“Minimum number of people you need in order to maintain […] our current level of technological civilization?”


“What is the minimum number of people you need in order to maintain (not necessarily to extend) our current level of technological civilization? […] Conservative politicians in the US — and elsewhere — get a lot of mileage from appeals to false nostalgia, to a yearning for a time when things were simpler, everyone was sturdily self-sufficient or knew their place (or both), and government was small (sometimes small enough to drown in a bathtub).”

What is the minimum number of people needed to design and build a pocket supercomputer? That’s what I would really like to know. Just in case I get a company off the ground!

Bjarne Stroustrup announces C++ Core Guidelines


Stroustrup said: “You can write C++ programs that are statically type safe and have no resource leaks. You can do that without loss of performance and without limiting C++’s expressive power. This supports the general thesis that garbage collection is neither necessary nor sufficient for quality software. Our core C++ guidelines makes such code simpler to write than older styles of C++ and the safety can be validated by tools that should soon be available as open source.”

I am NOT happy so see more life blown into C++.  C++ should have been legacy code by now if not for the curse of Automated Garbage Collection that afflicted all recent and more modern programming languages.

“Flat” software interface design considered harmful


“No argument here: Jony Ive has produced some of the best industrial design in the history of consumer products. He’s done it by cutting out all the extraneous parts. By eliminating edges, by smoothing and streamlining.

But what works beautifully for hardware does not work for software.”

I have felt too that the “flat” design promoted recently by many software interaction designers hurts usability. It looks like I’m not the only one that dislikes this trend. Not being the only one feels great!



“Tcl (Tool Command Language) is a very powerful but easy to learn dynamic programming language, suitable for a very wide range of uses, including web and desktop applications, networking, administration, testing and many more. Open source and business-friendly, Tcl is a mature yet evolving language that is truly cross platform, easily deployed and highly extensible.”

I love TCL. The idea of everything being a string including during marshalling to C too is genius. the FFI (foreign function interface) is made very easy this way. I will adopt and assimilate it.

IBM delivers Linux mainframes to the open source world


“IBM plunged its proprietary mainframes headlong into the open source waters, delivering two Linux-only mainframes and its largest mainframe code drop to the open source community.

IBM also signed an agreement with Canonical Ltd. to create a version ofUbuntu for IBM’s z Systems and committed to enable products, such asApache Spark and MongoDB, on z Systems.”

Conclusion: Native Linux on mainframes is an exciting new possibility but it makes you wonder if Linux is the best choice of an operating system for a mainframe. What about AIX? It’s supposedly more proper for large workloads than Linux; on POWER at least. And what about Ubuntu as a choice of Linux distribution? Wouldn’t Red Hat had been a better choice? It seems that IBM is losing trust in it’s core systems.

Difference Between AES and Twofish


“The Advanced Encryption Standard, or AES, is currently the latest standard that has been adopted by United States government for encrypting top secret information. The label of AES was not initially meant for a single encryption method; instead it was a competition between many. Among the five finalists are Rijndael and Twofish. Rjindael won and was adopted as AES while Twofish obviously did not.[…]”

Conclusion: Twofish is more secure than AES (Rjindael) but more complex and power-hungry in it’s hardware implementation.