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Ask Slashdot: Can a Felon Work In IT?

BlackHawk-666 Re:No (720 comments)

All of which are completely rife with corruption and scandal.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Can a Felon Work In IT?

BlackHawk-666 No (720 comments)

You don't put felons in charge of highly sensitive and potentially high value data. You can talk all you like about being reformed, but there is now a massive trust issue surrounding your behaviour and anything you say.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Convincing My Company To Stop Using Passwords?

BlackHawk-666 Lastpass (247 comments)

I use Lastpass. I get it to auto-generate random 16+ character passwords with a mix of alpha, numeric, upper / lower and special chars. The passwords are totally impossible to remember. Each password is totally unique to the site. I Then let it log me into everything after I give it my very long, easy to remember pass-phrase.

XKCD: https://xkcd.com/936/

about two weeks ago
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Programmer Father Asks: What Gets Little Girls Interested In Science?

BlackHawk-666 Adventure Time (584 comments)

Let her watch Adventure Time. Princess Bubblegum is both a princess with a castle and servants *and* a really super-smart scientist. There's your role model right there.

about two weeks ago
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Attack of the One-Letter Programming Languages

BlackHawk-666 Re:APL: A Programming Language (127 comments)

I swear, the "articles" are getting more idiotic every year. This stuff is of the level you'd expect on one of those 'Top x About y' sites.

about a month ago
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2014 Hour of Code: Do Ends Justify Disney Product Placement Means?

BlackHawk-666 Re:Of course not! (125 comments)

Which girl was the positive portrayal? The ditsy airhead who fell in love with an obvious creep about 20 seconds after meeting him, or the ice queen bitch who shut everyone out of her life and went on to live alone in an ice castle. Lucky that ice cutter (prince) guy was there to help the ditsy one or they never would have even made it to the castle.

Sure, these princesses aren't as completely helpless as a whole bunch of other Disney princesses, but they're certainly also not empowered woman providing a good role model.

about a month ago
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2014 Hour of Code: Do Ends Justify Disney Product Placement Means?

BlackHawk-666 Prince Charming (125 comments)

I foresee a dark future of lonely princesses spinning code in the top of a locked tower, waiting for their Prince Charming to come along and save it.

about a month ago
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Eizo Debuts Monitor With 1:1 Aspect Ratio

BlackHawk-666 Re:WANT. (330 comments)

Why don't you just rotate a 16:9 monitor into portrait orientation, or better yet a 16:10 portrait would be both tall and wide, just like you asked for.

about a month ago
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Russia May Be Planning National Space Station To Replace ISS

BlackHawk-666 Re:Forget the Space Station (236 comments)

But we'll need a new shuttle design for transporting equipment back and forth, with a cool, American sounding name like....lambs, pheasants...no wait, Eagles!

It'd make a great place to dump all our old nuclear waste!

about a month ago
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BitTorrent Unveils Sync 2.0

BlackHawk-666 Yay (60 comments)

Yay, finally I can stop enjoying the 100GB of free cloud storage that Google provide me, and instead pay $40 / year for no storage at all and the need to provide my own servers :D

I suppose there'll be a free version for people who don't need the "support". I'm just wondering who the pro version is targeted at.

about a month ago
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Intel Announces Major Reorg To Combine Mobile and PC Divisions

BlackHawk-666 Re:only greyneckbeard dinosaurs use PCs anyway (75 comments)

That might be marginally true, but only for consumers. The people who actually make the shit everyone consumes still need those tower rigs. Try running MSVC, Photoshop, Max, CRYENGINE and other DAW tools, all at once on your phone or tablet. You could run it on a beefy laptop, but that would seriously cost several times more than a standard PC and still be worse at the job.

So sure, over for the people who's only real need is a web browser...still going strong for the rest of us.

about a month ago
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Scientists Optimistic About Getting a Mammoth Genome Complete Enough To Clone

BlackHawk-666 Re:Exciting! (187 comments)

Clearly he's rescuing her from tentacle rape at the hands of a giant octopus - this is Japan after all ^^

about a month ago
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Scientists Optimistic About Getting a Mammoth Genome Complete Enough To Clone

BlackHawk-666 Re:huh? (187 comments)

He probably just has a chicken coop with a few hens and a rooster. Even some suburbanites do this since a back yard is plenty enough space for some chickens to run around as long as you supplement their diet.

about a month ago
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Do Good Programmers Need Agents?

BlackHawk-666 Re:Everybody's special. (215 comments)

I think even the terrible ones will notice the line comment at the start.

about a month ago
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MARS, Inc: We Are Running Out of Chocolate

BlackHawk-666 Re:Time to modify it to grow elsewhere (323 comments)

Slaves are a lot cheaper than you think.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/...

"The children are kidnapped or purchased for $20 - $70 each in poorer states, such as Benin and Togo, and sold into slavery in sex dens or as unpaid domestic servants for $350.00 each in wealthier oil-rich states, such as Nigeria and Gabon"

I'm sure you heard of that incident in Africa where a school of girls were kidnapped recently. Those girls will all be working as some form of slave now.

In India, parents will put their children into slavery (indentured service) for less than you spend on a night out. The owners make it so that they can never buy back their freedom by charging them for food and board, often in squalid conditions. The longer they remain a servant, the more they owe. Over time the females will give birth to children of their own and these are in turn owned as slaves with no way to buy their way out.

I'm not sure what sort of robot you think you can buy for a few hundred dollars.

about a month ago
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World's Youngest Microsoft Certificated Professional Is Five Years Old

BlackHawk-666 Re:Exactly why we test all candidates. (276 comments)

"If you'll indulge me in a little reductio ad absurdum... you mean people with a joint degree in Philosophy and History?"

Heh.

I'm not a huge fan of typing, since my fingers ache most the time from a life at the keyboard. So long as I managed to convey the gist, I'm reasonably happy to let the reader follow the train of thought on their own.

Anyway, good points there, all stuff I agree with. I went to uni in '87, and I can still remember to this day the difficulty of the switch from BASIC (my first language) to Pascal (where's the line numbers, no goto, what!), the introduction of C, and then...WTF...Lisp! What the hell is going on here? You definitely need a different state of mind and a different set of skills to use Lisp instead of most modern imperative languages.

You can jump from Java to C# and back pretty easy. Just learn the libraries and a few foibles and their "preferred style of coding" and you should be set. You can pick up a C based language pretty fast too...just learnt the ways it's different to C and hit those libraries again.

Ideally, you'd try and test a candidate on their ability to absorb knowledge, comprehend, reason, design, prototype and their understanding of the fundamentals. Most everything else is fru fru.

"If we add together all the computer knowledge that every computer recruiter thinks is "missing" from CS degrees, we'd end up designing a 20 year long programme...."

I've been at this 35 years now and all I know is that there is a vast ocean of things I still do not know.

about a month ago
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World's Youngest Microsoft Certificated Professional Is Five Years Old

BlackHawk-666 Re:Exactly why we test all candidates. (276 comments)

People laugh at that comment but he's quite right. It is literally impossible to work today in the programming field with just the information you can remember in your head. You should instead focus on getting people with good reasoning and research skills. People who can learn fast, apply past lessons and derive a correct solution based on your situation.

There's still a need for quite a large amount of information to be remembered by team members, but that is definitely trumped by how fast they can acquire it from resources they will have on hand at their work. For programmers they will have a syntax highlighting, auto-completing editor, project and make file management tools, language references, API references, and of course, vast realms of information on the net.

I was a little surprised the other day when I tried to remember the old definition for an OOP language. Inheritance and encapsulation jumped straight to mind but the third was just out of reach of my memory - despite actually using it every day for almost 30 years; polymorphism. I'd had to think I wouldn't pass some recruiter's idea of an test simply because my memory isn't what it used to be.

There's some skills like regex that I need to look up every time I use them. Mostly because they are used infrequently, have an arcane syntax, an API that varies from one language / environment to the next and every implementation seems to use different syntax. I've written heaps of SQL, I know where to place a key when to leave it down to a table scan. I can find my way through a query plan and figure out which part of a query is nonce...and yet I might still have trouble remembering some vague syntax thing. I have existing code to remind me and the web for when I don't have a snippet.

There's too much emphasis on rote learning of information that often is not even that useful, and not enough on developing analysis, research and planning skills.

about a month ago
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MARS, Inc: We Are Running Out of Chocolate

BlackHawk-666 Re:Time to modify it to grow elsewhere (323 comments)

Let's see

Option 1: buy incredibly expensive robots able to detect when beans are ripe, harvest them, dry them, etc These would come with service contracts, need constant maintenance and other high level - high tech skills.
Option 2: find some dirt poor local and indenture their children for some piddling small sum of money and have a slave labour force for life

Option 2 will always be cheaper and so market forces will always move some men towards it.

about a month ago
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MARS, Inc: We Are Running Out of Chocolate

BlackHawk-666 Re:This is what the Free Market is for (323 comments)

There's no shortage of other parts of the world where it could be grown. The real problem is that it's simply too expensive to grow it there, since they don't have a large workforce willing to work for slave labour wages. We could grow tons of the stuff here in Australia, but our people are used to decent work conditions, health care, a pension fund, and minimum wages that allow for a reasonable lifestyle.

about a month ago
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R. A. Montgomery, Creator of the "Choose Your Own Adventure" Books, Dead At 78

BlackHawk-666 Re:Got you, Mrs. Sampson (80 comments)

That's a perfectly cromulent thing to do around here.

about a month ago

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