MultiLinks 6-12-2015

Posted: June 12th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: MultiLinks | No Comments »

What Is Code?

If you don’t understand computer programming or how computers work, this is absolutely the best explanation I have ever seen. It’s accurate, simple, and clear. If you’ve ever wanted to understand computers and computer programming, read this.


The Vagus Nerve: A Back Door for Brain Hacking

I am extremely skeptical of this. Lots of promises, but we’ll see. I’m suspicious that this is going to turn into the next pop-med cure.


High Frequency Trading Model

It’s rare to see an actual, functional algorithm for HFT methodologies. This is a simple example of statistical arbitrage. In the coming weeks, I’m hoping to port this to QuantConnect’s Lean Engine in a few weeks.


Is Russia’s space program in crisis?

So Russia’s program is corrupt and falling apart. Still better than the US, since the US program cannot currently put people into orbit.


Airbus unveils Adeline, its clever answer to SpaceX’s reusable rockets

Speaking of space: Airbus now has a plan to reuse lower stages, and reduce launch costs. Thanks, SpaceX. Unlike the UAL’s insane-sounding mid-air recovery plan, Airbus’ plan actually sounds like it might work.

Swift has had a successful year

Posted: June 12th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Programming | Tags: , | No Comments »

As expected, Swift’s adoption is picking up quickly. It’s a nice language, with the modern look and feel that defines current languages:

  • Simplified method declarations
  • No semicolons on end of line
  • Functions as first class citizens
  • Lambdas
  • Some sort of memory management (ARC in Swift’s case)
  • Implicit typing
  • Etc.

It’s going through growing pains, as the language spec and tools are still immature. However, it’s a language with all the buzzwords and behaviors programmers currently want. Plus, if Apple follows through with it’s plan to open source Swift 2.0, a major hurdle to adapting Swift on other platforms will be removed.

As far as general non-Apple programming goes, Swift has some serious competition for mindshare in Google’s Go and Mozilla’s Rust. Go has a serious head start, and is solving real problems at Google and everywhere else these days; unfortunately, Google has a bad habit of abandoning projects. Rust looks like an absolutely amazing language, and I think it is the best-designed of the three (better type system than Go, better memory management than Swift). I’ll be curious to see if anyone actually uses it.

Swift, on the other hand, is Apple’s “language of the future.” Apple and Swift are in a similar position to Microsoft and C#. With a large development community eager to/forced to lap up whatever Apple brings down the pipe, I suspect Swift will continue to gain popularity.

MultiLinks 6-5-2015

Posted: June 5th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: MultiLinks | No Comments »

Intel will acquire FPGA maker Altera for $16.7 billion
Whoa. This is a huge deal. I’ll be very interested in seeing what Intel does with this.

Kubernetes – The Future of Deployment
This is an incredible technology. While Docker has slowly tried to add orchestration features like Machine, Swarm, and Compose, they are still somewhat immature and don’t fully work together well. You can read more about Kubernetes here and here. This is still immature and ambitious, but with Google’s experience behind it, I think it will develop quickly — assuming they don’t get bored. 😉

Majority of websites have serious, unfixed vulnerabilities
I’m shocked, shocked I tell you!

Play 2.4.0 “Damiya” released, adds new DI support and test APIs
Play 2.4 FINALLY adds built in DI — using Guice, my favorite Java DI container. They also look like they’ve added some useful methods for adding mock dependencies to FakeApplications when unit testing.

The U.S. Navy’s Big Mistake — Building Tons of Supercarriers
Super carriers are great for power projection — as long as you aren’t fighting a technologically even foe.

R.R. Wilson’s Congressional Testimony, April 1969

Posted: June 4th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Science | Tags: , | No Comments »

Going through some old links, I rediscovered this old testimony. This is the most beautiful defense of scientific research I have ever seen:

SENATOR PASTORE. Is there anything connected in the hopes of this accelerator that in any way involves the security of the country?

DR. WILSON. No, sir; I do not believe so.

SENATOR PASTORE. Nothing at all?

DR. WILSON. Nothing at all.

SENATOR PASTORE. It has no value in that respect?

DR. WILSON. It only has to do with the respect with which we regard one another, the dignity of men, our love of culture. It has to do with those things.

It has nothing to do with the military. I am sorry.

SENATOR PASTORE. Don’t be sorry for it.

DR. WILSON. I am not, but I cannot in honesty say it has any such application.

SENATOR PASTORE. Is there anything here that projects us in a position of being competitive with the Russians, with regard to this race?

DR. WILSON. Only from a long-range point of view, of a developing technology. Otherwise, it has to do with: Are we good painters, good sculptors, great poets? I mean all the things that we really venerate and honor in our country and are patriotic about.

In that sense, this new knowledge has all to do with honor and country but it has nothing to do directly with defending our country except to help make it worth defending.