Chapter 10 of the book, Learn You a Haskell for Great Good!, is titled, Functionally Solving Problems. In that chapter, the author describes a “Reverse Polish Notation” (RPN) calculator. If you ever used an old Hewlett-Packard (HP) calculator, you might know what that is. (At least that’s where I first learned about RPN.)

You don’t have to read it all yet, but some of that discussion is shown in this image:

I’m not a religious person in the traditional sense of the word, but I do like to visit old churches when I’m on vacation. I haven’t made it to Juneau, Alaska, yet, but when I do I want to visit the Shrine of Saint Therese. (I saw this photo on Twitter some time ago. I’m sorry, but I don’t remember who posted it.)

Here’s some source code for a Java method that lets you copy text (a String) to the clipboard on your operating system:

“No, no, no ... come on old man, just let me back up before you start walking behind me”, I mutter to myself, looking back behind the right side of my rental car. I had a twelve hour drive to get here, and now I need to move my car out of this parking space like the pretty girl at the front desk asked.

The two young men had been drinking in the open field in rural Kentucky most of the night. “Billy Ray”, Jimmy said, “ya know what I’m gonna do? I’m gonna shoot the next damn thing that moves.”

“Includin’ me, Jeemy?”, Billy asked.

“No, a course not you Billy. But anythin’ else, I’m gonna shoot it.” Truth be told, Jimmy knew it was late, and they’d likely just finish their beers and drunk-drive themselves home.

I started using the Java FreeMarker library recently, and I was surprised that it didn’t return its output as a String by default. Skipping my angst over that, this code shows how to output FreeMarker results as a String:

A song by Alan Parsons named Days Are Numbers (The Traveler):

“The traveller awaits the morning tide
He doesn't know what's on the other side
But something deep inside of him
Keeps telling him to go
He hasn't found a reason to say no.”

From time to time I write little stories that have nothing to do with programming or technology; this is one of those stories. So, if you’re only here for the tech, you’ll want to skip this one.

I was at a Christmas party, making a drink in the kitchen of a friend’s house, when Angie came in and started talking about something. The details don’t matter -- we were always talking about something. We met in high school, and we’ve been talking every since.

From time to time I write little stories that have nothing to do with programming or technology. This is one of those stories, so if you’re only here for the tech, you’ll want to skip this one.

As I stretched in Utthita Parsva Konasana, I took a break from my concentration and indulged in a moment of both reflection and forethought. For five days we drank tequila and sangria, swam in the warm ocean water, and even hiked in a Mexican jungle, but tonight it would be different: we would learn how to dance Salsa.

This is just a concept, but it’s cute. A little solar power device designed to look like a sunflower.

A friend of mine sent me a link to gratefulness.org. I’m glad to see more and more efforts like this coming into being.

A nice story on how having high expectations helps motivate people.

Amen, brother.

“To get where you want to go, sacrifices must be made.” ~ Joakim Noah. Photo from this Sun-Times article.

J haven’t heard of these mindfulness trainings before, but just found this “Wake Up” website while reading about Thich Nhat Hanh’s illness. The trainings: Reverence for life, True happiness, True love, Loving speech and deep listening, Nourishment and healing.

Someone is filming a Christmas movie in Boulder, Colorado, featuring Ernie Hudson of “Ghostbusters” fame. More info here.

Some of Chicago Bulls’ head coach Tom Thibodeau comments after they beat the Los Angeles Clippers last night without Derrick Rose or Pau Gasol.

This blog post on why curl defaults to stdout is an interesting discussion about decisions you have to make when designing things.

Okay, like everyone else in the world, I knew that we had just landed a spacecraft on a comet. What I didn’t realize is what it took to get there. Amazingly, the trip started in March, 2004 -- meaning that it took more than 10.5 years. It required three gravity assists from Earth, another one from Mars, and obviously a ton of math and science. All of this to land on a comet over 300 million miles away. You can see a summary of the entire voyage in this animated GIF.

Funny. Sadly funny. (I saw this on this Twitter page.)