January Week 5
Written by Editor   
Saturday, 05 February 2022

This weekly digest is a summary of our news and book coverage plus our latest articles. This week Mike James relates The Strange Incident of The Goto Considered Harmful and Ian Elliot provides a Programmer's Introduction to XML.  We also have a summary of this week's news written for programmers by programmers, our most recent book review and recent additions to Book Watch.

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January 27 - February 2, 2022

Featured Articles     

The Trick Of The Mind -The Strange Incident of The Goto Considered Harmful
Mike James
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In this chapter from my recent book we learn about the strange case of the goto instruction and why it caused such a storm - and perhaps still does.

Programmer's Introduction to XML
Ian Elliot
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XML is a general purpose markup language that can be used to control the structure of data. Despite the fact that many prefer the simplicity of JSON, it still has many advantages. What makes it so good?


Programming News and Views  

End of the Line For Stack Overflow Jobs
02 Feb | Sue Gee
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Stack Overflow, which is now owned by Prosus, has announced the "sunsetting" of Stack Overflow Jobs and Developer Stories. This decision, which hasn't been widely reported, isn't welcomed by developers. 

App Developers Support Open App Markets Act
02 Feb | Lucy Black
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A poll conducted on behalf of the Coalition for App Fairness reveals that 84% of developers support an antitrust bill aimed at curtailing the market power of Apple's and Google's app stores.

Eight Queens Solved!
01 Feb | Mike James
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Well not really - but it is still an interesting move in the right direction to understand this most simple of configuration problems.

Kafka 3.1 Adds OIDC Support
31 Jan | Kay Ewbank
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Apache Kafka, the distributed streaming platform that can be used for building real-time streaming data pipelines between systems or applications, has been updated. Improvements include extending SASL/OAUTHBEARER to add support for Open ID Connect (OIDC).

Computer Science For Beginners With Harvard's CS50x
31 Jan | Nikos Vaggalis
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CS50x is a highly popular online introductory course to Computer Science that just keeps going. You can now enrol in the self-paced 2022 edition for free on the revamped edX platform.

Android Studio Bumblebee Adds Support For ADB Over WiFi
31 Jan | Kay Ewbank
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The latest version of Android Studio, Bumblebee, is now available in a stable version, as is the latest release of the Android Gradle plugin (AGP). The developers say they've improved functionality across a broad area of the typical developer workflow, specifically, build and deploy, profiling and inspection, and design.

AMS Award For Max Cut Algorithm
30 Jan | Mike James
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Michel Goemans and David Williamson recently received the 2022 AMS Steele Prize for Seminal Contribution to Research for a 1995 paper which focused on the Max‐Cut problem, a core problem in combinatorial optimization, and has had sustained impact on the fields of theoretical computer science and optimization theory.

New DARPA Challenge Takes Autonomous Driving Off Road
28 Jan | Sue Gee
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Three teams are preparing to take part in a DARPA program that is focused on advancing off-road autonomy of combat vehicles. The idea is to test the limit of the vehicles' mechanical systems at high speed and over rough terrain.

Take Google's Machine Learning Crash Course
28 Jan | Nikos Vaggalis
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Sometimes it is worth re-visiting things that matter. And this is one of them - a free course on Machine Learning for total beginners.

Apache Flink ML 2.0 Released
27 Jan | Kay Ewbank
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Flink ML 2.0.0 has been released. Flink ML is a library that provides APIs and infrastructure for building stream-batch unified machine learning algorithms, that can be easy-to-use and performant with (near-) real-time latency.

Meta Builds AI Supercomputer
27 Jan | Lucy Black
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Meta, formerly known as Facebook, has announced that its researchers have designed and built an AI Research SuperCluster (RSC) that they believe is among the fastest AI supercomputers running today and will be the fastest AI supercomputer in the world when, in mid-2022, it’s fully built.


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 

This is a useful book, with clear descriptions of how to set up and use the many services that Azure provides. It gives enough information to get you started, so your services work and talk to each other. You won't be an expert in U-SQL or Azure Analytics once you've read the book, but you will have a working system that you can then fine-tune.

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, 05 February 2022 )