Dragons in the Algorithm
Adventures in Programming
by Michael Chermside

The Butterfly Bug

Edward Lorenz died this past Thursday at age 90. This is as good an excuse as I will ever have to recount the story of his discovery (which I first learned from the book Chaos by James Gleick). It is a tale of math and the proper use of computers …

Read more

Posted Thu 17 April 2008 by mcherm in Math

How to email blog posts from Outlook

Suppose (just for the sake of discussion) you wanted to share some blog postings with a group of people at work - and the company email system uses Outlook 2003. Sending HTML email with the blog posting seems like it would be a nice way to do it. But getting Outlook …

Read more

Posted Wed 02 April 2008 by mcherm in Uncategorized

Units of Work

When I was a physics student one of the things that I learned to do was "unit analysis". That's where you simply consider what units an answer has: is it in meters, or meters squared? Surprisingly, there is an enormous amount that can be learned just by doing unit analysis …

Read more

Posted Sun 30 March 2008 by mcherm in Programming

Resources

Firefox Plugins

Here are the plugins I commonly use for Firefox:

  • Google Browser Sync - share a common browser environment across multiple computers.
  • Weave - share a common browser environment across multiple computers.
  • Flashblock - flash doesn't run until you click on it.
  • IE Tab - embed IE into Firefox tabs. Useful for sites …

Read more

Posted Thu 27 March 2008 by mcherm in articles

How to talk about Data Structures

FizzBuzz.scalaI've been interviewing lately for "senior programmer" positions. I find it outright astonishing how many applicants for these positions lack what I would consider the most fundamental of programming skills. Some people have suggested using FizzBuzz (a trivial programming exercise) as a filter; what I use is a discussion of …

Read more

Posted Sun 17 February 2008 by mcherm in Programming