December Week 4
Written by Editor   
Saturday, 01 January 2022

Happy New Year To You All. Here is the final weekly digest of 2021 which, as well as current news includes three items from earlier in the year that are worth a second look. We also mark the birth, 230 years ago. of Charles Babbage. The week's features are a look at Perl on its 34th birthday and a deep dive into C#.

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December 23 - 30, 2021

Featured Articles     

Deep C# - Inheritance
MIke James
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Inheritance - is it where it all goes wrong? Find out in this extract from my new book, Deep C#: Dive Into Modern C#.

Perl Turns 34 - A Retrospective
Nikos Vaggalis
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Venerable Perl, a language that you either love or love to hate, has just had its 34th birthday. In celebration we look at its recent past, the milestones that defined it and look forward to a bright future. 


Programming News and Views  

Why The Metaverse Is Laughable
29 Dec | Mike James
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If you are a programmer then you probably share many of the opinions in this report. Perhaps not all, but enough to mean that you too can see that the circus show that is the Metaverse is just laughable.

Want Another Thumb? Easy!
29 Dec | Lucy Black
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Too Good To Miss: This report from May 2021 is typical of the way that robotic technology can do more than just destroy the world. The opposable thumb is supposed to be what made us great, so what could an extra thumb do for us?


What Is Status Of Art In Our Digital World?
28 Dec | David Conrad
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Too Good To Miss: This report from March 2021 is becoming ever more relevant as NFTs and con-artists make ever increasingly false claims about AI and creativity.

Festo's BionicSwifts Fly Like Real Birds
27 Dec | Lucy Black
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Too Good To Miss: This report from April 2021 is so impressive and deserves a second airing. A new video from Festo shows its flock of five BionicSwifts moving gracefully in a coordinated and autonomous manner.

Charles Babbage Born This Day In 1791
26 Dec | Historian
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Today we celebrate the birth of Charles Babbage, the man who invented calculating machines that, although they were never realized in his lifetime, are rightly seen as the forerunners of modern programmable computers.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays From Our Robot Friends
24 Dec | Editor
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It wouldn't be Christmas without a robot video. Here are two celebrating the holiday spirit featuring some of our familiar robot friends.

Santa Rides Again
24 Dec | Lucy Black
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It is Christmas Eve and Santa Claus has set off to deliver presents to children around the world. Thanks to NORAD and Google you can track his progress on your smartphone or other computing device.

GNU Nano 6 Increases Editing Area
23 Dec | Kay Ewbank
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GNU Nano 6 has been released with improvements including the ability to hide the title bar and status bar to provide more editing space. GNU nano is a command line text editor for Unix and Linux that aims to be simple and easy to use.

No Donald Knuth Christmas Lecture This Year ...
23 Dec | Mike James
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... but you can watch almost of the previous ones on YouTube. In fact, there are over 100 Donald Knuth lectures on the Stanford channel but if it's the Christmas Tree ones you are interested in there are some 20 of them each around an hour long.

Hash Code - Cannabis Use Among Programmers
22 Dec | Lucy Black
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A survey of cannabis use by programmers reveals that over a third had tried programming while using cannabis and almost one in five do so at least once a month, motivated by perceived enhancement to their ability to get into a programming zone. 


Books of the Week

If you want to purchase, or to know more about, any of the titles listed below from Amazon, click on the book jackets at the top of the right sidebar. If you do make Amazon purchases after this, we may earn a few cents through the Amazon Associates program which is a small source of revenue that enables us to continue posting.

Full Review 

Ian Elliot concludes his review:

This is a really good book, but it isn't essential reading for every JavaScript programmer. It is more suited to the experimenter and the existing assembly language programmer wanting to try out new ideas. Unlike many of the books out there this one actually has some technical content, but it might be too technical for many readers - this is a failure of the reader rather than the book.

Added to Book Watch

More recently published books can be found in Book Watch Archive.

From the I Programmer Library

Recently published:


Programmers think differently from non-programmers, they see and solve problems in a way that the rest of the world doesn't. In this book Mike James takes programming concepts and explains what the skill involves and how a programmer goes about it. In each case, Mike looks at how we convert a dynamic process into a static text that can be understood by other programmers and put into action by a computer. If you're a programmer, his intent is to give you a clearer understanding of what you do so you value it even more.  

  • Deep C#: Dive Into Modern C# by Mike James

    In Deep C#, I Programmer's Mike James, who has programmed in C# since its launch in 2000, provides a “deep dive” into various topics that are important or central to the language at a level that will suit the majority of C# programmers. Not everything will be new to any given reader, but by exploring the motivation behind key concepts, which is so often ignored in the documentation, the intention is to be thought-provoking and to give developers confidence to exploit C#’s wide range of features.

    Last Updated ( Saturday, 01 January 2022 )