Tag Archives: ICL

Alton Central School (ACS), To Their Credit, And Amazingly, Taking Part In ‘Code Day’ To Expose Kids To The JOYS Of Programming.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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Anura Guruge


Related posts:
++++ Search on ‘ACS’ for ALL related posts >>>>


Yes, they had sent flyers home.

But, I only really heard about it last Tuesday at the ACS ‘junior school’ concert when the Principal spoke about it twice (one in each ‘half’). Since I had NOT read the flyer and I could only go by what the Principal was saying I had NO IDEA what this was all about. The Principal spoke MAINLY about all the FREE food that will be available and the local restaurants that are kindly donating that food. I am glad. But, I wished she had STRESSED, did a little jig, and explained that this was an initiative to expose kids to the unmitigated JOYS of programming. Yes, I appreciate, that the Principal, the Superintendent, William (Bill) Lander and the School Board are extremely ‘oral‘ — but a little bit of elucidation about the ‘code‘ aspect of the evening as opposed to the ‘gastronomic‘ would have been cool.

That ACS is taking part in ‘Code Day‘ is cool.

Not sure whether the kids will get a full, uninterrupted HOUR to write some code that evening — but this is a good start. I just hope the kids aren’t distracted by the food. Hopefully, and this is a BIG hope, some of the teachers will try and continue this program sans the free food. But, to be fair, Devanee was taught MIT’s SCRATCH ‘animated programming’ a couple of years ago at ACS. So, that was good.

See below, after the images as to why I am so gung ho about kids getting exposed to the JOYS of programming.


codeday1

Click to ENLARGE. Use link below to access Website.

Link to access Website.


codeweek
Link to access Website.


codedaycsm

Click to access article …


I got a chance, in 1969, yes 1969, to take weekly 90 minute Computer Programming classes in school, viz. Mill Hill School in North London (also attended by Denis Thatcher and where James Murray, the primary editor of the Oxford English Dictionary once taught).

It was every Thursday and the classes were sponsored by the British International Computers Limited (ICL). They provided each of us with a BIG light green binder about computers and programming. I had yet to see a computer! But, computer programming and I clicked. Duck to the water. Natural affinity.

In those days there were no PCs. We didn’t have any terminals at the school. We wrote our programs on coding sheets; a practice that I continued to use, off and on, even when I worked for IBM, 8 years later — though by the time I was at IBM, and writing microcode, for the 3270 display system, I was classed as a programmer who wrote his code in ink (which I often did do) as opposed to pencil (because I was sure of what I was coding).

Our coding sheets were sent by mail (which is always overnight in the U.K.) to ICL. They punched it onto paper tape and ran it. The next Thursday we would get back our original coding sheets, the paper tape and the computer output. If you made a mistake you program would not have done what you wanted. But, it took a week to find out.

The rest is history. I went to Swansea College, University of Wales, to ‘study’ a 3-year B. Sc. course in Computer Technology. I, for the first time in my life, had unlimited access to computer resources. I programmed like I was possessed (in between near non-stop fornication). I had a great 3 years at Swansea. By my 2nd year at Swansea Ph. D. students were coming to me for help with their programs! One of my lecturers told IBM about me. IBM hired me during my 2nd year, after getting me to sit three IQ tests (as is permissible in the U.K., one of them at 10 pm at night) and told me that I can start work whenever I wanted — with or without a degree. Since I was having so much fun and really didn’t want to work — I hung around Swansea for another year and did get my 1st degree. Yes, I also do have a M. Sc. in Computer Science from the University of London — paid for by IBM.

Programming has been good for me, though in reality I didn’t write that much code professionally! I was considered ‘too good’ to just write code! A sign of the time. IBM and others wanted me to do more ‘executive’ tasks or do much more technical tasks such as Systems Programming or crafting microcode. I was IBM youngest ‘Planner’ — essentially a Product Manager. But, I wrote code in my ‘spare’ time — a program that I wrote as such in my spare time, which I called ‘NDSIO’, ‘New Display System Input/Output‘, where the ‘NDS’ was the now legendary 3270 display system, became a primary testing tool within IBM in the U.K., U.S. and Germany.

So, I am all in favor of kids being taught to program early.

Today, August 27, Marks 46th Anniversary Of Me Leaving Ceylon; 39th Of Me Joining IBM U.K. (Hursley), My Very First Job.

Anura Guruge, June 8, 2013.

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Anura Guruge


December 1967 in Buffalo. My mother decorating a cake. This was her forte. I couldn't find any pictures from August 1967.

December 1967 in Buffalo. My mother decorating a cake. This was her forte. I couldn’t find any pictures from August 1967.


August 27 has been an important landmark for much of my life.

That was the day in 1967 when I left Ceylon, basically for good, a week ahead of my 14th birthday. It sure changed my life though I am never sure whether it was for the better. IF I had had a choice I would have stayed in Ceylon and taken my lumps along the way. My cousins who knew me quite well reckon that I would have been shot very early on during the Civil War that started c. 1980 given that they know of my propensity to say my piece and be passionate about causes. I kind of think that they are right. I know that if I had stayed in Ceylon I would have got involved in politics.

I still remember the day we left. Actually it was night. Around 9pm local time, I think. I remember the Airport well. About 200 people came to see us off. I remember the plane. It was a Boeing 707 — still one of my favorite planes. I think it has ageless beauty. I think we flew TWA or PanAm. I have a TWA poster for a 707, from that era, hanging above my desk — even as I write.

Seven years later, on August 27, 1974, a Tuesday, the day after a Bank Holiday Monday in the UK, was my first work day at IBM U.K. Research Lab at Hursley — then IBM’s largest research lab. outside of the U.S.

I had signed up to start work on Monday, August 26, 1974. I did not know when it was a Bank Holiday when I sent a letter from Bangkok, Thailand, in July of that year, to a Ms. McKragen, Head of Personnel, Hursley, saying that I will start that day. I had been communicating with her off and on for 2 years — that being when IBM made me an unconditional job offer, when I was 19, that I would have a job at Hursley whenever I wanted it, degree or no degree — and all that I had to do was contact Ms. McKragen and tell her I was ready to join. That was a nice insurance policy to have in your back pocket when you were a totally WILD, totally hedonistic teenager living the life of Riley in College with no regard for the next day — let alone the future.

I wanted to be a game warden in Africa, though I was doing my degree in Computer Technology. After my offer from IBM I spent a whole year writing letters to various Game Parks in Africa looking for employment. Never got a single bite. Then I didn’t want to work for a capitalist American company! I hadn’t cut my hair in 2 years and was a quintessential no-drugs, but plenty of free love hippy. A British company, Sicon, offered me a very attractive job but they wanted me to spend a year in Bahrain installing a computer system at an hospital. Going to Bahrain, in 1974, did not appeal. I wanted to work for ICL — a British company, especially since I was already an expert on ICL systems (which is why IBM offered me this job in my 2nd year at Uni). ICL invited me for a weekend overnight recruiting camp at a very posh and nice country estate. I checked in on Friday night and then as was my wont those days, when I really was wild, took off the next day, with some girls I met at the event, to a very posh local pub, on the Thames, called ‘The Bell’. I still remember that, because I used to go back to that pub if I was within 15 miles of it. Suffice to say none of us got job offers from ICL since we missed most of Saturday. But, I had IBM’s job offer in my back pocket.

Then in June I went to Bangkok. Some of you will put two and two together. July – August 1974. The last days of Vietnam. American troops and support staff were pouring into Bangkok. I was living in a gated apartment complex with a lot of ‘service’ Americans. So exciting times. It was then that I sent my ‘can I start on August 26, 1974’ letter to Ms. McKragen — it being a Monday. She, a delightful lady, with a great sense of humor, sent me a letter back. This was before e-mail — though I first used e-mail, at IBM, to talk with some fellow IBMers in Japan, in 1976. She told me that Monday, August 26, was a Holiday but it certainly could be my official start date, but she would see me on Tuesday. Tuesday was august 27. What a coincidence.

So, August 27 is always special.

Romney’s Failed Election Day ‘Orca’ App: The Conspiracy Theory!


Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.

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by Anura Guruge


Related post:
>> Forget Voter Fraud; Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid Of Electronic Voting Machine Fraud! — Nov. 4, 2012.


Click to read the full article in ‘Politico’. Do Google for more, much more.

In the above cited post I presented my credentials as to my expertise in most things computer related.

I won’t divulge much, but let me just let you ponder on one key thing. These days WHO do you think is always BEHIND any mobile App.?

If you don’t know, let me help you out. With most of today’s apps. there are invariably one or more ‘Indians’ writing the code. Indians now dominate the software development field. Period.

Well we know how the Indians [i.e., Asians] voted.

Compromising an App is a piece of cake. It is so easy it is laughable. Much of it has to do with ‘Web service‘ and I have even written a book about it. All you have to do is to put in a call to a Web service and then manipulate that Web service on election day. Bingo. Cannot be detected.

I laughed so much. Oh, dear. This is not your father’s software.

Forget Voter Fraud; Be Afraid, Be Very Afraid Of Electronic Voting Machine Fraud!


Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.

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by Anura Guruge


I have never been a fan of electronic voting UNLESS there is a foolproof paper trail journaling system incorporated into it — and even then, I am always aware of the truism instilled into me in my early days at IBM: “you can’t make anything foolproof because fools are so ingenious“!

Getting ANY electronic voting machine to commit FRAUD, i.e., slew the vote in one direction or another, is a piece of cake. Trivial!

I actually do know what I am talking about. Given that I am actually quite modest (despite all evidence to the contrary) I will keep the stating of my computer credentials to a bare minimum. I started programming, in anger, in October 1969, when I had just turned 16. The programs were inputed via 7-track Paper Tape into a (British) ICL computer. I got my B. Sc. (Hons) in Computer Technology from the University of Wales in June 1974, aged 20. I went to work for IBM, at their Hursley Research Lab, on August 27, 1974 — a week prior to my 21st birthday (and starting my working life on a Bank Holiday Monday, and getting paid for it since I was on salary). I got my M. Sc. (Distinction) in Computer Science from the University of London in 1979. You know that extremely annoying serial number entering scheme you have to perform IF you ever buy any ‘expensive’ PC software legitimately. I developed the very first instance of that while working for IBM in 1978. See below for a U.S. Patent Office transcript that identifies me ‘Guruge’ and IBM as the initial ‘discoverer’. I didn’t make any money from it because I worked for IBM and the ‘ip’ belonged, quite rightly, to them. You can find the rest of my story on ‘Google’. Lets just say that I know my computers and in 1972 got banned for a month from using any of the computers at the University when they found out that I was HACKING into them — not to get any information BUT to ‘steal’ more computing time, those being the days when computing power was at a premium and computer access was thus RATIONED and closely monitored.


Lets just start with this list on Wikipedia of DOCUMENTED instances of electronic voting machine ‘issues’ — my interest being in all of the UNDOCUMENTED, stealth, successful scams.

Here is another story you might want to check out:

Click to read the article.

IF you have ANY interest as to whether YOUR vote will count on Tuesday, you should watch THESE videos on YouTube.

Click to access the YouTube videos.


Testing and certification means NOTHING and the videos (above) will demonstrate that to you.

So, why am I so PARANOID. Because, I can, right now, without hardly giving it much thought, tell you of 4 or 5 ways in which I can design some software that will be UNDETECTABLE!

But, here is what makes it real, real scary, especially for people like me (in the know).

I am at best a decent, above average computer scientist.

There are people out there a BILLION TIMES smarter than me!

If I can work out how to create fraudulent, undetectable software, there are folks, some in Russia, Hungary, India and China, who are way, way, way ahead of me. That is why I worry.

YOU take it from there.


Just one of the U.S. patents that cites ME as the original creator of authentication software (in 1978).
Click to visit the U.S. Patent Office search engine. Type in ‘Guruge’. The rest is history.