"Demystification" is just as important as "Abstraction" in "Computer Science" (Was: Know any Fortran

Dave Wade dave.g4ugm at gmail.com
Fri Oct 30 16:43:04 CDT 2015

> -----Original Message-----
> From: cctalk [mailto:cctalk-bounces at classiccmp.org] On Behalf Of ANDY
> Sent: 30 October 2015 21:22
> To: General Discussion: On-Topic and Off-Topic Posts
> <cctalk at classiccmp.org>
> Subject: Re: "Demystification" is just as important as "Abstraction" in
> "Computer Science" (Was: Know any Fortran
> From: "Fred Cisin" <cisin at xenosoft.com>
> > They literally refused to understand that a dataset could exist that
> > would be too large to fit into memory.
> In the UK, the Home Secretary wants to force all ISPs to store and keep
> (reasonably) easily searchable logs of all URLs accessed by all their customers.
> This, I think, is an example of "big data" … possibly so big that backup is
> impracticable.
> When I did daily analysis of the urls accessed by the 2000 or so students at a
> University*, that daily database was pushing what I could get into memory
> on my desktop system (well specified) … now imagine 20 million users for 365
> days - I'd be doubtful that even todays mainframes and supercomputers
> could do that.

About a year ago, I was asked by my employer to give them a list of the URLs accessed by one member of staff. I sent them a list of the URL's that I had accessed. 
It was totally useless, mainly because every page these day as is a composite. Add to that allowing Outlook to download the content of an HTML e-mail ..
.. its almost a totally pointless exercise....

> * When I questioned the legality (and morality) of doing this the answer was
> "we believe it is legal" (and "stop complaining and keep digging").
> Andy

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