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wise words

Where Obama Failed

A part of Trump’s success would be because Obama’s administration did not do enough – even without being critical of his administration, it’s possible to hypothesize that specific actions could have changed the narrative just that little bit.

He could have pursued a better foreign policy in Syria; he could have jailed more bankers; he could have made ARRA into a bigger stimulus package, or let it run a bit longer; etc.

At any rate, it’s worth it to me to keep track of specific reports of what did not go well in the Obama years. So here goes.

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Why Is There NoSQL? Who Took All The SQL?

I’ve been meaning to wade into the NoSQL debate for a while but couldn’t figure out exactly where to start. A comment on a Reddit post about what “backend to choose” got me excited enough to write:

What is a NoSQL DB? That term means nothing – all DBs need a “structured query language” to convert its storage schema into an abstraction you use in your code. “NoSQL” usually means ‘NoSchema’ – or rather, “NoFixedSchema.”

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String Formatting The Ancient Way: How To Interpolate in (s)printf

Recently, while mentoring a couple of kids who are starting to learn programming (using Ruby), I encountered the challenge of explaining the %f/d/g notation for formatting data in a string.

The notation is used in converting data into representations that can be printed as (part of) a string. The operation is called string interpolation. The format is used in commands like printf, and the syntax is typically like this:

printf(<string with format specs>, data value 1, data value 2, …)

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