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Remember the Computer Science Past Or Be Condemned To Repeat It?

zmughal Re:A (very) recent OSCON talk (479 comments)

Turing's Curse

I though the UK government were trying to get that conviction overturned?

The pardon should be granted Real Soon Now. John Graham-Cumming was actually the one who started the petition for issuing an apology.

about a year ago
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Remember the Computer Science Past Or Be Condemned To Repeat It?

zmughal A (very) recent OSCON talk (479 comments)

John Graham-Cumming gave a talk at OSCON 2013 titled "Turing's Curse" that speaks to this same idea. Worth a watch.

about a year ago
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Doug Engelbart Passes Away

zmughal Re:Our collective memory (124 comments)

Thank you for these words. I never knew him personally, but his ideas have affected my thought even when I did not know it. I am often pleasantly surprised to find his work and vision close to my own endeavours. I wish I was able to have met him.

about a year ago
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How Does a Single Line of BASIC Make an Intricate Maze?

zmughal Re:Perl analogue (438 comments)

The book actually has a Perl example. :-)

{binmode STDOUT,"utf8";print chr(9585.5+rand);redo}

about 2 years ago
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Slashdot Anniversary: Houston, TX, US

zmughal Facebook event (12 comments)

I also created a Facebook event for those that use that.

Get off my lawn! grumble grumble.

about 2 years ago
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Slashdot Anniversary: Houston, TX, US

zmughal Projector (12 comments)

I was thinking about bringing a projector and maybe pulling up old stories from over the years. I'm not sure about what metrics I want to use to choose stories. Perhaps number of comments as a first attempt?

about 2 years ago
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When Your e-Books Read You

zmughal Re:What's different about an ereader? (105 comments)

Saw the doctor? Noted. Diagnosis? Noted.

Noted, but not as open records, c.f. HIPPA privacy rules.

more than 2 years ago
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When Your e-Books Read You

zmughal Re:Uh what? (105 comments)

"'There's a societal ideal that what you read is nobody else's business,'"... no, no there isn't.

When speaking about the act of reading, there is some expectation of privacy, at least from the government. This isn't related to businesses per se, but librarians have fought to keep library records private and as such, their policies and software try to keep records for only as long as necessary (e.g. the duration of loan). Librarians often refuse to give out information on their patrons unless there is a court order.

This same sort of ideal can be applied to businesses in the form of opt-in data mining, but U.S. society needs to make this sort of decision in the form of information privacy law.

more than 2 years ago
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U.S. Judge Grants Apple Injunction Against Samsung Galaxy Tab

zmughal Re:Why do you need an example? (498 comments)

If high schoolers can compete in the North American Computational Linguistics Olympiad , they can surely teach themselves the concepts behind regular expressions and then whip up a bit of Perl to implement it. I know I could. In fact, another competition, ACSL, has existed for a very long time (late 70s) for high-school students that want to improve their CS theory and it tests regular expression knowledge from time to time.

more than 2 years ago
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Wikipedia As a "War Zone," Rather Than a Collaboration

zmughal Re:URL representing a given subject (194 comments)

Wikipedia is good for use as a URL representing a given real-world subject. For example, an article about graphics in Linux could refer to "this DRM, not that other DRM"

Which is why DBpedia (which is based on Wikipedia) plays such a central role for Linked Data.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot. Best Online Science Course?

zmughal Re:Get off my lawn (166 comments)

I agree with this. Schaum's Outlines are surprisingly comprehensive, easy to follow, and well-written. They are meant to complement textbooks, but given the low priority on conceptual organisation found in many textbooks, these can often be used alone if you do the problems.

more than 2 years ago
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The Real-Life Doogie Howser

zmughal Re:Too Bad for Humanity as a Whole... (303 comments)

From TFA, he actually worked on both a Ph.D. in molecular genetics and cell biology as well as an M.D., so it is likely he will be working on research as well.

more than 2 years ago
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Perl 5.16.0 Released

zmughal Re:Whatever happened to Perl 6? (192 comments)

As far as the matching capabilities of Perl 6, I think they're trying to do something that will advance the state-of-the-art in terms of programming langauge integration in the same way that Perl 5's regex did. The Perl 6 rules are similar to the tricks and hacks that people do with regular expressions to build up full grammars. By separating out the parts into logical components, you will get better readability and reusability. Not only will we get cleaner text processing, but this (along with the VM architecture) will aid the development of DSLs that will extend the language into an exciting future.

Yeah, it's some good Kool-Aid and the Perl community been waiting for a while, but bringing these ideas into a production-ready language isn't trivial. I'm still using Perl 5 because of CPAN, but I feel that Perl 6 will eventually get to the same level especially with a source-to-source compiler. The hardest part would be dealing with native-code bindings.

more than 2 years ago
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Programming — Now Starting In Elementary School

zmughal Re:Statistics of motivation (162 comments)

My initial motivation was learning about fractals, so, in a way, it was about building a graphics demo. However, I soon got into figuring out how to get my computer and graphing calculator to do my mathematics homework. That was where I learnt about breaking things down into fundamental abstractions.

more than 2 years ago

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