Daleks To Be Given 'A Rest' From Dr. Who

Veretax Re:At least the Daleks don't have relationships (332 comments)

"It's time for my Dalek Poetry Reading

This one is called Daffodils

Exterminate Daffodils

Exterminate Daffodils

Exterminate Daffodils

Exterminate, Exterminate, Exterminate"

I don't recall where I saw this online, but it made me Laugh so hard I fell out of my chair!

more than 3 years ago
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Professor Questions Sink-Or-Swim Intro To CS Courses

Veretax Re:This! (606 comments)

I also tutored as a Freshman Undergrad. They required all Engineers to learn some basics in C as an introductory course, so there were about 3 or 4 classmates that I tutored. I didn't do the work for them, I tried to help them learn how to think through the problems, and find a solution before they started writing the code. The sad part was our professor was a Civil Engineer, who really had no exposure to C before, and his idea for a Sort Algorithm made my eyes bulge. I coded up three better solutions I knew off the top of my head, and ended up having to present them in class. So I can understand some people's frustration there.

more than 3 years ago
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Professor Questions Sink-Or-Swim Intro To CS Courses

Veretax Re:WHy are you majoring in CS... (606 comments)

Then it must come as quite a shock to you, to know that many High Schools, still to this day, do not offer calculus to their students. If you want it, you have to double up on Math somewhere, and then take it as a College Course, which has its pluses and minuses. My first exposure to basic was very early in my life, before I ever reached high school, but it wasn't till I got to HS and took the course that I began to realize how much I loved Programming. Up until that point I was leaning Chemical Engineering, and the programming course, the single one I took, convinced me I wanted to work with Computers.

If I hadn't done that, would the very basic C they taught us in our Engineering 2 Courses have been sufficient to point me that direction? I honestly can't say for sure.

more than 3 years ago
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Teachers Back Away From Evolution In Class

Veretax What is the big deal? (947 comments)

I seriously don't understand all the hub bub. Look, there is only so much instructional time in Junior High and High School Biology anyways. When I was in High School, the teacher spent, 1 Day describing the basics of evolutionary theory, and in fact then said, however some people believe in creationism. Which you believe is not important for the context of this class, as we are focused on actually examining and learning about the differences in life. Evolution didn't even get brought up for the next 179 days of the school calendar. Frankly, I was fine with that, if I wanted to learn more about bio, then with a bit of basic understanding, then it would make sense in College, or advanced AP bio to be introduced. I just can't get over people throwing a fit over something that really I don't understand why its 1. a big deal, or 2. why it is such a big deal based on the total class room time actually spent on it. Maybe the way science was taught has changed in the last 20 years... who knows.

more than 3 years ago
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Why Teach Programming With BASIC?

Veretax Re:How to teach programming (709 comments)

This is pretty similar to what I went through.

Early on I learned TI Basic, then C64 Basic, then IBM Basic, they were all similar but were different contexts and quirks at times. Then when I got into Engineering, we learned C (In Borland Environment), and MATLAB. MATLAB was cool for being able to do a certain set of problems, but beyond our signals and processing class I have never used it since. Then we started taking CS classes where they taught you Ada, then later Data Structures with Ada, then another class on C on a *ix system learning about multi processing etc. I didn't really get into true C++ until I got my first professional job, and Java I picked up a book to learn a bit about it, but hardly use it. Now I dabble in C#, VB, VBA, PHP, etc. So I disagree that Basic kills you, but I do think given environments today, a safer environment to learn, might be best especially for young coders.

more than 3 years ago
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Extra-Galactic Planet Discovered In Milky Way

Veretax Re:Old (111 comments)

You are making the assumption that the description of creation began then, when it may just simply be a generalization, a statement of the thesis of the coming six days (seventh rest) of creation. It would be like if I described my day to you.

Before the sun rose in the morning, i Awoke, and headed to work. I a woke from my slumber shook my head, and rolled out of bed (minute 1). Then i slowly walked to the bathroom to do bathroom things (minutes 2-7). Then I headed downstairs, started up my computer, opened twitter, and email, and began reading the news (minutes 9-25) etc. All of these things were done in the beginning of the day, and the breakfast had yet to be consumed.

See what I'm saying, don't confuse the literary style of how genesis's creation account is presented, with some bullet point list, verse, by verse of the order of creation. Day 1 isn't verse 1, Day two isn't verse 2, It doesn't quite work out that way, even if you try to stretch it. It reminds me a bit of the intro to one of the LOTR moving, when it talks about what happened in the beginning etc.

more than 3 years ago
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Mystery Missile Launched Near LA

Veretax Re:foreign subs free to sail near calif. coast (858 comments)

And yet the US Constitution, cites the Law of Nations, which provides at least some basic definition of the "High Seas" for example.

more than 3 years ago
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TSA Bans Toner and Ink Cartridges On Planes

Veretax Article misleading (633 comments)

8 Fluid Ounces = cup
16 Fluid Ounces = pint

and as I've always understood it, a Pint's a Pound the world Around..... in other words Pint = Pound.... interesting that a Pound is also 16 Ounces. Article is a bit misleading on that. I mean a Pound of ink? That's a pretty huge amount if you ask me.

more than 3 years ago
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The Time Travel Paradoxes of Back To the Future

Veretax Re:No thought at all (454 comments)

The crazy thing is why Doc who had the foresight to make Marty change into 'cowboy clothes' didn't think to throw in some fuel for the De Lorean just in case.

more than 3 years ago
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The Time Travel Paradoxes of Back To the Future

Veretax Re:Separate Time Lines (454 comments)

I kind of like the way they handled this question in Star Gate Continuum. Where Col Mitchell's ancestor gets killed but they end up warping through the gate before he can fade out of existence, making him an anomaly of sorts.

more than 3 years ago
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The Time Travel Paradoxes of Back To the Future

Veretax Re:Frame of Reference Problem (454 comments)

Actually, if you were to go back to the Way Back Machine, way back to when there was a BTTF Cartoon, they actually built a location ability into the DeLorean and probably the train as well. I remember an episode where the DeLorean got stolen after some heist, with Einy stuck in the car, and one of the idiots was talking to his partner named Sydney, asking how much they had earned: "1890 Sydney" and they ended up back in Sydney during the old colonial days c1890.) Heck come to think of it they went all over the place in that series.

more than 3 years ago
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Selling Incandescent Light Bulbs As Heating Devices

Veretax Re:God, this is tiresome (557 comments)

By that logic why doesn't the government put a tax on non lean, high fat, etc foods. A fter all the meat seems to be 'artificially' higher right? It couldn't possibly be that the longer life span and costs to reproduce CFL/LED technology results in fewer bulb replacements and thus less bulb turnover right? Or could it.

more than 3 years ago
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Selling Incandescent Light Bulbs As Heating Devices

Veretax Re:Luckily for you (557 comments)

Bingo!

The vast majority of electrical power is generated not by oil, but by Coal fired plants. You can change all the light bulbs to other types and lower electricity usage nation wide (if such were possible), and it won't put a dent in Oil consumption. Oil is used in our cars of course, and other petrochemical products (How about plastics?). You'd a lot more perhaps by mandating reusable shopping bags, or decomposable bags rather than plastic as to do this.

This is why I get so upset at the Alarmist Global Warming movement. They throw whatever ideas they can against the wall to see what sticks short term, without considering (at least that we've seen) how that will actually have side effects and consequences both economically, and even whether it will work. Changing bulb types will not stop the dependence on foreign oil. Changing Car Fuel cells might. I'm all for conservation and preserving our environmental heritage, but let's do it smartly, not half cocked.

more than 3 years ago
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A Million Kids Misdiagnosed with ADHD?

Veretax Re:Sigh (711 comments)

As a formerly misdiagnosed ADHD Kid, I can tell you ritallin does not have the effect you claim. It literally shorts you out. I was on it from I believe Kindergarten into 6th grade. Though I didn't realize it at the time I literally had no emotions. I became very logical, very literal, and very much like the worst parts of 'Vulcan' characters on Star Trek. When I came off the medicine at 13, I immediately realized the flood of emotions, and feelings that had been suppressed by the medication. I'm sorry to say, I am probably five or ten years more immature mentally because I didn't learn mental discipline in those early years, but instead leaned on Ritilan as a Crutch to get me through the day. Now I know some kids do have ADHD, and do need help that only medicine can provide, but I grossly disagree that it does what you claim it does. Bottom line, our bodies were designed to run, and hunt, and be active, not to sit still in a chair for eight hours a day with little breaks at all. So no, some kids are in FACT deprived of learning about themselves, their emotions, and as a result live a much less fulfilled life because of this medication. I am proof of it.

more than 3 years ago
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Microsoft Hides Firefox Extension In Toolbar Update

Veretax This is funny (285 comments)

When i saw that update i instinctively unchecked it because I thought it was related to that annoying search enhancement that Microsoft released for XP a couple years ago which actually made searching even more cumbersome in the long run. I was more than happy with searching as it was, I just never thought that update had to do with "web searching" (And it apparently is there for IE 7 too btw). Strange though I don't remember having any tool bars in IE that the article mentions.

more than 4 years ago
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Proposed Law Would Require ID To Buy Prepaid Phones

Veretax Die hard reference... (615 comments)

Didn't McClain (Bruce Willis) steel a car phone or cell phone or something in one of the movies in order to talk to the terrorists?

more than 4 years ago

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