Reader's Corner for April 2014

April 29, 2014


featherweightmusings.blogspot.com

I'm a research engineer at Mozilla working on the Rust compiler. I have history with Firefox layout and graphics, and programming language theory and type systems (mostly of the OO, Featherweight flavour, thus the title of the blog). http://www.ncameron.org @nick_r_cameron

Rust looks very exciting. The ownership semantics and low-level memory access may finally allow it to become a competitor to C/C++ for "systems" programming, which would be a huge plus.


time.com

A celebration of one of technology's biggest, most underappreciated revolutions

Ah, the nostalgia.


jozefg.bitbucket.org

I’ve been using Go since November and I’ve decided that it’s time to give it up for my hobby projects. I’d still be happy to use it professionally, but I find that programming in Go isn’t “fun” in the same way that Python, Haskell, or Lisp is.

An article on a bunch of annoyances present in Go.


blog.erlware.org

I'm going to attempt to leave out my subjective opinions for disliking parts of Go, such as syntax or lack of pattern matching, and explain objective reasons for the language and runtime not being ...

This is a really good writeup that discusses the pros and cons of both languages.


github.com

Last Monday I published the least open and least transparent blog post GitHub has ever written. We failed to admit and own up to our mistakes, and for that I'm sorry. GitHub has a reputation for being transparent and taking responsibility for our actions, but last week we did neither. There's no exc…

Some more updates on the whole github fiasco.


news.sciencemag.org

Findings may be having a profound impact on everything from animal behavior experiments to human clinical trials

Reminds me of Feynman's Cargo Cult Science.


www.theatlantic.com

Officials hope less time at the office will make workers healthier and more productive.

Waiting to see how this goes.

April 27, 2014


game.notch.net

This is very moving. Made by Notch for Ludum Dare. A simple text adventure that portrays life.

(related blog post: http://notch.tumblr.com/post/37823268132/i-love-you-dad)

April 24, 2014


gowers.wordpress.com

A little over two years ago, the Cost of Knowledge boycott of Elsevier journals began. Initially, it seemed to be highly successful, with the number of signatories rapidly reaching 10,000 and inclu...

Way too long but worth sharing. Tim Gowers discusses the Elsevier boycott, and the various shitty business practices that Elsevier partakes in.


www.businessinsider.com

One day in July 2001, Larry Page decided to...

This is an enlightening biographical account.


connect.microsoft.com

"Artery chokes after 70 copies of Visual Studio"

I wonder what kind of person it takes to actually file such a good/reproducible bug report and investigate something like this.


click.pocoo.org

click is a Python package for creating beautiful command line interfaces in a composable way with as little amount of code as necessary. It’s the “Command Line Interface Creation Kit”. It’s highly configurable but comes with good defaults out of the box.

This is really exciting and I can't wait for a release to come out. Especially since this is from the guy that wrote flask/werkzeug/jinja2


mainisusuallyafunction.blogspot.com

The fiendish complexity of the x86 instruction set means that even bizarrely restricted subsets are capable of arbitrary computation. As others have shown, we can compute using alphanumeric machine code or English sentences, using only the mov instruction, or using the MMU as it handles a never-endi…

This is just ... I'm not sure what to say, really. Showing x86 is turing-complete with no registers by compiling brainfuck down to assembly code that uses no registers.


dev.stephendiehl.com

Since I wrote these slides for a little user group talk I gave two years ago they have become a surprisingly popular reference. I decided to actually turn them into a proper skimmable reference for intermediate level Haskell topics that don't necessarily have great coverage or that tend be somewhat…

This is version 2.0 of this amazing guide. Took me an 75 minutes to go through; will take me about 75 years to fully understand. Explains a lot of things in great detail, easily and succinctly.

My favourite parts include: Automatically deriving instances/code, quickcheck, the lens+aeson example, and the yoneda lemma.


github.com

netcat-cpi-kernel-module - Kernel module edition of the Cycles Per Instruction (2014) album.

And now you get an album as a kernel module. This is a cool hack.


rachelbythebay.com

Let's say you're writing a program which is intended to take a snapshot of your system's status every minute or so. The idea is to grab whatever data you might have looked at directly had you been on the box at that moment. You might have the results of an all-encompassing call to "ps", "netstat", "…

Valuable lessons.

April 23, 2014


www.elle.com

In the age of Snapchat, Angry Birds, and Candy Crush, why did no one think of this sooner?

The title is linkbait-y, but the app looks interesting.


codeofrob.com

Rob Ashton's blog and various other things. Javascript, C#, testing, whatever.

"We had a good thing, you ruined it. We had an escape route from that ridiculous enterprise hand-holding bullshit and instead of learning how to fucking code you've just brought your factory provider providers with you into what was once an okay place to get stuff done."


david.heinemeierhansson.com

Test-first fundamentalism is like abstinence-only sex ed: An unrealistic, ineffective morality campaign for self-loathing and shaming.It didn't start out like that. When I first discovered TDD, it was like a courteous invitation to a better world of writing software. A mind hack to get you going wit…

An interesting perspective on things.


queue.acm.org

Geo-replicated storage provides copies of the same data at multiple, geographically distinct locations. Facebook, for example, geo-replicates its data (profiles, friends lists, likes, etc.) to data centers on the east and west coasts of the United States, and in Europe. In each data center, a tier o…

This is well written and discusses an important design decision facing designers of distributed systems. 10/10 would read again.


www.theatlantic.com

Working in America’s everyday black-market economy

"His views are less ambiguous when it comes to mandatory prison sentences. He spoke passionately about his friends who are serving time. “Jails are full of people for selling a plant that grows out of the ground—that 50 percent of people view as a medicine—that no one has managed to prove causes any harm whatsoever. Just seems crazy to me.”

“If you had a son, would you be okay with him doing this?” I asked.

“Probably not. If you get jammed up, you can become a convicted felon and that damns you to do it for the rest of your life, because you won’t get anything but a $7.50 an hour job—if that. You give somebody a felony record for life, what did you accomplish? You’ve just created a lower-class idiot that has to commit more crimes to survive.”"


www.libressl.org

the main LibreSSL page

I love how they even use the blink tag...


gameprogrammingpatterns.com

If you see a mistake, find something unclear, or have a suggestion, please file a ticket. To know when new chapters are up, join the mailing list:

This book is finally completed. A really good resource for game programmers.


www.mensjournal.com

The key to a long, healthy life is not exercise or diet. It's strong social connections – in other words, friends. The problem: Research shows that men suck at friendship.

I can relate to this.


www.washingtonpost.com

The federal minimum wage doesn't cover fair market rent anywhere in the United States.

Why am I not surprised at the top 3?


www.americanscientist.org

For example, suppose we were interested in the randomness of the following sequence: 314159265358979323846264338327950288419716...

Reasons you should read this article:

1. It's a great perspective on randomness
2. It's by Scott Aaronson.
3. Refer to 2.


cookmellow.com

Mellow is a sous-vide machine that takes orders through your smartphone and keeps food cold until it’s the exact time to start cooking. Tell it what to do, teach it what you like, and it'll do its best to make your life simpler.

I still haven't tried sous-vide but this looks really exciting.


www.spacemonkey.com

Store all of your music, movies, photos, and documents in the cloud and never have to worry about losing anything ever again. The future of data storage is here.

"It’s a shame Go didn’t exist when Space Monkey started. We’re very lucky to have it now."


andrewkelley.me

Over the past few years, I have been slowly but surely building my own music player. It's been a wild ride. The codebase has radically changed several times, but is always converging on a better music listening experience.

This is a really good read.


projectnaptha.com

Project Naptha automatically applies state-of-the-art computer vision algorithms on every image you see while browsing the web. The result is a seamless and intuitive experience, where you can highlight as well as copy and paste and even edit and translate the text formerly trapped within an image.

I rarely install browser addons or extensions - after seeing this, however, I'm wondering what took the world so long to get this. This is amazing.

April 21, 2014


github.com

Last month, a number of allegations were made against GitHub and some of its employees, including one of its co-founders, Tom Preston-Werner. We took these claims seriously and launched a full, independent, third-party investigation. The investigation found no evidence to support the claims against…

GitHub loses one of their co-founders. Ouch.

(TPW's take on things: http://tom.preston-werner.com/2014/04/21/farewell-github-hello-immersive-computing.html)


madebymany.com

Is the Toilet Free? Callum Jefferies April 16, 20140 commentsA few of us Many have been working on a side project that we’ve aptly named Is the Toilet Free? Its purpose to provide an at-desk indication of whether a toilet is free in an effort to remedy that laborious walk to the loo only to find tha…

This is some fun hardware hacking.


www.smithsonianmag.com

Her claim of being

"Although [Alice]’s frauds had caused his bank to collapse and decimated his personal wealth, he studied her skeptically through the bars of her cell. “You’ve ruined me,” he said, “but I’m not so sure yet you are a fraud.” To this day the full extent of [Alice]’s spoils remains unknown—some historians believe that many victims declined to come forward—but the most commonly cited sum is $633,000, about $16.5 million in today’s dollars"


www.washingtonpost.com

Love and Fire: In Virginia's rural Accomack County, a troubled romance was behind a string of 77 arsons. wapo.st/arson

"Tonya and Charlie’s relationship had become one of two love stories.

Either, as Charlie says, he loved her so much that he had been willing to burn up a county because he thought it would make her happy. Or, as Tonya grew to believe, he loved her too much to let her be free while he went to prison alone."


www.sbnation.com

How some college football players are bought, in the words of a man who delivers the money.

"Now let me ask you, who do you think is more important to this team winning next season? Him with his $50,000 getting bathrooms painted in the basketball arena, or what I do with not even a quarter of that much money?""


www.seattlemet.com

After three decades and thousands of accusations and fractured lives, medical and legal experts are challenging shaken baby syndrome as a diagnosis. And as one family's saga demonstrates, we can't wait any longer to get it right.

" “When we started using more advanced imaging techniques such as MRI,” he told PBS’s Frontline in 2011, “we started realizing there were a number of medical conditions that can affect a baby’s brain and look like the findings that we used to attribute to shaken baby syndrome or child abuse.”

“If you look at it with any scrutiny whatsoever, the absolute bogus nature of the syndrome is clear as a bell,”"

So the study that is used as a basis for shaken baby syndrome involved putting monkeys through a (simulated) 40-mph automobile collision. I'm not sure how I feel about this.


www.motherjones.com

What do refund lenders see when they look at poor neighborhoods?

""We recommend that you locate your office where the household income is $30,000 or less," the Instant Tax manual counsels. Each franchisee attends a week of training sessions where "unbelievable emphasis was put on poor minorities," according to former franchisee Habtom Ghebremichael, who recalls a trainer telling his group, "We cater to the 'hood." His archetypal customer, Ogbazion says, is an assistant manager at a fast-food restaurant earning $19,000 a year. "They've burned the banks," he says. "They've bounced too many checks. They've mismanaged their finances.""


www.nytimes.com

An accusation against Jameis Winston, a marquee quarterback for Florida State, did not prompt an in-depth inquiry by either the university or the police. By the time prosecutors got the case it was nearly a year old.

"“I learned quickly what football meant in the South,” said Mr. Ruiz, who grew up in New York State. “Clearly, it meant a lot. And with respect to this case I learned that keeping players on the field was a priority.”"


www.salon.com

Contrary to what the bestselling author would tell you, obsessive practice isn't the key to success. Here's why

"Here’s a study that may surprise you. A group of eight-year-olds practiced tossing beanbags into buckets in gym class. Half of the kids tossed into a bucket three feet away. The other half mixed it up by tossing into buckets two feet and four feet away. After twelve weeks of this they were all tested on tossing into a three-foot bucket. The kids who did the best by far were those who’d practiced on two- and four-foot buckets but never on three-foot buckets."


randsinrepose.com

Management their productivity is your productivity Bored People QuitMuch has been written about employee motivation and retention. It’s written by folks who actively use words like motivation and retention and generally don’t have a clue about the daily necessity of keeping your team professionally…

This is a really good read.

"I’ve gone back and forth on whether managers should code and my opinion is: don’t stop coding. Each week that passes where you don’t share the joy, despair, and discovery of software development is a week when you slowly forget what it means to be a software developer. Over time it means you’ll have a harder time talking to engineers because you’ll forget how they think and how they become bored."


chronicle.com

Thomas Piketty’s new book is not just a novel argument about inequality but a pointed rebuke to his field.

Another viewpoint on Piketty's new book which is likely to bring around some major rethinking of economics and discussions relating to wealth distribution and inequality.

April 19, 2014


nplusonemag.com

Those were the years of Microsoft’s long, slow decline, which continues to this day. The number of things wrong with the company was extraordinary, but they can be summed up by the word bureaucracy. Early on at Microsoft—and even later, when we first started Messenger—you could just do things.

This is really really well written. Reads like a story. It talks about how an engineer on the MSN messenger team would keep trying to reverse engineer the AOL client and how AOL tried to stop his efforts.

"This was tricky, vastly trickier than anything they’d done so far. It was also a bit outside the realm of fair play: exploiting a security hole in their own client that our client didn’t have!"

April 18, 2014


www.theatlantic.com

One of the worst maritime disasters in European history took place a decade ago. It remains very much in the public eye. On a stormy night on the Baltic Sea, more than 850 people lost their lives when a luxurious ferry sank below the waves. From a mass of material, including official and unofficial…

This is a ten-year old story on a twenty-year old disaster in which 850 people lost their lives. It recounts the last moments of various people on that ship, reconstructed from the stories of the few survivors.

Well worth reading, especially in light of the current Korean disaster.


opensslrampage.org

Tearing apart OpenSSL, one arcane VMS hack at a time. Like what OpenBSD is doing to OpenSSL? Donate...

The OpenBSD team making funny comments as they rip out tons of cruft from openssl.

I love "Do not feed RSA private key information to the random subsystem as entropy. "


arstechnica.com

We sampled public data to estimate sales and gameplay info for every Steam game.

I like how dota2 is off the charts in terms of total hours played; yet football manager 2014 kicks its butt in terms of hours played.

It's also scary how dota2 has a mean of 147.7 hours played and a median < 19.

(graphs at http://arstechnica.com/gaming/2014/04/introducing-steam-gauge-ars-reveals-steams-most-popular-games/2/)

April 17, 2014


jmoiron.net

The last few months I've had the pleasure of working on a new bit of intake processing at Datadog. It was our first production service written in Go, and I wanted to nail the performance of a few vital consumer, processing, and scheduling idioms that would form the basis for future projects. I wrote…

This is a really insightful article. Especially:

"A quick grep aes /proc/cpuinfo showed that the aws c1.xlarge box I was on lacked these. After finding another machine in the same class with them, throughput increased by 50-65% and strhash's prominence was drastically reduced in the profiles."


www.bloomberg.com

Americans die in smaller portions each year, but what kills us is changing.

This is a really good visualization (although you need to pay attention to the scales, some of the graphs are /100k while others are raw numbers. kind of misleading).


healthysleep.med.harvard.edu

� A resource from the Division of Sleep Medicine at Harvard Medical School Sponsored by the Federal Railroad Administration, an operating mode of the U.S. Department of Transportation Produced in partnership with WGBH Educational Foundation and the John A. Volpe National Transportation Systems Cente…

This is a very helpful resource for everyone with sleeping issues.

April 16, 2014


norvig.com

When an experimental study states "The group with treatment X had significantly less disease (p = 1%)", many people interpret this statement as being equivalent to "there is a 99% chance that if I do treatment X it will prevent disease." This essay explains why these statements are not equivalent. F…

"Prof. [Alice] Wigler has a more pessimistic way of putting it (quoted by Natalie Angier): "Most of the time, when you get an amazing, counterintuitive result, it means you screwed up the experiment.""

Worth reading. Norvig concludes with

"By now you should see that much can go wrong between the simple statement of "this result is significant at p=1%." and the conclusion about what that really means. As Darell Huff said, "it is easy to lie with statistics," but as Frederick Mosteller said, "it is easier to lie without them." By scrutinizing experiments against the checklist provided here, you have a better chance of separating truth from fiction."


Some cool security/vision work. I'm pretty sure their algorithms for CAPTCHAs beat most humans by a wide margin. Which kind of defeats the point of having a CAPTCHA in the first place.


This is some really cool vision/graphics research.


Sid Meier's Civilization®: Beyond Earth™ is a new science-fiction-themed entry into the award-winning Civilization series. As part of an expedition sent to f...

One ... more ... turn ...


artyom.me

Alternative title: A Haskell Programmer Tries to Learn Racket (a Language from Lisp/Scheme Family), Documenting This New Experience with Quite Unusual Honesty and Diligence, All the While Secretly Plotting to Steal the Good Bits Which Haskell Doesn't Currently Have.

This is a good read. Still being updated from what I can tell.

April 15, 2014


One, tiny Dart. Power for all your devices. Perfect for your mobile lifestyle. #TheDart #PerfectlyMobile

Now this is something I would pay for in a heartbeat (if only they supported my laptop ...)


techcrunch.com

Today, the tech industry is apparently on track to destroy one of the world's most valuable cultural treasures, San Francisco, by pushing out the diverse..

This is insanely long and pretty informative.


www.nytimes.com

The tactics are different from those used for encouraging achievement.

This is an interesting read.

April 14, 2014


data.heapanalytics.com

How to Lie with Data VisualizationTeam HeapData visualization is one of the most important tools we have to analyze data. But it’s just as easy to mislead as it is to educate using charts and graphs. In this article we’ll take a look at 3 of the most common ways in which visualizations can be mislea...

Yay for misleading "statistics"


thecodelesscode.com

An illustrated collection of (sometimes violent) fables, concerning the Art and Philosophy of software development

The Codeless code finally discusses the Heartbleed bug. Worth reading.


www.thecodelesscode.com

An illustrated collection of (sometimes violent) fables, concerning the Art and Philosophy of software development

On women in tech.

"“Why are there so few women in this temple?” asked the novice monk.

“Because very few girls apply for admittance anymore,” replied the abbot.

“Why is that?” asked the novice monk.

“Because it is widely known that most girls do not meet our rigorous standards,” replied the abbot.

“Why is that?” asked the novice monk.

“Because productivity requires harmony, and many female applicants are a poor fit for our culture,” replied the abbot. “Indeed, most have wasted the time we invested in them by leaving soon after arriving.”

“Why is that?” asked the novice monk.

“Because they were unhappy here, and did not work well with the monks,” replied the abbot.

“Why is that?” asked the novice monk.

“Because like so many great temples, the culture of this temple is a boy’s culture: rough and rude, cruel and crude, in work and in play,” replied the abbot.

“Why is that?” asked the novice monk.

“Because there are so few women in this temple,” replied the abbot."


blog.andyet.com

Eleven days ago, Jon Lamendola was asking Adam Baldwin in our team chat how to do something with JavaScript. The discussion went like this:

I don't know what to think of a language that actually prints output with the following code snippet:

if (b===1 && b===2 && b===herpderp) {
console.log('this runs');
}

April 12, 2014


cheatsheet.codeslower.com

Learning Haskell is not easy. Besides the syntax, concepts, and advanced types, there is a real lack of succinct, accessible references. As I learned Haskell I frequently wanted a quick reference for syntax, keywords and other language elements. The Haskell Report, while very thorough, wasn't quite…

This is a valuable cheat sheet.


ejohn.org

Last fall, work on my coding side projects came to a head: I wasn’t making adequate progress and I couldn’t find a way to get more done without sacrificing my ability to do effective work at Khan Academy.

This is a really good motivational piece.


zulko.github.io

In this post I use Fourier transforms to revive a forgotten Gershwin piano piece. Piano rolls are these rolls of perforated paper that you put in the …

This is really cool.

April 10, 2014


This is a good read.


www.drop-dropbox.com

On April 9th, Dropbox announced that Condoleezza Rice will be joining their Board of Directors. Dropbox's CEO, Drew Houston, posted the following message:

I'm not sure how I feel about this.

April 9, 2014


www.haskellforall.com

It forks the current context. For example, let's say I write:forkPlus :: Free Expr BoolforkPlus = liftF $ Plus False TrueThen it would behave just like C's fork implementation, where the return value tells you which branch of the computation you are on:do bool <- forkPlus if bool then ... -- On the…

Monads and more Monads - writing Interpreters using Free Monads


blog.regehr.org

I’m teaching a small Advanced Operating Systems course this spring. Preparing for the course over winter break, I spent some time reading various Linux subsystems such as the scheduler, and was a bit shocked at how complex it has become. I’ve been using Linux, looking at its code, and occasionally h...

This is interesting for people looking to learn OS.


blog.mortardata.com

Doug Daniels What’s better than a recommendation engine that’s free? A recommendation engine that is both awesome and free. Today, we’re announcing General Availability for the Mortar Recommendation...

This is really cool.


Reposting because this is finally out in ghc

"We also show that with Mio, McNettle (an SDN controller written in Haskell) can scale effectively to 40+ cores, reach a thoroughput of over 20 million new requests per second on a single machine, and hence become the fastest of all existing SDN controllers."

"After removing various bottlenecks in our system, SimpleServer scaled to 20 cores and serves nearly 700,000 requests per second. This workload places an unusual burden on the Linux kernel and triggers a bug in Linux;"

April 8, 2014


www.drdobbs.com

The path that led Walter Bright to write a language, now among the top 20 most used, began with curiosity — and an insult.

"A couple years later, D first appeared on Slashdot and it rapidly started attracting users and collaborators. Turns out, I am hardly a unique person in what I want from a language! D grew dramatically in ambition, with collaborators from all over the world. It wasn't until a few months ago at Dconf2013 that we even knew what each other looked like. (This is one of the greatest aspects of the Internet revolution: You can work successfully with others while knowing nothing about their sex, age, looks, race, religion, language, culture, disabilities, histories, etc. It's as pure a meritocracy as it gets. Only your ideas, contributions, and how you present yourself matter.)"


pyjvm.org

PyJVM : Java Virtual Machine implemented in pure python

WHY?!

April 7, 2014


heartbleed.com

The Heartbleed Bug is a serious vulnerability in the popular OpenSSL cryptographic software library. This weakness allows stealing the information protected, under normal conditions, by the SSL/TLS encryption used to secure the Internet. SSL/TLS provides communication security and privacy over the I...

wgb.

This is a pretty serious bug. Yay for leaking private keys over the internet.


www.haskellforall.com

Note: the actual limited use of `filtered` that you are making here is perfectly fine. The criterion you are filtering on isn't affected by the action you are taking.

"Haskell gets a lot of flack because it has no built-in support for state and mutation. Consequently, if we want to bake a stateful apple pie in Haskell we must first create a whole universe of stateful operations. However, this principled approach has paid off and now Haskell programmers enjoy more elegant, concise, and powerful imperative code than you can find even in self-described imperative languages."


www.washingtonpost.com

Our brains, neuroscientists warn, are developing new circuits with a big impact on non-digital reading

"Serious reading takes a hit from online scanning and skimming, researchers say"


hackerretreat.com

Why doing SICP is one of the best courses of study to improve as a coder, bar none.

April 6, 2014


www.bloomberg.com

The Australian government should act to rein in rising labor costs that threaten a potential A$180 billion ($167 billion) expansion of the nation’s liquefied natural gas industry, a lobbying group said.

I should learn to cook ...

April 4, 2014


www.newyorker.com

French economist Thomas Piketty’s “Capital in the Twenty-first Century” is a sweeping account of rising inequality. Reviewing the French edition of the book, which came out last year, Branko Milanovic, a former senior economist at the World Bank, called it “one of the watershed books in economic thi...

This is a review of a highly popular economics book that has been hailed as a revolution in economics.

"Given that inequality is a worldwide phenomenon, Piketty aptly has a worldwide solution for it: a global tax on wealth combined with higher rates of tax on the largest incomes. How much higher? Referring to work that he has done with Saez and Stefanie Stantcheva, of M.I.T., Piketty reports, “According to our estimates, the optimal top tax rate in the developed countries is probably above eighty per cent.” Such a rate applied to incomes greater than five hundred thousand or a million dollars a year “not only would not reduce the growth of the US economy but would in fact distribute the fruits of growth more widely while imposing reasonable limits on economically useless (or even harmful) behavior.”

(there is also a summary at http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/johncassidy/2014/03/piketty-looks-at-inequality-in-six-charts.html)


www.newyorker.com

For many young, successful game makers, who created their work out of a passion for play, riches come with profound cost.

This is a well-written piece.

"One night in March, 2013, Rami [Alice] and his business partner Jan [Bob] released a game for mobile phones called Ridiculous Fishing. [Alice], who was twenty-four at the time and who lives in the Netherlands, woke the following morning to find that the game had made him tens of thousands of dollars overnight. His first reaction was not elation but guilt. His mother, who has a job in local government, had already left for work. “Ever since I was a kid I’ve watched my mom wake up at six in the morning, work all day, come home, make my brother and me dinner—maybe shout at me for too much ‘computering,’” he said. “My first thought that day was that while I was asleep I’d made more money than she had all year. And I’d done it with a mobile-phone game about shooting fish with a machine gun.”


www.cbsnews.com

The treatment for hepatitis C is so effective that patients and doctors are clamoring for it, but heath insurers are balking at the steep costs

I'm not sure how I feel about this. On one hand, pharma needs money to fund expensive R&D to develop drugs (one estimate says the acquisition cost $11B). On the other hand, paying $90k to get rid of hep-C is a bit crazy.


www.10news.com

An Ocean Beach boy is in the spotlight after he discovered a back door in to one of the most popular gaming systems in the world.

All spaces? Really, Microsoft?

(and yes this is genuine, he's acknowledged at http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/security/cc308589.aspx)


www.buildyourownlisp.com

If you're looking to learn C, or you've ever wondered how to build your own programming language, this is the book for you.

A book on building your own lisp in C.

This is cool.

April 3, 2014


blog.dota2.com

Every ticket includes access to all four days of the Championships Event at KeyArena. Tickets will be sold through Ticketmaster beginning this Friday April 3rd at 3PM PDT, so check back later for more information.

To go, or not to go


www.sysdig.org

Sysdig is open source, system-level exploration: capture system state and activity from a running Linux instance, then save, filter and analyze. Think of it as strace + tcpdump + lsof + awesome sauce. With a little Lua cherry on top.

This is awesome and really useful. And it comes from the creators of Wireshark...


firstround.com

This is a great piece by Jeff Atwood.

"What’s the most consistent piece of advice you get as a startup?

Always hire the best people. Never compromise in your hiring standards, no matter how big your company gets.

And it’s true. A great team can take an okay idea and transform it into an incredible, world-beating product.

But something has always bugged me about this advice. There’s an elephant in the room in the form of an implied clause: Always hire the best people… who are willing to live in San Francisco."


blog.mozilla.org

Mozilla prides itself on being held to a different standard and, this past week, we didn’t live up to it. We know why people are ...

All I can say is: "Ouch".


roslyn.codeplex.com

"Roslyn" .NET Compiler Platform

Microsoft just open sourced the .NET compiler platform. This is pretty cool.


gist.github.com

Whiteboard Picture Cleaner - Shell one-liner/script to clean up and beautify photos of whiteboards! - Gist is a simple way to share snippets of text and code with others.

This is really useful.


blogs.marketwatch.com

Google stock is set to split Wednesday in a move meant to give founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin more control.

This is interesting.


www.antipope.org

George Osborne has committed the Conservatives to targeting "full employment", saying that tax and welfare changes would help achieve it.

"Today, in the political discourse of the west, it is almost unthinkably hard to ask a very simple question: why should we work?"

April 2, 2014


Funny business meeting illustrating how hard it is for an engineer to fit into the corporate world! Starring: Orion Lee, James Marlowe, Abdiel LeRoy, Ewa Woj...

This is so close to reality it's not even funny.


All I can say is "ouch".


Think, work, and live better with the most affordable "automatic" sit-to-stand desk.

This looks promising


www.npr.org

When 3,000 average citizens were asked to forecast global events, some consistently made predictions that turned out to be more accurate than those with classified intelligence.

"Galton was at a fair where about 800 people had tried to guess the weight of a dead ox in a competition. After the prize was awarded, Galton collected all the guesses so he could figure out how far off the mark the average guess was.

It turned out that most of the guesses were really bad — way too high or way too low. But when Galton averaged them together, he was shocked:

The dead ox weighed 1,198 pounds. The crowd's average: 1,197."

(slightly better source: http://www.economist.com/news/21589145-how-sort-best-rest-whos-good-forecasts)


www.bbc.com

Fighting the system used to be dangerous anywhere in Eastern Europe. For one protester from a small Romanian village it was disastrous - and for his family.

"When he left home, the car stuffed with placards and leaflets, my father knew what he was returning to. Yet he had no choice. For him the family was his country and the country was his family. If he did not fight for everyone else, he could not have hoped to put food on our own table. Or a shred of dignity in our lives. He left us out of desperation and moral conviction."


www.amazon.com

Amazon Fire TV is a tiny box that connects your HDTV to a world of online entertainment. With a huge selection of TV episodes and movies, voice search that really works, plus exclusive features like Amazon FreeTime, it’s the easiest way to enjoy Netflix, Prime Instant Video, Hulu Plus, low...

This is interesting

April 1, 2014


antirez.com

antirez 3 minutes ago. Generally speaking, I love randomized algorithms, but there is one I love particularly since even after you understand how it works, it still remains magical from a programmer point of view. It accomplishes something that is almost illogical given how little it asks for in ter...

This is a really interesting writeup on a cool data structure.