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The False Owl

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Generally when software fails, there is some sort of error message that informs the user what happened and what, if anything, they can do to rectify it. Then there are cases where is no such message and the user is left with nothing. And then there's this:

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An Isomorphic Exercise with Old Code

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Has anyone looked at code they wrote six months ago and went...what was I thinking?

Today I went to some code I wrote in 2009. That's right, 2009. This interesting challenge...
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GzipWriter vs. Zlib::deflate in Ruby

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I spent the better part of the yesterday afternoon trying to figure out why I was getting different results when using GzipWriter versus using Zlib::deflate and putting my own headers on it. Lo and behold while both gzip and zlib use DEFLATE...
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Working with Binary Data in Ruby

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Ruby is fun. Ruby is sexy. But Ruby doesn't do underlying bytes as nice as I'd like. But Knowles, whatever do you mean?

Consider the following, I have a file with contents:

If I tell you nothing else about the file, what can you infer? Well it's probably hex, but maybe it's ascii. If you read this file in Ruby and print it out...
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Interstellar Review

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I just watched Interstellar and in an attempt to quantify what I thought was going on, I went to the white board. The missus and I then had a marker duel on the details:

I'm pretty sure there is a plot hole somewhere, but I haven't yet scoured the internet for details.
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Burned by Endianness

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Sometimes the best bugs are the ones you unintentionally put in yourself.

Consider the following problem. You have a buffer of arbitrary binary data that is interpreted as various data pieces. In this particular scenario you are putting various sized integers in this buffer. The buffer is defined to be network byte order.

Let's say you...
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tmux has changed my life

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I know what you're thinking:

Image reduced in size

But hear me out. I always ran multiple tabs, multiple window setup and it worked. But last week, I had a coworker show me this "program" he used to recreate part of our product's GUI. Basically a shell script that sets up tmux...
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Don't Upgrade to Android 5.0

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I have a Samsung Galaxy S5 with Verizon service. Last week I went from Kit Kat [4.4.4] to Lollipop [5.0]. Mistake.

Performance is abysmal. "lag" when using buttons on my phone should not be a thing in 2015. I was experiencing a little bit of this in Kit Kat; one of the reasons to give Lolli a go. One step forward, two steps back.

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Sometimes You Can't Trust the Header

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Consider the following:

  class SomeApi {    /*      Add name value pair to the underlying object.      Adding multiple pairs with the same name does not       guarantee which one is added.     */    void add(std::string& name, std::string& value);  };
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An In-Depth Look at AVL Trees Part II

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Now that we've all gotten the annual family visitation out of the way let's delete some nodes!

Basic concepts of AVL Trees and insertion can be found here...

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December 2015

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