Monday, June 23, 2008

'Democratisation de l'acces a L'Education' ...yes but at what cost?

Hi u all,
We have all heard that the government intends to provide access to Tertiary Education to all eligible students, and as per their definition, eligible students are those who have at least one A-Level....implies that with an 'E' in Maths is now eligible.

Should they really apply this measure, i believe that this will weigh heavily on the National Economy. A quick question i ask is: Do all jobs 'created' require the potential applicant to have a University Degree.

Furthermore, i believe that there is something more subtle going on....Let's assume that a School-Leaver is meant to be looking for a job, and given the current situation, finding a job is hard...Consequently, it could be that ensuring that most of the school-leavers join Uni implies that they will not swell up the unemployment statistics...What a Crafty Measure!!!

To mask the level of unemployment, get them to uni... They are just delaying the problem...

Several countries have faces problems when they educate too many people..They end up with over-qualified people, and worse still, since many cannot find well-enough paid jobs, the people then try 'Greener Grass Elsewhere', resulting in brain drain.

Reputable Universities usually have entry requirements as high as 3 B's....wonder where our decision makers are getting their inspiration from....for the one time they are not copying from Europe, they are making a mess of it all.

It is a fact that not everyone is has the ability to join university.. University Education is meant for people who really want to get it and who work hard enough for it.

I would not want to witness a bunch of Spiky-Hair, Piercing Loving, gum-chewing, and Techtonic obsessed teenager wearing Riped jeans being given something they have not worked hard enough to deserve. (Teenager ..yes..though they are 18 or more, i have doubts whether their mental age matches this high!)

What do you think?


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

In a free world, who needs Windows and Gates...all we need is Linux (and a good bandwidth)!

Hi all,

Last Poll Results!

'Un petit pas pour l'homme mais un pas de géant pour l'humanité'...This is what i said to myself when i installed Linux, Hardy Heron on the Office PC.

Hard to leave 14 years of a using Windows, it all started with Windows 3.1 on a 386 SX with 4 MB RAM, in 1994...and DOS-Shell...... Those were the days!

I already had a dual boot Vista-Linux on my Laptop, then i was so happy with it that i said to myself, that i might get more used to Linux if I used it in office, so i got a copy and off i went! Linux ready!

I had a little issue though, i have put the hostname 'Gavin' for my computer and then i sad to myself that i might change it to a funnier name, my friends had called their terminals Sugarbabe, Honey, Sexy... so i wanted to change the hostname to Pixie-Doux!

with the help of the owner of Sexy and Honey, i looked for the command to change the hostname, we came up with a sudo command...hummmm!! sudo, for once i am using it:


So i typed:

sudo hostname Pixie-Doux

It seemed to work fine, but when i rebooted the PC, and tried


It gave me the old name, i.e Gavin, i tried something more radical, by trying to change the hostname file from the folder /etc/hostname by writing

sudo vi /etc/hostname

However, i think i had done something wrong, I even tried to change it as any 'Normal' person would, i.e System settings->Network Settings....

Then i did something wrong...but I do not know what, All the sudo commands I was typing were not getting executed, they were giving me the 'unable to resolve host Pixie-Doux' error message, neither were any changes i was trying to do from the administrator login.

Worse still 'amateur comme je suis', i did not have a root login on the system to login and revert to the previous hostname...quelle stupidité.

The owner of Sugarbabe then kindly advised me to have a root user created as soon as the problem was sorted....

It was time to call Dr Scheme, and as soon as i told him i needed some help in Linux, his reply was 'Ki zafaire tone faire foiré encore la?'

Anyways, la fin justifie les moyensm he booted the pc using the CD, then used some Hocus Pocus Commands at the console, and badaBoom! Everything was operational!

Then i quickly applied Zetwal's advice and created the root account by typing:

sudo passwd root

Can't wait to experiment more on linux! I have found the long lost pleasure of using commands!

Pas conner ki mo pou casser encore lor Linux...anyways, I learnt many things my breaking other!


Monday, June 9, 2008

Alternatives to teaching programming methodology IN C++

Hi all,

Right now i am unable to phone or send text messages from my Orange Cell Phone.....

This situation is so bad...At times, sending your text messages is simply impossible..How long do we have to suffer from the whims of Orange? Hopefully, there is no Fair Use Policy on texts or call time.... Anyways...I believe that Orange should have the decency to inform its customers using a text message that the network will be case they have planned service upgrades.

I am faced with a fundamental question. Having myself learnt programming methodology in C++, I was wondering if we could use another language instead. Many times, i have had students whinging and whining about the complexity of the C++ syntax.

However in my opinion, the essence of programming methodology is not the language used for the implementation but it is in fact allowing the student to 'think' in a series of simple stepwise manner...i.e 'to think algorithmically'...subsequently, the use of a programming language to implement this thought becomes a trivial issue.

I have noticed that some students face difficulties imagining the different steps to be followed such that a solution is devised...I said devised...not implemented.

The implementation of a solution is trivial once you know exactly what are the steps that make up the solution. If our students find C++ tough..then i believe then we could look for alternative languages with more or less the same capabilities, because as I said it is more important to inculcate problem solving abilities and programming concepts than a specific language. We need to show them 'how to think'...and not 'what to think'...and definitely not 'what to think in C++'...coz some people tend to lose their thinking capabilities at the sound of 'C++'.

Programming is an art...the essence is the inspiration (The Aha moment!) and the expression are the codes...irrespective of the language used.

Would Romeo and Juliet be a less grand and less emotionally-stirring masterpiece if Shakespeare had written it in French (Assuming he knew French!)? Alors le langage n'importe que peu. L'idee ou l'inspiration est fondamentale, l'expression n'est que secondaire. Qu'en dites-vous?

Please vote and comment.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Mesures Reactives, et Operation Coup de poing!

Hi all,

As usual, last poll results,

we were all shocked hearing what happened to that student at Quatre-Bornes while she was taking the bus to get to her exams....but we have also witnessed the reactive measures of the local authorities, the cleared the bushy tracks leading to the Shoprite bus-stop...Apres la mort, la tisane... do they always have to wait until someone gets killed or abused?

The very day i was disgusted to hear a member of the police force describing an operation against drink-driving and the carrying of weapons in cars and .. He termed his operation as being 'proactive policing'...Cher Monsieur L'agent, si vous voulez faire du 'proactive policing' efficace, faites cela un Vendredi ou un Samedi soir... sinon shhhhhh!!!! Et faites le de sorte a ce que tous ceux interpellés recoivent le meme traitement, qu'ils soient fils de fermier ou fils de ministres or deputés. Since I am fed up hearing stories of double standards, ou la politique de deux poids, deux mesures dans notre petite ile paradisiaque!

Great are the words like Operation coup de poing....bla bla bla......If the right people were at the right places by a vast 'Operation Coup de pied' ou 'Lev Paké Aller'...may be we will live in a safer country, right now I am not sure if the Commissioner of Police is back or if we still have an Actor....sorry an Acting Commissioner of Police in his place. Well with a salary of Rs. 110 000 , he'd better be back quickly.

We hear high rank police officers or ministers talking about safety and security...but these are just words. I wonder if they would allow the wife and or daughters be outside the house on the roads after six....

The safety in Mauritius is Questionnable! With the number of thefts, murders, rapes.... Furthermore, there are several cases of murder and... which are yet to be solved...famous case are interrupted due to the accused suddenly falling ill, or lack of proof...It is just disgusting that people get away with murder simply because of their connections... Inquiries are only dropped due to lack of proof....what the hell is it really lack of proof or lack of competence...

Instead of Having Dall-Puri Police Officers (Since the walk in pairs, probably fearing the wind might carry them away, as they are soo skinny) or Ace police officers (coz now the new trend is to walk in group of four...4 Aces!!), or the SMF who are mostly sleeping right now, i believe we should have night patrols...these guys are paid from each and everyone's they better provide a service! Some are twice my size, i wonder if they can sprint for 30 metres to catch a thief.....

My regular readers, you might have read in one of my previous post that some roads in my locality have been resurfaced due to a possible visit from the PM, the later did not turn up......and as per Mr Boodhoo, it was because it was agreed by the members of the organising committees that there should be no political speeches during the visit. Interested readers can read the full articles on Le Mauricien Newspaper Website...Quelle Deception ...les politiciens sont meme prets à utiliser des lieux de prière pour des discours à connotation politiques.... How lowly!

Anyways....i was not personally thrilled to meet him...but luckily the roads got resurfaced.

Anyways, i finished correcting most of my scripts, and funnily enough some people managed to fill a queue implemented using a linked inventive!,

I need to inform you of a couple of things...

The Integrity of a message DOES NOT refer to the honesty of the person who has written it.

The Refresh rate of a NOT a special mechanism which prevents it from burning.

The Resolution in computing terms has nothing to do with Decision Making,

And When it comes to Transmission media in Networks, there is not such thing as a Wireless Cable

Its amazing what you can come across!!!!