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Old 11-18-10, 08:36 PM
  #276  
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Originally Posted by Blackdays
Everyone says java is easy to pick up, but I had the opposite experience.

I still don't understand how arrays work.
Java & related languages are easier to pick up than say C/C++ or LISP, but it still may not be easy.

They are easier since you don't have to worry about dereferncing pointers or null-terminating strings, two huge gotchas in unmanaged/native languages.

As for Verilog, etc, I'm with ya: ugh!
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Old 11-18-10, 08:38 PM
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Originally Posted by mollusk
I have a really weird one.

Many years ago (mid-1970's) I was working for an engineering firm in Chicago doing some heat transfer calcs. They had access to a computer somewhere and I would dial in on an acoustic coupler modem. I thought that my code was correct (in some bastard language called "super" fortran), but it kept crashing. I put in all kinds of diagnostics (print out values of this and that, etc.) and when I did the code ran perfectly. I took them all out and it crashed.

Then I started taking out the diagnostic lines of code one by one. I could take them all out but one. If I took that line out the program crashed, but if I left it in the code ran just fine. It was a real head scratcher. Finally I replaced that line with a CONTINUE statement. And the code ran perfectly.

To this day have don't know for sure what was going on. But I was never fully confident of anything that came out of that computer after that.
Trace/debug/logging can definitely mess with threading-type issues, since your whole app will ususally block to write out the buffer.

So timing issues can arise by putting in or removing basic trace statements. Anyway, maybe your CONTINUE statement was like a NOOP that made the timing work out? Just a guess..
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Old 11-18-10, 08:39 PM
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I thought that Java was easy to pick up, but I learned C first.
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Old 11-18-10, 08:42 PM
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Originally Posted by mattm
Trace/debug/logging can definitely mess with threading-type issues, since your whole app will ususally block to write out the buffer.

So timing issues can arise by putting in or removing basic trace statements. Anyway, maybe your CONTINUE statement was like a NOOP that made the timing work out? Just a guess..
This was a simple fortran type program with a single "thread". There were no multi-threading timing issues. Not like some of the VBScript code I used to write about 15 years ago. That was the total suck.
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Old 11-18-10, 08:43 PM
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Originally Posted by mollusk
I thought that Java was easy to pick up, but I learned C first.
I learned C and C++ before Java as well. When I started CS at UCSB in '97 they had just switched from Pascal to Java. It just seemed like castrated C++ to me.
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Old 11-18-10, 08:44 PM
  #281  
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Originally Posted by mollusk
I have a really weird one.

Many years ago (mid-1970's) I was working for an engineering firm in Chicago doing some heat transfer calcs. They had access to a computer somewhere and I would dial in on an acoustic coupler modem. I thought that my code was correct (in some bastard language called "super" fortran), but it kept crashing. I put in all kinds of diagnostics (print out values of this and that, etc.) and when I did the code ran perfectly. I took them all out and it crashed.

Then I started taking out the diagnostic lines of code one by one. I could take them all out but one. If I took that line out the program crashed, but if I left it in the code ran just fine. It was a real head scratcher. Finally I replaced that line with a CONTINUE statement. And the code ran perfectly.

To this day have don't know for sure what was going on. But I was never fully confident of anything that came out of that computer after that.
memory issues.

bane of my existence
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Old 11-18-10, 08:49 PM
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I had a program that would always crash on one particular test machine. I figured that it must have been memory related and eventually convinced someone to replace the memory (it was expensive back then!). Problems gone.
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Old 11-18-10, 09:03 PM
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Originally Posted by umd
I noticed an arbitrary "4:" on one of the lines and I asked him why it was there.
He replied, "I don't know, but it doesn't seem to hurt anything".
I literally facepalmed.

That "4:" is a label. You can actually use old BASIC syntax like "GOTO 4" to jump to that line. It wasn't really "best practices" even for VB6.
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Old 11-18-10, 09:05 PM
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Originally Posted by agoodale
That "4:" is a label. You can actually use old BASIC syntax like "GOTO 4" to jump to that line. It wasn't really "best practices" even for VB6.
I'm well aware. Hence the facepalm.
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Old 11-18-10, 09:10 PM
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Originally Posted by umd
I'm well aware. Hence the facepalm.
ok. i get it.

I love looking at other people's code. I always think...Is my code this crappy??
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Old 11-18-10, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by WCroadie
Can any of you guys recommend a web monitoring tool, one that tracks what an end user does on the internet and can report back? One of my clients wants to watch his employees. I looked at work examiner, seems to have a bunch of bells and whistles but all I need is web monitoring. Many moons ago we used webtrends at work, other then that I haven't used anything.
Tell your client that any software you install would also track his usage. I bet he'll change his mind.
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Old 11-18-10, 09:35 PM
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Originally Posted by kudude
memory issues.

bane of my existence
That is what I figured. It led to ZERO confidence in anything spit out of that machine.
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Old 11-18-10, 09:38 PM
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Originally Posted by agoodale
That "4:" is a label. You can actually use old BASIC syntax like "GOTO 4" to jump to that line. It wasn't really "best practices" even for VB6.
keeping my thoughts to myself...
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Old 11-18-10, 09:43 PM
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speaking of VB, my first introduction to programming (other than LOGO, haha..) was watching my buddy write a D&D character generator in VB - I suppose v2? - on his desktop while we downloaded Linux (slackware I think, kernel v .96) from AOL on to floppy disks. I actually have a pretty vivid memory of this.
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Old 11-18-10, 09:51 PM
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Originally Posted by slynkie
keeping my thoughts to myself...
VB6 had it's uses. I was mostly stuck with it for a long time, and wrote a pretty robust set of libraries for it that did all kinds of API and memory hacks, including some pretty trick window subclassing and quasi-inheritance.
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Old 11-18-10, 10:02 PM
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Originally Posted by slynkie
keeping my thoughts to myself...
don't be a language snob. VB3-VB6 got the job done for millions of small/medium (and quite a few large) companies back in the day. Yes you could make a mess of things with it. But you can do that with any language. (I made quite a bit of money with it so I'm a bit prejudiced.)
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Old 11-18-10, 10:02 PM
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Originally Posted by slynkie
keeping my thoughts to myself...
I learned VB back in the early to mid 1990's. The reason was that I was running my department's first webserver off of my desktop and that was "running" Windows 3.1. I found that running CGI scripts in anything other than a "native" language would quickly crash the server due to horrible memory leakage and there wasn't that much memory in that old 486 machine. Each "call" invoked a virtual machine and you never did get all of the memory back. Can you imagine running Perl scripts in that environment? Running CGI's in VB solved that problem.
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Old 11-18-10, 10:10 PM
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yikes, i was just poking a bit of fun! ;p

i've got my opinions and preferences sure, but there's no way i could ever be a real language snob - not at the company i work for. we've got products dozens of years old with ingrained dependencies on languages that are even older.
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Old 11-18-10, 10:13 PM
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Originally Posted by mollusk
I learned VB back in the early to mid 1990's. The reason was that I was running my department's first webserver off of my desktop and that was "running" Windows 3.1. I found that running CGI scripts in anything other than a "native" language would quickly crash the server due to horrible memory leakage and there wasn't that much memory in that old 486 machine. Each "call" invoked a virtual machine and you never did get all of the memory back. Can you imagine running Perl scripts in that environment? Running CGI's in VB solved that problem.
No mod_perl back then, I guess?
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Old 11-18-10, 10:21 PM
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Sorry if this is old but it's good geek humor:

Step 1: Go to Google Maps.
Step 2: Write Japan as your departure point.
Step 3: Write United States as your arriving point.
Step 4: Get Directions

Read step No. 27
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Old 11-18-10, 10:24 PM
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Originally Posted by slynkie
yikes, i was just poking a bit of fun! ;p

i've got my opinions and preferences sure, but there's no way i could ever be a real language snob - not at the company i work for. we've got products dozens of years old with ingrained dependencies on languages that are even older.
I used to be embarassed but now I don't care.
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Old 11-18-10, 10:25 PM
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Originally Posted by agoodale
don't be a language snob. VB3-VB6 got the job done for millions of small/medium (and quite a few large) companies back in the day. Yes you could make a mess of things with it. But you can do that with any language. (I made quite a bit of money with it so I'm a bit prejudiced.)
i don't disagree, you can shoot yourself and others in the foot with any language.
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Old 11-18-10, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by slynkie
i don't disagree, you can shoot yourself and others in the foot with any language.
The problem with VB was that they were so concerned with not letting you shoot yourself in the foot that they locked the trigger and threw away the key.
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Old 11-18-10, 10:27 PM
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Originally Posted by slynkie
yikes, i was just poking a bit of fun! ;p
no problem. VB6 purchased the gold plated chip on my shoulder.
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Old 11-18-10, 10:27 PM
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REXX got me my first raise.
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