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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.

Jan
13
answered why empty function are needed
Jan
13
comment Why do so many languages treat numbers starting with 0 as octal?
@OldBadmanGrey, the "leading zero == octal" design decision for C happened LONG before the ANSI standard. Why the original designers chose it, I don't know. The ANSI standard merely codified widely existing practice.
Jan
9
comment How to structure a loop that repeats until success and handles failures
The key phrase in your ellipsized sentence is "properly employed". My bitter experience seems to me to indicate that damned near NOBODY in this crazy racket knows how to employ those things "properly", for almost any reasonable definition of "properly" (or "readable", for that matter).
Jan
5
comment Distributing a set of “Jobs” across multiple computers
What you are describing is essentially the parallel programming scatter/gather problem/paradigm. You start with your JobSet. You have a Scatter() pre-step that parcels out individual Jobs in the JobSet to processors. You have a Gather() post-step that collects the multiple JobStep results, and decides how to stitch them together and what to report up. The actual implementations will be VERY operating-system-dependent.
Dec
29
comment Should curly braces appear on their own line?
@Alex, one might think that. One would be highly mistaken. 40+ years ago, using video display terminals and text editors for programming was VERY RARE. The vast majority of programmers used printed listings, at roughly 66 lines per page. EVEN TODAY, tubes that support 66 lines per screen, with a readable font, are relatively uncommon, meaning that Weinberg's data is still highly relevant today.
Dec
13
comment Is it possible to quickly change an array declared on the stack to one declared on the heap
I have to ask. What are you trying to do that you think you need 100 million elements (400 million bytes) in your matrix?
Nov
20
answered How to solicit new product recommendations from existing clients?
Nov
20
comment Can we reduce confusion in line-based diff tools by annotating the code with some unique tokens?
@mouviciel, if I could have +1000'ed your comment, I would have.
Nov
16
comment How can one manage thousands of IF…THEN…ELSE rules?
What you are describing is first cousin to a LARGE rule-based expert system. The canonical example of such is XCON (eXpert CONFigurator) (formerly known as R1), developed by Digital Equipment Corporation for configuring VAX computers. They had a very similar problem, hundreds or thousands of rules, and about 30% of the rules changed every year. Start by reviewing the expert systems literature.
Nov
13
comment Why were punch cards used for programming
+1 for knowing what you're talking about. If I could've given you another +1 for the joke, I would've!
Nov
12
answered Why in cyclomatic complexity we add 1 for operators within a condition?
Nov
11
comment Why is the Unix linker called “ld”
@RobertHarvey: The point I was trying to make is that the term "loader" goes back to long BEFORE "the First Age of Unix, back in the 1970s."
Nov
11
comment Why is the Unix linker called “ld”
Please, please, please, people, please try to remember that computers and software and operating systems DID exist before Unix was invented. The term "loader", as in "relocating (or relocatable: both terms were common) linking loader" goes back to LONG before Unix. I first ran into it in about 1970, and I'd be VERY surprised if there weren't relocating linking loaders in 1960.
Nov
10
comment What advantages are there to using Flex/Bison over just writing a compiler straight in a programming language?
I am not certain, but I THINK ANTLR builds top-down parsers.
Nov
7
comment How to deal with clients that only gives you huge flow of “how to do this”, but can't say “what and why” they need?
@LachlanB, if you are so foolish as to enslave yourself to one (1) and only one (1) customer, you deserve what you get. In that sorry state of affairs, your ONLY option is to explain to them that the only work you can do for them will be to discuss those three questions, and it will have to be compensated on a straight-up "time and expenses" basis. Meanwhile, you should start cultivating other customers, PRONTO.
Nov
6
comment How to deal with clients that only gives you huge flow of “how to do this”, but can't say “what and why” they need?
@LachlanB, the term "fire them" means "cease taking work from them". You presumably have heard the term "fire your manager", which means "change jobs". Same concept.
Nov
6
awarded  Enlightened
Nov
6
awarded  Nice Answer
Nov
6
answered How to deal with clients that only gives you huge flow of “how to do this”, but can't say “what and why” they need?
Nov
1
comment Improving the speed of coding in Fortran
Have you looked at MATLAB, from MathWorks? Your university probably has a student discount arrangement. Alternatively, if you are not working at a university, and your employer is one of the VERY few who are too cheap to buy proper tools (MATLAB is generally regarded as a basic required tool these days), take a look at GNU Octave.