The political leader of the opposition Movement for Progressive Change (MPC), Mr. Simeon Freeman, says Liberia should be certified Ebola free by the World Health Organization (WHO) before the National Elections Commission (NEC) can conduct the Special Senatorial Elections.Speaking over the weekend in Monrovia, the MPC former standard bearer said it was a shame that the government decided to close schools and other activities because of the Ebola disease and then wants to conduct elections that would put more lives at risk. He stressed that the elections should only be held after WHO has declared Liberia Ebola free.Mr. Freeman, acknowledging that the disease has caused hardship for most Liberians, said he is worried that most children might not be able to get back to school immediately because many of the companies that their parents worked for folded and left the country due to the virus outbreak.“They have no certainty that even when schools open in February or March, paying tuition is going to be possible. They are victims of something they know nothing about and we need to be concerned about that as a country and people and not the holding of elections at this time,” he stated. “We share, care and have never been a country that while experiencing difficulties, we go about celebrating as we are trying to do in holding elections for a few people to be glorified. That is not Liberia and the type of political leadership that Liberia needs,” said Mr. Freeman.The MPC political leader said he would only spend his resources on a Liberia that he knows to have respect for the people.Mr. Freeman said it should be remembered that Liberians are still in tears due to the hardships and thousands of deaths caused by the Ebola virus and holding an election to satisfy a few individuals was a grave concern that needed to be discussed by people who are to benefit from the election. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
“Writer’s Block” is a real thing, but “Programmer’s Block?” According to computer science professor at Oregon State University, Heather Knight, programmers are just as subject to getting blocked as writers, but programmers do not have a host of self-help resources with insights applicable to programming. However, she discovered that many of the writing books for writer’s block had methods that can be applied to programming. SD Times summarized her list of 10 ways to solve programmer’s block (and yes, her list starts at zero): Tip 0 (Program First): Schedule your programming like you would a meeting. Do whatever it takes to “glue” yourself to your chair. Grab some coffee and park it. Tip 1 (Don’t be afraid to use paper): According to Knight, Writing Your Dissertation in Fifteen Minutes a Day “emphasizes the importance of getting to draft zero, the conceptual template predates the first draft.” Sometimes free writing can help grab all those ideas floating around in your head overnight and during the wee hours of the morning. Don’t be afraid to get out the old fashioned pen and paper.Tip 2 (Establish a programming addiction): Establishing a schedule is the best way to guarantee accomplishment, said Knight. We are creatures of habit after all, so make programming a part of your daily schedule and then set achievable (reasonable) goals. Tip 3 (Track ideas as well as bugs): Just like you would track bugs, track those ideas as well. Start with Tip #2, but if creativity doesn’t follow your schedule, catch your ideas when you can, said Knight. She recommends carrying a notebook. Tip 4 (Make friends): Join online forums, meetups, hackathons — chat with folks about their code. According to Knight, “people do better when we have accountability.”Tip 5 (Learn from others): “Unlike writing, it’s very much encouraged to use pre-existing libraries and samples to scaffold your project needs,” wrote Knight. “Reference where things come from, but there’s no need to re-invent the wheel when someone has already figured a problem out.”Tip 6 (Be nice to your muse): Like writing, conceptualizing how code should be structured requires a creative process. Take a walk, pace the hallway, and don’t be afraid to “celebrate the activities that fertilize the soil before planting, and water it after,” wrote Knight.Tip 7 (Be heartless, but not mean-spirited): Stephen King once said writers in their editing stage will “kill their darlings.” For programmers, the tricky part is finding mistakes without recrimination, said Knight. She recommends being heartless when it comes to the purpose of your code, but be kind when it comes to yourself. Tip 8 (Beware the curse of knowledge): “One of the biggest challenges of writing is ensuring the audience follows,” wrote Knight. “Use whitespace, comment your code, and spend time creating sensible abstractions and structures. It doesn’t matter how clever your prose (or code) is, if people cannot deconstruct the story.”Tip 9 (End on a downward slope): Knight said to devote 10% of the end of your day to think about what you’ll do the next. That way, you can wake up and just get started on your code. “I believe these ten strategies can make you more creative, more productive, and less likely to get stuck,” she wrote.
Android 9 power improvementsGoogle is continuing its effort to improve battery life in its latest Android operating system and beyond. Past efforts have included Job Scheduler in Android 5.0, Doze and App Standby in Android 6.0, Doze improvements in Android 7.0 and background limits in Android 8.0. In Android 9, Google is expanding on these improvements with a focus on helping developers build cool apps, making those apps power-efficient and not having to both users with configuring app settings. “This means that the OS needs to be smarter and adapt to user preferences while improving the battery life of the device. To address these needs, we have introduced App Standby Buckets, Background Restrictions, and improved Battery Saver,” Madan Ankapura, product manager for Android, wrote in a post. Perfecto releases new DevOps professional bookPerfecto will be releasing the Continuous Testing for DevOps Professionals book next week at Jenkins World in San Francisco. This is Perfecto’s second book, and was created in collaboration with CloudBees, Tricentis, Testim.io, test.ai and various industry thought leaders. The book will provide a definitive guide to implementing success continuous testing initiatives throughout DevOps pipelines. Profits from the book will be donated to Code.org whose mission is to expand access to computer science in schools. In addition, the book will include fundamentals of continuous testing, continuous testing for web apps, continuous testing for mobile apps, and the future of continuous testing. HackerRank today announced a new machine learning solution designed to help companies in their software development hiring process. The HackerRank Tech Talent Matrix uses ML to provide companies the proper data on software developer candidates. It analyzes more than 150 million assessments and candidate data points in order to provide insights into technical recruiting efforts and increase chances of finding the right software developer for the job. “Companies lack basic visibility into their developer hiring process, which is now just as big a priority as revenue and customer retention for executives across every industry,” said Vivek Ravisankar, CEO & co-founder of HackerRank. “We power one assessment every eight seconds on our platform, and have built a deep, unparalleled data set on what makes for a great candidate experience. Pairing machine learning with our experience and data, we’re arming businesses with the actionable intelligence they need to make smarter technical hiring decisions and ultimately transform into tech companies.”The matrix will provide a candidate response score to measure an organization’s candidate outreach performance, and a assessment quality score to measure the quality of companies’ assessments. eBay open-sources head motion technology for iPhoneseBay announced HeadGaze, a reusable technology library for tracking head movement through iOS apps, is now available on GitHub. HeadGaze was developed as part of an internship project within the company and uses Apple ARKit and the iPhone X camera to track head motion. According to the company, this type of technology could be used to scroll through a recipe without using greasy fingers to touch the phone, following how-to-manuals while trying to fix something messy like a car engine, or if it is too cold to remove your gloves in the winter to use your phone. The team will also be looking into tracking eye movements and fusing the experiences together.