Specialist

Specialist

  • Commented on Ask me anything!
    It has been proven beyond reasonable doubt that the absolute best environment for a programmer (software enginer) (developer) is a PRIVATE OFFICE with a DOOR THAT CLOSES. "Peopleware", Tom Demarco. I am really surprised at the number of managers I...
  • Commented on Lessons learned: writing really long fiction
    Funny, I thought that show, the TV coverage of the election of 2016, was a comedy. It was absolutely hilarious watching all the talking heads who were so obviously totally unable to comprehend what was happening right before their eyes,...
  • Commented on Someone please cancel 2019 already?
    "Pres. Hillary vs. Pres. Nancy Pelosi"... Two classic memes come immediately to mind: the old joke "Death, or bunga-bunga", and Gozer the Gozerian intoning "Choose the form of your destruction..." (or some such)....
  • Commented on Happy Halloween!
    "Metal is annoyingly difficult to effectively zap with lasers..." Some years ago, walking through MBK mall in Bangkok, Thailand, one of the myriad small booths on about the 4th floor had a small laser engraving machine in operation. I think...
  • Commented on What can possibly go wrong?
    SMIDSY... There was an informal experiment conducted in California many years ago. The local police had purchased some motorcycles. They were a standard police design. The local city council ordered them to get rid of those dangerous motorcycles. The hero...
  • Commented on What can possibly go wrong?
    "... or make citizen such couch potatoes that they're untrainable for military service." Actually, there is an easier way to do this, that has already been implemented in the United States. Change the nutritional guidelines so as to emphasize foods...
  • Commented on Crib Notes: Empire Games
    Burroughs Extended ALGOL, on the B5000 descriptor machines, comes immediately to mind as a counterexample....
  • Commented on Crib Notes: Empire Games
    It doesn't usually matter. In just about every significant program in just about every modern programming language, the actual incidence of multiple-line statements is less than 1%, which dooms the difference between "Statements" and "Lines of Code" to statistical insignificance....
  • Commented on Crib Notes: Empire Games
    Both sides routinely do that. Look at Eddie Bernice Johnson's (D-TX) district in Dallas. If you can find the older one, it is especially telling. It had a fractal border, having been VERY carefully crafted to create a safe district...
  • Commented on Crib Notes: Empire Games
    The CDC 6600, and its brethren (6400, 6500, 6700, 7600) and descendents (Cyber 70, Cyber 170) central processors had 60-bit words. The peripheral processors used 12-bit words. (The PPs were descended from and VERY similar to the CDC 160A.)...
  • Commented on Crib Notes: Empire Games
    Could you please provide documentation of the high drone crash rate, compared to piloted aircraft? Reason I ask: there's some chatter going around about pilotless passenger transports, and I'd REALLY like to have some Class A mishap rate safety data...
  • Commented on Crib Notes: Empire Games
    There's a bit more to the Rotary Rocket story than "They ran out of money." A longstanding friend of mine was working there. I was on the phone with her very shortly after the shutdown announcement went out....
  • Commented on Bread and Circuses (circumlunar version)
    You have my curiosity up. Which rebreather(s) did you work on? (Full Disclosure: I did a pool dive on Peter Ready's PRISM prototype, several years ago, when they were letting lots of people dive it, so they could find out...
  • Commented on Trapped in the wrong trouser-leg of time
    It depends on the plasma globe. There used to be (probably still is) a BIG one in a museum in downtown Phoenix AZ. The jolt from that one into my fingertip on the globe was very noticeable, and a bit...
  • Commented on Trapped in the wrong trouser-leg of time
    Zimbabwean dollars still exist in physical form. They are legally valueless. However, as a warning that it CAN happen here, they are quite important. I'm looking at a 10,000,000 Zimbabwean dollar note, date of issue 1 Jan 2008, as I...
  • Commented on Trapped in the wrong trouser-leg of time
    "Which is funny, because there ain't no such thing as a "Nobel prize for economics"." http://www.nobelprize.org/nobel_prizes/economic-sciences/laureates/1976/press.html "The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has decided to award the 1976 Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel to Professor Milton...
  • Commented on Paging Agent 007
    Because the original inquirer may not want to click on a link, I'll give away the punchline. The Tesla battery pack weighs 1323 lbs. Call it 600 kg, close enough....
  • Commented on Book day!
    "What's interesting is that the Laundry doesn't seem to have much in the way of heavy duty stored magic items (think the Elves Mace of Blasting) not sure if it's just because banishment bullets are cheaper, or if there are...
  • Commented on Book day!
    "Like how many FANGs will be created on purpose from high level math students?" I was wondering when/if anyone would raise this question. Back when "Forever Knight" was on TV, it hit me that there is a small human subpopulation...
  • Commented on Book day!
    Amy Acker, especially in makeup somewhat similar to "Illyria" vs. "Fred Burkle", could work VERY well as Mhari....
  • Commented on Crib Sheet: The Nightmare Stacks
    The Blackbird flight test program stopped once it had demonstrated that it could meet the objectives. It reportedly did not go so far as to determine a maximum reachable altitude. Actual records are probably (almost certainly) still classified and I...
  • Commented on Crib Sheet: The Nightmare Stacks
    "EG someone could make something like a time bubble and hide for eons? Or say hide the UK until the horrors eat everyone else and move on?" It has been done. Vernor Vinge, "The Peace War", "Marooned in Realtime". The...
  • Commented on Rejection Letter
    Work has been done, successfully, on designing formally-verifiable hardware, including verifying the design and the final silicon. It was not done at or by Intel, to the best of my limited knowledge, and it was done a lot of years...
  • Commented on Rejection Letter
    I've been out of the loop, on vacation, for several days, so please pardon the late entry. The root of the problem is OEMs basing mission- and safety-critical embedded systems on consumer-grade operating systems built by the company that gave...
  • Commented on 2117 revisited
    It has been done. "A Wrinkle in Time", Madeleine L'Engle, 1963 I believe. You have reinvented/rediscovered Camazotz....
  • Commented on The internet of decay
    I've worked in FORTRAN (both FORTRAN IV and FORTRAN 77), various assembly languages, LISP (relatively briefly), Ada, C, C++. I've had to read JOVIAL and PASCAL. A long time ago I did a #include processor in EMACS macros (!). I've...
  • Commented on The internet of decay
    Actually: C assumes that a programmer should be able to do anything he wants to do, and makes it easy. Ada observes that, 99% of the time, when a programmer attempts to do certain things, he is making a very...
  • Commented on The internet of decay
    As I remember it, the Atari ST machines came in two flavors: 520ST and 1040ST. They shipped with 512 KB and 1024 KB, respectively. They also shipped with MIDI ports standard, which is why I bought the 1040ST. I was...
  • Commented on The internet of decay
    Uh, not quite. PASCAL was originally developed on the CDC 6400 at ETH-Zurich, long before the Cyber 170s came along....
  • Commented on The internet of decay
    PASCAL had pointers from the beginning. I have seen it reported that, in 1982, Wirth stated explicitly that PASCAL had been designed for general-purpose programming. It is true that it was used heavily for teaching in the 1970s, it being...
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