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> Stack overflow rant
post Jul 21 2018, 10:59 PM
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Ok i know over been away from rcbot in a while, but it's certainly not left my mind, I'm back at my old job coding away and in my free time at work i decide to help answer some noob questions on SO (stack overflow) about c coding. This is just something to get off my chest for you folks who like to code with me here since i doubt my friends and family have got a clue about this stuff.

Hope you enjoy rants. anyway, if you don't know what stack overflow is. It's basically a site where people ask programming questions and get answers from people who know how to solve them.i like to think i know a bit about programming in c for example... I started the first rcbot more than fifteen years ago now and i taught for five years, coded in industry for five. Now my credential don't matter, i don't really care about that. All i care about i helping folk especially noobs. My rant contains some detailed that have been changed as noy to identify anyone involved.

I discovered stack overflow only have three types of people.
  1. Noobs,
  2. noob answerers like me and ...
  3. smart asses who think they're gods next place in the throne of programming who write condescendingly towards every noob or noob answerer to show just how brightly the sun shines out their smart asses.
i started helping noobs who've basically just started more or less with the c language. "How can i get this to work " questions or "why did this not work" question. Well i may have simple suggestions. But that's all these noobs want.

Anyway i started answering questions that noobs asked. First answer was easy....

“Try using a static variable. ***code**** “

, I gave a suggestion as an actual answer --- 'cos most people are just fannying about in the comment section and not actually answering the question...

My answer gets a comment

QUOTE("Some dude")
"be wary that this is not thread safe"

..ok i know that myself anyway..its kind of freaking obvious to me, I don't think this is a comment to my knowledge of threads or maybe it's just for other readers... but the main point is the guy who asked the question {the OP) made NO mention of threads or using them of any kind, plus the guy asking the question is a noob --- It will be a while before they're going to start using threads.

You know what they say when you start to Learn to teach. They tell you ...
QUOTE("general teaching")

only teach and correct the outcome. So even if someone makes a grammatical mistake let's say in an English class designed to improve fluency, we let it go, only if they made the same mistake in a grammar class, well that should be instantly corrected..

What I'm trying to say here is... If the OPs question didn't involve a subject ... Don't bring it up. (Or even ... If i didn't say it . Don't say i did). Bear that in mind for the next two examples...

Anyway this comment was not so bad, nicely said but this was just the start.

Next, came a fecking weird one. A question to determine which is quicker to execute , strcpy or strncpy plus some extra stuff the OP addedd. The OP put some code with a for loop. Well i did the calculations and put in an answer that was accepted by the OP , nice one i thought. Except  i made a throw away comment in my answer about the use of for loops on strings. I had optimized an FFT to work in appropriate time on an 8 bit microprocessor and found my way to work the fastest  with my poor compiler was by using pointers in while loops and incrementing them rather than using indices into arrays that may slow down with an unoptimized compiler.

Comment arrived

QUOTE("some nob")
. "Do you really think we still need to optimize for loops in the 21st century?“

Well i replied...


“of course not but it depends on your compiler, and its not the main point anyway

(The calculations are the main point)” .

Comment by the OP confirmed so

“the for loop is not important (not to worry)” .,

.cheers OP.

Comment and down vote of my answer for my throw away comment

QUOTE("some smartass")
“some coding styles prevent this such as automotive industry standard -- and your calculations are useless”

now i don't mind this guy's comment but the #industry standard' he's given my accepted answer a freakin down vote for being a 'useless' answer --- implying its a bad answer because of the throwaway comments even though it has been accepted by the OP. Anyway --- the default library code of strcpy (that the OP insists he needs to use anyway) will freakin  violate this “coding style” because it does the exact same freaking thing (i.e. while loop using incrementing pointers) --- so the OP will certainly not give a sh+t about this , and the OP made no mention about ”"automotive industry standard" in the question... it was a general c question about algorithms and complexity (ffs!!!). So this comment is simply him being a smart arse. I gave back a comment:

”Hmm, tell me more. I'm intrigued --- what about the strcpy violation?"

...Heard nothing back since.

The last straw was a noob question about declaring classes as pointers and declaring by value. I made an answer that declaring a class by value will have trouble for polymorphism and inheritance, i had personal experience of this, plus I referenced another SO thread with an question/answer in that respect . Kind of left it in for something for the OP to ponder .


QUOTE("some nob")
“your answer is completely wrong --- you can use smart pointers “

Well i didn't say smart pointers DONT give you trouble and i referenced another SO question. If you have a problem, make a better answer to the question I'm referencing !!! I deleted my answer to delete the guys comment. So now the OP may no longer need to ponder my 'completely wrong' answer.

Another thing, if you dis an answer, then please post a BETTER answer!


I recently put up an answer for a noob who had trouble with allocating memory correctly for a 2d array of strings, so I put up an elaborate post of what memory looks like before and after allocation and what the pointers represent in memory. The answer got a downvote and no comments. Okay if you don't want an elaborate answer I'll delete it, and anyone else wondering the same thing won't see it any more. And wasted my time coming up with the answer. I'm about to delete my account tbh.


This is a stack exchange rant.

There is a section for ENGLISH LEARNERS to ask questions about ENGLISH ... Now these people asking questions about English are more than likely 99% speakers of English as a SECOND language. These people asking questions will be sticking their answers into google translate which isn't exactly perfect either.

Look at the answers to many questions. They all need to be understood by at least degree educated who have ENGLISH as their FIRST language. Now if you cannot dumb down your English for the poor people asking the question you have not answered the question. Is just like explaining advanced physics to a dog, the dog didn't learn anything.

And i find this sums up everything

QUOTE("Tao Te Ching")

Great straightness seems twisted.
Great intelligence seems stupid.
Great eloquence seems awkward

Good men do not argue.
Those who argue are not good.
Those who know are not learned.
The learned do not know


SO/SE is full of condescending smart arses ---- and noobs that can't learn anything from the former. Or maybe these smart arses are just rep whores for folks who aren't actually wanting to see an actual answer to the question. Furthermore many 'questions' never get actually 'answered', sometimes they just get comments with an answer which isn't very clear if you're looking for an answer.

Anyway I'm not going back to stack overflow, well not in the same way anyway. Ill stick a disclaimer on all my answers at least.

Rant over. Thanks for reading. Hope you enjoyed it

Still thinking about rcbot . Wish i could have time to rewrite everything , cos i would if i had the time. Make it fully autonomous and everything ... Job and family don't make it easy!!
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post Aug 27 2018, 05:16 PM
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RCBot Fan

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From: Dundee, Scotland
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Well I was beginning to worry that you guys had waved a white flag for coding RCBot2 but I couldn't let good things come to an end like that. Also I've been trying to rally some bot coders and testers as well did some minor fixes for nearly 8-10 bots - as well as fixed some broken HLDS Metamod Addons for SteamPipe.
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