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What if you could surf while you surf? Well, nobody really wants to do that, but apparently consumer reality and marketing promotions need not have anything in common. Intel Corp.'s marketing team commissioned a surfboard with an integrated tablet laptop and a solar charger, to show off the company's Centrino wireless technology, which gives the surfboard an Internet connection via a wireless hot spot on the beach. It was developed for a sports festival in 2004 but is still in use a year later, as demonstrated here by Neco Padaratz, at Joaquina Beach, in Florianópolis, Brazil. Frivolous as the idea is, there was a bit of engineering involved in the board's construction, according to Jools Matthew of Gulfstream Surfboards, in North Devon, England. The challenge, he says, was to make the laptop watertight and to ensure that its weight didn't alter the board's balance.

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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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