Saturday, November 1, 2014

Progvember 2014 hype

I'm doing progvember this year. The point is to make something out of vinter, an interpreted toy programming language I've been working on recently. Lately I've been bad about completing my projects, so hopefully this will help. Vinter started as a way to partly get re-acquainted with C++, which I haven't used lately, and partly because I found this really interesting approach to language parsing by tree manipulation a couple of years ago I've been itching to make use of.

I don't have a public source repository up yet, but I hope to have one soon. Meanwhile it's all git on my local workstation. I started a twitter account for keeping track of my changes. If I've gotten the HTML right, it ought to show up below :-)

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Links from a week in bed

This post is just a short link dump.

I've been home sick with some never-ending flu for the last week. Adding cabin fever to the actual fever, I got a bit stir crazy and decided to look for some interesting "homework" to offer some mental gymnastics to take the edge off shuffling between the bed and the TV couch day in and day out.

So here's a curated list of links that kept me busy.

---

I decided to pick up C++11, since my grasp of the new standard is all too superficial. Especially what is promised in the title, that is rvalue references, std::move, and std::forward. I consulted google, but the answers I received were so contradictory I decided to ask the C++ google+ group instead. The replies received were of much higher quality:

Anyway, the links were so good I decided I should share them with the world. They made a world of difference. I highly recommend them to anyone with the same general sense of bewilderment I used to have.

---

Sticking to c++, I've recently decided CxxTest to be my new favorite testing framework for the language. Its code generation based approach is by far the least painless way of implementing unit tests in the language I've encountered.  This was before i got sick, but it makes the list anyway, as it's on my mental radar :-)

---

From a former classmate's feed on facebook, I discovered this webgl-based fluid simulator. What's possible in web browsers has really changed in the last couple of years. Heck, It wasn't even that long ago that simple javascript-based snowflakes boggled the mind.

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Loop proof

For a while now, I've realized I have a bad habit. I think the habit is perhaps best illustrated by recent XKCD comic "The Loop".

XKCD Comic 1441 - The Loop

As I refreshed reddit for the umpteenth time, I stared at the screen and asked myself:  

What am I doing with my Saturday morning? What am I actually doing. I'm refreshing reddit. Then I'm refreshing a news site. Then I'm on facebook. Then I'm checking my email inboxes. Then I'm back on reddit again! This isn't fun, or productive, or rewarding. Why am I actually doing this?!

Struck with this insight  I closed my chrome instance. Within seconds, and without thought, I had started it again and was back on reddit and the news site. This unconscious action was very unsettling to witness first hand. I subsequently blocked the affected sites both on my desktop and laptop computers.

I'll still browse these sites on my mobile phone, but thanks to my gargantuan bear-hands, that's so awkward and clunky I don't at all seem to get stuck looping in the same way. Incidentally, the weeks that have passed since I implemented this change have been very enjoyable. I've had so much more time, now that I don't waste a bunch of time every day looping.