How simple are newbies anyway? - Linux

This is a discussion on How simple are newbies anyway? - Linux ; "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message news:W6tBk.32109$IB6.25015@bignews8.bellsouth.net. .. > After takin' a swig o' grog, amicus_curious belched out this bit o' > wisdom: > >> "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message >>> >>>> If so, could you >>>> really find and fix ...

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Thread: How simple are newbies anyway?

  1. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?


    "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message
    news:W6tBk.32109$IB6.25015@bignews8.bellsouth.net. ..
    > After takin' a swig o' grog, amicus_curious belched out this bit o'
    > wisdom:
    >
    >> "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message
    >>>
    >>>> If so, could you
    >>>> really find and fix a defect in someone else's area?
    >>>
    >>> Yes. Been there, done that. I've had to dig through megabytes of some
    >>> of the nastiest, ugliest assembly code you could ever imagine.
    >>>

    >> I am suspicious of such a tale. First off, you would presumably only dig
    >> through machine code if you lacked access to the source. If you work on
    >> the
    >> product, you have access to the source.

    >
    > Your ignorance betrays you, amicus_incongruous. "Assembly code" !=
    > "machine code".
    >

    One for one isn't it?

    > I was working on the team that produced this software, and of course I
    > had access to the source.
    >

    It was written in assembly language? That is unusual.

    > Weren't we /just/ talking about why open-source is so important? Yet
    > you bring binary code into it!
    >

    You were the one who mentioned having such a hard time with "assembler
    code", which was presumably because you lacked source. Now you say your
    source was in assembly language. How can you blame that on it not being
    open source?

    > In any case, even though this project provided source, it had the
    > following features:
    >
    > 1. A lot of source code (megabytes)
    >
    > 2. Really stupid use of technology
    >
    > a. All variables were global. It was like they never /heard/ of
    > the stack.
    >
    > b. The global data was organized in 64K pages. A limitation of
    > DOS at the time.
    >
    > c. Usage of video memory for data storage.
    >
    > d. Usage of color bytes as a syntax marker.
    >
    > And guess what their high-level programmer's editor consisted of?
    >
    > EDLIN
    >
    > On that project, I learned that you can master /anything/, if you have
    > to.
    >
    > By the way, just in case you want to denigrate the project based on
    > size, it was deployed in a number of sites all over the world. Not a
    > huge project.
    >

    At a time long, long ago, too, eh? What does that have to do with today?



  2. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    On 2008-09-21, amicus_curious wrote:
    >
    > "JEDIDIAH" wrote in message
    > news:slrngdb9ge.g3d.jedi@nomad.mishnet...
    >> On 2008-09-19, amicus_curious wrote:
    >>>
    >>> "JEDIDIAH" wrote in message
    >>> news:slrngd7nrr.nk1.jedi@nomad.mishnet...
    >>>> On 2008-09-19, amicus_curious wrote:
    >>>>>
    >>>>> "Moshe Goldfarb." wrote in message
    >>>>> news:1i4hfh859kjo9.1sl6q6br80770.dlg@40tude.net...

    [deletia]
    >>> Various models come with various versions of Windows. For retail outlet
    >>> packages, the user gets what's in the box. No option to pick and choose.
    >>>
    >>> That is a major reason why you are not going to see Linux on the shelves
    >>> since it is an all or nothing kind of selection by the distributor. If
    >>> they

    >>
    >> Not quite.
    >>
    >> The end user can select or deselect anything they like.
    >>

    > Not in a package that they pick up at Costco. I think that is only true for


    Such a package is not going to constrain an end user any more than
    a Debian net install image would.

    > an item ordered online and even then the choices are restricted.
    >
    >> This is even more true once you consider network enabled software
    >> repositories.
    >>

    > But that is far from a retail outlet package.


    Actually, when compared to a copy of Windows that will spend
    all night getting updates from the mother ship... it's not far
    from a "retail outlet package" at all.

    >
    >> ...and Linux has been on store shelves for quite a while actually.
    >>

    > And off the shelves, too. Is is still on the shelf anywhere that you know
    > of?


    Only the most respected computer stores on the planet.

    >
    >>> order the wrong version and people don't want to buy it in comparison
    >>> with
    >>> another version, it is no sale. Dell could perhaps offer a better choice
    >>> since the merchandise is not shipped until sold, but there is still an
    >>> inventory issue. Retail stores don't want the problem. It is like
    >>> having
    >>> two different products.
    >>>
    >>>> ...but you are essentially correct: OS cost isn't the driving factor.
    >>>>
    >>>> When Solaris x86 first came around, I was willing to pay the asking
    >>>> price for it.
    >>>>
    >>> You must have wanted it badly.

    >>
    >> That's hardly remarkable considering the state of Windows at the time.
    >>

    > So today Linux is free and next to no one wants it. Does that mean that it
    > is not so good or that Windows is completely adequate?


    No one wants Windows by itself.

    No one ever did.

    --
    My macintosh runs Ubuntu. |||
    / | \

    Posted Via Usenet.com Premium Usenet Newsgroup Services
    ----------------------------------------------------------
    http://www.usenet.com

  3. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    On 2008-09-21, amicus_curious wrote:
    >>>
    >>> ...and Linux has been on store shelves for quite a while actually.

    >>
    >> Yep, at least since 1997. I bought my first Redhat off the shelf then.
    >>

    > What's on that shelf today and where is it located?


    The "shelf" is now on the 'net.

    In 1997 I had a dialup connection....

    --
    Regards,

    Gregory.
    Gentoo Linux - Penguin Power

  4. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    amicus_curious wrote:

    >
    > "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message
    > news:W6tBk.32109$IB6.25015@bignews8.bellsouth.net. ..
    >> After takin' a swig o' grog, amicus_curious belched out this bit o'
    >> wisdom:
    >>
    >>> "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message
    >>>>
    >>>>> If so, could you
    >>>>> really find and fix a defect in someone else's area?
    >>>>
    >>>> Yes. Been there, done that. I've had to dig through megabytes of some
    >>>> of the nastiest, ugliest assembly code you could ever imagine.
    >>>>
    >>> I am suspicious of such a tale. First off, you would presumably only
    >>> dig
    >>> through machine code if you lacked access to the source. If you work on
    >>> the
    >>> product, you have access to the source.

    >>
    >> Your ignorance betrays you, amicus_incongruous. "Assembly code" !=
    >> "machine code".
    >>

    > One for one isn't it?


    Nice try. Not even close

    >> I was working on the team that produced this software, and of course I
    >> had access to the source.
    >>

    > It was written in assembly language? That is unusual.


    Unusual does not mean that it is not happening

    >> Weren't we /just/ talking about why open-source is so important? Yet
    >> you bring binary code into it!
    >>

    > You were the one who mentioned having such a hard time with "assembler
    > code", which was presumably because you lacked source.


    Bad reading comprehension on your part

    > Now you say your source was in assembly language. How can you blame that
    > on it not being open source?


    He does not. Another case of your bad reading comprehension

    >> In any case, even though this project provided source, it had the
    >> following features:


    < snip >

    > At a time long, long ago, too, eh?


    You assume without having knowledge

    > What does that have to do with today?


    Similar things happen all day, today

    --
    Proposed Additions to the PDP-11 Instruction Set:

    BBW Branch Both Ways
    BEW Branch Either Way
    BBBF Branch on Bit Bucket Full
    BH Branch and Hang


  5. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    "Peter Köhlmann" stated in post
    48d73f4c$0$6617$9b4e6d93@newsspool3.arcor-online.net on 9/21/08 11:46 PM:

    ....
    >>>>> Yes. Been there, done that. I've had to dig through megabytes of some of
    >>>>> the nastiest, ugliest assembly code you could ever imagine.
    >>>>>
    >>>> I am suspicious of such a tale. First off, you would presumably only dig
    >>>> through machine code if you lacked access to the source. If you work on
    >>>> the product, you have access to the source.
    >>>>
    >>> Your ignorance betrays you, amicus_incongruous. "Assembly code" != "machine
    >>> code".
    >>>

    >> One for one isn't it?
    >>

    > Nice try. Not even close



    -----
    An assembly language is a low-level language for programming
    computers. It implements a symbolic representation of the
    numeric machine codes and other constants needed to program a
    particular CPU architecture. This representation is usually
    defined by the hardware manufacturer, and is based on
    abbreviations (called mnemonics) that help the programmer
    remember individual instructions, registers, etc. An assembly
    language is thus specific to a certain physical or virtual
    computer architecture (as opposed to most high-level
    languages, which are usually portable).
    ...
    A utility program called an assembler is used to translate
    assembly language statements into the target computer's
    machine code. The assembler performs a more or less
    isomorphic translation (a one-to-one mapping) from mnemonic
    statements into machine instructions and data. (This is in
    contrast with high-level languages, in which a single
    statement generally results in many machine instructions. A
    compiler, analogous to an assembler, is used to translate
    high-level language statements into machine code; or an
    interpreter executes statements directly.)
    -----

    Care to explain what the phrase "one-to-one mapping" means in relation to
    your claim that he is "Not even close" when he asks about it being "One for
    one?"

    I bet not.

    ....



    --
    If A = B and B = C, then A = C, except where void or prohibited by law.
    Roy Santoro, Psycho Proverb Zone (http://snipurl.com/BurdenOfProof)






  6. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    "Gregory Shearman" stated in post
    slrngdef2m.8v5.ZekeGregory@netscape.net on 9/21/08 11:33 PM:

    > On 2008-09-22, amicus_curious wrote:
    >>>>>
    >>>>> Yes. Been there, done that. I've had to dig through megabytes of some
    >>>>> of the nastiest, ugliest assembly code you could ever imagine.
    >>>>>
    >>>> I am suspicious of such a tale. First off, you would presumably only dig
    >>>> through machine code if you lacked access to the source. If you work on
    >>>> the
    >>>> product, you have access to the source.
    >>>
    >>> Your ignorance betrays you, amicus_incongruous. "Assembly code" !=
    >>> "machine code".
    >>>

    >> One for one isn't it?

    >
    > No it isn't.



    -----
    assembly language
    A programming language that is a close approximation of the
    binary machine code. Also called assembly code.
    -----


    -----
    a computer language most of whose expressions are symbolic
    equivalents of the machine-language instructions of a
    particular computer.
    -----


    -----
    Assembly has a one-to-one mapping to machine language.
    Therefore, each line of assembly corresponds to an operation
    that can be completed by the processor.
    -----


    -----
    Assembly Language generally has a one-to-one correspondence
    with the underlying machine language, which is not human
    readable.
    -----

    While there are exceptions, generally there is a one-to-one relationship.




    --
    I can't say we will succeed at this, but we will make a significant attempt
    to elevate the Linux desktop to the point where it is as good or better than
    Apple.
    - Mark Shuttleworth (founded Canonical Ltd. / Ubuntu Linux)


  7. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    The liar Michael Glasser (Snot/Snit/Rekruled/Brock McNuggets) snotted:

    > "Peter Köhlmann" stated in post
    > 48d73f4c$0$6617$9b4e6d93@newsspool3.arcor-online.net on 9/21/08 11:46 PM:
    >
    > ...
    >>>>>> Yes. Been there, done that. I've had to dig through megabytes of
    >>>>>> some of the nastiest, ugliest assembly code you could ever imagine.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>> I am suspicious of such a tale. First off, you would presumably only
    >>>>> dig
    >>>>> through machine code if you lacked access to the source. If you work
    >>>>> on the product, you have access to the source.
    >>>>>
    >>>> Your ignorance betrays you, amicus_incongruous. "Assembly code" !=
    >>>> "machine code".
    >>>>
    >>> One for one isn't it?
    >>>

    >> Nice try. Not even close

    >
    >
    > -----
    > An assembly language is a low-level language for programming
    > computers. It implements a symbolic representation of the
    > numeric machine codes and other constants needed to program a
    > particular CPU architecture. This representation is usually
    > defined by the hardware manufacturer, and is based on
    > abbreviations (called mnemonics) that help the programmer
    > remember individual instructions, registers, etc. An assembly
    > language is thus specific to a certain physical or virtual
    > computer architecture (as opposed to most high-level
    > languages, which are usually portable).
    > ...
    > A utility program called an assembler is used to translate
    > assembly language statements into the target computer's
    > machine code. The assembler performs a more or less
    > isomorphic translation (a one-to-one mapping) from mnemonic
    > statements into machine instructions and data. (This is in
    > contrast with high-level languages, in which a single
    > statement generally results in many machine instructions. A
    > compiler, analogous to an assembler, is used to translate
    > high-level language statements into machine code; or an
    > interpreter executes statements directly.)
    > -----
    >
    > Care to explain what the phrase "one-to-one mapping" means in relation to
    > your claim that he is "Not even close" when he asks about it being "One
    > for one?"
    >
    > I bet not.
    >


    Bill Weisgerber (the twit posting as "amicus_curious") assumed that Chris
    had to dig through machine code.
    Having to understand machine code is not even close to understanding
    assembly code. It is one thing that assembly code maps one to one to
    machine code. The other way around is not as simple. Anyone with experience
    would know that.

    Nice try, Snot Michael Glasser. And another case of your total incompetence
    regarding computers
    --
    Linux is not a desktop OS for people whose VCRs are still
    flashing "12:00". -- Paul Tomblin


  8. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    The liar Michael Glasser (Snot/Snit/Rekruled/Brock McNuggets) snotted:

    > "Gregory Shearman" stated in post
    > slrngdef2m.8v5.ZekeGregory@netscape.net on 9/21/08 11:33 PM:
    >
    >> On 2008-09-22, amicus_curious wrote:
    >>>>>>
    >>>>>> Yes. Been there, done that. I've had to dig through megabytes of
    >>>>>> some of the nastiest, ugliest assembly code you could ever imagine.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>> I am suspicious of such a tale. First off, you would presumably only
    >>>>> dig
    >>>>> through machine code if you lacked access to the source. If you work
    >>>>> on the
    >>>>> product, you have access to the source.
    >>>>
    >>>> Your ignorance betrays you, amicus_incongruous. "Assembly code" !=
    >>>> "machine code".
    >>>>
    >>> One for one isn't it?

    >>
    >> No it isn't.

    >
    >
    > -----
    > assembly language
    > A programming language that is a close approximation of the
    > binary machine code. Also called assembly code.
    > -----
    >
    >
    > -----
    > a computer language most of whose expressions are symbolic
    > equivalents of the machine-language instructions of a
    > particular computer.
    > -----
    >
    >
    > -----
    > Assembly has a one-to-one mapping to machine language.
    > Therefore, each line of assembly corresponds to an operation
    > that can be completed by the processor.
    > -----
    >
    >
    > -----
    > Assembly Language generally has a one-to-one correspondence
    > with the underlying machine language, which is not human
    > readable.
    > -----
    >
    > While there are exceptions, generally there is a one-to-one relationship.
    >
    >


    The only "one-to-one relationship" here is "Snot Michael Glasser"
    <--> "total incompetent IT teacher"

    As usual you don't have the tiniest idea what you are blubbering about
    --
    Never argue with an idiot. He brings you down to his level, then beats
    you with experience...


  9. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    "Peter Köhlmann" stated in post
    48d73f4c$0$6617$9b4e6d93@newsspool3.arcor-online.net on 9/21/08 11:46 PM:

    ....
    >>>>> Yes. Been there, done that. I've had to dig through megabytes of some of
    >>>>> the nastiest, ugliest assembly code you could ever imagine.
    >>>>>
    >>>> I am suspicious of such a tale. First off, you would presumably only dig
    >>>> through machine code if you lacked access to the source. If you work on
    >>>> the product, you have access to the source.
    >>>>
    >>> Your ignorance betrays you, amicus_incongruous. "Assembly code" != "machine
    >>> code".
    >>>

    >> One for one isn't it?
    >>

    > Nice try. Not even close



    -----
    assembly language
    A programming language that is a close approximation of the
    binary machine code. Also called assembly code.
    -----


    -----
    a computer language most of whose expressions are symbolic
    equivalents of the machine-language instructions of a
    particular computer.
    -----


    -----
    Assembly has a one-to-one mapping to machine language.
    Therefore, each line of assembly corresponds to an operation
    that can be completed by the processor.
    -----


    -----
    Assembly Language generally has a one-to-one correspondence
    with the underlying machine language, which is not human
    readable.
    -----

    Poor Peter. He tries *so* hard to sound knowledgeable. Peter, while there
    are exceptions, generally there is a one-to-one relationship. For you to
    say he is not even close is, well, simply wrong. I knew this and I am not a
    programmer. What is it you claim to do for a living?

    ....



    --
    The answer to the water shortage is to dilute it.


  10. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    The liar Michael Glasser (Snot/Snit/Rekruled/Brock McNuggets) snotted:

    > "Peter Köhlmann" stated in post
    > 48d73f4c$0$6617$9b4e6d93@newsspool3.arcor-online.net on 9/21/08 11:46 PM:
    >
    > ...
    >>>>>> Yes. Been there, done that. I've had to dig through megabytes of
    >>>>>> some of the nastiest, ugliest assembly code you could ever imagine.
    >>>>>>
    >>>>> I am suspicious of such a tale. First off, you would presumably only
    >>>>> dig
    >>>>> through machine code if you lacked access to the source. If you work
    >>>>> on the product, you have access to the source.
    >>>>>
    >>>> Your ignorance betrays you, amicus_incongruous. "Assembly code" !=
    >>>> "machine code".
    >>>>
    >>> One for one isn't it?
    >>>

    >> Nice try. Not even close

    >
    >
    > -----
    > assembly language
    > A programming language that is a close approximation of the
    > binary machine code. Also called assembly code.
    > -----
    >
    >
    > -----
    > a computer language most of whose expressions are symbolic
    > equivalents of the machine-language instructions of a
    > particular computer.
    > -----
    >
    >
    > -----
    > Assembly has a one-to-one mapping to machine language.
    > Therefore, each line of assembly corresponds to an operation
    > that can be completed by the processor.
    > -----
    >
    >
    > -----
    > Assembly Language generally has a one-to-one correspondence
    > with the underlying machine language, which is not human
    > readable.
    > -----
    >
    > Poor Peter. He tries *so* hard to sound knowledgeable. Peter, while
    > there are exceptions, generally there is a one-to-one relationship. For
    > you to say he is not even close is, well, simply wrong. I knew this and I
    > am not a programmer. What is it you claim to do for a living?


    http://www.ctyme.com/intr/rb-0107.htm


    You *do* know what a BIOS is, do you?

    Now please tell me again that I don't know assembly language / machine
    language. Just to make you look as idiotic as you are, Snot Michael Glasser
    --
    Computers are like air conditioners -
    they stop working properly when you open Windows


  11. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    "amicus_curious" writes:

    > "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message
    > news:W6tBk.32109$IB6.25015@bignews8.bellsouth.net. ..
    >> After takin' a swig o' grog, amicus_curious belched out this bit o'
    >> wisdom:
    >>
    >>> "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message
    >>>>
    >>>>> If so, could you
    >>>>> really find and fix a defect in someone else's area?
    >>>>
    >>>> Yes. Been there, done that. I've had to dig through megabytes of some
    >>>> of the nastiest, ugliest assembly code you could ever imagine.
    >>>>
    >>> I am suspicious of such a tale. First off, you would presumably only dig
    >>> through machine code if you lacked access to the source. If you
    >>> work on the
    >>> product, you have access to the source.

    >>
    >> Your ignorance betrays you, amicus_incongruous. "Assembly code" !=
    >> "machine code".
    >>

    > One for one isn't it?
    >
    >> I was working on the team that produced this software, and of course I
    >> had access to the source.
    >>

    > It was written in assembly language? That is unusual.


    It is certainly very rare in the past 10 years. Everyone uses C or C++
    for this generally now and only ventures into assembler for things like
    uninterruptable instructions specialised for the target CPU. The Linux
    kernel being a great example.

    Liarmut might be telling lies again to big himself up. But I'm loath to
    jump to that conclusion in this case.

    However, assembler isn't that hard and nothing to be particularly
    frightened off either.

    Having the source would have provided meaningful sub routine names and
    of course comments.

    >
    >> Weren't we /just/ talking about why open-source is so important? Yet
    >> you bring binary code into it!
    >>

    > You were the one who mentioned having such a hard time with "assembler
    > code", which was presumably because you lacked source. Now you say
    > your source was in assembly language. How can you blame that on it
    > not being open source?


    It's always hard to know what to believe with one of Liarmutt's make
    believe stories.

  12. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Peter Köhlmann writes:

    > Bill Weisgerber (the twit posting as "amicus_curious") assumed that Chris
    > had to dig through machine code.
    > Having to understand machine code is not even close to understanding
    > assembly code. It is one thing that assembly code maps one to one to


    Dont be silly. Understanding machine code is more or less the same (give
    or take) to understanding *uncommented assembler*. Yes, yes macros can
    make the assembler much easier but the general code is similar enough to
    the uncommented source. And a "Macro" is no more than a type of comment
    if you look at it from one angle (which you will probably not acknowledge
    and fixate on what angle means here).

    But of course I am assuming you are acknowledging that one is using a
    decent disassembler here?

    > machine code. The other way around is not as simple. Anyone with experience
    > would know that.


    Depends on the code.

    >
    > Nice try, Snot Michael Glasser. And another case of your total incompetence
    > regarding computers


    --
    If you take both of those factors together then WinXP is a flop, selling
    *less* than Win 98 by a factor of two.
    comp.os.linux.advocacy - where they the lunacy in advocacy

  13. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Hadron wrote:

    > Peter Köhlmann writes:
    >
    >> Bill Weisgerber (the twit posting as "amicus_curious") assumed that Chris
    >> had to dig through machine code.
    >> Having to understand machine code is not even close to understanding
    >> assembly code. It is one thing that assembly code maps one to one to

    >
    > Dont be silly. Understanding machine code is more or less the same (give
    > or take) to understanding *uncommented assembler*.


    What? Now you go really off the deep end.
    Disassembled code is *always* without any comments, and even the best
    disassemblers need a *lot* of human input to recreate somewhat halfway OK
    assembler code from machine code.
    So, by definition even completely uncommented assembler code is still way
    better than any disassembled machine code.

    > Yes, yes macros can
    > make the assembler much easier but the general code is similar enough to
    > the uncommented source.


    You keep forgetting that even if completely uncommented, the variables will
    have names, the branches and subroutines will have names.
    Which speak for themselves already

    > And a "Macro" is no more than a type of comment
    > if you look at it from one angle (which you will probably not acknowledge
    > and fixate on what angle means here).
    >
    > But of course I am assuming you are acknowledging that one is using a
    > decent disassembler here?


    Even *if* one uses a decent disassembler, its output will still be a lot
    worse than the original assembler code

    >> machine code. The other way around is not as simple. Anyone with
    >> experience would know that.

    >
    > Depends on the code.


    Every program of any decent size will be difficult to disassemble

    >>
    >> Nice try, Snot Michael Glasser. And another case of your total
    >> incompetence regarding computers

    >


    --
    I just found out that the brain is like a computer.
    If that's true, then there really aren't any stupid people.
    Just people running Windows.


  14. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    amicus_curious wrote:

    >
    > "Homer" wrote in message
    > news:rikgq5-fmj.ln1@sky.matrix...
    >>
    >> What a_c fails to understand (in addition to his inability to see things
    >> in anything other than financial terms) is that "independence" does not
    >> just mean the independence of one man, but the independence of a whole
    >> community.
    >>

    > Don't you think you are making all too much out of this? Software is a
    > product that is designed for and sold to a market that is expected to
    > obtain
    > beneficial use on a par with its price. It isn't a quality of life issue
    > at all, it is a cost based decision.
    >
    >> If the software is independent of corporate interests, then its future
    >> lies in the hands of those who /use/ it, not those who exploit it for
    >> profit. As you indicate, software is abandoned, or worse, abused as an
    >> extortion device far too often by greedy corporate interests. This is
    >> not only morally wrong, and results in unacceptable costs, but also has
    >> the effect of denying access to the software that people come to depend
    >> on. The only way to resolve this "lock-in" is to break that dependence,
    >> by setting the software Free, such that it is "owned" by no one (or
    >> conversely "owned" by *everyone*).
    >>
    >> That is exactly what the Free Software community sets out to accomplish.
    >>

    > You are a true looney toon, Homer! Why don't you go waste your time on
    > something else that might be more valuable for the "community"?
    >
    >> In such a community, the software is Free for *everyone*, not just one
    >> man. But there's a "price" for that Freedom, which is participation.
    >> Free Software is not, and should not be seen as a spectator sport. We're
    >> all players. That doesn't mean that we all need to be software
    >> developers, but there's more to contribution than writing code. Just
    >> look at any community distro for an example of the hundreds of ways in
    >> which anyone can help out. Because we function together as a single
    >> unit, this means that no one is alone in their efforts. If one person
    >> needs to accomplish a goal, but lacks the means to do so, then he can
    >> call on others in the community to help him. This is something else that
    >> a_c (and others) fails to understand, when he claims that access to the
    >> source is useless unless one is an accomplished programmer.
    >>

    > I am pretty sure that a looney tune like yourself is not an accomplished
    > programmer, so what do YOU do with the source?


    According to yout criteria, Stallman is a "looney tune"? Would you contend
    that he too cannot be an accomplished programmer?

  15. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    After takin' a swig o' grog, amicus_curious belched out this bit o' wisdom:

    > You were the one who mentioned having such a hard time with "assembler
    > code", which was presumably because you lacked source.


    You presumed too much.

    > At a time long, long ago, too, eh? What does that have to do with today?


    Ye gods, you're dense.

    --
    It would be illogical to assume that all conditions remain stable.
    -- Spock, "The Enterprise Incident", stardate 5027.3

  16. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    After takin' a swig o' grog, Peter Köhlmann belched out this bit o' wisdom:

    > Hadron wrote:
    >
    >> Peter Köhlmann writes:
    >>
    >>> Bill Weisgerber (the twit posting as "amicus_curious") assumed that Chris
    >>> had to dig through machine code.
    >>> Having to understand machine code is not even close to understanding
    >>> assembly code. It is one thing that assembly code maps one to one to

    >>
    >> Dont be silly. Understanding machine code is more or less the same (give
    >> or take) to understanding *uncommented assembler*.

    >
    > What? Now you go really off the deep end.
    > Disassembled code is *always* without any comments, and even the best
    > disassemblers need a *lot* of human input to recreate somewhat halfway OK
    > assembler code from machine code.
    > So, by definition even completely uncommented assembler code is still way
    > better than any disassembled machine code.
    >
    >> Yes, yes macros can
    >> make the assembler much easier but the general code is similar enough to
    >> the uncommented source.

    >
    > You keep forgetting that even if completely uncommented, the variables will
    > have names, the branches and subroutines will have names.
    > Which speak for themselves already


    Indeed.

    But notice how these two (scratch that, three, as Snit apparently has
    added his overinflated 2-cents worth) clowns simply distract from my
    point, which was that large bodies of source code, even the kruftiest
    kind of code, /can/ be mastered, if necessary.

    And it is an order of magnitude easier than figuring out binary code,
    even with a dissassembler.

    By the way, this assembly code was generally pretty well documented.

    Although, the fact that the manager mandated all /upper/ case made it
    much more difficult to scan. And often someone would forget a blank
    line, so sometimes you'd discover that there was one line of code
    hidden between two large comment blocks.

    It was a weird place to work.

    --
    Santa Claus is watching!

  17. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Peter Köhlmann writes:

    > Hadron wrote:
    >
    >> Peter Köhlmann writes:
    >>
    >>> Bill Weisgerber (the twit posting as "amicus_curious") assumed that Chris
    >>> had to dig through machine code.
    >>> Having to understand machine code is not even close to understanding
    >>> assembly code. It is one thing that assembly code maps one to one to

    >>
    >> Dont be silly. Understanding machine code is more or less the same (give
    >> or take) to understanding *uncommented assembler*.

    >
    > What? Now you go really off the deep end.
    > Disassembled code is *always* without any comments, and even the best


    Very selective of you. I even put *uncommented assembler* in stars
    above. Why did you choose not to recognise that?

    > disassemblers need a *lot* of human input to recreate somewhat halfway OK
    > assembler code from machine code.


    You certainly have more experience in this than me assuming your BIOS
    stories are correct but that has not been my experience in general. All
    jumps/Calls point to addresses which can then be disassembled
    relatively cleanly.

    > So, by definition even completely uncommented assembler code is still way
    > better than any disassembled machine code.
    >
    >> Yes, yes macros can
    >> make the assembler much easier but the general code is similar enough to
    >> the uncommented source.

    >
    > You keep forgetting that even if completely uncommented, the variables will
    > have names, the branches and subroutines will have names.
    > Which speak for themselves already


    I didnt forget that at all. I even mentioned it. Actually you are
    right. I did not mention it in this post. I said it in my reply to
    amicus:

    "Having the source would have provided meaningful sub routine names and
    of course comments."

    >> And a "Macro" is no more than a type of comment
    >> if you look at it from one angle (which you will probably not acknowledge
    >> and fixate on what angle means here).
    >>
    >> But of course I am assuming you are acknowledging that one is using a
    >> decent disassembler here?

    >
    > Even *if* one uses a decent disassembler, its output will still be a lot
    > worse than the original assembler code


    Certainly better to have the source.

    >
    >>> machine code. The other way around is not as simple. Anyone with
    >>> experience would know that.

    >>
    >> Depends on the code.

    >
    > Every program of any decent size will be difficult to disassemble


    I dont know if "difficult" is the right word. Run it using a debugger.

  18. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?

    Chris Ahlstrom writes:

    > After takin' a swig o' grog, Peter Köhlmann belched out this bit o' wisdom:
    >
    >> Hadron wrote:
    >>
    >>> Peter Köhlmann writes:
    >>>
    >>>> Bill Weisgerber (the twit posting as "amicus_curious") assumed that Chris
    >>>> had to dig through machine code.
    >>>> Having to understand machine code is not even close to understanding
    >>>> assembly code. It is one thing that assembly code maps one to one to
    >>>
    >>> Dont be silly. Understanding machine code is more or less the same (give
    >>> or take) to understanding *uncommented assembler*.

    >>
    >> What? Now you go really off the deep end.
    >> Disassembled code is *always* without any comments, and even the best
    >> disassemblers need a *lot* of human input to recreate somewhat halfway OK
    >> assembler code from machine code.
    >> So, by definition even completely uncommented assembler code is still way
    >> better than any disassembled machine code.
    >>
    >>> Yes, yes macros can
    >>> make the assembler much easier but the general code is similar enough to
    >>> the uncommented source.

    >>
    >> You keep forgetting that even if completely uncommented, the variables will
    >> have names, the branches and subroutines will have names.
    >> Which speak for themselves already

    >
    > Indeed.
    >
    > But notice how these two (scratch that, three, as Snit apparently has
    > added his overinflated 2-cents worth) clowns simply distract from my
    > point, which was that large bodies of source code, even the kruftiest
    > kind of code, /can/ be mastered, if necessary.


    Yes, yes we KNOW they can be mastered. The point is how often companies
    bother to do so and if they have the resources to do so.

    > And it is an order of magnitude easier than figuring out binary code,
    > even with a dissassembler.


    Depends on the source. Poorly commented assembler is a nightmare too.

    >
    > By the way, this assembly code was generally pretty well documented.


    I thought you would throw that in.

    >
    > Although, the fact that the manager mandated all /upper/ case made it
    > much more difficult to scan. And often someone would forget a blank
    > line, so sometimes you'd discover that there was one line of code
    > hidden between two large comment blocks.
    >
    > It was a weird place to work.


    Clearly....

    --
    "You're a condescending, arrogant asshole, Quack."
    -- Tattoo Vampire in alt.os.linux.ubuntu, comp.os.linux.advocacy

  19. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?


    "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message
    news:u8LBk.39088$Ep1.12034@bignews2.bellsouth.net. ..
    > After takin' a swig o' grog, amicus_curious belched out this bit o'
    > wisdom:
    >
    >> You were the one who mentioned having such a hard time with "assembler
    >> code", which was presumably because you lacked source.

    >
    > You presumed too much.
    >
    >> At a time long, long ago, too, eh? What does that have to do with today?

    >
    > Ye gods, you're dense.
    >

    You sneer and sneer, but you never seem to have any answer that provides a
    definition. I say that assembly code and machine code are generally
    considered the same thing and you and the kraut say I am a fool and/or
    incorrect, but you neither one offer any counter. I am suspicious of your
    abilities and I am certain that Kohlman has nothing to offer the world.


  20. Re: How simple are newbies anyway?


    "Chris Ahlstrom" wrote in message
    news:IfLBk.39091$Ep1.13604@bignews2.bellsouth.net. ..
    >
    > But notice how these two (scratch that, three, as Snit apparently has
    > added his overinflated 2-cents worth) clowns simply distract from my
    > point, which was that large bodies of source code, even the kruftiest
    > kind of code, /can/ be mastered, if necessary.
    >

    And you ignore the original point which was that it is almost never
    necessary to do that and always the wrong thing to do. There is no need for
    open source unless you are developing for the OSS project or just amusing
    yourself with puzzles.


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