Recent Feature Articles

May 2023

Classic WTF: Wordy Invoice

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It's a holiday weekend in the US, which means we dip back into the archives for a classic story. This one remembers the good old days, of greenbar paper and programs that can't handle large numbers because they don't have the memory for it. Original -- Remy

The daisy wheel stabbing at green-lined sheets could have been Satan’s fanfare, but Andy was long accustomed to tuning out ambient printer noise. It was 1982, and he spent most of his time before his Commodore PET 4032, churning out useful things in 6502 Assembly. Most of the code was for printing invoices, much like customer invoice currently printing and making all of that racket.

A sudden cloud formed over his desk. Once Andy clued in to the shadow overhead, he glanced up to find the new regional sales manager, Rick, accordion-folded printout in hand.

Around the World (Around the World)

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Sandra has ongoing issues. When we last checked in, we had some problems with geography, and those problems haven't been solved.

Now, one truth of geographic points is that they're bounded. We know, for example, that longitudes cover the range (-180,180), and latitudes are always (-90,90). Even if we change the coordinate system, it will still have bounds, as the Earth is a closed shape with finite boundaries.