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Facebook Open Sources RacerD For Android Race Detection
Oct 23 | Ian Elliot
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It is a hardly discussed problem, but Android is a tough platform to use with concurrent programming. As a result most apps don't use it to its full potential. Facebook has now gifted you a tool that makes it a lot easier and is using it to make its own app faster and more reliable.

Bing Maps Improves BirdsEye Presentation
Oct 23 | Kay Ewbank
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There's an updated version of the Bing Maps Web Control with a number of new features. The developers describe the additions as 'smaller but highly requested'. 

Mozilla's Plan For Easier Web Development
Oct 23 | Lucy Black
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With a view to making web development just a little easier Mozilla is partnering with Microsoft, Google, the W3C and Samsung to create cross-browser documentation on MDN.

Arkansas Offers Incentives For AP Computer Science
Oct 22 | Sue Gee
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The US state of Arkansas is planning to give cash rewards of up to $1000 to high school students who gain top grades in Computer Science exams.

The Search For Small Chaotic Circuits
Oct 21 | Harry Fairhead
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Chaos and complexity seem to go together, but can you make a chaotic circuit with just small number of parts? A supercomputer search suggests that yes you can and chaos is more common than you might expect. 

October Week 3
Oct 21 | Editor
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As well as sifting through the news, the IProgrammer team does the same for books, selecting titles for Book Watch and for review. We also bring you articles. This week's are extracts from books in the I Programmer Library by Ian Elliot, our JavaScript guru.

Yahoo Open Sources Vespa
Oct 20 | Kay Ewbank
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The big data serving system that powers Yahoo and Flickr has been open sourced by Oath, the parent company to Yahoo.  

Top 10 From Around the Web: More CMS Resources
Oct 20 | Alex Armstrong
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This round up of interesting posts from external sites has resources for those working with WordPress, Joomla and Drupal.

Apple And GE Bring Predix to iPad and iPhone
Oct 19 | Kay Ewbank
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Apple and GE are making Predix available for iPad and iPhone via a new SDK for iOS, meaning developers have the tools to create Industrial Internet of Things apps on the Apple platform.

AlphaGo Zero - From Nought To Top In 40 Days
Oct 19 | Sue Gee
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DeepMind has revealed details of latest evolution of the computer program that plays the ancient Chinese board game of black and white stones. Unlike previous versions. which were trained with data from human games, AlphaGo Zero started with no prior knowledge and learned simply by playing itself.

Does Strong Typing Help?
Oct 18 | Mike James
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We all have our opinions on static strong typing versus dynamic or even no real typing at all, but hard evidence of what works is thin on the ground. Now some new research gives us some facts to throw into the debate. 

Google's Teachable Machine - What it really signifies
Oct 18 | Nikos Vaggalis
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The Teachable Machine is an effort by Google to make Machine Learning and AI accessible to the wider public, without requiring any specialized training, knowledge in Computer Science or coding.

Android Instant Apps Updates API
Oct 18 | Kay Ewbank
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There's a new version of Google's Android Instant Apps SDK with configuration APKs to improve binary sizes, and a new API to keep user context when they move from an instant app to an installed app.

Creator of cURL Awarded Prestigious Swedish Prize
Oct 17 | Sue Gee
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Daniel Stenberg, himself a Swede, is the recipient of this year's Polhems Prize, consisting of a gold medal and 250,000 SEK (about $31,000 USD), for his creation of cURL, an open source program that is indispensable in today's interconnected world.

PayPal Open Sources JavaScript Suite
Oct 17 | Kay Ewbank
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The strength of PayPal's cross-domain JavaScript suite is that as the code has to run on a wide variety of third-party websites and other domains without causing problems, it is designed to avoid pitfalls.PayPal has just open sourced the whole suite.

I Know Who You Are By The Way You Take A Corner
Oct 17 | Harry Fairhead
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There are many things that reveal identity, but the way you drive around a corner doesn't seem that likely a candidate. However, it seems it can give you away. A sensor data from a single turn, preferably in a rural setting, seems to be enough.

More Recent News



Book Review

Modern Mathematics and Applications in Computer Graphics and Vision
Friday 20 Oct

Author: Hongyu Guo
Publisher: World Scientific
Pages: 500
ISBN: 978-9814449328
Print: 9814449334
Kindle: B00KF43NF0
Audience: Competent mathematicians interested in computer graphics.
Rating: 4.5
Reviewer: Mike James

Math is the foundation of computer graphics and vision so this book seems like something your should read.


Featured Articles

Using Predix UI Web Components
Kay Ewbank
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The Predix Design System is being used to build web applications for the Industrial Internet that is built on the Predix platform by using an increasing library of UI web components that were created using Polymer.


Lambda Calculus For Programmers
Mike James
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You may have heard of "the lambda calculus" - it's the reason lambda expressions are so called. You may know that it is something to do with computability, and so any explanation of how it works should be "for programmers". However, lambda calculus is close to logic and pure maths and it can be difficult to see what it is actually all about in practical terms. So there is a need for a plain-spoken guide suitable for programmers.

JavaScript Async - The Fetch API
Ian Elliot
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There are a number of new features in JavaScript that make good use of promises and hence async and await. The Fetch API is a replacement for the XMLHttpRequest function and perhaps the jQuery Ajax function. It also has a big role to play in the action of a ServiceWorker. If you are using modern JavaScript you probably should be using Fetch.

Getting Started with Node.js
Ian Elliot
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By bringing JavaScript to the server, Node.js is something of a buzz in the wider JavaScript world. Here we look at the problem it solves and how to make good use of it.

The Programmers Guide To Kotlin - Data Classes
Mike James
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Kotlin doesn't have structs or records specifically designed for storing data as you might find in other languages but it does have a special type of class that it just right for the job. 


Unhandled Exception!
Self Driving 
Self Driving

In my experience those random strangers turn out to be programmers, but I can see that the alternative approach has its attractions. If you get it wrong or time out, presumably not only don't you get to access the website, you also are responsible for a traffic accident. 

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


Book Watch

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Algorithms and Networking for Computer Games 2nd Ed (Wiley)
Monday 23 Oct

This is the second edition of a book written from the perspective of the computer scientist. Combining algorithmic knowledge and game-related problems, it explores the most common problems encountered in game programing. Authors Jouni Smed and Harri Hakonen also focus on how to find a path in, create the terrain of, and make decisions in the game world.


Learn Git In A Month Of Lunches (Manning)
Thursday 19 Oct

This book introduces the discipline of source code control using Git. In easy-to-follow lessons designed to take an hour or less, Rick Umali works through Git's distributed collaboration model, along with core concepts like committing, branching, and merging. The book concentrates on the components of Git you'll use every day.


Python Machine Learning 2nd Ed (Packt)
Wednesday 18 Oct

This is the second edition of a popular book originally by author Sebastian Raschka that contains a mix of practical information and techniques on machine learning, deep learning, and modern data analysis. It has been updated using the latest Python open source libraries and now includes the TensorFlow deep learning library. The scikit-learn code has also been fully updated to include recent improvements and additions to the machine learning library.


A Common-Sense Guide To Data Structures And Algorithms (O'Reilly)
Monday 16 Oct

Mastering algorithms and data structures enables you to write code that runs faster and more efficiently. Author Jay Wengrow takes a practical approach with techniques and real-world scenarios that you can use in your daily production code, and brings to this book the key teaching practices he developed as a web development bootcamp founder and educator


Data Mining for Business Analytics (Wiley)
Thursday 12 Oct

This book, with the subtitle "Concepts, Techniques, and Applications in R" presents an applied approach to data mining concepts and methods, using R software for illustration. It shows how to implement a variety of popular data mining algorithms in R  to tackle business problems and opportunities.


Java 9 Modularity (O'Reilly)
Wednesday 11 Oct

The Java 9 module system will affect existing applications and offer new ways of creating modular and maintainable applications. In this hands-on book, authors Sander Mak and Paul Bakker look at the advantages of modularity, and also about the patterns needed to create truly modular and reliable applications.


Learn More Python 3 the Hard Way (Addison Wesley)
Monday 09 Oct

This book is a follow-up to Learn Python 3 the Hard Way, in which author Zed Shaw covered the basics of Programming with Python 3. This follow-on title goes beyond the basics by working through 52 projects, each designed to show a key practical skill. There are also 12 hours of online videos, showing how to break, fix, and debug your code.


Swift in the Cloud (Wiley)
Thursday 05 Oct

The authors of this book - Leigh Williamson, John Ponzo, Patrick Bohrer, Ricardo Olivieri, Karl Winmeister and Samuel Kallner - are the team of developers that worked on bringing the Swift language to Cloud computing, and this is their guide to writing and running Swift language programs for cloud environment. The book covers creating and running Swift language applications in Cloud computing environments, complete with examples of real code that you can start running and experimenting with today.


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