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Tutor profile: Joseph M.

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Joseph M.
Software Consultant at FAST Enterprises
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Questions

Subject: Javascript Programming

TutorMe
Question:

Why might asynchronous programming be useful when interacting with the DOM (Document Object Model)?

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Joseph M.
Answer:

Oftentimes users want to do something that takes a while. If that task can be completed in isolation, then it is best to do so asynchronously so that the main thread can continue to update the DOM so that the user doesn't think it's frozen. For example, you may see a spinning wheel after entering your login information on a website. In the background, Javascript sent an asynchronous request to the server to check your credentials. While it waits on the asynchronous request, it can continually update what the user sees so that the user knows the app is doing something.

Subject: Java Programming

TutorMe
Question:

Explain inheritance to someone who isn't a programmer, preferably with an example.

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Joseph M.
Answer:

We often use general concepts to quickly classify things. For instance, if we define a mammal as a being with a heart, then if we say humans and dogs are mammals, we expect all humans and all dogs will have hearts. Here, the definition of humans has inherited the definition of mammals. We could expand upon the original definition and say that humans also have big brains, but we always know that since humans are mammals they must have a heart. For a programmer, inheritance is when the definition of an object must include the definition of another object.

Subject: Databases

TutorMe
Question:

Can you give an example of when you might want to have a denormalized database schema, and explain why?

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Joseph M.
Answer:

Denormalization involves storing data in multiple places. While it may help with lookup times, it hurts storage space. An example of a time to use it would be: if I have a database holding information about a school, I will probably have a table with students' information (like their full name, address, and ID number). I will probably have a separate table listing grades students have received in the class, with a foreign key on the student ID. If this table will be referenced often and their names will be used in the results, it may make sense to add their names to the list of columns in the grades table.

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