21 Feb 2015 @ 7:19 PM 

So, I was just thinking about how our brains can slowly repair itself over time, as new neurons learn to take over – then I had a thought:  What would happen if, after a person’s heart stops, they keep the person on a HLM (heart and lung) machine (to prevent further brain damage), with a modified pacemaker, and see if, over time, the heart learns to start beating again?  Interesting …

Posted By: James
Last Edit: 21 Feb 2015 @ 07:19 PM

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Categories: Here's A Thought

 03 Dec 2014 @ 8:28 PM 

From YouTube:

We never thought a video would be watched in numbers greater than a 32-bit integer (=2,147,483,647 views), but that was before we met PSY. “Gangnam Style” has been viewed so many times we had to upgrade to a 64-bit integer (9,223,372,036,854,775,808)!  Hover over the counter in PSY’s video to see a little math magic and stay tuned for bigger and bigger numbers on YouTube.

Just – WOW.  It’s like Y2K all over again.  People assume things too much I guess. ;)

Show/Hide

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9bZkp7q19f0

Posted By: James
Last Edit: 03 Dec 2014 @ 08:44 PM

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Categories: General News, News

 03 Dec 2014 @ 7:46 PM 

So, for a few years I’ve been stuck with jamesnw@me.com (please feel free to spam this to hell, as I never use it, and perhaps Apple will then allow me to change it, lol).  Can people change their Apple ID?  Yes – EXCEPT, if the email is an APPLE email (i.e. some_one@me.com, or @icloud.com).  Why?  Who knows – perhaps it’s good for business to trap people into a corner and prevent them from leaving.  I would liken it to people going into a store, and the owner locking the door to prevent them from buying elsewhere. ;)  Dumb? Yes.  Expected?  Of course, from Apple.

Posted By: James
Last Edit: 03 Dec 2014 @ 07:48 PM

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 03 Dec 2014 @ 7:35 PM 

Well, I was in my Apple account changing stuff, and what recently pissed me off (just add this to the list) was changing my security questions.  By the time I figured out the answers to 3 of them, it timed out, and I had to start over (3 times, because I had to find the questions still, then type the answer, and change the email).  There’s not enough damn time to do anything the first time.  So dumb – yet so expected really.

Posted By: James
Last Edit: 03 Dec 2014 @ 07:35 PM

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 03 Nov 2014 @ 4:00 PM 

I hate phone voice dictations and smell checkers that auto corset my messages without first giving me options. Is spatially regarding voice dications, witch I think should give a list of possible meanings to select forum.  I mean, some words just don’t make cents in the context, write? :(

Posted By: James
Last Edit: 03 Nov 2014 @ 04:00 PM

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 19 Aug 2014 @ 6:00 PM 

So…

What web related programming language is your favorite?  There are so many options these days, between Java, JavaScript, Go, Dart, PHP, Phython, Ruby, .NET/Mono, and more – enough to spin the heads of many new developers on the scene.  So, which should you chose to learn if you are starting out?  First off, let me just say that I think it’s a BAD idea to start at a high level language that does everything for you (except, perhaps, as an introduction to get one’s “hands wet”).  Why?  Because you cannot truly understand what is going on behind the scenes.  In my 30+ years of development experience, I can honestly say that I have only truly mastered that which I have truly understood.  Abstraction is not always a good thing, unless it’s sole purpose is to help speed up development, and not used to code in ignorance.  To this end, I’d want a good middle ground in development – not too low level (machine code anyone?), and not too high level (VB?).

The Baseline

I have tried many languages to date (I started with BASIC as a kid [C64, yeah baby!], then assembly [started on the C64], C/C++, Java, C#, etc.), and regarding the JS++ languages (a term coined for languages the transpile down to JavaScript) I never really felt that any of them seemed right (concept and/or syntax wise).  Yes, they can save time, but I never felt they could scale very well (or maybe I just never felt at home).  I even CREATED my own scripting language called ASM Script (assembly-like script, but much easier), and even used it on an application project that eventually won a $475k RFP for a company, and also for scripting a 3D editor tool for a 3D library years back; however, would the world really accept it in the long run? After some thought, I realized that what was needed is:

  1. * A scalable script (for large modular enterprise applications).
  2. Compiles to local device machine code.
  3. Has garbage collection.
  4. * Is known and used world wide by the greatest number of developers.
  5. Is an open world-driven standard (driven by multiple “big players”, not run by ONE company [open source or not]).
  6. Flexible/dynamic, but with type constraints where needed.
  7. * The same code base can be used both server and client side without needing to learn two separate languages.

At first I though that, well, since JavaScript is JIT compiled now, why not use that?  It must be fast enough now for most apps.  The problem at the time was with #1 above – I just could not see it scale well for large modular applications without creating a huge mess.  I also considered GO and Dart, but I could just never see it being used *world wide* by all company devices/computers, browsers, etc. (Microsoft will never bend to it for one).  I mean, for example, GO was created for use with internal Google development teams, in efforts to write code needed for the kind of collaboration and scalability needed by Google for their servers and other software (the video on the front page of the website [at the time of this writing] even states that fact).  This does not mean that it will translate to being useful by everyone.  For example, Microsoft has their own internal process with .NET and TypeScript (TS is open source as well), Oracle (Java) has theirs, many others use SAP (an ERP system used by large companies) with uses Java and ABAP, and I’m sure you could think of a dozen more.  Why should all companies use the mighty Google GO language, or even Dart?  The simple answer is that every language has a good and bad side, and what works for some, does not always work for others.  For all time, this will always be the case.  A language is a tool, and as more mature developers would agree, you use the right tool for the right  job – and also, learn to change with the times as needed.

The Powers That Be

Now, all that said, there’s also the idea of “momentum”.  If you stood in front of a fast moving train, how much would you slow it down? ;)  Did you know, by now, we could all be driving electric cars? (http://goo.gl/41IV2c)  But, the “powers that be” didn’t want to let go of the oil sales. As well, many claim it would have caused economic trouble (mechanic job losses, etc).  While the important thing is to invest in a better future, it’s the big players with the power that ultimately shape the future.   The electric car, being ahead of it’s time, was too “disruptive” in many ways, and was squashed for a time.  The goal then was to later focus on a “hybrid” idea that would help bridge the gap.  Why?  Because a good middle ground is almost always a good compromise of one’s terms (like arguing married couples ;) ).  For a good web based language standard to succeed it needs to have GLOBAL momentum.  As well, it cannot be proprietary – the moving force must be with the people.  Of the two major contenders, Dart tries to be it’s own thing, while TypeScript does not (TS emulates the upcoming ECMAScript 6 standard).  This is why Dart will never be adopted – simply because 1. it’s trying, in arrogance, to be a replacement for JavaScript, and 2. Microsoft won’t allow it as a standard.  JavaScript is the only thing Google and Microsoft can agree on because, frankly, it’s on neutral grounds.  It’s like the mediator between feuding couples. ;)  The focus then should be to slowly bring JavaScript to where it needs to be, not fragment the web with everyone else’s own language ideas.

The Mess

So, let’s make the picture a bit more clear: Google has Go/Dart/JS, Microsoft and Stack Overflow uses C#/VB.NET/JS, Oracle/eBay/Linkedin uses Java/JS, Facebook uses a big variety :) , Yahoo/Wikipedia/Wordpress uses PHP/JS, Blogger uses Python/JS, Bling (Microsoft) uses ASP.NET/JS, and so on (http://goo.gl/m4Re0). It’s also important to note that many big companies use large  ERP systems, such as SAP (which uses a proprietary scripting language called ABAP), and Oracle ERP. So, what do all these big players have in common?  They all develop for browsers and mobile devices.  And what do all mobile devices and browsers support? JavaScript.  But is JavaScript scalable?  Not easily.  But … there is light coming at the end of that long tunnel.

Working Together

JavaScript is the only language that has forced companies to learn to work together for a single code base.  Back in the browser war days, the lack of standards compliance and diverse interpretation of implementation details attributed to many developer headaches (mine included).  I even gave up on JavaScript for a few years because of it (after creating a large library for a web based game development IDE).  It wasn’t until over a couple years back that I noticed a shift occurring. The new HTML5 tags, along with the new ECMAScript 5 & 6 standards, is changing the way JavaScript is viewed regarding its use for application development.  In fact, HTML5 is supporting “off line” applications, using such things as Web Storages, Web SQL, “app.manifest” files, file system APIs, and more.  This means that you could create non-server based, client only, applications that can save locally.  As Microsoft gets its act together with IE standards compliance, and plays nice with the other boys in the sandbox, along with Apple supporting the HTML5 application model, we will see more and more of desktop (and native mobile) style applications being built on the web.  Regardless of JS++ type languages (Google Dart, Coffescript, etc.), in the end it all transpiles down to JavaScript.  With language levels, the higher up you go (i.e. closer to “human speak”), the less control you may have, but the faster you can work.  On the flip side, the lower you go, the more power you have, but the longer things take to develop.  If we consider that  JS++ languages transpile down to JavaScript, which in turn becomes JIT (just-in-time) compiled (to machine code), we can see the “middle” ground here might be JavaScript itself, and is the common language already adopted cross-platform by all major corporations. The vendors are diverse, and hardware is diverse, but JavaScript is not (the compromise). Since we can’t force the world to adopt a new language overnight, we should be fixing up JavaScript into something better (because it’s already adopted), and not confuse people with new stuff.  Also consider, what if something in a JS++ language didn’t work out for some reason?  You’d most likely have to review the resulting JavaScript to see what the heck is going on – so, why not just learn JavaScript to begin with?  Well, there are issues again with the language quirks and scalability, but this is changing! …

The Future

The ECMAScript standards people have been busy little bees (or ants?), moving us towards a better future, and a richer web experience.  I envision that those in the future who master the new semantics will truly understand what is going on in their code, and will be the top of the line, and obtain a skill transferable to any organization (trade security). As well, organizations that focus on popular cross-platform languages will have no problems finding a replacement for developers working on high priority/critical development projects.  The new ECMAScript 6 standard introduces concepts similar to many OOP type languages, like classes, properties, modules, iterators, and much more. Now, if only JavaScript could add static typing, then the compiler could catch errors early on, making enterprise development much easier.  Well, in fact, there is such a thing.  Keeping to the true nature of ECMAScript 6, and allowing the use of static typing, along side dynamic types, TypeScript is the only language I know that accomplishes this (and addresses ALL points in my list at the top).  In fact, TypeScript is not even a “new” language.  It’s just ECMAScript 6 made available TODAY, with optional type checking added (similar to ActionScript, which is also popular, so flash developers will be right at home).  Even the compiler itself is created in JavaScript!  This opens a whole new set of doors (in-browser based IDEs, etc.).  When used along with JavaScript supported servers (like NodeJS), it allows enterprise applications to reuse code between client and server side development, greatly reducing the developer workload (for instance, using JavaScript to validate user input client side before sending, and server side as well [using the same code] for more secure validation).  TypeScript already supports NodeJS (a JavaScript server), and there are JS libraries, such as V8.Net, which can be used to build custom servers scripted using JavaScript.  It’s worth noting that Microsoft is positioning JavaScript as a tool for building windows apps (and supports JS servers for mobile apps with Azure using NodeJS), Apple is going to support WebGL iOS 8 (great for game companies!),  rich media apps will be able to use WebRTC, Away3D (a popular 3D flash library) is moving to HTML5/JavaScript via TypeScript, and the list goes on.

Finale

So, to make it clear, I’m not advocating the use of TypeScript.  I’m advocating the move to mold JavaScript (ECMAScript) into what it needs to be.  It’s like the marriage that brings the warring kingdoms together, and declares peace across the land. In time, JavaScript will become a powerful language, and perhaps even TypeScript will become obsolete.  Until then, TypeScript gets us there today.

Keep in mind, this is MY personal blog, and it’s how I see things.  You may disagree – in which case you can write your own. ;)  I traverse life with an open mind though, so I don’t mind hearing other view points on the matter.

Too see more on TypeScript, watch this video, or visit the  website.

Note: I have no affiliation with Microsoft, and after much research, made these decisions entirely on my own, in light of my past experiences.

Some stats:


(http://goo.gl/FnXNRJ)

BTW:  Yes, I’m aware that “Go” is not really intended as a client side JS++ language, but I put it there anyhow for curiosity sake.

Posted By: James
Last Edit: 19 Aug 2014 @ 06:04 PM

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Categories: Coding

 24 Feb 2014 @ 8:34 AM 

Well, I cannot say for sure, but I’ll let you in on a little something I just found out.  I did a quick search to find the truth, and found they created a bias website to trick people into believing it is the best thing since sliced bread.  The site I found was this one:

http://gastricbypass.me (Gastric Bypass Reviews and Options)

Looks good, and seems to be a neutral website on Gastric Bypass.  It also seems some pages conveniently fail to load because, well, apparently a lot of people are flooding the pages from MY specific city (it seems they autodetected my location); how convenient for them.

 

Wow, a lot of people from my specific area are on this site. :(

 

Ok, well, let’s assume that I’m unlucky enough to have a lot of people from my small area flood this page.  Let’s look deeper into the site itself.  I’m curious if this domain is owned by Roca Labs.  I did a quick lookup and got this:

Domain Name:GASTRICBYPASS.ME
Domain Create Date:30-Mar-2012 20:09:04 UTC
Domain Last Updated Date:14-Nov-2013 04:01:40 UTC
Domain Expiration Date:30-Mar-2014 20:09:04 UTC
Last Transferred Date:
Sponsoring Registrar:Name.com LLC R79-ME (625)
Created by:Name.com LLC R79-ME (625)
Last Updated by Registrar:Name.com LLC R79-ME (625)
Domain Status:CLIENT TRANSFER PROHIBITED
Registrant ID:wp81546cydbvt
Registrant Name:Whois Agent
Registrant Organization:Whois Privacy Protection Service, Inc.
Registrant Address:PO Box 639
Registrant Address2:
Registrant Address3:
Registrant City:Kirkland
Registrant State/Province:WA
Registrant Country/Economy:US
Registrant Postal Code:98083
Registrant Phone:+1.4252740657
Registrant Phone Ext.:
Registrant FAX:+1.4259744730
Registrant FAX Ext.:
Registrant E-mail:gastricbypass.me@protecteddomainservices.com

Ok, well that’s “protected” from prying eyes, so what about rocalabs.com?

Domain Name: ROCALABS.COM
Registrar WHOIS Server: whois.domainsite.com
Registrar URL: http://www.domainsite.com
Updated Date: 2013-02-14T19:12:18-07:00
Creation Date: 2009-04-09T12:20:20-06:00
Registrar Registration Expiration Date: 2014-04-09T12:20:20-06:00
Registrar: DomainSite, Inc.
Registrar IANA ID: 466
Registrar Abuse Contact Email: abuse@domainsite.com
Registrar Abuse Contact Phone: +1.17202492374
Resellser:
Domain Status: clientTransferProhibited
Registrant Name: Whois Agent
Registrant Organization: Whois Privacy Protection Service, Inc.
Registrant Street: PO Box 639
Registrant City: Kirkland
Registrant State/Province: WA
Registrant Postal Code: 98083
Registrant Country: US
Registrant Phone: +1.4252740657
Registrant Fax: +1.4259744730
Registrant Email: rocalabs.com@protecteddomainservices.com 

Hmmm, well well well. That location looks much the same.  Also, something to hide?  Not even Microsoft, as big as they are, use privacy services.  Well, let’s look even deeper.  Let’s lookup the IP addresses of the domains:

gastricbypass.me = 209.59.163.199
rocalabs.com = 209.59.164.12

Well well well gain.  The IPs seem to be on the same subnet!  Ok, well, perhaps they could claim its in the same data centre as a coincidence.  Ok, well, let’s do a simple “trace route” to find more details on the IPs:

>tracert 209.59.163.199 (this is the gastricbypass.me domain)
11 30 ms 30 ms 40 ms lw-dc3-dist15.rtr.liquidweb.com [69.167.128.205]
12 32 ms 31 ms 31 ms host2.rocalabs.com [209.59.163.199]
>tracert 209.59.164.12 (this is the rocalabs.com domain)
11 32 ms 33 ms 33 ms lw-dc3-dist15.rtr.liquidweb.com [69.167.128.201]
12 34 ms 32 ms 35 ms host.rocalabs.com [209.59.164.12]

BUSTED!  As you can see, gastricbypass.me is hosted by the host2.rocalabs.com server, and rocalabs.com is hosted by host.rocalabs.com!!! THEY ARE BOTH ON THE ROCALABS.COM DOMAIN!!!

So, my question is not whether or not their product works, but whether or not you should trust a company that tries to mislead people through fake websites in order to boost sales. In fact, they even go as far as to list “other options”, but the information is laced with details that seem tailored to scare people away – and into the only other “successful” alternative called, of course, “Gastric Bypass Alternative” (the product sold by Roca Labs).  As well, all the videos on the site simply glorify the Roca Labs product ONLY.

Need I really say more?   Help fight scams, share this article.

 

Posted By: James
Last Edit: 24 Feb 2014 @ 08:50 AM

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 08 May 2013 @ 6:36 PM 
Posted By: James
Last Edit: 08 May 2013 @ 06:36 PM

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 08 May 2013 @ 6:19 PM 

Okay, so I’ve been collecting Air Miles for years (no reason, just because) and got 1083 points.  They then started a new program that lets you convert your Air Miles to cash (for gas, etc.) – but only if you start over! :( Really!? I mean, COMMON! ARE YOU KIDDING? You honestly think I’m going to start over, and to make matters worse, SPLIT points between TWO plans now? (since it’s one or the other).  I see the warning signs – time to switch to something else that’s not a scam I think, ‘nough said.

Posted By: James
Last Edit: 03 Dec 2014 @ 08:51 PM

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 10 Mar 2013 @ 11:33 PM 

So, do you love to watch shows where the bad guys win, and people act like they keeping making choices after smoking weed?  It seams as of late there are three types of shows you’ll find on TV (not including reality shows – don’t even get me started on that!!!).

The first kind are hit-and-runs, where each episode is in itself is a complete show (one completed plot), with a limited sense of a story line between them (Two And A Half Men, CSI, Criminal Minds, Bones, Star Wares The Clone Wars, etc.).

The second kind of shows also have completed plots (one major story per episode), but also have a back running story line (Stargate, Fringe, Justified, Lost Girl, Revolution, Arrow, Grim, Supernatural, etc.).

The third kind are the absolute worst, and what I like to call “the soap operas” (and many reality TV shows qualify, but that’s a whole other post…). No, not the drama shows that stay-at-home moms usually watch after their kids go to school.  I’m talking about a running action/sci-fi story line that never ends.  Have you ever watched an episode, and got really into it, and right at the end you see “To be continued…”?  This just used to drive me crazy, because I had no idea if I’d be around to watch the next one!!!!  >:(  God forbid, before the internet and VCR, I should miss one, and then have no way to watch it again!  But wait, now we can have “To be continued”s for EVERY episode, OH JOY!  Shows like “Fringe” (toggles between type 2 and 3), “Once Upon A Time”, “The Following”.  As it turns out, they all love to suck every ounce of common sense out of you, including your faith in humanity, as you watch each one.  First of all, every one of the aforementioned shows rarely complete episodes with the good guy winning, and leaves the watcher cringing at the stupidity of it all (“Once Upon A Time” wins the big award on this one).  Any character in those shows with half a brain would probably have ended the show after 3 episodes, but to drag it out, the bad guy has to keep winning.  For instance, in “The Following”, the main evil character keeps getting away with it, so there’s never really any sense of accomplishment on the good side. As well, I can always predict he WILL win, do to some convoluted circumstance to keep the story line going (again, usually do to stupidity and lack of common sense [have trackers and GPS ankle brackets not been invented yet?]). If I were writing the show, I would allow the good guy to gain some good traction at EVERY episode, along side the bad guy, and piss off the bad guy each time – not just ALWAYS the bad guy winning!  That way I have a good sense accomplishment each time, while looking forward to the next one (the shows “Supernatural” and “Justified” do this REALLY well).

So anyhow, there I am, watching, for instance, “Once Upon A Time”, episode 1, then the bad guy wins (the pilot was very disappointing).  Episode 2, the same.  Episode 3, the same (by now I want to stop watching because I feel I wasted my life for no *good* reason, but I decided to watch it if there’s nothing else on). Episode 4,5,6 (ok, I have to stop, now I’m getting sick of the stupidity, and I want to shoot myself … but of course, I HAVE TO KNOW HOW IT ENDS!!! :( ).  Episode 7, 8, 9, … and then, the finale.  I’ve seen good finales where the good guy wins (Stargate, Lost Girl, Dexter [good guy? LOL :) ]), and YET, the writers are still able to hook in something smaller that makes you interested to see how it continues.  THIS IS HOW IT SHOULD BE DONE WITH EACH EPISODE PEOPLE.  Please, for the love of GOD, stop making BS episodes, which make me want to throw my drink into the screen, and allow me the decency of feeling satisfied after each episode (after all, I’m watching it to relax, sort of, not increase my anxiety).  Does your show suck so bad, you’re afraid people won’t keep watching it unless you make up some BS reason for the bad guy to keep winning?  It takes a smart writer to satisfy their viewers in every episode, while keeping them intrigued to see the next one.  It’s a shame it seems they are few and far in between.  Any how, to be continued…

8)

 

Posted By: James
Last Edit: 11 Mar 2013 @ 10:15 PM

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