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Very senior embedded real-time systems programmer (Texas law is very picky about the use of the term "engineer"), unsuccessful candidate for U.S. Congress, and unreconstructed Cold Warrior.

Sep
22
awarded  Nice Answer
Sep
19
comment Is my work on a developer test being taken advantage of?
What Henry Keiter said goes for me too.
Sep
16
comment Are there any empirical studies on the effect of different languages on software quality?
@Kevin, while it may be true that good engineers can produce quality software in any language, we all live and work in the real world, and there is some evidence out there that suggests that, in the real world, with typical engineers, language makes a difference.
Sep
16
comment Are there any empirical studies on the effect of different languages on software quality?
If the study indicated, and strongly supported, a result that you personally found intolerable or disgusting, what would you do?
Sep
11
comment Is it ever OK for a conditional to have side effects?
Look at the bright side. You now know one more company where you DON'T want to interview.
Sep
11
comment dealing with a very large state machine in a class
Is there any chance you can get your employer to junk the protocol specification and START OVER??? Alternatively, out of morbid curiosity, what protocol is this, and where can I find the protocol specification?
Sep
9
awarded  Necromancer
Sep
8
comment Ambiguous If-else nested block in C without braces
Because this is how C is defined to work. There was (and still is) a REASON why Ada required all control structures to be fully bracketed. Ichbiah et al. KNEW that the "dangling else" problem was Bad, and they Fixed It.
Aug
31
comment Testing multi-threaded race conditions
@PeterK., this is one of those few cases in software development, along with monitors, RAM, and disk drives, where bigger IS better.
Aug
19
comment What is the ideal length of a method?
so am I. The correlation study looked at LOTS of code, and LOTS of routines. (It was one of the big public repositories.)
Aug
19
comment When do you use float and when do you use double
"Modern computers" meaning Intel x86 processors. Some of the machines the Ancients used provided perfectly adequate precision with the basic float type. (The CDC 6600 used a 60-bit word, 48 bits of normalized floating-point mantissa, 12 bits of exponent. That's ALMOST what the x86 gives you for double precision.)
Aug
19
comment What is the ideal length of a method?
Cyclomatic complexity has been shown, on large quantities of real production code, to be VERY strongly correlated with raw SLOC, making the computation of cyclomatic complexity a total waste of time, energy, and clock cycles.
Aug
19
comment What is the ideal length of a method?
It isn't so much "get off my lawn" as an observation that I have seen a LOT of crap code over the years, and it seems to be getting WORSE.
Aug
15
comment Has there really not been one thing in the past 20 years that provided huge software development gains?
There seems to be an assumption underlying the question, that programmers would actually choose to use something that offered significant demonstrable benefits. Whether that assumption is justified seems to me to be very much in question.
Aug
13
comment Optimizing code by using registers, but what if they are not enough in number?
@randomA, the value may or may not reside in memory, depending on the target architecture, the compiler, the optimization level chosen, other code, and the phases of the moon, Mars, and Uranus. If the target machine has enough registers, and the compiler recognizes that there is no need to store the temporary in memory, it will just leave it in a register. NB: If you are on an x86 processor, the compiler essentially has no registers to play with, and everything must live in memory.
Aug
13
comment Optimizing code by using registers, but what if they are not enough in number?
@delnan The compiler is required to obey the semantic roadblocks. The programmer may know that the roadblock does not apply in this case, but there is no way, other than explicitly assigning a temporary, for the programmer to convey that knowledge to the compiler.
Aug
8
answered How to parse different number types with LALR(1)
Jul
31
comment Programmatically manipulate expressions accounting for operator precedance
Once you have a parse tree, printing a fully-parenthesized version is just an inorder traverse, with decoration.
Jul
30
answered Which language introduced the idea of private (hidden) variables?
Jul
28
answered What is the ideal length of a method?