Archive for May, 2018

stackoverflow dev survey 2018

Thursday, 31st May, 2018

Is out now, here.

Its really interesting (if you are a developer, or interested in that sort of thing), loads of interesting details to avoid work

a few highlights

  • Most Dreaded Platform – Sharepoint. ha ha ha ha hahahah
  • 2nd most loved language – Kotlin. Agreed, this is the best language I have ever used.
  • About 7% of devs are over 45 – maybe that’s because no one loves us…
  • The UK has the highest proportion of independent devs. Germany the most part time.
  • Functional languages pay the biggest bucks, especially in the US
  • Javascript, the most common language, is also the worst paid.
  • Most devs want to stay in dev or do a start up, few want to go into management.
  • 50% of devs use a standing desk. ‘Have used once’ I could believe, but 50%? regularly? I’m slightly dubious on this one.
  • Everyone is doing (fr)Agile or Scum.
  • Most devs are using git and generally check-in a few times a day
  • Mobile devs are almost the worst paid (another great career choice from me)

and finally, as per last year I think….

  • Most dreaded Language – VB – any flavour!

Again

I must admit, although I use SO a lot, I don’t really participate. Most of the questions have better answers than I could provide and there are a few too many milk monitors.

I did have a poke around their job site for a while looking for remote jobs. There weren’t many and the search seemed a bit random. I got my latest job from Jobserve as usual, not remote, also as usual.

Have you got any SO insights?

cheers

simon

 

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AI – artificial intelligence or absolute idiocy?

Tuesday, 29th May, 2018

I’m not on faceache as I have a life, but I was busy on losergram for a while.

I went on recently to see they have ‘improved’ the relevancy of the feed. ie its completely repetitive samey stuff now.

If I like 1 picture of trees, all I see is trees. but I already liked my tree picture for the day, now I want to see other things.

Apparently pootube is the same, they re moving from a simple time based list to ‘targeted’ and/or customised lists from channels.

We are all being trapped by prior choices with no clear way to see something new. It reminds me of two things

1. All this GDPR stuff – lots of people have highlighted how ‘targeted’ adverts only ever show them things they already bought, and are therefore absolutely not in the market for.

and 2. When Microsoft introduced the ribbon with ‘context awareness’ – it showed you commands relevant to what you had just done, not what you were about to.

So, for me as these systems become more aware, developers misuse that the make them more stupid, and more irrelevant.

Its just arrogance, these people think that because they have a bit of info on what we have done in the past they can predict with worthwhile accuracy what we currently want. Whilst that may be the case (very) occasionally, it really isn’t often enough for their systems’ positives to outweigh the trapped echo chamber negatives.

So for me, Absolute Idiocy.

 

FoxPro

Thursday, 24th May, 2018

I thought VBA was old and outdated. Then I just saw a job for a foxPro developer.

Now *that* is a blast from the past.

(2007 apparently)

 

GDPR phishing

Wednesday, 16th May, 2018

We are still a few days away from the data slurppocalypse and my inbox is bulging with ‘privacy improvements’ messages. All include links to log-in or sign up or learn more. Many from complete randoms.

In general I’m ignoring them, but it does seem a great opportunity for the ne’er-do-wells to do a bit of data slurping of their own.

stay safe…

Excel Javascript UDFs

Tuesday, 8th May, 2018

“Office developers have been wanting to write JavaScript custom functions for many reasons,” Microsoft says,

My Arse!

I remain sceptical of the whole webbification of Excel. It started with the Toytown UI in 2007 and just keeps going downhill.

MS have been trying to tempt mainstream developers to Excel forever, and have completely consistently completely and utterly failed. I doubt chucking a bit of javascript at it will have web devs thronging in either.

Here is a fact:

Office development is just not ‘sexy’.

‘sexy’ is pointless navel gazing arguing about ‘is a’ v ‘has a’ (inheritance v composition)

‘sexy’ is arguing whether your new pointless feature should be a property or a method, and then arguing about whether to put it in a concrete class or create a new abstract base class to inherit from so you can also tick the polymorphic box in your 60 line sort routine. (don’t even think about range.sort – are you mad??)

getting the work done quickly with no drama is just not, not now, not ever again seemingly, ‘sexy’.

It used to be appealing, now? not so much.

It might be that some Excel devs do see value in js, I think a genuine focus on a more mainstream language (than VBA) could be useful. I think friction free access to the whole web infrastructure could be good (web queries are excellent, as far as they go). Python would be more use than javascript I think.

So, No I do not believe for one second that ‘Office developers have been wanting to write JavaScript’.

But Microsoft consistently misses the mark  – they need to target existing Office devs and give them what they actually want, not web devs and not Visual Studio devs. Whatever happened to VSTA? does VSTO still exist?

I’m not totally ranting here, when I was on the Office Developer Advisory Panel for Office 2010 we said exactly this – give us a decent IDE. what did we get? the Toytown UI! They eventually disbanded the panel, probably cos they were sick of all the greybeards refusing to sing from the koolaid hymn sheet.

If there was a decent IDE for Office development every aspect would improve, regardless of the language (even brainfuck or fetlang!).

But Microsoft don’t want to give Office developers what they want, they want Office developers to want whatever shallow gimmick Microsoft wants to play with this week. Which hasn’t been pragmatic, getting the job done stuff, or respect for old/working stuff since the MSDN generation took over from the Raymond Chen school of thought over a decade ago.

Probably… I do most of my spreadsheeting in LibreOffice these days, and developing in IntelliJ, so what do I know!

Apple Engineering

Sunday, 6th May, 2018

I watched a great video recently about Apples engineering ‘quality’.

Its not very complementary.

But as I have changed 3 hard drive cables on my Macbook estate, and two have screen hinge problems, and on this current one the letter F keeps falling off… I have some understanding of his point of view.

Talking of crap keyboards…

Anyone feel the need to sign this to encourage a recall (yeah right!) of the latest Macbook pro with the slimline fragile keyboard?

I had vaguely thought of updating my machine but I really don’t think Macbooks provide what I want these days. So I need to find another supplier, who doesn’t insist on installing (and charging for) Windows. And who supplies Europe sensibly, with a suitable keyboard. No rush though…

cheers

LinkedIn Zombie account

Thursday, 3rd May, 2018

I shut my LinkedIn account down last year as I didn’t like their new terms of service.

Imagine my surprise then to get an invitation today from another user to connect.

I was also able to update my account preferences, for an account that should not exist, that I can’t log into. But still receives invites?

Has anyone actually managed to get off there? can people still see my profile?

I thought I had deleted my account apparently its just pining for the fjords!!

I can feel a GDPR violation report brewing….

cheers

simon

 

spurious correlations

Tuesday, 1st May, 2018

I assume you all know 90% of statistics are made up, but I was delighted to find some great examples of co-related variables. That aren’t.

I can’t remember now, but when I studied stats I seem to recall an R value of over 0.9 or so being suggestive of a high correlation (but not causation). I guess it depends too on sample size etc. etc.

Anyway here is great website with enough doubtful correlations to calm down even the most ardent pointy haired boss on a ‘data driven mission’ to do something retarded.

Have fun, and don’t eat too much cheese.