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At 40, a person is ...

Austerity Empowers Re:It's my birthday today! (169 comments)

Actually, join a group where you spend a lot of time having face-to-face conversations

Is this to help us feel better about death by giving us a terrible reminder that there are fates worse than death?

yesterday
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Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

Austerity Empowers Re:Yes, idiocy (573 comments)

Are parents going to allow their kids to see this movie know a lone gun nut might kill them?

Or more accurately let them go see The Hobbit 3, or other big blockbusters that might show in the same theater and would otherwise draw in a lot of money.

2 days ago
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Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

Austerity Empowers Re:Actually (573 comments)

And China. China probably wouldn't piss on them if they were on fire, but wouldn't like us dropping troops next door or risking Dear Lunatic lighting off a nuke to make a point.

2 days ago
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Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

Austerity Empowers Re:yea but (573 comments)

There's no way Sony would be liable for an act of war or terrorist attack due to their decision to air a movie. We can't even hold them responsible for the financial loss and emotional damages that most of their movies already cause, and that is absolutely through their own negligence!

2 days ago
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Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

Austerity Empowers Re:Land of the free (573 comments)

I wonder too, considering by some accounts it's just a really bad movie (http://www.cnn.com/2014/12/17/opinion/stanley-interview-threats/index.html?hpt=hp_t3 , warning, it's CNN and it's an editorial, take with a shot of tequila and a salt shaker). The only known way of making people see a really bad movie is to have Michael Bay do the special effects, or make some controversy around it. Michael Bay is no doubt working on Transformers N: Plan Gigli from Outer Space

I don't think NK has the capability of making good on telegraphed threats, nor would they like the response.

2 days ago
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Reaction To the Sony Hack Is 'Beyond the Realm of Stupid'

Austerity Empowers Re:Land of the free (573 comments)

I'm totally gonna shoot that pipe bomb, and show it who's boss!

2 days ago
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Top Five Theaters Won't Show "The Interview" Sony Cancels Release

Austerity Empowers Re:Home of the brave? (580 comments)

I'm not sure hacking Sony implies the capacity to pull off "9/11 style attacks". Further, pulling off "9/11 style attacks" might be considered an overt act of war, and regardless of the difficult political situation there, little Kimmy might find himself the victim of "Iraq Style Liberation".

2 days ago
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New AP Course, "Computer Science Principles," Aims To Make CS More Accessible

Austerity Empowers Re:Confused. (208 comments)

Why do we have to assume one way or the other? Why not just admit we don't know and let people do what they want instead of trying to push them to do what we think they should?

So I agree, no one should push you into a career you don't want to be in. The question is whether something is pushing them out of STEM, even if they do want to be in it. I don't think that's answered by the horseshit in TFA. The question is whether these people are lefties because that is their dominant hand, or because all they have is left-handed scissors.

I disagree that we should just accept the status quo without further investigation. The problem in a nutshell: the gender pay gap. If you are going to doom a demographic to lower wages, you should have good reasons for it. Is there a good reason for it? What is that reason? Is it solvable in a way we can tolerate?

3 days ago
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New AP Course, "Computer Science Principles," Aims To Make CS More Accessible

Austerity Empowers Re:Confused. (208 comments)

there ARE no differences between boys and girls

If anyone is saying that, they are clearly idiots. The internet has copious data regarding the differences between boys and girls. Even after eliminating the porn sites, you end up with various physiological and psychological differences. We're very different in general, the extent to which and whether it's nature or nurture will no doubt rage on for the rest of our lives. There is absolutely no reason to think men and women are the same...

The question of equality is where they are asserting men and women can perform the same. Until evidence exists to the contrary, we have to assume this is true. This is not to say that men and women will do the same things to establish this equality, or will acquire knowledge or even perform the function identically. Only that in the end they will produce the same results.

to create curriculum specifically for girls, who are no different than boys

Accepting the above, which I believe with conviction, this then falls apart. However, where I would direct my nerd rage is at the conclusion that lead to creating a gender specific curriculum as a solution. It must have been something like "CS education as it exists is incompatible with female psychology; a CS education program which can target both genders is impossible, ergo we need to fork a new curriculum". I can't imagine the kind of data that existed to justify this. If it did exist, it seems like a likely assumption than the genders will probably require dedicated education on other topics as well, and maybe we should go back to having boys and girls schools across the board.

Personally I think the problem is entirely social and cultural, and we're wasting our time with this stuff.

3 days ago
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Economists Say Newest AI Technology Destroys More Jobs Than It Creates

Austerity Empowers Re:Does the job still get done? (658 comments)

Stop being sensible. This is our weekly "fear the AI" post. Soon they'll have to change the tagline: news for luddites, stuff to fear.

Obviously the solution is going to have to be to figure out how to retrain people in later life, the system already doesn't work even without AI, but put in context of changing technology and shifting labor forces. You wake up one day and some wall st. nitwit has decided that china or india has a comparative advantage for certain kinds of work, and whether that's true or not he will make it true by sending the work over there. So it will be time to retrain. Asking the average guy who is in debt for his house, his car, often his regular living expenses to also be saving money for re-education is just not going to fly.

But we can just blame AI for taking our jobs because that's easy and doesn't sound like a tax hike on the wealthy.

3 days ago
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Dr. Dobb's 38-Year Run Comes To an End

Austerity Empowers Re:Pretty sad (155 comments)

That's kind of the problem and why I dropped subscription a while back. The explosion of computing and computing jobs means that their target audience is wildly diverse and I found maybe one article in a year would touch on a subject or topic that was remotely applicable to me, and it wasn't paying out.

4 days ago
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Virtual Reality Experiment Wants To Put White People In Black Bodies

Austerity Empowers Re:It has been done. (447 comments)

Offensive jokes, even if they were not intended to be offensive. First you are alienating the person, simultaneously recognizing his success and his not-belongingness; secondly, while I don't know that being proud of one's race should be a thing, any such pride is diminished by the joke.

I'm not ready to start a campaign of sensitivity training for the whole world or have people fired for racism etc., people do need to have a thick skin and let the little stuff pass, but our actions do impact the world. There are good reasons to pass on these jokes, and none to let them fly.

4 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Should a Liberal Arts Major Get Into STEM?

Austerity Empowers Re:Hmmmmm. Interesting decision history... (279 comments)

None proves it, but the question was how to break in to the field, this implies an interest in being successful in the field, not cheating your way to a diploma. There are many STEM careers that are hard or impossible to get in to without going back to school and getting the specialized degree. EE, CompE, Chemical engineering are all tough to break in to on your own. You could of course read a lot of books, but it's probably tough and you're unlikely able to get the kind of focus you need on the areas you will use on your specialization. A dirty secret is perhaps that if you go to school for say EE and you study RF, you may have a very hard time breaking in to computer engineering later, or even the much more closely related power systems. These areas end up being super specialized and your school+work experience ends up binning you into your niche. Later in life your "experience" is expected to be pretty fine grained and deep, so the breadth that's frequently touted as an advantage for liberal arts is actually a drawback for STEM fields outside of academia.

The trick is getting past the resume screen, that's tough to do without the degree in the first place. Then once you do, prepare for an 8 hour long interview that is going to make many PhD defenses seem trivial. There's no risk taking in the hiring process, they will be looking for you to demonstrate a large set of active knowledge on the spot. If you make it through there, be prepared to be learning hte rest of your life and never let yourself get comfortable. The fields change fast, your niche may disappear or more likely be outsourced, so you want to be able to shift focus believably and keep your eyes on trends.

In theory some software programming jobs are easier and don't necessarily require a degree, but I would absolutely be prepared to demonstrate expert knowledge on the language they use (exclusively C in my line of work) and if you're in to systems programming you better know hardware really well too. A CS degree really only helps with the social factor, even if you already know how to code well and have some documented experience on open source.

None of what I said sounds like it should be the case, but it absolutely is. It strikes me that degrees are being used as professional training program (ex. med school, law school) not for general education, as they should be.

4 days ago
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Virtual Reality Experiment Wants To Put White People In Black Bodies

Austerity Empowers Re:It has been done. (447 comments)

Yeah, black people call him an Uncle Tom Nigga, while white people call him friend.

Or perhaps a white guy would also make the same joke about Obama or Ribeiro, but less likely to say Uncle Tom or anything explicitly racial.
 

4 days ago
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Virtual Reality Experiment Wants To Put White People In Black Bodies

Austerity Empowers Re:It has been done. (447 comments)

It's one of those fun things in life: you get a well-raised, well-educated black man, and he's called all sorts of names by black people and white people alike. You get a poorly-educated, poorly-raised black man, and while we arrest him and throw him in jail for the crimes he inevitably (might have) committed, he's socially accepted.

Figure this problem out and there may be a lot less dumb on planet earth.

4 days ago
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Sony Demands Press Destroy Leaked Documents

Austerity Empowers Re:First amendment? (250 comments)

It does, a bit. If someone were to write an article talking about terrible/illegal/immoral actions Sony has engaged in, and uses the leaked documents (or excerpts thereof) as evidence, those people are free from criminal prosecution, such as slander.

Of course we know Sony will try to sue the crap out of them for "damages", but other than being expensive, probably won't stick provided the media DOES download the leaked documents.

5 days ago
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Why Didn't Sidecar's Flex Pricing Work?

Austerity Empowers Re:Duh. (190 comments)

The difference is that Katz posts were entertaining. Perhaps entertaining in entirely an unintended way, but they possessed a level of surrealism which felt like high art. It's like if The Jerk were to take up editorialism, I think that's how his stuff always read.

These posts are just dumb.

5 days ago
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Why Didn't Sidecar's Flex Pricing Work?

Austerity Empowers Re:It was CmdrTaco's blog (190 comments)

Rob Malda's personal blog.

Rob Malda's blog was more interesting, that's the real complaint. He did a good job of separating the wheat from the chaff. Articles like this one reduce the usefulness of slashdot, which was always a monoculture that ignored significant, but off-topic developments elsewhere.

Uber is technologically noteworthy due to how they are using technology, I think they get a bit too much air time, but it's interesting to see the taxi industry get shaken: they are relatively poor and survive only due to their government regulations. They serve as an example to any who might try to use technology to try to overthrow more well heeled industries, like say, Hollywood or publishing in general. How long are we going to fight that particular battle?

This, however, is clearly a post about business models and the economy, or I assume it is, tl;dr The business side of technology is irrelevant to my interests, business is just a bad reality TV show.

5 days ago
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Tracking the Mole Inside Silk Road 2.0

Austerity Empowers tax dollars well spent (81 comments)

I'm so glad my tax money is being well used here. I'd hate it if the libruls spent this money on health care or if we could just tighten our belts and do away with useless big government programs.

about a week ago
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MIT Removes Online Physics Lectures and Courses By Walter Lewin

Austerity Empowers Re:Just wondering... (416 comments)

It seems like his lectures are about 1000x more awesome than what I had to sit through in school, so you'd think they'd keep those and just make sure he's out of a position where he is interacting with students on MIT's behalf, which it sounds like he did voluntarily some time back. Kind of ridiculous to eliminate a person's work because he did bad things. How many of us read Moby Dick in school? Herman Melville was not a good man, but we ignore that, and focus on his work.

The best thing MIT could do is release the lectures for free (i.e. remove a profit motive from themselves), eliminate their name being used in association with it, and step back. That's reasonable. Trashing the whole thing is silly.

about two weeks ago

Submissions

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ARM Server Start-up Calxeda Closes Up Shop

Austerity Empowers Austerity Empowers writes  |  1 year,1 day

Austerity Empowers (669817) writes ""Calxeda, the pioneering maker of low-power microservers using hundreds of ARM central processor cores and System-on-a-Chip (SoC) products for hardware appliances, has laid off most of its employees and is shutting down operations beyond servicing its existing customers and investments." A sad day for many of us."
Link to Original Source
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Wheel of Time: A Memory of Light Released, but no eBook until April

Austerity Empowers Austerity Empowers writes  |  about 2 years ago

Austerity Empowers (669817) writes "The final entry in the fantasy series that has been released in 14 volumes over the past 20 years has been released . However in a typical money grubbing strategy that consumers have grown accustomed to from publishers, the eBook option will not release until April . We've seen this with movies, delaying streaming releases to try to drive up sales (and failing, with publishers mostly giving up), but now we also see it with books. Loyal fans are irate, giving 1 star reviews for a book they can't even have read ."
Link to Original Source
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Apple caves to Think Of The Children

Austerity Empowers Austerity Empowers writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Austerity Empowers (669817) writes "Apparently in an attempt to maintain a good corporate image, apple has yanked the "Baby Shaker" iPhone app from the app store. While I think there is little doubt that shaking a baby is not a socially acceptable behavior, it appears that good taste is one of many parameters required to sell a product on the iPhone. It would seem little has changed in the smart-phone world, except rather than being dominated by apps acceptable to carriers, we are to be dominated by apps acceptable to Apple."
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Civil War - Part Deux, Texas Strikes Back

Austerity Empowers Austerity Empowers writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Austerity Empowers (669817) writes "Former presidential candidate and Slashdot dark-horse favorite Ron Paul discusses the merits and patriotism associated with secession, after failing to stop bailout politics. While many of us on any side of the political spectrum might hear the message and agree in part, is this possibly the reason why he remains on the outside looking in at the political machine that is the US Government? Not all of our secessions have exactly been crowning achievements."
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Zombies Invade Austin, Natives Still Weird

Austerity Empowers Austerity Empowers writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Austerity Empowers (669817) writes "Public safety was given a significant boost yesterday, as a clandestine resistance organization changed electronic roadway signs to warn Austinites of a zombie invasion . The local government ministry of information and hired thugs quickly acted to suppress the information, correcting the signs to innocuous traffic reports. I, for one, welcome our new Zombie overlords."
Link to Original Source

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