Building Emacs 25.2 on XUbuntu 17.04

Timo Geusch from The Lone C++ Coder's Blog

I haven’t done much with Ubuntu recently, but had to set up a laptop with XUbuntu 17.04. That came with Emacs 24.5 as the default emacs package, and as skeeto pointed out in the comments, with a separate emacs25 package for Emacs 25.1. I tend to run the latest release Emacs everywhere out of habit, […]

The post Building Emacs 25.2 on XUbuntu 17.04 appeared first on The Lone C++ Coder's Blog.

Visual Lint 6.0.4.281 has been released

Products, the Universe and Everything from Products, the Universe and Everything

Visual Lint 6.0.4.281 is now available. This is a recommended maintenance update for Visual Lint 6.0, and includes the following changes:
  • Microsoft Visual C++ Express Edition 2010/2012 system headers can now be used as a source of system headers for PC-lint 8.0/9.0 analysis of VS2013/15/17 projects.
  • Fixed a potential crash in VisualLintGui if a corrupt window layout is restored on startup.
  • Fixed a bug in the parsing of Visual C++ 2010-2017 project (.vcxproj) files in which the configurations are defined in an external property (.props) file located via a user macro.
  • Fixed a bug in the parsing of Green Hills projects which affected whether some subprojects were read correctly.
  • Various changes to the installer:
    1. The installer now prompts for affected applications (Visual Studio, Atmel Studio, AVR Studio, Eclipse, VisualLintConsole and VisualLintGui) to be closed before installation can proceed.
    2. The installer now installs VSIX extensions to Visual Studio 2017 and Atmel [AVR] Studio silently.
    3. Revised the order of registration of the Visual Studio plug-in with each version of Visual Studio so that the newest versions are now registered first.
    4. Uninstallation no longer incorrectly runs "Configuring Visual Studio..." steps if the VS plug-in is not selected for installation.
    5. The "Installing Visual Lint" progress bar is now updated while Visual Studio, Atmel Studio and Eclipse installations are being registered.
    6. Improved the logging of VSIX extension installation/uninstallation.
Download Visual Lint 6.0.4.281

On Divisions – student

student from thus spake a.k.

The Baron's game most recent game consisted of a series of some six wagers upon the toss of an unfair coin that turned up one side nine times out of twenty and the other eleven times out of twenty at a cost of one fifth part of a coin. Sir R----- was to wager three coins from his purse upon the outcome of each toss, freely divided between heads and tails, and was to return to it twice the value he wagered correctly.

Clearly, our first task in reckoning the fairness of this game is to figure Sir R-----'s optimal strategy for placing his coins. To do this we shall need to know his expected winnings in any given round for any given placement of his coins.

Vacancy: Executive PA / Office Manager

Rain Crowson from Paul Grenyer


Naked Element are a software development company based in Norwich looking to recruit a self motivated, outgoing, well organised person looking for variety in a small, yet progressive tech company. There is opportunity for the right person to grow into a more specialised role, based on your strengths, as the company grows.

Salary: £18-20,000 per annum salary (depending on experience)

Hours: 37.5 hours per week

Location: New Patricks Yard, 2 Recorder Road, Norwich, Norfolk, NR1 1NR

Application Deadline: 28th July 2017

Essential skills and qualities:

  • Good client and communication skills
  • Exceptional organisation
  • Self motivated
  • You thrive in a fast-paced office environment
  • Competent user of email systems, document creation and management software packages
  • Ability to prioritise

Desirable skills and qualities:

  • An Interest in Software, Technology, Development, or any wider part of the ICT industry
  • Previous Administration and Office Management experience 
  • A Level 3 qualification or equal in Administration or Business Management

Main Responsibilities:

Office Management

  • Running the office on a day-to-day basis depending on the needs of the business, it’s directors and employees
  • Purchasing stationery and equipment
  • Liaising with suppliers
  • Answering the phone
  • Preparing agendas, documents and contracts

Company Administration

  • Book keeping
  • Managing finances
  • Financial forecasting/producing reports
  • Paying and raising invoices
  • Paying bills
  • General administration
  • Payroll

Social Media & Marketing Assistant

  • Assisting the commercial director in all elements of marketing as required
  • Setting up daily social media
  • Preparing and sending marketing material
  • Attending networking events
  • Exhibiting at events

Sales Assistant

  • Assisting the commercial director in all elements of sales as required
  • Prospecting
  • Warm calling
  • Meeting prospects & clients
  • Sandler training provided

Account & Project Management

  • Day to day running of projects
  • Project reporting
  • Liaising with all stakeholders during projects
  • Regular client reviews & other account management as necessary

 Executive PA

  • Managing diaries for both the Commercial Director & CEO
  • Booking events & meetings
  • Booking travel

Benefits

  • Pension after 3 months
  • 6 Month probationary period
  • A lovely, air-conditioned working environment in the centre of Norwich
  • Flexible working hours

This is the perfect opportunity for those looking for an interesting, never the same each day role to grow their skills. You will benefit from the guidance of staff with over 20 years experience in Business, Finance and Project Management. This is also a chance to gain an in depth insight into the software development industry.

If you would like to apply for this opportunity, please send CV’s to emma@nakedelement.co.uk 

Pride Vibes 2017: Isle of Wight Pride

Samathy from Stories by Samathy on Medium

Isle of Wight Pride welcomed people of all ages to a fantastic event

Pride Vibes: As a photographer for Gay Pride Pics, I attend lots of Prides across the UK every year. Each Pride has a different feel. This series will describe what each Pride was like and what the vibe of the pride was like.

The entire series is my opinion and mine only. Take it as you will. Note that this opinion comes from a 20 something extroverted transwoman who is herself a pride organiser.

I’m still working out what this series is going to be like. Bear with me.

Previous: Coventry Pride

We were delighted to share Isle of Wight’s first ever Pride festival with the Isle’s inhabitants and visitors from the mainland.
The Isle of Wight Pride had already seen quite a lot of press coverage, such as the article from Isle of Wight County Press and the Isle of Wight’s former MP making homophobic statements and so attracted not only a lot of islanders, but also people turning up to support a Pride that proved much more controversial than expected.

TL;DR The event was absolutely incredible. It was the best Pride this season with by far the best vibes going. Inclusive, welcoming, and excited.

It felt like the whole island turned out for the parade.

The Isle of Wight Pride started with a parade through the town of Ryde.
I was astounded to see what seemed like the entire town, maybe the whole island’s population on the streets for the parade.
There was a diverse group of people watching the parade, we saw the old, young and everyone in between.

The buzz from the parade was huge, everyone was so excited to see a Pride parade in their small town.

The buzz from the parade was huge. Everyone was so excited to see a Pride parade in their small town. Everyone was showing their support for each other, and the marchers.

Everyone seemed so happy the the isle has a Pride

The parade featured mostly charities, with a few local branches of businesses present, and some larger ,more well known organisations like Outdoor Men and a surprisingly large contingent from the Scouts.
While nowhere near as long as larger, more established Pride parades like Birmingham or Exeter, the Isle of Wight parade was extremely long considering its their first one.

The parade finished at the Pavilion down by the beach with people tailing the end of the parade off the streets towards the entrance to the main event.

Unfortunately, the main event was ticketed, but free.
This is because of an old law preventing the Isle of Wight from holding an event with more than 5000 people attending.
5000 people is totally more than enough for a first Pride, but I certainly think that if it wasn't for this law, there would have been many more people there.

Isle of Wight Pride was such a happy, excited event

The main event, as mentioned, was held partly on the beach and partly on the beach front.
Isle of Wight Pride featured a reasonable set of stalls, mostly commercial, on their grassy section.

I felt that the large amounts of commercial stalls appeared like they were profiteering from the ‘pink pound’ as a lot of these stalls were not really specifically LGBT+ related.

Everyone was enjoying the isle’s first event

There were a few LGBT+ charities in attendance. I most noted the presence of Mermaids and was amazed to see them on the island.
Maybe it felt like there were a lot of commercial stalls because there really were not many stalls in total at all.

All stall holders were incredibly friendly and I enjoyed feeling very comfortable talking to them.
The feeling around the stalls was very relaxed and calm. They seemed to be seeing loads of custom and the two stages on the grassy area always had an audience sitting quietly and enjoying the shows being put on there.

People in the stalls area seemed just happy to be there and comfortable being who they are.

The beach was busy, but relaxed

The main stage was on the beach section, which was a totally different experience from any other Pride I’ve been to.
The beach was quiet at first before people really started arriving.

It got pretty busy on the beach, but managed to never feel packed and pushed together like some of the other prides. There was always room to move around through the crowd easily (even for me, a photographer with a big bag on!)
The beach stage did feature quite a lot of drag acts, 5 in total I think, but counteracted the large drag presence with powerful political statements and spoken word from several people including Peter Tatchall and Hannah Phillips. The main stage also featured plenty of musical performances across the day.

I was really happy to see Isle of Wight Pride welcome political statements on their stage. It really helped make me feel like the event is keen to maintain itself as a political pride which is well aware of its roots and all the work that still needs to be done by the Pride movement.

It should be noted that although the stage was on a sandy beach, IoW Pride put down plastic boards over some of the beach to allow wheeled personal transport like buggies and wheelchairs access to the main stage area, a great touch.

Unlike many Prides it was not overwhelmingly attended by students and young people, but saw a wide ranging attendance base from young people, young couples, young families alongside older people, and established families. Most Prides do see people from all age groups, but it was extremely striking at IoW to see people from every walk of life.

This diversity really enhanced the vibes of the event. It was such a happy event, but certainly not an alcohol-fueled party like so many other Prides can be.
I never felt uncomfortable with the level of drinking as I have been previously.

It seemed like everyone there was there to show their support for the Isle of Wight’s LGBT+ population, and that the Isle of Wight had Pride in their LGBT+ culture.
Despite the lower population of younger people, I really felt included in the event and all the people I spoke to were also loving it.

It should be noted, however, that it seemed like most attendees were white British people. Not surprising considering the pride was on a small island, but I’m fairly sure I could have counted the amount of people of colour on two hands.

For me, Isle of Wight Pride truly felt like people were proud to be there showing their colours.

Generally, the event was absolutely astounding. I was amazed to see such a wonderful, diverse turnout from the island.
The event had an excited vibe with people showing so much support for the LGBT+ community.
For me, Isle of Wight Pride truly felt like people were Proud to be there showing their colours.

Best Pride of the season so far.

Best of luck to the Isle of Wight Pride organisers and thank you for welcoming us to such a wonderful event.
May your future events continue to have the same vibes as this one.

On Company Diversity Targets

Samathy from Stories by Samathy on Medium

A diversity target number isn't all it might seem to be.

Diversity targets show you’re dedicated to giving women a big enough box

This a reply to Carol Roth’s piece for Entrepreneur. Please read that piece before this one. Make sure to form your own opinions. I invite you to carefully inspect your own thinking and respectfully criticise yourself, me and others.

“Accenture, one of the world’s best-known consulting firms for major enterprises, announced that they have set a target to have 50 percent of its workforce be comprised of women within the next eight years.”

When I first read Carol’s piece, I was quite annoyed. She seemed to be thinking that setting diversity goals meant hiring less capable people to essentially fill check boxes and make a companies numbers look better.

I tweeted about this, and Carol replied suggesting I hadn't quite grasped what she was saying.

I’m very keen to make sure I understand my thinking well before I criticise someone else’s, so I’ve gone ahead and read the article several times since then in order to ensure that I’ve understood well what Carol is trying to say.
It should be noted that I don’t intend to attack Carol personally, but this is a topic close to my heart which I love to foster respectful discussion around.

I’m going to dissect Carol’s piece a little.

Ms Roth starts off by saying that Accenture, the company who set the diversity target in question, have; “set a workforce target not based on experience, qualifications, potential or any work-related factors.”

I agree with this statement. They have indeed got a workforce target which is not based on experience or other work-related things. However, this does not mean that they’re throwing all those factors to the wind when hiring new employees.

A company can have more than one target to aim for. Accenture is saying that Diversity in their workforce is important enough to them that they want to make this target public. They want to have a number that other people can measure their achievements against.

I expect, as they’re a huge company, they’ve got numerous other targets when they’re hiring. And most certainly they’ll still be looking at a candidates experience, qualifications and potential when they’re sitting on the other side of the interview table.

Carol goes on to say that she finds Accenture’s diversity targeting “…offensive and, ultimately, bad for women…”.
Just a slight note here; Carol, you’re a very successful woman. I’m sure you put a lot of effort to get to where you are. But, this target is NOT for you.

This target is to show women that are not already experienced and well known that a company like Accenture is dedicated to providing a platform to allow prospective female employees to be the best that they can be.

A person’s opinion will be coloured (as will mine) by the status you already hold. One needs to be careful of that.

Getting into the meat of the article, Carol explains that she believes businesses should be “interviewing and hiring the best possible candidates they can find for their business”.

I’d invite readers to consider that for a business, hiring a woman (or any other person of minority) might be the best person for their business at that time. Maybe a business is so heavily dominated by men that they really need to get some diversity in there and are weighting a person’s background, personality and identity above their skill set and experience.

However, further on Ms Roth mentions that diversity for the sake of diversity is not a good thing. I.E hiring people just because you need to tick boxes is not a good strategy. (“Diversity for the sake of diversity, though, doesn’t help anything.”)
While considering my earlier point, I’d be inclined to agree with her.

Hiring minorities into an organisation where they will continue to be minorities is a bad idea. It’s a great way to get really fast churn of minority employees as they join, realise that the percentage of non-average employees is bad, and leave again.
If you’re going to hire people because of who they are, make sure that you’re making that choice for the right reasons and that those people are adequately supported by you as a business and by the other minorities within your employment base.
Basically, don’t hire one woman for your department of 50 because you need a woman in there, hire 10 women, 5 non-native people and some other minority people because you need some diversity in there.
That way, everyone can support each other, no one is alone and tokenism is, hopefully, avoided.
Continue working to raise the percentages of non-average employees, too.

We reach a rather interesting part of Carol’s article.
This section talks about how “some industries will have more women and some will have less.”.

I find it surprising that Ms Roth has not picked up on why “arbitrary representation targeting” does help this issue.

She understands that there is issues with some industries underrepresenting women (Engineering, Technology and Academia [citation needed] just to name a few). But fails to realise why having targets helps that.

Having targets help to foster better internal practices and culture.
Such as: widening the pool in which managers circulate job openings to include places where you might find more women (like WomenIn Tech/Eng/Sci initiatives), having a diverse interviewing team or starting up working groups internally examining what the company can do better to increase their diversity numbers.

Having targets also really helps to increase perception of a company externally.
As I mentioned earlier, Accenture is keen to show that they’re actively working to increase their female work force and showing that they really support their female workforce once they are on board (Promoting it’s largest percentage of women to the managing director level in 2016 (30 percent)).

These kind of things really help to show women that this is a company, and industry, that they really want to be in, or at least is willing to consider them on the same level as men.
Large companies publishing their good diversity targets and initiatives hopefully shows women that the industry, and the working world, is keen to bring more women on board and is really ready to provide what those women need to succeed in whatever field.

It’s showing women that the door is much more open now, and is getting much closer to being just as wide open to them as it is to men.

Does representation targeting help women into unrepresented industries? Probably.

According to Ms Roth, some women want to leave the workforce to care for their household. (“Other women have a strong preference to leave the workforce to run a household and care for children.”)

Openly supporting women in the workplace can help to reduce the load on men to be the bread-winners of a family. It can help to allow women to feel that staying in work after having a child is a totally valid option, and men that they can leave work and care for the family. It helps to break stereotypes.

In conclusion, for God’s sake, have diversity targets! It helps to show that your business is ready to employ and support a female workforce. It shows potential employees that they’re not alone, that they’re not being tokenised, that it’s a real effort you’re putting in to get those diversity numbers up and run a great business.

It shows that you really care.

Annealing Down – a.k.

a.k. from thus spake a.k.

A few years ago we saw how we could search for a local minimum of a function, being a point for which it returns a lesser value than any in its immediate vicinity, by taking random steps and rejecting those that lead uphill; an algorithm that we dubbed the blindfolded hill climber. Whilst we have since seen that we could progress towards a minimum much more rapidly by choosing the directions in which to step deterministically, there is a way that we can use random steps to yield better results.