• On higher education, programmers and blue-collar job



      “Sometimes it happens that a man’s circle of horizon becomes smaller and smaller, and as the radius approaches zero it concentrates on one point. And then that becomes his point of view.”

      David Hilbert
      “When I thought I had hit rock bottom, someone knocked from below.”

      Stanisław Jerzy Lec

      Preface


      Does a programmer need a higher education? The flow of opinions on this undoubtedly urgent topic has not dried up, so I have decided to express my view. It seems to me the general disappointment in education is due to the numerous processes and changes in the profession and it needs serious study. Below I will discuss the most common misconceptions, myths, and underlying causes of the phenomenon.
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    • Researchers from MIT designed «rectenna» which converts Wi-Fi signals into electricity


        Source: eeNews Europe

        I'm glad that Habr got brand new English version. And my first post in English is about new MIT project. Researchers designed an ultra-low capacitance and ultra-low resistance Schottky diode capable of switching at GHz frequencies. This diode is able rectify and convert random WiFi signals into DC electricity.

        MoS2 «rectenna» (this is how scientists called their invention) could become the main element of roll-to-roll process to cover a huge areas. To be fair antennas capable transform radio signals in to electricity is not a new thing. The main achievement of MIT engineers is creation of soft rectenna made from special alloy.
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      • Scaling a Tech Newsletter to 700k Subscribers in 300 Cities: the History of Techstars Startup Digest

          Entrepreneurs are constantly looking for new tools and possibilities to develop their businesses and enrich their knowledge. One of the ways of doing this is visiting themed events — meeting colleagues in real life, exchanging experiences, and communicating with potential investors.

          In fact, there are thousands of tech-focused events taking place annually. The important thing is to pick the best, most useful and easily accessible ones to optimize your time and expenses.

          Techstars Startup Digest solves this problem by sending its subscribers an email newsletter with a curated list of relevant and reasonably priced events for entrepreneurs. Currently, Startup Digest consists of more than 700 curators, is approaching 700K subscriptions, and is available in more than 300 cities all around the world. Today, I’d like to share its history, how the founders came up with the idea, what it looked like in the initial stages, and what it’s going through right now.

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        • Making Git for Windows work in ReactOS

            Good day to you! image


            My name is Stanislav and I like to write code. This is my first english article on Habr which I made due to several reasons:



            This article is an english version of my very first article on russian.


            Let me introduce the main figures in this story who actually fixed the bug preventing Git from running in ReactOS — the French developer Hermès Bélusca-Maïto (or just Hermes with hbelusca nickname) and of course me (with x86corez nickname).


            The story begins with the following messages from the ReactOS Development IRC channel:


            Jun 03 18:52:56 <hbelusca> Anybody want to work on some small problem? If so, can someone figure out why this problem https://jira.reactos.org/browse/CORE-12931 happens on ReactOS? :D
            Jun 03 18:53:13 <hbelusca> That would help having a good ROS self-hosting system with git support.
            Jun 03 18:53:34 <hbelusca> (the git assertion part only).
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          • 10 Tips for Being a Good Tech Lead

            Leadership is not a service, it’s a skill. Professionals working as a software developer for a couple of years are given the chance to be a tech lead. However, remember that ‘with great power comes great responsibility.’

            There are several things that you need to take care of while being a tech lead. Obviously, you don’t need to code as much as you need to do while being a software developer. However, there are several other non-coding related things that now are your responsibility to deal with.

            10 Tips for Being a Good Tech Lead


            Maintaining a tech lead position while not gaining any criticism from the team isn’t possible. This is not due to your incapacity albeit due to human nature. However, the effort can be made to minimize it and becoming better in what you do eventually. After all, you are the leader now.
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          • How to prevent targeted cyber attacks? 10 best network sandboxes



              Targeted attacks are the most dangerous among the multitude of modern cyber threats. They are also known as ATP (an abbreviation which stands for Advanced Persistent Threat). Those are not viruses that can accidentally get into the computer due to user's carelessness. Neither it is an attempt to replace the address of a popular site in order to cheat billing information from credulous users. Targeted cyber attacks are prepared and thought out carefully and pose a particular threat.
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            • AdBlock has stolen the banner, but banners are not teeth — they will be back

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            • Server-provided animations in iOS apps



                Hi everyone! About six months ago we launched one of Badoo’s most exciting features: Live Streaming. One of its main functionalities is that viewers can send gifts to their favourite streamers to express their appreciation. We wanted to make the gifts as fancy and as engaging as possible, so it was decided to make some of them really lively, and by this I mean animated. And to engage people even more, we, the Badoo team, planned to update those gifts and animations every few weeks.

                As an iOS engineer, you might have already guessed the challenge we faced here: the need to add new animations and remove the old ones was going to require a fair amount of work from the client side. We’d need both the Android and the iOS development teams for every release — which, when combined with the amount of time App Store reviews and approval often take, would mean it might be days before each update could go live. But we solved the problem, and I’m going to explain to you how.

                Solution overview


                By this stage, we already knew how to export Adobe After Effects (AAE) animations into the format readable by our iOS app using the Lottie library. This time though, we went a bit further: we decided to create a kind of animation storage service, available via the internet. In other words, we would store all the actual animations on the server and deliver them to the client apps on demand:
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              • Wanna Play a Detective? Find the Bug in a Function from Midnight Commander

                  bug

                  In this article, we invite you to try to find a bug in a very simple function from the GNU Midnight Commander project. Why? For no particular reason. Just for fun. Well, okay, it's a lie. We actually wanted to show you yet another bug that a human reviewer has a hard time finding and the static code analyzer PVS-Studio can catch without effort.
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                • PC Speaker To Eleven

                    Known now as a «motherboard speaker», or just «beeper», PC Speaker has been introduced in 1981 along with the first personal IBM computer. Being a successor of the big serious computers for serious business, it has been designed to produce very basic system beeps, so it never really had a chance to shine bright as a music device in numerous entertainment programs of the emerging home market. Overshadowed by much more advanced sound chips of popular home game systems, quickly replaced with powerful sound cards, it mostly served as a fallback option, playing severely downgraded content of better sound hardware.

                    «System Beeps» is a music album in shape of an MS-DOS program that features original music composed for PC Speaker using the same basic old techniques like ones found in classic PC games. It follows the usual retro computing demoscene formula — take something rusty and obsolete, and push it to eleven — and attempts to reveal the long hidden potential of this humble little sound device. You can hear it in action and form an opinion on how successful this attempt was at Bandcamp, or in the video below. The following article is an in-depth overview of the original PC Speaker capabilities and making of the project, for those who would like to know more.

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                  • Open Source developer's life in GIFs

                      Sberbank is the largest bank in Russia and Eastern Europe. Our team in Sbertech teaches Sberbank efficient work with Free & Open Source Software. You can read more about this on Habr (what we exactly do, yet in Russian).

                      One of the main challenges is to open the mind of managers and engineers for using FOSS (Free & Open Source Software) properly. Because we have a lot of them, we have tried to use GIFs for answer the most common questions.

                      image

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                    • Generic Methods in Rust: How Exonum Shifted from Iron to Actix-web

                        The Rust ecosystem is still growing. As a result, new libraries with improved functionality are frequently released into the developer community, while older libraries become obsolete. When we initially designed Exonum, we used the Iron web-framework. In this article, we describe how we ported the Exonum framework to actix-web using generic programming.

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                      • Feature requests and Product requirements

                          You can always count product manager’s strategy skills like innovative thinking, blue ocean approach and others. But on daily basis we use more practical tools and approaches. This article is about working with feature requests and product requirements.

                          The main axiom of managing requests is that feature requests from customers, partners and internal teams are not requirements to the product. This is because every request can be split into several requirements or, otherwise, several requests can be combined to a single requirement.
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                        • Announcing F# 4.6 Preview

                            We’re excited to announce that Visual Studio 2019 will ship a new version of F# when it releases: F# 4.6!


                            F# 4.6 is a smaller update to the F# language, making it a “true” point-release. As with previous versions of F#, F# 4.6 was developed entirely via an open RFC (requests for comments) process. The F# community has offered very detailed feedback in discussions for this version of the language. You can view all RFCs that correspond with this release here:



                            This post will detail the feature set and how to get started.

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                          • Videogame monsters: how to sow fear

                            • Tutorial

                            In video games, enemies are one of the key figures, without which a game might lose its meaning, and when it’s not only enemies, but terrifying monsters, they often create the chilling atmosphere intended by the developers. It’s impossible to imagine Silent Hill without the Pyramid Head, or Outlast without Chris Walker, and so on, you get the idea. Monsters are a cumulative image of a video game enemy, and it’s not necessarily an ugly demon or a giant spider: even an angry neighbor, like in Hello Neighbor, is a monster despite his human appearance.

                            This is where the reader probably asks:


                            what’s the point of this article?
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                          • Understanding the POCSAG paging protocol

                              Long time ago, when a mobile phone costed about 2000$ and one minute of voice call was 50 cents, pagers were really popular. Later cellular phones became cheaper, calls and SMS prices became lower, and finally pagers mostly disappeared.


                              For people, who owned a pager before, and want to know how it works, this article will be useful.
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                            • Manifest of Smart Home Developer: 15 principles

                                Today I’d like to speak about Smart homes and IoT devices. But it is no ordinary article. You won’t find description of hardware, links to manufacturers, batches of code or repositories. Today we’ll discuss something of a higher level — principles that are used to organize “smart” systems.

                                image



                                Smart home is a system that can do some everyday routines instead of a person. It leads us to the first and the main principle:
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