02:38:30 PM Feb 4th 2016
edited by SaltyWalty
edited by SaltyWalty
John Handcock. What does it mean by "what image did his name instantly bring to your head?"?
03:03:05 PM Feb 4th 2016
It's because his last name sounds like "hand cock". It's not a particularly good example of this trope.
10:12:15 PM Nov 17th 2015
I know Taft from all the things he did (and not what's he's known for, funnily enough... Until I read this, I didn't know he (supposedly) got stuck in a bathtub), but the thing I REALLY know him for is that he is the first (and so far only) member of a major party (Republican) to lose to a third party candidate, and to make matters worse, he was an incumbent president.
12:40:23 AM Jul 16th 2013
I've removed the point on GOTO in programming (the text is included below). The reasons:
- It's not really an example of Never Live It Down
- The command (or statement) doesn't occur just in three languages but in most existing programming languages (but in various forms, which makes it misleading to just amend that bit)
- The text, if kept on, needs to discuss "good" goto practice examples (exceptions, tail calls, continuations) rather than just condemn it, making it far longer than what is reasonable
- The "GOTO" command in Basic, Perl, and PHP: An article was written entitled "Goto considered harmful" — one article, mind you — and to this day people act as if inserting a single Goto into a program will render it indecipherable.
- GOTO is a Very Bad Idea. It's not "one article", practically every textbook on the subject of programming drills into your head that using GOTO to save development time will paradoxically lead to waste of development time (and they sometimes provide case studies, some more comical than others). Add to it that sooner or later you will have to modularize your programs, a stray GOTO in a library (especially if it's supposed to be multithread-safe library) can cause your program to behave erratically. So repeat this after me, young ones: GOTO is Bad. Except Yuko Goto.
- For those who are not programmers, "GOTO" is a command in several programming languages that basically tells the program to go to a certain section of the code. The problem with this is that it is very easy to break a program with the command, because it can interrupt a currently executing function or procedure, which will, as a result, never complete. Most veteran programmers feel that it is never worth the risk to use it, and there are almost no situations in which the command is strictly necessary anyway.
- Except that in the machine languages of computers for which such languages are compiled, there are often explicit "jump to this address to execute" instructions - i.e. GOT Os in machine language.
06:23:31 AM Sep 10th 2014
In 1981, I was working at what was then Bell Telephone Labs on telephone switches. I was taking a program written in a language called EPL running on a #1 ESS (Electronic Switching System — a big telephone switch) and translating it into another language, EPLX, to run on a #1A ESS (another big telephone switch). EPLX was a language based on FORTRAN (with some influence from C) that was home-brewed for the #1A. One of the programs I was writing in it took the dialed digits and determined which sort of phone call was being made (operator assisted, 911, to another area code, inside the same area code, international, speed dialed, etc). In one unusual case — a speed dialed call which translated to an international number — the easiest way to handle it would have been to take the IDDD number and start the progam over again. I looked in the language manual to see if the GO TO instruction was one word, as it is in FORTRAN or two words, as it is in C. I couldn't find it. So I went to the man who had developed the language, and asked him about it. He said, "I didn't put in a GO TO. Haven't you read Dijkstra?" I wound up creating an odd looking loop with a SWITCH containing a strange BREAK statement, slowing down the general cases so I could deal with an unusual case. There are, in fact, times when using a GOTO is very handy.