If you're not a computer programmer, the name Bjarne Stroustrup might not mean that much to you. The creator of the coding language C++ isn't exactly a household name. But the coding languages he wrote are the technological backbone behind many of the most sophisticated computer systems that run the world around us.
In his Big Think interview, Stroustrup talks about why he created C++, improving on the language C that was developed by Bell Labs, which was then in general use. "My idea was very simple: to take the ideas from SIMULA for general abstraction for the benefit of sort of humans representing things... so humans could get it with low level stuff, which at that time was the best language for that was C. ... And take those two ideas and bring them together so that you could do high-level abstraction, but efficiently enough and close enough to the hardware for really demanding computing tasks. And that is where I came in. And so C++ has classes like SIMULA but they run as fast as C code, so the combination becomes very useful."
Today C is obsolete, says Stroustrup, and the increased efficiency of C++ actually is helping to combat global warming. Fewer server farms (with their related energy expenditure) are needed, he says, when code works better.
Stroustrup also predicted that in the near future there will be a unified language that programs run on. "I’m not talking about programming language," he says. "I’m talking more about a unified design style, a unified set of guidelines for how to combine the techniques. I certainly hope that there will not be just one programming language."
Finally, Stroustrup tells us a little about his work setup and habits, and why he does his work on a small laptop that runs Windows.
Upstreamism advocate Rishi Manchanda calls us to understand health not as a "personal responsibility" but a "common good."
- Upstreamism tasks health care professionals to combat unhealthy social and cultural influences that exist outside — or upstream — of medical facilities.
- Patients from low-income neighborhoods are most at risk of negative health impacts.
- Thankfully, health care professionals are not alone. Upstreamism is increasingly part of our cultural consciousness.
In most states, LGBTQ Americans have no legal protections against discrimination in the workplace.
- The Supreme Court will decide whether the Civil Rights Act of 1964 also applies to gay and transgender people.
- The court, which currently has a probable conservative majority, will likely decide on the cases in 2020.
- Only 21 states and the District of Columbia have passed laws effectively extending the Civil Rights of 1964 to gay and transgender people.
A new method promises to capture an elusive dark world particle.
- Scientists working on the Large Hadron Collider (LHC) devised a method for trapping dark matter particles.
- Dark matter is estimated to take up 26.8% of all matter in the Universe.
- The researchers will be able to try their approach in 2021, when the LHC goes back online.
No, depression is not just a type of "affluenza" — poor people in conflict zones are more likely candidates
- Often seen as typical of rich societies, depression is actually more prevalent in poor, conflict-ridden countries
- More than one in five Afghans is clinically depressed – a sad world record
- But are North Koreans really the world's 'fourth least depressed' people?
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