User talk:Timhowardriley

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Request for Comment[edit]

I added some comments to the talk page at talk:Computer program. I'll add some more info, and make some edits to the article when I get a chance. In the meantime, you might want to go into the different types of abstractions used and maybe add some history (Babbage's Analytical Engine, etc.) SqlPac 04:12, 22 May 2007 (UTC)

I'll be back to add some info to the article as soon as I get a chance to break out TAOCP :) SqlPac 19:34, 22 May 2007 (UTC)
Re-worked the intro., and gave you a formal definition of a computer program from Dr. Knuth himself. Also added some notes to the talk page. Will add some more later. If you can, I'd recommend getting a copy of Donald E. Knuth's "The Art of Computer Programming, Vol. 1". It will make learning the intricacies of programming theory easier. SqlPac 02:14, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
Thank you. The intro is better; however, the first sentence is still mind short-circuiting. I think is the best start. I'll look for Dr. Knuth's book. I went to the library last night and picked up "Comparative Programming Languages" by Wilson and Clark. It covers the whole gamut from Von Neumann to Prolog. Timhowardriley 16:28, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
I like to start with the cold, hard facts and then add the flowery text that makes it easier to understand. While it's good to add soft-sell definitions and expand on the explanations with nice and easy text, the formal definitions (IMHO) are the best place to begin. It hopefully will eliminate a lot of the argument over the intro that I see has been going on for months. Now the argument appears to be more about Style, but it would be better to steer the discussion toward Content and Substance. You can always Prettify it later. :) SqlPac 20:06, 23 May 2007 (UTC)
Fair enough. I landed on computer program by linking to it from someplace else. When I saw what I linked to I said, "yuck!" The problem is the first sentence -- the definition. So, without deciding on a good definition to use and expand upon, any changes to the article's body will just be rearranging the chairs of the Titanic. Timhowardriley 20:26, 23 May 2007 (UTC)

Bench press[edit]


Are you still editing the bench press article? I think the entries might be better off if they started with the descriptor (hypertrophy, endurance) rather than having them after the number of reps. Seems clearer to me. Also, a reference would be nice, but I've never seen one that satisfied me (i.e. peer-reviewed journal). WLU 17:12, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

Hello. I'm finished. Feel free to make it better. Timhowardriley 17:17, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
Lurvely, I'll re-arrange and throw in some wikilinks. No reference, eh? WLU 17:26, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
I re-wrote the section; I removed the reference to pyramids since it was pretty close to a how-to section. I tried to clarify where I could, but the section mixed power, endurance, strength and size, and generally there's only real agrement on the strength and endurance, power if you include plyometrics. Size, from what I've heard, doesn't really have any agreement on how to best achieve it, barring horse testosterone. WLU 17:39, 16 October 2007 (UTC)
Very good. I'm impressed. (P.S. I'll stick with normal size. ;-) Timhowardriley 18:05, 16 October 2007 (UTC)

Regarding your essay[edit]

Let's use the NOP instruction as an example to play with. Does a CPU parse the NOP instruction, or does it simply execute the NOP instruction? In the simplest of computers, those without the ability to pre-fetch or cache, an instruction can be defined as an input state alone, such that the introduction of such an input state onto the control lines of the computer necessarily causes a change in state of the remainder of the electronic circuitry after the next clock cycle. True? So is the mnemonic "NOP" an instruction? or is the resulting input bytes the instruction? or is the resulting state of the control lines the instruction itself? If one were to alter the state of the control lines manually by applying various voltages then one would be supplying an instruction but would also then be supplying an entirely new program (one instruction long and beyond the control of the CPU to vary), true? So then while it may be true that all algorithms that can be parsed may become computer programs, all computer programs do not necessarily need the characteristic of being parse-able. Even an instruction that is *not* within a CPU's instruction set, whether it resulted in an exception or not, is still an instruction, true? Computers do not require that the humans that program them are sane before attempting to follow their instructions. Metrax 23:04, 17 October 2007 (UTC)

I do databases, so I can't defend my essay at very low levels. The essay's purpose is to prove the relationship between most computer programs and algorithms. Regarding your comment on object code, go ahead and make the improvement in the article's third paragraph. Timhowardriley 00:02, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Is there any particular computer language that you are comfortable with enough that interpreting a small program in that language wouldn't require a laborious effort on your part? If not, then in what languages do you "do databases" and how exactly are they "done"? The reason I'm asking is so I can be more clear in any of my explanations. Metrax 05:27, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
I'm able to function completely in UNIX shell, C, and SQL. Timhowardriley 16:03, 22 October 2007 (UTC)
C is portable enough for me. If there is anything you want to ask about any particular example, just ask. It may seem transparent enough to me that I'd make the assumption you'd find it just as transparent. Metrax 21:52, 22 October 2007 (UTC)

I originally found the article as a subject of the mediation cabal. After reading the notes on the medcab project page, it looks to me like most of the contention has been resolved. One of the remaining items, though, was in regard to algorithm. Being a computer programmer myself on the order of more than thirty years now, i for one can certainly attest to the fact that i, myself, have written quite a few computer programs that did not fit the definition of algorithm. Quite a few of those weren't even compilable and had syntax errors, misspelled symbol references, and so forth. The question then becomes, is a computer program *not* a program simply because it is not compilable? On other occasions what i might have *thought* was an algorithm at the time turned out only to be either a recursive loop that blew stack, or upon forgetting a pop command ended up returning into the data instead of the code. Even though either of these types of programs would certainly not be classified as algorithms, they were still computer programs. Not only had the instructions been intended for execution, they were actually executed. An algorithm, though, has the necessary characteristic of being able to solve a given problem. Metrax 00:00, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

Regarding "After reading the notes on the medcab project page, it looks to me like most of the contention has been resolved." Yes it does. I hope these improvements stick. Stay tuned. Timhowardriley 00:05, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
As I understand it, an algorithm does not necessitate a computer. So while it might be true that all computer programs that solve a problem implement algorithms we still have a great number of cases of computer programs that cannot either be implemented, are inefficient, are used only as a means of throughput of information, and/or are dysfunctional. There appears to be an intersection between the two sets algorithms and computer programs, but neither is a subset or superset of the other. Do you agree? Metrax 20:34, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
I'm sorry, but I don't understand "cannot either be implemented, are inefficient, are used only as a means of throughput of information, and/or are dysfunctional." I would prefer to stay focused on the essential elements of computer programs and whitewash the peripherals. For a more formal proof of the relationship between algorithm and computer program, I would deploy Theory of algorithms. It would go something like: Algorithms --> Regular Languages --> Context-free Languages --> Turing Machines --> Computer Programs. But it's been 15 years since I took Math from Mars. However, I can emphatically remember that the thesis of that required, computer science, math course is: computer programs are a subset of algorithms. More specifically, the theory says that if you have an algorithm that will end, then it can be executed on a Turing Machine. And anything that can be executed on a Turing Machine can be executed on a computer with infinite memory. And of course, computer programs are needed to execute a computer. As you can see, it's my desire to have computer program defined in terms of algorithm, which at one time occurred. Timhowardriley 22:37, 18 October 2007 (UTC)
Consider my new program in my new language that resembles BASIC. In this language, as in BASIC all instructions are given on numbered lines and the numbered lines act also as addresses for reference. This program has only one instruction so you won't need to get a cup of coffee before reading the entire thing. Here is my program: 1 GOTO 3; Does this satisfy all of the requirements of a computer program? yes. Does it also satisfy all of the requirements of an algorithm? Metrax 05:19, 20 October 2007 (UTC)
About a different thought... you mentioned that you would prefer to stay focused on the essential elements of a computer program. The only essential element of a computer program is a single computer instruction. It does not matter how the instruction is formed and only matters that the instruction meet the criterion of changing the state of the machine (which it must by definition of an instruction). Metrax 05:25, 20 October 2007 (UTC)


Thank you!  :-) --HappyDog 06:45, 18 October 2007 (UTC)

Well deserved. Timhowardriley 17:03, 18 October 2007 (UTC)


What I meant was the first paragraph says a computer program is A, B, and C. The second paragraph explains A, but B and C are left hanging. Moreover, B mystifying. B says that hardware processing generates computer programs. And C seems archaic. I just feel these should be explained further in the third and fourth paragraphs. Timhowardriley 22:03, 23 October 2007 (UTC)

It occurs to me that perhaps you don't see as many computers in the world as maybe I do. When you are picturing a computer in your mind, are you seeing a PC with a keyboard, monitor, etc.? When I picture a computer in my mind, I only see a CPU with a data, control, and address lines. A PC to me is a complete conglomeration of computers working in tandem. There are far more computers in the world than there are PC's. Telephones, washing machines, toys, and even a typical keyboard today all contain fully respectable computers. There is a difference between the idea of "computer" and "human interactive computer". When you press a key on a keyboard, do you feel it to be archaic, too? Maybe you do! Metrax 21:32, 24 October 2007 (UTC)
I should have been more clear. When I see a computer program, I see instructions for a CPU. Those instructions may need many iterations of translation before those instructions can finally be decoded into micro-code. But at each iteration, those instructions are always software. On the other hand, the article's second sentence says in part, "Computer programs may ... even be manually input to the central processor of a computer." "Manually input" seems like throwing switches or moving cables, i.e. moving hardware. (When I was a computer operator on a Nova III, I had to set 16 toggle-switches and then push a button for many iterations to boot it into debug mode.) This is what I mean by archaic. Manually inputted computer programs used to happen but probably only currently occur on legacy systems. I'll expand on the subject of manual input in the article with this experience in mind if it doesn't conflict with your idea of what manual input means. Timhowardriley 23:09, 24 October 2007 (UTC)

Deleting things[edit]

Hey, I just noticed your {{ifd}} for an image you uploaded, and are the sole author of. You may want to try adding {{db-author}} to such things in the future, since it is very quick and easy. +mt 19:56, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

Thank you. Timhowardriley 20:17, 1 November 2007 (UTC)

Computer Program reorganization[edit]

After reading some of the comments recommending delisting Computer program. I decided I was wrong to pass it for GA. I made the classic mistake of focussing too much on how well you had addressed the comments in my original failing review, rather than rereviewing the article from scratch to see if it met GA standards. After carefully re-reviewing the article and the comments in the de-listing thread I decided that the problems were mostly with the article's organization more than with the actual material (much of which really was quite good). Therefore I took it on myself to follow up on what you had started (by breaking up the lead) with a major reorganization of the article. I think it is now really GA or very close. Most of what I did was just reshuffle existing material with a few wording tweaks and minor additions. I hope you don't take it as in anyway a negative reflection on all the work I know you have put into improving the content of the article.Rusty Cashman 20:12, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

Excellent! The more quality editors participating in the article, the better it will become. Timhowardriley 20:52, 10 November 2007 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:SacState.jpg[edit]

Nuvola apps important.svg

Image:SacState.jpg is being used on this article. I notice the image page specifies that the image is being used under fair use but there is no explanation or rationale as to why its use in this Wikipedia article constitutes fair use. In addition to the boilerplate fair use template, you must also write out on the image description page a specific explanation or rationale for why using this image in each article is consistent with fair use.

Please go to the image description page and edit it to include a fair use rationale. Using one of the templates at Wikipedia:Fair use rationale guideline is an easy way to insure that your image is in compliance with Wikipedia policy, but remember that you must complete the template. Do not simply insert a blank template on an image page.

If there is other fair use media, consider checking that you have specified the fair use rationale on the other images used on this page. Note that any fair use images uploaded after 4 May, 2006, and lacking such an explanation will be deleted one week after they have been uploaded, as described on criteria for speedy deletion. If you have any questions please ask them at the Media copyright questions page. Thank you.

BetacommandBot (talk) 20:35, 26 November 2007 (UTC)

Computer program lead[edit]

You are right I have stopped paying attention to computer program I have been busy with a FAC for history of evolutionary thought and with starting a new job. History of evolutionary thought failed FA so now I may have a little time for some other Wiki projects before I try again. Although I still have a to do list for history of paleontology, but I will devote some time to computer program as well. Here are some thoughts. I like the current definition of what a computer program is betther than the alternative Knuth definition of algorithm + data structures that some other people were proposing, and I am glad you appear to have won that particular edit war:) However, I think the Knuth definition should be mentioned. It is historically important in CS. Something like "In computer science a program has sometimes been defined as algorithm combined with data structures." This should be discussed where you talk about programming paradigms, as it is really the heart of imperitive programming. Here are some more comments on the article as it now stands:

  • You really need a better description of declaritive programming preferably with examples.
  • The section on program execution should mention that increasingly today programs are loaded from remote servers accross network interfaces (ie a java script loaded from a website when you click on something with your browser).
  • The Functional categories section really needs some better examples. I would use a hard disk defragmentation utility as an example of system SW and possibly anti-virus and/or firewall SW as well. The sort utility is Ok as an example of an applicationm utility but you should really list a couple of applications that would be more familiar to most readers. Obvious candidates would be word processing, email, and web browsing. If they are using Wikipedia they probably know what a web browser is :)

I hope that helps a little. I will try and help more with article in the next few weeks. Rusty Cashman (talk) 04:17, 16 December 2007 (UTC)

Re-reverted Wiki[edit]

Not all wikis are software engines, and even if they were, it's not a helpful term for most readers.

Your request for comment[edit]

Done I was happy to oblige, but you may be disappointed as I directly contradicted you. I'm surprised that you asked for my opinion: why? I won't be watching your talk or the article's talk page unless you request that I do, so please respond on my talk if you need to address me directly. -Justin (koavf)TCM☯ 21:29, 3 April 2008 (UTC)

Fair use rationale for Image:Appaserver screendump.jpg[edit]

Thanks for uploading Image:Appaserver screendump.jpg. You've indicated that the image meets Wikipedia's criteria for non-free content, but there is no explanation of why it meets those criteria. Please go to the image description page and edit it to include a fair use rationale. If you have any questions, please post them at Wikipedia:Media copyright questions.

Thank you for your cooperation. NOTE: once you correct this, please remove the tag from the image's page. STBotI (talk) 06:13, 21 May 2008 (UTC)

Oil depletion PDF[edit]

Do you think you could convert the file you've linked to on Oil depletion into a .svg or .png, clarify the source of the info a bit, and upload it? I think it would be a great addition to the article. NJGW (talk) 22:46, 11 June 2008 (UTC)

Thanks for the feedback. Will try. Timhowardriley (talk) 01:41, 12 June 2008 (UTC)

What is a computer program?[edit]

From your user page - Q: what is a computer program A: a subset of algorithm. You can also think of a computer program as the actual implementation of an algorithm, which is itself an abstraction.

BTW - Q: Why is the sky blue? A: So we know where to stop mowing?

Are you planning to work on the computer program article again anytime soon? Or are you giving it a break? I restricted myself to the discussions on the talk page to avoid an all-out edit war on the article page, but the article still could use some touching up :) SqlPac (talk) 03:42, 14 July 2008 (UTC)

Regarding the article: I'm out of material. Regarding the introduction of the article: it's the topic sentence of each major paragraph. So it would be best to add a paragraph and then add its topic sentence to the introduction. Regarding the association of computer programs and algorithms: as you can tell I wish the association were made in the article. However, I couldn't refute the claim that algorithms need to be intelligent and computer programs need not. Timhowardriley (talk) 03:24, 17 July 2008 (UTC)

Oil depletion[edit]

Hi Tim, when something like this occurs, all you have to do is go to the last bit of text that is visible in the article and that will be where the error is. In this case it was a "/" that was missing from a named ref tag. I've replaced it and now the article is as it should be. Don't panic ;) NJGW (talk) 04:21, 17 July 2008 (UTC)

Request for arbitration on tax issues[edit]

I have requested arbitration on tax issues here:

BLP privacy policy for limited public figures[edit]

I think that the current deadlock on Joe the plumber is due to unclear BLP policy on limited public figures. I've made a proposal to clarify the policy here. Since you are one of the parties involved in the dispute, this is a notification for your input on the proposed policy clarification. VG 10:56, 26 October 2008 (UTC)

Oil depletion per country.jpg[edit]

I allowed myself to make a PNG version of the file without all the JPEG artefacts:

Before: After:
Oil depletion per country.jpg Oil depletion per country.png

Much Much better for a 19kb increase :) TiCPU (talk) 20:38, 14 December 2008 (UTC)

Fund Accounting[edit]

I've added an external link from Fund Accounting to your book, The Accountancy Model. You proposed adding the link quite awhile back, but I've only just now gotten around to editing the article. Thanks for writing the book; I think it has material that would be particularly helpful to accounting students. Folklore1 (talk) 14:45, 16 March 2010 (UTC)

File permission problem with File:Appaserver screendump.jpg[edit]


Thanks for uploading File:Appaserver screendump.jpg. I noticed that while you provided a valid copyright licensing tag, there is no proof that the creator of the file agreed to license it under the given license.

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If you believe the media meets the criteria at Wikipedia:Non-free content, use a tag such as {{non-free fair use in|article name}} or one of the other tags listed at Wikipedia:Image copyright tags#Fair use, and add a rationale justifying the file's use on the article or articles where it is included. See Wikipedia:Image copyright tags for the full list of copyright tags that you can use.

If you have uploaded other files, consider checking that you have provided evidence that their copyright owners have agreed to license their works under the tags you supplied, too. You can find a list of files you have created in your upload log. Files lacking evidence of permission may be deleted one week after they have been tagged, as described on criteria for speedy deletion. If you have any questions please ask them at the Media copyright questions page. Thank you. MBisanz talk 00:00, 15 May 2010 (UTC)

Better solution to removing dead links[edit]

Hi Timhowardriley,

Noticing you removed a dead link from the article Festuca: you don't always have to do that. I was able to find an archive for this very simply by slipping the old url into the Internet Archive Wayback Machine, and finding the latest version for it archived. It's a really useful website to have around, although it doesn't always have the page you are looking for (I would guess up to 90% anyway). Here's the place to go...

---> <---

Hope this helps, Hamamelis (talk) 08:04, 24 August 2010 (UTC)

Nice tip. Thanks. Timhowardriley (talk) 18:15, 24 August 2010 (UTC)

A common problem[edit]

Dear Wikipedist editor, I want to submit to your attention an our common problem: disruptive contributions and edit warring operated by user Derek farn (talk). This latter shows systematically a provoking behaviour and lacking of respect for other people’s work, typical of vandalism. I’ve sent this communication to many people having the same problem in order to organize a collective protest/action request directed to e.g. the Arbitration Committee or Requests for comment/User conduct (this latter procedure requires the participation of at least two users) or to the Wikipedia Community. If you agree with this initiative please contact me at this dedicated email address: clipeaster-1971 AT yahoo DOT com. In order to avoid creating of a forum section dedicated to Derek farn I suggest you to delete this communication once you’ve read it and, then, be in contact via email. Any suggestion are welcomed. I look forward to hearing from you. Best regards, Structuralgeol (talk) 17:53, 15 July 2011 (UTC).

As another user pointed out to me that suggesting to be in contact outside wikipedia is not a correct way, for transparency reasons, so I conclude that we need to correspond via talk page. Best regards, Structuralgeol (talk) 02:32, 16 July 2011 (UTC).
I concur. If you refer Derek to the Wikipedia:Arbitration Committee, I'll submit my experiences of his bullying. Keep me informed. Timhowardriley (talk) 22:58, 19 July 2011 (UTC)
Dear Timhowardriley, thanks very much for your cooperation. I will keep you informed about. With my best regards and have a nice day, Structuralgeol (talk) 18:41, 23 July 2011 (UTC).