How to tell someone has no idea what they're talking about:
(note: context is talking about SHA hashes for the purpose of breaking the connection between personal information and buying habit on amazon.com)
"0185fd1f5137ec04a564fdd8ef043e12fd643511" is 41 characters and there's no real way to reduce that. an int, even a large int ( oracle-style ) would come out to be neighborhood of 8 bytes, and thats being overly generous. those 33 bytes eventually add up, given indexes and other such things. additionally, most databases can compare ints faster than they can char(41) columns.
free cookie to the first person to point out why this person is on crack - if you don't do this sort of thing for a living, you get a larger cookie. :P
expensive stuff that needs to be managed before college:
Still to do: Tuition ($lots) Car ($much less, but still noticable) Rent ($4.5k) Food ($varies, but well under $1k) Utilities ($varies, but well under $1k) Laptop (<$500) Hard drives ($400, with current plan) Speakers (Midiland 8200 V2) ($300) Sound card (TerraTec Aureon 7.1 Space) ($150) Headphone amp (Headroom Little) ($250) Joystick (Thrustmaster Cougar HOTAS) ($250) PS2 ($200)
Completed: AV switch(es) for consoles and audio ($70)
. . . and that's it.
Not too bad, all things considered . . . not failing miserably at Topcoder (if I can do it) will blow away a good number of these easily.
Financial aid will help too, as will student loans. If I can get 'em. We'll see.