268 reputation
17
bio website chris.improbable.org
location Washington, DC
age 35
visits member for 3 years, 3 months
seen Feb 24 at 20:43

These days I'm working on websites and other projects for the Library of Congress and working on a number of open source projects: mostly on Github with a few BitBucket projects.

You can find me at http://chris.improbable.org/ and on Twitter as @acdha.


Jan
28
comment Why does the US government disallow dynamic languages for secure projects?
@Giorgio: that was rather my point — it's a mistake to say that a single language tells you much about security when considered in isolation. Implementation quality, culture and tools are far more important.
Jan
27
comment Why does the US government disallow dynamic languages for secure projects?
@Giorgio: this is technically true but it's a fallacy to claim that this follows the static / dynamic divide. C is a static-typed language but other features make it less provable than a dynamic language like Python which has safer semantics. Java is theoretically better but common design mistakes often lead to people disabling those measures, which says less about the core language than the culture around it.
Jan
27
comment Why do dynamic languages make it more difficult to maintain large codebases?
It would be interesting to compare this with other dynamic languages than JavaScript where all of the sticking points which you mentioned are far less critical and there's much better tool support. For example, I primarily develop in Python where I have static analysis tools, a robust module system, culture of unit testing, etc. and the language has been adding features like annotation support to improve this. There's an interesting discussion in how different languages have adopted features to encourage that kind of practice, irrespective of the static/dynamic divide.
Jan
26
comment Why does the US government disallow dynamic languages for secure projects?
This comment is a lengthy discussion of the halting problem, which applies to all common programming languages dynamic or not. It's entirely possible that security people would reject Ruby because it's a dynamic language but that's because they're not good at security or software development, not because of any intrinsic failure of the language itself.
Jun
29
awarded  Announcer
Jun
28
awarded  Nice Answer
Mar
27
awarded  Yearling
Mar
25
awarded  Editor
Mar
25
revised Why did Alan Kay say, “The Internet was so well done, but the web was by amateurs”?
Fixed iOS autocorrecting "either" to "epithet"
Mar
25
answered Why did Alan Kay say, “The Internet was so well done, but the web was by amateurs”?
Jul
30
comment Why can't the IT industry deliver large, faultless projects quickly as in other industries?
I downvoted due to the begged question: anyone who's ever lived in an area with major civil works projects or followed the news on projects like the ones you mentioned has reason to question whether they're that much different. A better question would compare some large projects which did and did not procede efficiently to compare the approaches - there's a potentially interesting discussion about strategies for managing complexity.
Jul
6
awarded  Critic
May
29
answered Should we document stand-up meetings?
Mar
31
awarded  Teacher
Mar
18
comment Why do ads for s/w engineers always say they “offer a fast-paced environment”?
I'd up-vote except for the government-job comment: I've worked in corporate and academic environments which were considerably slower paced than the very OSS-friendly government job I now have.
Mar
18
answered Why do ads for s/w engineers always say they “offer a fast-paced environment”?
Jan
21
awarded  Supporter
Jan
11
awarded  Autobiographer