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Nov
22
comment How to respond when you are asked for an estimate?
And there's always... "It's six hours of work. Now when will these six hours of work be scheduled, that's out of my hands, talk to my boss."
Nov
22
comment How to respond when you are asked for an estimate?
A much better question in this situation is "When should I ask you about the estimate again?" - sometimes this will require a second derivative answer: "I will know answer to THAT in three days." It rarely goes more meta than this. Otherwise, I'm giving a wiiiide bracket: "Anything between an hour and two weeks. We're searching; it's an hour since found until fixed, but it first needs to be found."
Nov
18
comment Why do we still use JavaScript?
@Jason All language flaws can be overcome by adopting coding habits that nullify their impact. It doesn't mean there are no flaws or they are not flaws. It just means efficient workarounds have been found.
Sep
22
awarded  Notable Question
Sep
19
comment Why would it ever be possible for Java to be faster than C++?
@KonradRudolph: This is all true when it comes to clarity and ease of writing the code, making it bug-free and maintainable. The point about efficiency of the algorithm implementation still stands though: if you're about to write obj.fetchFromDatabase("key") three times within five lines of code for the same key, you'll think twice whether to fetch that value once and cache it in a local variable. If you write obj->"key" with -> being overloaded to act as database fetch, you're far more prone to just let it pass because the cost of the operation isn't apparent.
Sep
18
comment Why would it ever be possible for Java to be faster than C++?
@KonradRudolph: If the deadline is in a week, you don't measure, you write the goddamned code and pray not to make too many bugs because there's hardly any time to fix them. And operator overloading is very, very handy at writing code faster completely regardless of how much overhead given overload creates.
Jul
5
awarded  Yearling
Feb
7
comment Root cause analysis in event correlation
@MahendraGunawardena: These were just examples - some of hundreds of possible problems. The question is about creating a system that would discover root causes like these in multitude of input data, not about resolving the three example problems. The blockade line is a system-wide line which halts the operation of all modules - any module can activate it if in case of an unrecoverable error. PSU supplies power to everything. And no, I haven't created that system until now - there are always "higher priority tasks" and developing this is continually pushed back.
Feb
5
awarded  Popular Question
Nov
3
comment Why do bitwise operators have lower priority than comparisons?
@supercat: If I need x ? y : 0 I write x ? y : 0. OTOH, I frequently write status = (threshold > thresh_max)*MASK_MAX_EXCEEDED + (threshold < thresh_min)*MASK_MIN_EXCEEDED + (!!alarm)*MASK_ALARM + (motor_out!=motor_in)*MASK_MOTOR_ERROR; etc. The fact boolean expressions produce 0 or 1 only is very comfortable, allowing to turn many conditionals into simple multiplications (which additionally avoid branches in pipeline, meaning better efficiency.)
Sep
8
comment Can any GPLv2 licensed library be used in a company's internal intranet application?
@keppla: Yes, and that means: Use it, but be aware of it. Keep semi-clear borders between your proprietary and GPL'd, so that if the time of change comes you won't find yourself hopelessly entangled. "Business secrets" separated with good abstraction layer of some glue logic from GPL parts.
Sep
5
awarded  Good Answer
Jul
6
comment Recursion or while loops
@dan_waterworth: This is all again about writing. While writing you happily accept what the function means and enjoy the simplicity, assuming the function is correct. Debugging is all about "what the function actually does, versus what it was supposed to do", and all the elegance and simplicity of writing crashes on your head. "Dirty mechanics" which recursion manages to hide efficiently is where usually the problem lies, and debugging stuff that happens behind the scenes is always harder than debugging what lies out in the open.
Jul
5
awarded  Yearling
Jan
16
awarded  Nice Answer
Oct
31
comment “Do it right, against customer's wishes” - how is it called?
@Rig: So, unless we just build it reliable, we're in a lose-lose situation. We can't not build it (deadline is final), and we can't build it to specs (flawed). The choice is quite smart: make it flawless and then if someone protests, let them argue that no, they demand flaws to be implemented.
Oct
30
comment “Do it right, against customer's wishes” - how is it called?
Let me emphasize: This is NOT the USA. And these government organizations may not be technical experts but are great at politics. Seriously, if you point out two different dates and ask which one is right, they can reply with a straight face these are both the same date and your request is invalid. Argue with that.
Oct
30
comment “Do it right, against customer's wishes” - how is it called?
(in particular, the contract is pretty clear on punitive charges for delays in delivery. We're better off deploying an empty box that does nothing, and "fixing it" as warranty repairs by filling it with electronics as they are developed, than to delay deployment for any reasons.)
Oct
30
comment “Do it right, against customer's wishes” - how is it called?
@JamesSnell: In this particular case, likely the lawyer costs would exceed the expected profits long before resolution. Especially that a device that doesn't perform to specs can be "fixed within warranty" (only costs of modifying the algorithms). That's the worst that can really happen to us currently. Also, I have a strong suspicion the customer understands the SNAFU but is unwilling to admit mistake and silently hopes we do what we're about to do. That way their reputation is never at stake and the device performs just fine. It's not just about law, it's very much politics.
Oct
30
awarded  Nice Question