Shawn Driscoll's Tech Blog

Stuff That Happened in the Past

Sunday, October 15, 2017

TRAVELLER RPG: A Star Map That Talks (because)

Been adding more to my Traveller map viewer-turned-reader Python 2.5 app. I added some more sector data for it to work with. Next to work on will be the zoom in/out feature.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Python 2.5: Sphinx and MongoDB Cameos

Too punch drunk for this video. Said mongoose a few times in the wrong places. But you get the idea.

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

3D-Coat 4.8 Released!

Read video description for new discount pricing. Free download for existing customers.

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Popular GUIs and Programming Languages

I know that trends, researches, and studies often mean nothing. So there's probably more of the same shown here. Some of the data does makes sense though when used in a calendar setting, when looking back in the past.

These charts were created from data kept on Stack Overflow's BBS by entering tag names. 
The tags used above were programming languages that I have run into in the last 20 or so years. Languages like Pearl, I consider to be as dead as COBOL, FORTRAN, and BASIC. Ruby is headed in that direction. Objective-C is obviously on the downward trend because it had been canceled after Swift's introduction. Go is still going along. I forgot to add Rust to the tags, which would be crawling behind Go.

Above, we have GUIs being charted. Technically, they are decorated widgets for our OS's default GUIs. I started with X Windows, and obviously Mac before that. But the NeXTs and SPARCs got me interested in designing by own GUI for Microware's OS-9 Level II, which ran on the TANDY Color Computer 3.

Gtk was an ugly version of that GUI I made when I first saw it in Python's built-in library as tkinter, which is only becoming popular because Python is becoming popular. I've tried wxwidgets, and have made videos about how clunky it is. Kivy looks like a modern/contemporary GUI. What you see used on most hand-helds these days.

Qt (pronounced as either "q t" or "cute" still) had a great start coming out of the gate because of its professional design and clean look. And it has remained the easiest GUI to write programs for.

PYTHON 2.5: Voice Change

I was trying out PyTTSx 1.1 for Python 2.5 here, after downloading a couple UK eSpeak voices for it. I'll have to figure out how to use eSpeak one day, so I can create my own voices.

Friday, September 22, 2017

TRAVELLER RPG: Trying a Different Planetary Chart Scheme

I gave up using one charting method for another one. In order to incorporate a legend with this new scheme, I had to re-think how I was scattering the plotted points in 3D. So I used Matplotlib's scattering in clumps this time, to better label everything by defined colors instead of just random colors.

Monday, July 17, 2017

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

There Are Better Programming Languages Than C

I just read an article, called Are All Programming Languages Based On C?, that says basically what I been saying about C since 1984 (maybe even earlier). That C is a programming language one uses to make much better programming languages with. People used C, back in the day, to avoid programming in Assembly code (aka ASM languages, or HEX code). So, C was a welcome programming language at the time.

ANSI C was kind of a big deal. For it allowed C code to run on any computer that had a C compiler. C programs ran much faster on computers that were usually programmed using BASIC or Pascal. And since C was so closely tied to the Assembly code it could produce, many programmers wrote hardware drivers using C. Even Operating Systems could be written in C.

Anyway. Thirty-plus years later, I still see people learning how to program a computer using C. Today, it's C++ or C# programming. But it is still the same thing. Basically, it's people writing typo-filled code and trying to compile and debug it. The code is clumsy to type, hard to look at, and is harder for others to follow through one's logic. This is what the schools are teaching though. It's like they want to keep computer programming as complicated as possible so that students think they are getting their money's worth out of a class.

As I said earlier, C is used to write much better programming languages. And there are a lot of much better programming languages available. And since nearly all programming languages are free now, it is much easier to access them for trying out.