Geek Smithology

June 27, 2006

Static Typing Sucks, a Prologue?

Filed under: Craft of Dev by Nathan @ 8:58 pm

Static types give me the same feeling of safety as the announcement that my seat cushion can be used as a floatation device.
— Don Roberts

To antonymously crib Roger Ebert, I love, love, love this quote.

I don’t know about you guys, but I honestly can’t remember the last time I had a ClassCastException (or an InvalidCastException, for that matter) that wasn’t a glaring bug. When will these people learn? Looks like C# is starting to get it in 3.0, but I don’t imagine Java will catch on anytime soon.

Yeah, Ruby has no static typing. But don’t let that scare you, let it free you. Because when you’re free-flying with Ruby, you don’t need any safety net.

June 18, 2006

Happy Father’s Day

Filed under: Personal by Nathan @ 8:33 pm

Hey All,

Just wishing all you fathers out there a happy father’s day (and for all of you who aren’t fathers, I hope your fathers who are around had a good one!) We did the brunch thing, because my dad just loves that stuff. I can’t complain — I enjoyed myself quite, er, heartily. I consumed what could fairly be noted as “a day and a half worth of food”, but almost three hours of blading and tennis put any potential guilt out the window. My boys are still too young to really grok the whole father’s day concept, so Mommy is still buying the presents, and I looove presents (who doesn’t?)

In addition to all the wonderful clothes, I (finally) got a copy Thomas Keller’s incomparable The French Laundry Cookbook, a tome I’ve practically lusted after for a few years now. Thomas Keller is in my own personal pantheon of geek gods (along with such diverse compadres as Anthony Bourdain, Roger Ebert, and John Carmack). Software Developers (or anyone creative for that matter) who want to delight in the “food porn” of a man who is so far ahead of everyone else the words “in a class of his own” feel trite and weightless owe it to themselves to browse this book.

So I’ve got a book to drool over before I hit the sack – hope everyone had a great day.

June 1, 2006

Bow Down Before teh Wid0wM4ker

Filed under: Personal by Nathan @ 9:10 pm

So I go to my office to sync my iPod when I notice that my ‘puter ain’t running. No matter, my son Xander enjoys switches and lights (who doesn’t?) power bars are a veritable cornucopia of digitally manipulatable delights, so I just figured that he had gone ahead and killed the power.


But it turns out that my power supply was shot.


I am like some sort of eater of worlds in the realm of power supplies, the king at the head of some pantheon of cruel Elder Gods, combing the cosmos for 450 watt cubes o’ goodness. The burned out husks left in my horrible red wake form a sad line to infinity; a trail of tears, if you will. To try and thwart myself, this time I splurged for a true beast: 550 ever-loving, environment-destroying watts o’ doom. Unfortunately, I had to install the damn thing.

Now, I love my Antec case. Many a time I’ve immortalized it in song, singing sweet ballads to the ease with which I’ve installed drives and cards (is anyone else with a high end video card slightly nervous that your PCI Express bad boy has it’s own power cable?). Installing a power supply was hell, tho’ We’re talking naught but burning hot coals and burning hot cola.

It probably doesn’t help that I’ve got a ridiculously huge (we’re talking the mouth of a yelling anime character huge) fan, which I had to remove. Unlike the old days (ah, nostalgia), there is no simple lever, but power leads and nipples and clips and screws, oh my![1] The rest is a long story that doesn’t really need to be told right now, but after much heaving, ho-ing, and raking I finally got ‘er installed. Which brings me to the next part of my story.

I got a new monitor.

Not just any new monitor, but a 20.1″ (yes, the .1 does matter, so shut up) widescreen monitor. Despite some wags saying I should hold off (Eskimo Bill was heard to quip “You’ll get a 20″ widescreen for free with your iMac.” Yeah, you’re right, it is pretty funny) recent events (which I may or may not get into one day) convinced me that it was time for a present, so I got the monitor. And all I can say is


I used to have twin 19″ beasts, and I don’t for a second miss them – this thing is so clear and crisp and not weighing 200 pounds that it’s not even funny. And get this – I have a desk! It seems like crazy talk, but you can’t make this stuff up folks. So I played some Tomb Raider and some Half-Life and all I can say is


Yeah, colleagues chide me about my lack of a console, but I don’t care. I love my ridiculously hard to maintain PC with its ridiculously-expensive-at-the-time-but-now-more-depreciated-than-a-Sunfire video card. And I love writing this blog entry on a 20.1″ widescreen LCD while listening to phat beats through my 4.1 (anything else is overkill {wink , wink, nudge, nudge, say no more!}) system. I will totally throw up an mp3 this weekend. So yeah, life’s a pretty sweet fruit.

’cause even Skeletor, spawn of the Hell-Beast[2] must sometimes set aside his thirst for galactic dominance (and power supplies) and just chill out. All I can say is


[1] Hmmm…that last sentence, out of context, could fit right into the lighter works of the Marquis de Sade. I bet he never had to install a power supply.
[2] for power supplies

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