Programming News and Views

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Apple And Google Break W3C Standards
Mar 02 | Ian Elliot
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The story of pointer events and its API is a complicated and divisive one, but now that it is effectively a W3C standard browser makers should start to support it. The problem is that Apple won't and Google probably won't unless Apple changes its mind. 

Firefox 64-bit For Windows Coming Soon?
Mar 02 | Alex Armstrong
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The long-awaited Windows 64-bit version of the Firefox browser is in prospect. It is already available to download in the Firefox Developer Edition Channel.

Waterbear Spaceship - Conway's Life
Mar 01 | Mike James
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What do programmers do for fun? Some play code golf, some contribute to open source, but some try to build an alternative universe within Life. Waterbear is an amazing testament to what can be achieved if you put your mind to it. 

New Milestone For Google - 1000 Chrome Experiments
Feb 28 | David Conrad
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To celebrate reaching 1,000 Chrome Experiments that showcase what you can do in the browser with HTML5 and JavaScript, the Google Chrome has created an experiment that visualizes every other experiment on the site.

February Week 4
Feb 28 | Editor
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If you want to keep up with what's important from the point of view of the developer, you can rely on the  I Programmer team to sift through the news to select items that are of interest. This one is for February 19th to 25th.

ASP.NET 5 Cross Platform - But Is It Still ASP?
Feb 27 | Mike James
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Microsoft has announced version 5 of ASP.NET and seems pleased that the 15 year old technology is alive and well - but is it? If you replace the heart, mind and soul of a technology all you have left is the name.

Firefox 36.0 Released Firefox 37.0 In Beta Channel
Feb 27 | Ian Elliot
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Firefox 36 implements support for the HTTP/2 network protocol which should lead to it being faster, more scalable and more responsive. 

All Change For Pwnium V
Feb 26 | Alex Armstrong
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Google has scrapped its annual one-day contest to demonstrate vulnerabilities in Chrome. In future bugs can attract rewards all the year round.

Android For Work - A Developer Opportunity?
Feb 26 | Mike James
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Google has finally made a move on its promise of Android for Work, first announced at last year's I/O conference. It has a range of features that make Android more business-friendly, but there are some important things to know before you decide to adopt it.

Apache Storm On Azure
Feb 26 | Kay Ewbank
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Apache Storm,  a distributed real-time analytics system for Hadoop that can be used for processing large volumes of rapidly changing data, has been released on Microsoft Azure HDInsight.

Neural Networks Beat Humans
Feb 25 | Mike James
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Another neural network breakthrough has been announced by Microsoft Research. Its neural network now outperforms humans on the 1000-class ImageNet dataset.

The Emterpreter JavaScript As Byte Code
Feb 25 | Ian Elliot
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This is one of those stories that, if you get what is really going on, might send you screaming for the comfort of a pillow. Does the programming world get any stranger?

IFTTT Reinvents Macro With Do
Feb 25 | Kay Ewbank
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IFTTT has launched new apps that let you automate frequent actions for camera, note, and IFTTT recipes.

Nao's Creator Quits Aldebaran As Pepper Goes On Sale
Feb 24 | Lucy Black
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Bruno Maisonnier, founder of Aldebaran, the French company that brought us the friendly humanoid robot Nao, is standing down as its CEO. This coincides with the availability, in Japan, of company's latest creation Pepper which has quickly established itself in a hospitality role.

Microsoft Band Gets An SDK
Feb 24 | Mike James
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Microsoft Band could be a big win, if only it got the marketing and the support. Now, four months after the launch, there is an SDK. Is it worth investigating?

Qualcomm Releases NoSQL Qizx
Feb 23 | Kay Ewbank
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 Qualcomm has launched Qizx, a noSQL, native XML database for text-intensive projects where you need quick access and searching of documents.

More Recent News



Book Review Of The Day

MS SQL, T-SQL, and SQL Server Interview Questions
Monday 02 Mar

Author: William Barden
Publisher: William Barden
Kindle: B00SXNZ94I
Audience: SQL developers
Rating: 3.5

Reviewer: Ian Stirk

This book aims to help you succeed in a SQL developer interview, how does it fare?


Featured Articles

What is a Data Scientist and How Do I Become One?
Edward Jones
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What exactly is it that data scientists do? Why does everyone want one? And, how do you become one? These are the some of the key questions circulating as the term "data scientist" spreads.

Codebreaking and Colossus
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In the mid 70s it was revealed that British Intelligence had been using machines to break the German coded communications - and one of the machines was an early electronic computer called Colossus. Can it lay claim to being the first electronic computer?

SQL Workshop - Removing Duplicate Rows
Nikos Vaggalis
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Let’s say that we have a heap table without keys, solely used for dumping raw data into. That data at some point is filtered and cleaned up for further use. As time passes and data accumulates, duplicate rows creep in causing all sorts of issues. So, using SQL, how do we remove the duplicates but keep the one row necessary?


Unhandled Exception!


This week's xkcd cartoon reminds us of a time when the problem was clear and we fixed it - or did we? Even if we did. it is a well known law that commerce abhors a vacuum. 

 More cartoon fun at xkcd a webcomic of romance,sarcasm, math, and language

Click to view bigger version


Book Watch

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Big Data (Wiley)
Tuesday 03 Mar

There is much buzz around big data and we all want to know what it is and how it works. This book's subtitle is "Using Smart Big Data, Analytics and Metrics to Make Better Decisions and Improve Performance" . In it ′Big Data Guru" Bernard Marr looks at the SMART model: Start with Strategy; Measure Metrics and Data, Apply Analytics, Report Results, Transform Business.  



Learning Spark: Lightning-Fast Big Data Analysis (O'Reilly)
Monday 02 Mar

Data in all domains is getting bigger. How can you work with it efficiently? Written by the developers of Apache Spark, the open source cluster computing system that makes data analytics fast to write and fast to run, this book will have data scientists and engineers up and running in no time. You’ll learn how to express parallel jobs with just a few lines of code, and cover applications from simple batch jobs to stream processing and machine learning.


iOS for GameProgrammers (Mercury)
Friday 27 Feb

Allen Sherrod guides you on a journey into the world of mobile game development aimed at beginner Objective-C programmers. You will create five projects: a matching game, a puzzle game, a whack-a-mole game, a pong game, and a coloring book, each of which impart knowledge and skillsyou can apply to your own gaming projects.


Arduino: A Quick-Start Guide 2nd Ed (Pragmatic Bookshelf)
Thursday 26 Feb

Arduino is an open-source platform that makes DIY electronics projects easier than ever. Maik Schmidt helps readers with no electronics experience create their first gadgets quickly. This new edtion which has photos throughout. is up-to-date for Arduino 1.6.0 and  the new Arduino Zero board, with step-by-step instructions for building a universal remote, a motion-sensing game controller, and many other fun, useful projects.

<ASIN: 1941222242>

Cython (O'Reilly)
Wednesday 25 Feb

Build software that combines Python’s expressivity with the performance and control of C (and C++). It’s possible with Cython, the compiler and hybrid programming language used by NumPy. Kurt Smith takes you through Cython’s capabilities, with sample code and in-depth practice exercises, showing how to use Cython to improve Python’s performance—up to 3000x— and to wrap C and C++ libraries in Python with ease.


Machine Learning (Wiley)
Tuesday 24 Feb

Hands–on instruction and fully–coded working examples for the most common machine learning techniques used by developers and technical professionals. The book contains a breakdown of each ML variant, explaining how it works and how it is used within certain industries, allowing readers to incorporate the techniques presented by Jason Bell into their own work.


The VimL Primer (Pragmatic Bookshelf)
Monday 23 Feb

VimL is the scripting language of the Vim editor. If you've ever edited or saved a vimrc file, you've written VimL. With VimL you can configure basic settings and specify option values- or add entirely new functionality. You can write entire plugins in VimL.This quick and easy introduction from Benjamin Klein helps you create your own Vim plugin while learning the concepts and syntax of VimL.

<ASIN: 1680500406>

JavaScript & jQuery for Data Analysis & Visualization (Wrox)
Friday 20 Feb

Jon Raasch and his co-authors go beyond design concepts to show data analysts, developers, and web designers how they can put modern JavaScript libraries to work to analyze data and then present it using visualizations. They also demonstrate the use of each technique with real–world use cases, showing how to apply the appropriate JavaScript and jQuery libraries to achieve the desired visualization.


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