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30 May 2008

The Tao of Programming

(It appears I'm having troubles sleeping today). I just came across The Tao of Programming, and found it to be much enjoyable.

A master was explaining the nature of Tao of to one of his novices. ``The Tao is embodied in all software - regardless of how insignificant,'' said the master.

''Is the Tao in a hand-held calculator?'' asked the novice.
''It is,'' came the reply.
''Is the Tao in a video game?'' continued the novice.
'It is even in a video game,'' said the master.
''And is the Tao in the DOS for a personal computer?''

The master coughed and shifted his position slightly. ''The lesson is over for today,'' he said.

13 Reasons Java is Here to Stay

Over here (and here is the Google cached version after the website fell because of the Slashdot effect). This article discusses why the language family of java,C, C# and C++ are here to stay, and won't be replaced any time soon by new contenders such as Ruby and Haskell.

I agree. While as Eli likes to say, it's important to know functional languages / paradigms, I really believe that most programming tasks should be done in either the C# or java flavors of Java# (A future hybrid of the Java and C#? It's really sad IMO that two almost identical languages don't join forces and user bases). C# is my current favorite, but I can see benefits to Java as well, not the least of which is the huge open community and plethora of available tools for Java. I do like the fact the functional programming is included in C# 3.0 and will be supported in Resharper 4.0 - a strong code analysis and refactoring tool is essential for developing and maintaining large projects.

To be fair, I'll admit that most of my programming experience, and what I find most interesting, is classical server-side programming (that's what I currently do in Delver). Also, besides a brief encounter with LISP and Prolog in university courses, I haven't had the time/motivation to truly learn families outside of the C family tree.

Baby's Pagerank

Aya met a baby and her mother on a train the other week. It appears the 5 months old baby has a blog, where "she" puts pictures of people she's met.

I wonder - when she's actually grown enough to read/write, what kind of pagerank will she have (I'm guessing a direct correlation between the lifetime of the blog to the blog's pagerank). Here is my minor contribution :)

27 May 2008

Problems using WaitFor/ASP

Update - eventually I just ditched the whole murky setup and instead used a jsp script. Because sleep() is an integral part of java, it works much better (significantly more consistently) than the ASP-COM integration.


For testing, we need to create an ASP page that simply writes "1" every second.
There is no Sleep() method in ASP, so we used an external COM object called WaitFor.

We had some problems using it out of the box, so my friend Pasha volunteered to help clear up the COM mess. Here is his solution (that worked), in his words:

Deploy the girlie-man WaitFor object:

  1. a. register object using regsvr32.exe c:\tests\waitfor.dll
  2. create empty application in component services
    1. choose type "server application"
    2. give it a meaningful name (like "pasha", "black cock down" etc.)
    3. define for your application under "properties->identity" to run with some service account (e.g. semingo\integration)
  3. add the component you registered (waitfor.dll) to the application you've just created:
    1. choose "install components that are already registered"
    2. check "32-bit registry"
    3. find your component

24 May 2008

We Finally Found An Apartment!

These last couple of weeks have been utterly exhausting, but it is done. Aya and I finally closed the deal on a nice apartment in Herzelia, near the center of town.
We'll be moving on the 18th next month. House warming to be announced later, once we're settled in.

23 May 2008

Thue-Morse Sequence

I was wondering - how many of you ever thought about the sequence 0,1,1,0,1,0,0,1,1,0,0,1,0,1,1,0,...?

It's a sequence that's fun to try and recite (fun = fun for me, yeah I'm a geek I know). I just recently found out that my little sister Shira also independently "discovered" this sequence and enjoys reciting it from time to time.

Have any of you done so as well?

BTW, the lengthiest prefix of it I can quickly produce (in one or two attempts) without external aid is the first 112 elements:
0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 0, 0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 0, 0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 0, 0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 0, 0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1, 1, 0, 1, 0, 0, 1, 1, 0, 0, 1, 0, 1, 1, 0,

04 May 2008

Self-Assembling Robots

We continue our robots series with a research project showing self-assembling robots.
Make the cubes 100,000 times smaller and 200 times faster and you got yourself a T-1000.