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Activist Group Sues US Border Agency Over New, Vast Intelligence System

Afty0r TIA (82 comments)

The AFI, which was formally announced in June 2012 by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), consists of "a single platform for research, analysis, and visualization of large amounts of data from disparate sources and maintaining the final analysis or products in a single, searchable location for later use as well as appropriate dissemination."

Sooo errr.... Total Information Awareness then?
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/T...

3 days ago
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Renewable Energy Saves Fortune 100 Companies $1.1B Annually

Afty0r Re:Saved? (116 comments)

$2.2billion, annually.

about three weeks ago
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In a Hole, Golf Courses Experiment With 15-inch Holes

Afty0r Expensive Middle Class Sport Losing Patrons (405 comments)

Wonder why - the most expensive popular sport in existence is losing millions of players, right around the time that the income of the group most associated with playing golf is dipping dramatically...

Maybe if Sherlock were here he could figure out why?

about 3 months ago
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Your Car Will Tell You How To Hit the Next Green Light

Afty0r Making waves in traffic (364 comments)

So correct me if I'm wrong, but if all drivers adopted this, wouldn't it result in traffic in a lane approaching a light from converging together into "clumps" or "waves"?

Cars near the front of any given clump would be slowing down in order to arrive at the light after it has stopped being red and become green. (Close) Behind those cars would cars which would have passed through during the green interval regardless of this system. At the back of a clump would be cars who are speeding up to attempt to "get in" on that same green signal.

Ultimately it would result in cars travelling very close together, with huge spaces between "convoys". It might even be more efficient, so sure - but while there are still humans behind the wheel, this seems dangerous as everyone will always be "tailgating". Once CPUs are behind all the wheels, it will be trivial to implement using the "Internet of Things".

about 4 months ago
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TSA Missed Boston Bomber Because His Name Was Misspelled In a Database

Afty0r Re:Helpful links for intelligence community devs (275 comments)

Having worked in this arena, I can also say that Engram (or Qgram) analysis is excellent, and can be written in common SQL servers and perform very well compared with bit-shifting code methods.

about 4 months ago
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Operation Wants To Mine 10% of All New Bitcoins

Afty0r Re:I admire their spunk, but... (275 comments)

Why do you believe "unlike gold, the users can just up and quit Bitcoin forever"?

I don't use, mine, or own Bitcoin - but it's fairly obvious that beyond the use of Gold for conducting materials, it has little to no intrinsic value - it's almost identical to Bitcoin.

Everyone invested in Gold could decide tomorrow to shift their investments to Aluminium...or Dogecoin. This would leave Gold almost worthless. The same is true of Bitcoin - but why do you feel one is more likely than the other?

I think you do not understand how currency works...

about 4 months ago
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Walmart Unveils Turbine-Powered WAVE Concept Truck

Afty0r Re:Trailer strength (242 comments)

By the time this concept is rolling off a production line, what makes you think a human will be operating the forklift?

about 5 months ago
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Good Engineering Managers Just "Don't Exist"

Afty0r *All* the benefits? (312 comments)

The best engineers get all the benefits of being leaders

*All* the benefits?

I don't think so, I think it's just inertia. Our industry pays middle management comparatively poorly. In software engineering / web development which is my line of work, manager get paid barely more than senior engineers. Now I'm not one of those people who feels it's wrong to have an engineer making more than his boss (I've managed people earning more than me before, they were all awesome) but if you want the best people to step up and take a lot more pain you need to pay them a lot more.

In most other industries managers earn significantly more than their reports. Take a look at retail, at sales and many other professions. Someone in retail in the UK earning £16k/annum on a checkout line will have a manager who earns around double that - 30k or so. Same for customer services.

So, take a software engineer earning 55k/annum in London - his manager probably earns around 65k-70k, and has a MUCH more stressful and less enjoyable job, and almost certainly longer hours. His pro-rata take home is probably only around 5% better.

So how about we pay our Development Managers 100k? I bet you'd have a few more of the stronger candidates stepping up to the plate.

Yours sincerely, a (fairly, IMHO) good Development Manager in London - considering taking a step down or sideways because the money just doesn't justify the extra hassle...

about 5 months ago
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Cops With Google Glass: Horrible Idea, Or Good One?

Afty0r Re:Judging Performance (192 comments)

Selective enforcement of the law is one of the most harmful possible aspects of policing - the sooner we are rid of it, the better.

Instead, for small crimes which are rarely prosecuted (because the punishment is crazy high, like littering) we will instead prosecute all instances, and by popular demand reduce the fine to something more palatable....

about 5 months ago
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UK Govt's Censorware Blocks Tech, Civil Liberties Websites

Afty0r Useless Article (148 comments)

He states, based on a single "URL checker" from O2, that every website he tried to check including slashdot, other tech news/resources sites and his own blog are "blocked by a parental controls regime - according to the URL checker".

But a little testing would have shown him that disney.com is blocked on this. As is www.gov.uk - the UK governments own official site. The parental controls he's ranting about are bunkum. He should have researched his subject, and posted from an informed viewpoint, instead this article is a waste of time.

about 7 months ago
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AI Reality Check In Online Dating

Afty0r Re:Surprised people still use... (192 comments)

That's what is missing from these algorithms. What about those who are attracted by some other factor than physical appearance?

They are a small outlier that it makes commercial sense to ignore them.

about 8 months ago
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NSA Chief Keith Alexander Takes His PRISM Pitch To YouTube

Afty0r Have they not worked it out yet? (165 comments)

All the lies and deceit that has come along from them so far means that WE. DO. NOT. TRUST. WHAT. YOU. SAY.

Your words are pointless, because you are almost certainly lying. "How do you know when an NSA spokesman is lying?" "His lips are moving"

about 9 months ago
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Attackers Tweet As They Assault UN Development Program Compound

Afty0r Re:Why... (240 comments)

That is absolutely absurd.

For example when you talk about "they" who do you mean? All of them?

Take, for example, drug-dealing in the West... now drug dealers have to conduct business in public and with the public, Al-Shabab do not and can remain relatively hidden during their planning and operations. What percentage of the population of Western Towns and cities do you think could accurately identify or name over 50% of their local drug dealers? I'm guessing it's in the region of a few percent - the other ninety-odd percent of people know little or nothing about it.

Your comments are actually harmful to this discourse, you haven't thought them through, and are labelling an entire population when it is, in fact, a minority.

about a year ago
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Fixing Over a Decade of Missing Computer Programming Education In the UK

Afty0r Can Anyone Tell Me Why This Mattters? (117 comments)

So a decade ago they stopped teaching computer programming in UK schools.

And in the last decade, what... has London stopped being a major Tech Hub? Is there a shortage of good young programmers looking for jobs in London?

The answers to both of those questions is NO. So *my* question is this - if teaching computer programming in schools or not teaching it has no discernable effect, why bother wasting time on lessons on it when they could be devoted to something else?

about a year ago
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Apple's War Against Jailbreaking Now Makes Perfect Sense

Afty0r Re:IMEI (321 comments)

Probably the fact that the IMEI number can be changed?

about a year ago
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New Best Way To Nuke a Short-Notice Asteroid

Afty0r Re:Simulate or it didn't happen! You know what I m (311 comments)

To be fair, regardless of simulations, proofs etc. having 50 asteroids of mass 1 tonne each impacting the earth at the same time is *way* less risky than having a single asteroid of 50 tonnes impact - at the very least more of the mass will be burned off in the atmosphere, also the distributed nature, and lower individual impact energies, of the fragments will almost certainly result in less loss of life and less climate change...

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: Moving From Contract Developers To Hiring One In-House?

Afty0r Can't afford a good developers' salary? (524 comments)

Then it sounds like you will need to give some equity in your business away.

Or, consider this - why are you allowing the same guys writing the software to be responsible for testing it? If you genuinely write good specs you should be able to find someone who will write automated testing (and/or engage in manual testing) to meet your spec and apply it against the software provided by the contractor. This should eliminate a very large number of potential bugs. If your specs are good enough you could even offshore this fairly easily - it's very simple work.

about a year ago

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