Peter Jackson will not make The Hobbit

Crap! It seems that because some petty little dispute over some accounting issues Peter Jackson will not go on to make The Hobbit. It's really sad to hear. Especially since PJ seemed like he would have enjoyed making the movie. I'm not sure I'm looking forward to this movie anymore. With a new production team the end result can be pretty much anything.

Searching Haskell Code

Whoho! Google Code Search now supports Haskell code!

I've had some fun with Google Code Search since it was launched in early October. Among other things I've used to motivate changes to the standard libraries in Haskell based on how people write code. But not having proper support for Haskell has been a little awkward. One has to fiddle with file extensions to make it search in Haskell files. And it's always this suspicion that the search doesn't cover all that many Haskell files since the crawler presumably doesn't look for them. But all that is gone now, and I'm much happier. I've already put the new feature to good use.


Football technicalities

There is something that I've been wondering about for many years. It concerns football (or soccer if you prefer). It's the following question:

What is the purpose of the goal area?

Do you know? I'd be surprised if you did. Do you even know what the goal area is? In case you don't: it's the little rectangle inside the penalty area and just in front of the goal. I think even most hard core football fans don't know what purpose it has.

Today I decided to look it up. And wikipedia is helpful here as usual. It turns out that "Indirect free kicks awarded to the attacking team within the goal area must be taken from the point on the line parallel to the goal line nearest where an incident occurred; they can not be taken further within the goal-area. Similarly drop-balls that would otherwise occur in the goal area are taken on this line." Indirect free kicks are awarded for technical fouls such as offside and usually happens far away from a teams own goal. Indirect free kicks within the penalty area are extremely rare. I've only seen it once. The reason the judge awarded the foul was that he thought the goal keeper took too many steps with the ball in his hands. This particular rule has now been dropped in favor for a six second time limit.

I should add though that I'm not that crazy about football as this post might suggest. I do like to watch a game every now and then. But I almost never watch more than one game per week and often it is much more seldom than that. I like to watch when Sweden's team is playing an international match. Every now and then I also watch one of the major clubs in the Spanish league play, as they play very good football.


An Open Mind

Today, for no apparent reason, I ran 'fortune' and got the following quote:
If you keep an open mind people will throw a lot of garbage in it.

The man behind the quote is William Orton an American politician from way back.
I featured a similar quote here on this blog about a year and a half ago.


The "C is Efficient" Language Fallacy

Maybe a week or so ago I stumbled upon an article via reddit called "Programmer's rant: what should and should not be added to C/C++". It was a terrible article. The author had some pretty bad misconceptions on how to produce fast code, which was what the article was most about. I just couldn't let that stand unchallenged so I wrote a comment which you can find if you scroll down on the page of the article. I will not repeat is here. If you're interested go to the page instead.

I was rather frustrated by the fact that this story had made it to the front page of reddit. Therefor I was pretty happy to see that a few days later there was another story on the front page debating the above article: The "C is Efficient" Language Fallacy. He makes pretty much the same argument as I did but he writes a lot better and have some good concrete examples.

The bottom line in both my comment and the other article is that functional languages are catching up pretty quickly when it comes to speed.