Alvin Alexander | Java, Scala, Unix, Perl, Mac OS X

Functional Programming, Simplified” is currently $15 on Amazon. Get it while you can, the price goes back up to $30 Monday night (October 23, 2017).

Functional Programming, Simplified has a nice article about code reviews titled, Getting into other people’s code.

A favorite mellow song with some Zen-like lyrics is Time, by The Burned, and featuring Katie Gray.

Dateline October 20, 2017: I’ve renamed my book about Scala and functional programming. The original name was, “Learning Functional Programming in Scala,” but I don’t think that sets the tone of the book quite right, so I renamed it to “Functional Programming, Simplified (Scala edition).”

You can preview and buy the book in two places:

Here’s the new “Rampaging Lambda” book cover:

Functional Programming, Simplified book cover

“Now the Sun’s gone to hell
And the Moon riding high
Let me bid you farewell
Every man has to die.

But it’s written in the starlight
And every line in your palm
We’re fools to make war
On our brothers in arms.”

Today’s song of the day is Brothers in Arms, by Dire Straits.

Never stayed in a roadhouse before, pretty interesting. You can walk in off the street and buy a shower for $4. Setup is communal, like a hostel.

Probably the most important lesson I learned from aimlessly wandering around for five years is that if you treat complete strangers as brothers and sisters that you’re meeting for the first time, the world magically becomes a better place.

I got to spend some more quality time in the hospital last week, and the CT scan results are almost comical: scar tissue where 99.9% of people won’t have scar tissue, body parts have been removed, four of my internal organs are enlarged, etc. Today I saw that I posted this on Facebook a year ago and I thought, well, it’s good to know that at some point my body will no longer be a problem. :)

(I don’t remember which book I found this page in, but I’ll update this post when I figure it out.)

The vajra body and tantric practice

The Fairbanks, Alaska ArcticCam shows snow on the ground this morning, October 19, 2017. The high today is 24 degrees (F), the low is 12. The high/low is 32/16 in Talkeetna as well.

The Fairbanks, Alaska ArcticCam (snow)

“Show me your flowcharts (source code), and conceal your tables (domain model), and I shall continue to be mystified; show me your tables (domain model) and I won’t usually need your flowcharts (source code): they’ll be obvious.”

~ Fred Brooks, “The Mythical Man Month

The Mythical Man Month reports that Samsung is developing an Android app that will let you use your Galaxy phone as a Linux desktop computer. Samsung’s “Linux on Galaxy” announcement is here.

If you’ve never heard of the story of The Two Wolves, here’s a good, short, illustrated version of the story.

The Two Wolves

NPR reports that a new version of Google’s AlphaGo Zero software became a Go master by learning to play the game only by playing itself, i.e., only by using reinforcement learning (as opposed to supervised learning). Per the report in, “AlphaGo Zero achieved superhuman performance, winning 100–0 against the previously published, champion-defeating AlphaGo.”

In case you want to know about squirrel behaviors, especially in the fall, National Geographic has this short article and video.

As a quick note today, I’ve been trying to build my own Amazon Kindle eBook using HTML and CSS, and yesterday I learned that I also need an OPF file as part of the process of creating both the eBook and the Table of Contents (TOC).

This morning I found that Amazon has a collection of sample books that you can use with Kindlegen, and the “Guide” project specifically includes the following example OPF file, which is well-documented.

Hatcher Pass, Alaska, October 20, 2010.

Hatcher Pass, Alaska

In the “Good News” department, apparently a long time ago when I was pretty sick with the MCAS, I wrote a series of Scala scripts to help convert a LaTeX document into an Amazon Kindle eBook. As a result, my book on functional programming in Scala should be available as a Kindle eBook later this week.