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A Bronx Tale

Broadband TV concern hooks up the 'hood

8 min read

New York City is the epicenter of wealth creation in the world's richest nation. But along with its growing ranks of millionaires, the Big Apple still has huddled masses of have-nots. The South Bronx, an area of New York City that has, for decades, borne the brunt of crime, drugs, and poverty, is still a neighborhood emblematic of urban blight and evocative of the lot of the underclass everywhere.

But in an office building in the heart of the 'hood, on a bustling commercial thoroughfare lined with small grocery stores cheek by jowl with shops studded with large, hand-scrawled signs hawking the latest bargains on household goods and electronics, exists one of the city's original broadband franchises--and the industry's most unlikely success story. The company, Urban Communications Transport, which does business under the name Urban Telephone and Video, has been making a profit in an endeavor that has defeated not a few telecom industry giants [see photo, " Where Angels Fear to Tread"].

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Why Functional Programming Should Be the Future of Software Development

It’s hard to learn, but your code will produce fewer nasty surprises

11 min read
A plate of spaghetti made from code
Shira Inbar

You’d expectthe longest and most costly phase in the lifecycle of a software product to be the initial development of the system, when all those great features are first imagined and then created. In fact, the hardest part comes later, during the maintenance phase. That’s when programmers pay the price for the shortcuts they took during development.

So why did they take shortcuts? Maybe they didn’t realize that they were cutting any corners. Only when their code was deployed and exercised by a lot of users did its hidden flaws come to light. And maybe the developers were rushed. Time-to-market pressures would almost guarantee that their software will contain more bugs than it would otherwise.

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