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Slack - Where Work Happens
Jul 24 | Sue Gee
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Looking to be recognized as more than a messaging platform and shifting the focus to workflow, Slack is also putting new emphasis on its developers.

RethinkDB Moves On Under Community Governance
Jul 24 | Kay Ewbank
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The team behind RethinkDB has released the first version since it was taken under community governance. The main changes to this version are bug fixes and stability improvements, but it shows that the team is moving forward.

AI Applied To Cookies
Jul 23 | Lucy Black
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Are you one of those people who, when eating an unfamiliar dish, attempts to work out its ingredients in order to re-create it at home? It's something programmers are particularly prone to and now researchers at CSAIL are giving it a deep learning makeover.

Bitcoin Averts A Split
Jul 22 | Mike James
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The big problem with Bitcoin is that it has been far too successful. The algorithm it uses is a brilliant, if slightly unworkable, solution to the problem of distributed trust. It works, but it is slow by design. Now there are moves to improve the algorithm and this has nearly split Bitcoin into two different cryptocurrencies.

July Week 3
Jul 22 | Editor
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It's hard to keep up with all the developments in the developer world. I Programmer's team cover a wide range of topics, from AI to web development with comment and analysis you won't find elsewhere. This summary covers this week's news, articles and book reviews.

Intel Divests Itself of Wearables
Jul 21 | Harry Fairhead
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According to a report that originated with CNBC and has been widely circulated, Intel completely eliminated the group concerned with wearables earlier this month.

Apache Spark With Structured Streaming
Jul 21 | Kay Ewbank
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Apache Spark 2.2 has been released with Structured Streaming no longer experimental. The accompanying release of PySpark is also available in pypi.

Stack Overflow Channels In Beta
Jul 21 | Sue Gee
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Stack Overflow is launching a new product. Stack Overflow Channels is targeted at teams of developers within companies who want a secure, private space to ask and answer proprietary questions.

Rider IDE Improves Webstorm Support
Jul 20 | Kay Ewbank
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There's a Release Candidate of Rider, JetBrains' new cross-platform .NET IDE based on the IntelliJ platform and ReSharper.

Mozilla Wants Your Voice
Jul 20 | Lucy Black
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Mozilla has launched Project Common Voice to crowdsource speech recognition. Once a massive amount of audio data has been captured, it will be made available for others to use in their own applications.

Game Of Thrones Analysed
Jul 19 | Mike James
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In a new paper, brilliantly timed to coincide with the start of the new series of Game of Thrones, we have an analysis of its main protagonists in terms of network theory 

Python Heads IEEE Spectrum Language Ranking
Jul 19 | Janet Swift
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The language that comes top in this year's IEEE Spectrum Ranking is Python, closely followed by C and Java. However if you think another language should be the most popular one, simply use its interactive tool to change the weightings!

SQL Server 2017 RC For Windows And Linux
Jul 18 | Kay Ewbank
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SQL Server 2017 is now at Release Candidate 1, and is available for download with support for Windows and Linux.

SDD Deep Dive 2017
Jul 18 | Sue Gee
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An event offering seven concurrent workshops into today's leading technologies takes place in London in November. The number of places at each workshop is strictly limited so it is worth booking early. If you do so by Friday 28 July you can save £300.

LZ Compression And The One-Bit Catastrophe
Jul 17 | Mike James
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We use compression algorithms extensively to save both storage and time. The most popular algorithms are based on LZ dictionary compression and are used in GIF, Deflate, Zip, PNG. It was even named an IEEE Milestone. But we know little about them. One long standing question is, can adding a single bit to a file dramatically change the compression achieved? Surely not!

Tabs v Spaces - More Analysis
Jul 17 | Janet Swift
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The recent finding that developers who use spaces for indentation make more money that those who use tabs led to a few raised eyebrows and puzzled looks. Now reanalysis of the data finds further correlations.

More Recent News



Book Review

97 Things Every Programmer Should Know
Friday 21 Jul

Author: Kevlin Henney
Publisher: O'Reilly, 2010
Pages: 258
ISBN: 978-0596809485
Print: 0596809484
Kindle: B0039OVIAK
Aimed at: Practising programmers
Rating: 5
Reviewed by: Alex Armstrong


The 97 Things series presents a well-chosen collection of short essays in a highly accessible way. There is plenty to interest every programmer here.


Featured Articles

The Programmers Guide To Kotlin - The Class & The Object
Mike James
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Kotlin is a class-based, object-oriented language and it works in a way that is compatible with Java objects. This doesn't mean that Kotlin does classes in exactly the same way as Java or any other language. In fact. part of the problem in getting to grips with Kotlin classes is that initially they look as if they are just like Java classes - but they aren't. 

Self-Descriptive Arrays
Joe Celko
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Put on your thinking cap for another set of conundrums that will exercise your coding skills. This time Melvin Frammis introduces his junior partner Bugsy Cottman to some classic number puzzles that can be solved with arrays.

Java Books For Beginners
Kay Ewbank
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Java is one of, if not the most, widespread programming language. Given its popularity, it's not surprising that our reviewers have scrutinized over 50 books relating to it, both new and classic. This is the pick of recommended titles.

Master JavaScript Regular Expressions
Ian Elliot
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Regular expressions can seem complex but the biggest reason for this is that most programmers don't take them seriously enough. Spend just a little time finding out how they work and you can do amazing things.

The Programmers Guide To Kotlin - Arrays & Strings
Mike James
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Arrays and strings are the most basic of the more advanced data types. They are so familiar that you might think you don't need to look at them, but Kotlin has its own way of doing most things.


Unhandled Exception!
Kolmogorov Directions

Kolmogorov Directions

A good friend of mine once tried to give Andrey Kolmogorov, Kolmogorov directions. Of course Kolmogorov had no choice, any directions he gave were "Kolmogorov directions" by definition. Is this informational recursion or is it just name dropping...

See: Kolmogorov Complexity

   More cartoon fun at xkcd a webcomic of romance,sarcasm, math, and language


Book Watch

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Defensive Security Handbook (O'Reilly)
Monday 24 Jul

This book is aimed at organizations that don’t have the budget to establish or outsource an information security (InfoSec) program. In this pragmatic guide, authors Lee Brotherston and Amanda Berlin provide a security-101 handbook with steps, tools, processes, and ideas to help drive maximum-security improvement without spending a fortune.


R For Everyone (Addison Wesley)
Thursday 20 Jul

R has traditionally been seen as difficult for non-statisticians to learn, and most R books assume far too much knowledge to be of help. This book avoids that error, aiming the material at users new to statistical programming and modeling. Author and professional data scientist Jared P. Lander focuses on the 20 percent of R functionality needed to accomplish 80 percent of modern data tasks.


Cloud Computing: An Introduction (Mercury)
Wednesday 19 Jul

This overview of cloud computing by R Chopra is written in a "self-teaching" format with tips and insights about cloud computing, its architecture, applications, information on security and privacy, and numerous case studies.The book also includes questions for discussion and "Cloud Computing Lab Experiments".


Cloud Foundry: The Definitive Guide (O'Reilly)
Monday 17 Jul

With a subtitle of 'Develop, Deploy, and Scale', this practical guide demonstrates how the open source Cloud Foundry application platform can reduce the develop-to-deploy cycle time. Author Duncan C. E. Winn argues that it also raises the value line for application operators by changing the way applications and supporting services are deployed and run.


Operating Systems: An Introduction (Mercury)
Thursday 13 Jul

Designed to provide a step-by-step approach to clarify all of the key concepts of operating systems, the book covers all the topics from basics to mobile device operating systems. Authors R. Garg and G. Verm cover the basic concepts of operating systems such as architecture, CPU scheduling, memory management, file systems, and I/O.


Monitoring with Graphite (O'Reilly)
Wednesday 12 Jul

In this practical book, author Jason Dixon examines why Graphite is one of the most popular tools for monitoring and graphing the performance of computer systems. The book helps you use this open source tool to track the operational data you need to monitor your systems and track application-level metrics for profiling your services.


The Python 3 Standard Library by Example 2nd Ed (Addison Wesley)
Monday 10 Jul

The Python 3 Standard Library contains hundreds of modules for interacting with the operating system, interpreter, and Internet–all extensively tested and ready to jump-start application development. Author Doug Hellmann introduces every major area of the Python 3.x library through source code and output examples.


Java 9 For Programmers (Prentice Hall)
Friday 07 Jul

Written for programmers with a background in another high-level language, this book applies the Deitel signature live-code approach to teaching programming and explores the Java 9 language and APIs in depth. The authors, Harvey and Paul Deitel, present concepts in fully tested programs, complete with code walkthroughs, syntax shading, code highlighting and program outputs.


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