Adaptively downsampling a curve

It's holiday shopping season and every one is obsessed with getting discounts and points. I, however, am looking for a slightly different discount on a slightly different collection of points. When we simulate a dynamical system (a system that evolves in time), the smaller the time step of a simulation, the more accurate it is. …

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Inline virtual final

I was looking into virtual functions (that link is the most succinct exposition I have seen) for some of my code. And I began to think, huh, won't this slow things down? The code first has to go to a virtual table and then look up the correct function - that's a WHOLE extra step. …

C++: how to order class declarations

Of course, this is all a matter of opinion. When I started out writing C++ (back in the days of glBegin() and glEnd() ) I followed the convention (which I found in books and example code) of putting all the member variables first, then all the member functions. There was  much hand-wringing about whether the …

Your microprocessor knows π

When I started out in electrical engineering we were given 8085 kits to play with. It was an 8-bit microprocessor. I used to know the instructions set by heart. I have fond memories of using a ruled college notebook to work out a program to do long division and then keying in the program opcode …

Chebyshev polynomials and Runge’s phenomenon – Computing Orbits (2)

Using polynomial fits to interpolate data can blow up in your face. To avoid this, use the non-uniformly spaced Chebyshev nodes as your fitting control points. For extra bonus bucks, use Chebyshev polynomials.

c++: the named argument tease

I love Python keyword arguments because I forget what the order of the arguments are, because sometimes I want to leave some arguments at default values, because I hate writing boilerplate. That is why I got so excited when I was going through the source code of samtools (If you are not in bioinformatics, for …

C++: Notes on moves and copies

I found the behavior of Objects in STL containers a bit confusing, so I wrote down some notes for myself. (I've updated this post after helpful comments from my colleagues Vladimir Semenyuk and Björn Pollex. They pointed out that I hadn't implemented copy and move constructors in my original code. Hopefully the post now looks …