top NPR: '80s Ads Are Responsible For the Lack of Women Coders
Time to re-watch WarGames.
top Is an Octopus Too Smart For Us To Eat?
I am reminded of this classic New Yorker cartoon caption contest winner:
top China Using Troop of Trained Monkeys To Guard Air Base
China once did something similar, and it lead to ecological disaster and mass starvation:
top Windows 8.1 Rolls Out Today
Windows 8.1 mouse lag reportedly renders some PC games "close-to unplayable"
top NSA Broke Privacy Rules Thousands of Times Per Year, Audit Finds
Brazil is my favorite movie, and I will take your reference one step further to point out another scary thing that people tend miss on their first few viewings: there are no terrorists in the film, only routinely failing infrastructure, and the oblivious bureaucracy that places the blame on terrorism.
For completeness, I should say that Harry Tuttle does engineer one small disaster out of spite, but in general his M.O. is to go around fixing things without filing paperwork, and Sam Lowry sabotages the pneumatic tubes in his new office, but it's not suggested that everyone is as fed up as they are and therefor actively revolting against the system. The SWAT-style police entry and arrest of Buttle is also very destructive, as they fail to repair the damage, and then neglect it.
The real world does have actual terrorists, but they are similarly less threatening than our government and police and infrastructure.
top Can Valve's 'Bossless' Company Model Work Elsewhere?
Fast Company published this article about GE's Durham, NC jet engine factory:
The plant opened in 1993 and is still running. The factory had 1 boss and 170 employees in 1999 when the article was written.
It predates Valve but tells the same basic story: doing a very hard thing in surprisingly smart ways with extraordinary people yields success. GE Durham also delivers on schedule, but they're engineering and manufacturing, not making creative entertainment on Valve time.
about a year and a half ago
top EA Building Microtransactions Into All of Its Future Games
EA: "We are making all our future games worse."
about a year and a half ago
top What Early Software Was Influential Enough To Deserve Acclaim?
top Valve's 'Steam Box' Console Is Real, Says Gabe Newell
> You want to get up and switch out the cartridge every time you wish to play another game?
I'd love to be able to plug in 10 cartridges and leave them there instead of swapping media.
top The White Noise of Smell
Sound may be a better analogy than you realize. See
top The Downside of Warp Drives: Annihilating Whole Star Systems When You Arrive
You can't go home again.
top Ask Slashdot: What Books Have Had a Significant Impact On Your Life?
Hackers: Heroes of the Computer Revolution, by Steven Levy.
The Invisible Gorilla: And Other Ways Our Intuitions Deceive Us, by Christopher Chabris and Daniel Simons.
Blindsight, by Peter Watts.
top The History of 'Correlation Does Not Imply Causation'
I had the phrase "Desired: A woman who understands that correlation does not imply causality..." in my dating profile.
I married the woman who replied. Yes, I am surprised that worked as well.
But correlation does not imply causality, so you don't know for sure that it worked!
top US Military Designates Julian Assange an "Enemy of State"
"Who the f*ck rated this garbage 'Insightful'?!?!"
Literal interpretation FAIL.
top Russia Builds World's Largest Nuclear Powered Ice-Breaker
If it ever navigates "the freezing depths of the Northern Sea" it will just be a very expensive nuclear powered shipwreck.
top Polish Researcher: Oracle Knew For Months About Java Zero-Day
It goes more like this:
2) Ditch Java 3) Profit!
top Firefox 15 Released: Silent Updates, Compressed Textures, Add-on Memory Leak Fix
The Opus site links to this great writeup explaining why 16bit/48khz audio all we'll ever need for consumer audio distribution:
top Ask Slashdot: What's the Best Place To Relocate?
Those who live in a paradise don't want more people to move there.
top Ask Slashdot: Most Underappreciated Sci-Fi Writer?
Asher is my favorite guilty pleasure. I would argue that he is on the hard end of the spectrum because it really is about the tech and aliens and AI ruled Polity and so on. These things are all central to the action rather than being backdrops or flavoring, and the space opera generally has some philosophical undercurrents.
Neal Asher writes a huge range of great monsters, action scenes with excellent pacing, firefights on seriously ridiculous scales, parasites with weird life-cycles, strange aliens and ecologies, and is just unreasonably fun to read. If he has a fault, it's underdeveloped villains with questionable motivations, but I'm happy to overlook them and get on with the good stuff.
Try Adaptogenic for an introductory Asher fix:
top Ask Slashdot: What's the Most Depressing Sci-fi You've Ever Read?
Blindsight, besides being the best thing I've ever read, has a rather stark outlook on the nature of consciousness and what that means for us as human beings. I don't consider it depressing, though some might, and Watts calls his portrayal of human nature "almost childishly optimistic."
From Watts' homepage: "Whenever I find my will to live becoming too strong, I read Peter Watts." —James Nicoll
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