Sneaking Past the Censors

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"If you want to sneak in an ad that doesn't necessarily belong in Kongregate, I guess a little creative spelling is one way to do it," wrote Ben J.


Crash Diet

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WT Durham had never met Bruce, former sales executive and new COO of Prepackaged Pixels, before he paid a visit to WT’s department. They were responsible for maintaining the licensing API for the company’s toolkit bundle, which included their prized platform-agnostic GUI. The bundle was used for internal projects as well as for third-party licensing, and customers often bought the entire bundle just to use the GUI. Bruce wasn’t too happy about that.

Weird Al in his 'Fat' music video, wearing a fat version of a Michael Jackson costume.

“We’ve conducted several customer surveys,” Bruce said. “Two-thirds of our customer base only want the GUI toolkit, not the rest of our bundle.”


This Hits an Association

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I recently have needed to write some systems that do analysis on a stream of samples. The target stream of the analysis process was stored in a variable targetOfAnal, because obviously, that’s more efficient to type than targetOfAnalysis. I of course needed an analProcess and analComplete flag, and yes, my inner 13-year old was snickering the entire time.

James’s co-worker decided to demonstrate that immature dirty jokes should only be taken so far. James heard him cursing up a storm, and thus offered to help debug whatever the problem was. You could say this code is hitting the “dirty variable names” button a bit too hard. I present it here without modification, because honestly, there is no way to censor this code and have it convey its full meaning. Ready your alt-tab before the boss comes by:


A Lost Voice

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Having survived the scourge of Jack's automated testing debacle, Rita thought she could handle anything. Since that time, Rita had Operations burn/kill/destroy all the JCKRKS servers and set up new ones that she had full control over. Rita felt well-prepared for a future where nothing that bad could happen again. But sometimes those who only look forward are unprepared for the return of a long-forgotten relic.

Laryngitis: a diagram of the larynx and its inflammation In a different IVR-enabled part of their health insurance system, customers could call in to hear information about their health benefits. These benefits, as is par for anything with health insurance, were governed by a very complex set of rules, contracts, overrides, and addendums. Depending on the caller's employer, benefit administrator, subscriber level, eye color, astrological sign and feng shui positioning, their very specific set of benefit information would be read back to them.


Identifying the Globally Unique

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UUIDs, aka GUIDs are, well… unique. Unique identifiers. It’s right there in the name.

Active Directory needs to identify things. Thus, it uses GUIDs. “Omni’s” co-worker got this far, but then ran into a problem. If you print a GUID from AD, it looks like this: “35918bc9196d40ea9779889d79b753f0”, but if you print it from C#, it looks like this: “35918bc9–196d–40ea–9779–889d79b753f0”. Whatever is a programmer to do when dealing with these radically incompotible formats?


When Good Dev Tools Go Bad

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"I'd say that this brings new meaning to what a 'core dump' really is," Paul N. writes.


ByteBool

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Tony Hoare has called null references his “billion dollar mistake”. Dealing with nulls and their consequences have created a large number of bugs, and eaten a lot of developer time. It’s certainly bad enough when you understand nulls and why they exist, but Benjamin Soddy inherited code from someone who absolutely didn’t.

First, there’s our new type, the ByteBool:


When Computers Fly

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In the Before Times, the Ancients would gather in well-sheltered caverns, gather to themselves foods blessed by the gods, drink strange, unnaturally colored concoctions, and perform the Rite of the LAN Party.

In the era when the Internet was accessed by modem, to have any hope of playing a game with usable latency, you had to get all the players in the same place. This meant packing up your desktop in a car, driving to your friend’s house, and setting up your computer on whatever horizontal surface hadn’t already been claimed by another guest.


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