November Week 4
Written by Editor   
Saturday, 01 December 2018

Catch up with everything on I Programmer last week. Our digest gives links to news coverage plus the week's book reviews and additions to Book Watch. The list finishes with an extract from Android Programming in Kotlin showing how to create an Android UI using code and a history article, John Backus - the Father of Fortran.  

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November 22 - 28, 2018 

Book Watch

This week's additions to Book Watch, our ever-growing archive of newly published computer books, are:    

Book Reviews

  • Regular Expressions: Pocket Primer

    Alex Armstrong gave this pocket sized book a rating of 3 our of 5 noting that it is " packed with lots of examples and, even better, useful examples. It doesn't really manage to make regular expressions simpler to understand, however. There is a lot of logic behind how regular expression work and this isn't made particularly clear."

  • T-SQL Querying

    Ian Stirk awarded this book 4.8 out of 5 and concluded:
    If you want a more advanced understanding of T-SQL features, together with the latest performance techniques, written by some of the best SQL educators, I can highly recommend this excellent book.


Apple App Store Antitrust Suit  
Wednesday 28 November

It is obvious that Apple has a monopoly on iOS apps, but it is using a very slippery argument to thwart the current class action being brought against it for being said monopoly. 

Google Launches Web Component And Data API For Quick, Draw!   Wednesday 28 November

Google has released a web component and API based on drawings collected as part of its Quick, Draw! AI-based drawing experiment. 

Update: JS Foundation and Node.js Foundation Progress Towards Merger   Wednesday 28 November

Following on from the joint announcement of a planned merger and community feedback approving the intent, the boards of the JS Foundation and the Node.js Foundation are in what they call a “bootstrap” phase, exploring all of the potential details that must be considered as part of a merger. 

Free Machine Learning Training From Amazon  
Tuesday 27 November

Amazon announced today that the machine learning courses used to train engineers at Amazon are now being made available to all developers through AWS for free. 

The Perl Renaming Debate Highlights Tensions  
Monday 26 November

The name "Perl" lies at the heart of the drama developing between the two languages, Perl 5 and Perl 6. This is a long way from the once desirable unification  and moves towards breaking the ties between former sister languages now emerging as total foes. 

FoundationDB Adds Multi-region Support  
Monday 26 November

A new version of FoundationDB has been released with support for multi-regions within single clusters, faster failover recovery and improved TLS. 

Dreams Come To Life With Machine Learning  
Sunday 25 November

Combining music, art and machine learning, a magical transformation of the Walt Disney Concert Hall was created to celebrate to 100th anniversary of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. 

New Site For Google's Coding Competitions  
Saturday 24 November

Google hosts three separate coding competitions that are "meant to enthrall, challenge, and test coders". Google has now launched a new website to make it easier to sign up and join in.  

Better Face Detection in Amazon Rekognition  
Friday 23 November

Updates to Amazon's face detection software have led to a significant increase in its performance in detecting faces from images, avoiding false detections and in making matches. 

Pyro Now On Watson Machine Learning   Friday 23 November

Pyro, a universal probabilistic programming language (PPL) written in Python and supported by PyTorch on the backend, is now available on IBM's Watson Machine Learning platform with PyTorch 0.4 

Chrome Working Towards Faster, Smoother UX  
Thursday 22 November

One announcement from the 2-day Chrome Dev Summit that took place in mid-November was that Google has pledged $200,000 for JavaScript Frameworks. Here's a round up of news from the event. 

Microsoft Malmo Marlo Competition Dates Extended   Thursday 22 November

The closing date for entries to a competition co-hosted by Microsoft has been extended to the end of December, and the initial kickoff round of the tournament has been held at AIIDE 2018, a workshop on artificial intelligence and digital entertainment. 

The Core

Android Programming In Kotlin: Programming the UI   Monday 26 November

You can create an Android UI using code rather than XML but this isn't as well known. Here's how to do it in Kotlin, in an extract from the published book  Android Programming in Kotlin: Starting With An App by Mike James. 


John Backus - the Father of Fortran   Thursday 22 November

Creating the first compiler went hand-in-hand with the task to creating the first high-level computer language. You can argue that this was Fortran or some other language, but the fact of the matter is that Fortran was the language that kickstarted the widespread use of computers. This is the story of how it happened. 


If you want to delve into I Programmer's coverage of the news over the years, you can access I Programmer Weekly back to January 2012.

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Last Updated ( Saturday, 01 December 2018 )