Programming

Shell Scripting a Bunco Game

Bunco—a dice game that makes Yahtzee look complicated! more>>

Getting Started with ncurses

How to use curses to draw to the terminal screen.

While graphical user interfaces are very cool, not every program needs to run with a point-and-click interface. For example, the venerable vi editor ran in plain-text terminals long before the first GUI. more>>

Analyze Song Lyrics with a Shell Script, Part II

In my last article, I began exploring song lyrics. Not so you could have an epic Karaoke night, but more in the sense of analyzing song lyrics and word usage therein. more>>

How-to Take the Plunge and Replace the "I'm not a programmer" Mantra

For the past few years, the bulk of my consulting work has been in corporate training. Many of the participants in my courses are people who have been developing software for years already and simply want to learn new languages and techniques. more>>

Analyzing Song Lyrics

I was reading about the history of The Beatles a few days ago and bumped into an interesting fact. According to the author, The Beatles used the word "love" in their songs more than 160 times. At first I thought, "cool", but the more I thought about it, the more I became skeptical about the figure. In fact, I suspect that the word "love" shows up considerably more than 160 times. more>>

V. Anton Spraul's Think Like a Programmer, Python Edition

What is programming? Sure, it consists of syntax and the assembly of code, but it is essentially a means to solve problems. To study programming, then, is to study the art of problem solving, and a new book from V. Anton Spraul, Think Like a Programmer, Python Edition, is a guide to sharpening skills in both spheres. more>>

Watermarking Images--from the Command Line

Us geeks mostly think of the command line as the best place for text manipulation. It's a natural with cat, grep and shell scripts. But although you can't necessarily view your results from within a typical terminal window, it turns out to be pretty darn easy to analyze and manipulate images from within a shell script. more>>

Heirloom Software: the Past as Adventure

Through the years, I've spent what might seem to some people an inordinate amount of time cleaning up and preserving ancient software. My Retrocomputing Museum page archives any number of computer languages and games that might seem utterly obsolete. more>>

Zed A. Shaw's Learn Python 3 the Hard Way

Author Zed A. Shaw makes a simple promise in his Hard Way series of books from publisher Addison-Wesley Professional: "It'll be hard at first. more>>

Manipulate Images with ImageMagick

In my last article, I had some fun looking at the children's game of rock, paper, scissors, writing a simple simulator and finding out that some strategies are better than others. Yes, I used "strategy" and "rock, paper, scissors" in the same sentence! more>>

Gabriel Ford, Sadie Ford and Melissa Ford's Hello, Scratch!

In the new book Hello, Scratch! (published by Manning Publications), parents and kids work together to learn programming skills, but not in just any old way. They create new versions of old retro-style arcade games with the Scratch open-source visual programming language from the MIT Media Lab. more>>

Rogue Wave Software's Zend Studio

The quick pitch for Rogue Wave Software's Zend Studio, recently updated to version 13.6, is "the PHP IDE for smarter development". Zend Studio 13.6, says Rogue Wave, offers 3X faster performance in indexing, validation and searching of PHP code, and it allows users to code faster, debug more easily and leverage the massive performance gains in PHP 7. more>>

Scissors, Paper or Rock?

In this article, I'm going to tackle a children's game that's extraordinarily complicated, with many variations, and the programming task is going to be quite tricky. Just kidding! Rock Paper Scissors (or RPS, as it's known) is pretty darn easy to simulate because there aren't really many variants or possible outcomes. more>>

FreeDOS Is 23 Years Old, and Counting

The FreeDOS Project has just reached its 23rd birthday! This is a major milestone for any free software or open-source software project. more>>

Is the Moon Waxing or Waning?

In my last article, I talked about the complications of calculating the phase of the moon and decided simply to scrape the same website that Google uses. more>>

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