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COMDEX 2010: Virtual Fear and Loathing of Las Vegas

A one-time megaconference comes out of its coma

3 min read

When we last saw COMDEX, it was dying of old age.

The former champ of the tech trade-show business, born in 1979 as the Computer Dealers’ Exposition, had triumphed for a quarter century as the personal computer’s annual main event. In 2000, as many as 200 000 IT soldiers tramped to the Las Vegas Convention Center for their annual marching orders on how to conquer the world with hardware and software. My own fondest memory of COMDEXes past featured the rollout of Microsoft Windows 95. The firm I worked for then, Ziff-Davis Publishing, rented several floors of the MGM Grand. The likes of Gladys Knight performed at our parties, which featured enough liquor to float the Treasure Island pirate ship.

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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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