Busy as a ZigBee

Now that you've finally installed Wi-Fi, get ready for a second home network--one that will control the house itself

10 min read

They tell inventors to build a better mousetrap, but what we really need is a better light switch. Think about how one works: the light itself might be in the middle of the ceiling, but you have to run a wire to the doorway if that’s where you want to be standing when you turn the light on.

It’s all so 20th century! Today, with wireless radio technology, you ought to have a switch that you could slap on the wall with double-sided tape. That way, if you wanted to place it lower so a houseguest in a wheelchair could reach it, you’d just peel it off, move it down, and slap it back on the wall.

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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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