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Cause and Effect: How a Revolutionary New Statistical Test Can Tease Them Apart

ConceptJunkie Re:Great... (136 comments)

So once we start using this on everything, 1 out of every 5 times, it will lead us to bogus conclusions with false statistical confidence....

So, a vast improvement then? ;-)

3 days ago
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Is Enterprise IT More Difficult To Manage Now Than Ever?

ConceptJunkie Re:I don't care what the user has at home (241 comments)

Perhaps the person is a developer. I normally running a VM, sometimes two or three. My machine has 20GB of RAM and it gets used.

about two weeks ago
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Google Earth API Will Be Retired On December 12, 2015

ConceptJunkie Re:Adobe (75 comments)

I never installed Java in the first place on this computer. It's just too much hassle. Those very few sites that have Java plug-ins... I can live without.

about two weeks ago
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NetHack: Still One of the Greatest Games Ever Written

ConceptJunkie Re:Omega forgotten? (186 comments)

I also enjoyed Omega more than Nethack, so much so that I ported the game to C++ in the late 90s, but never finished it...

about two weeks ago
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NetHack: Still One of the Greatest Games Ever Written

ConceptJunkie Re:Don't foget (186 comments)

Between that and a quote from Crow T. Robot, I salute you, sir.

The only sad thing is that your ascension probably doesn't earn you as much money. I've never ascended or even gotten close, but I hit a point about 10-15 years ago where I realized that beating Nethack amounts to reverse-engineering the spoilers list, a lot of which is arbitrary and capricious. I still play once in a while, but I don't ever expect to win.

I don't know if I've changed or the game has changed, but I don't recall Hack being so unforgiving when I first played it (29+/-1 years ago). Maybe I had more patience back then. Nowadays, I tend to prefer games like WazHack (which also runs on Android) because it is meant to capture the spirit of roguelikes without being quite as tedious and unforgiving. It's a lot of fun, but I miss some of the richness of Nethack. There's just no pleasing me, I guess.

My all-time favorite roguelike was Omega, which was pretty obscure, and hasn't been actively developed (to my knowledge) in well over a decade. I actually ported it to C++ back int he late 90s, but lost my momentum and never finished the project. It's sad, too, because I was probably 90% done. I frequently think about dusting it off again. Omega was almost unique (especially in the late 80s) in that it had a whole world including towns and several dungeons (and even some trips to alternate planes). I came _this close_ to winning Omega back in the day, but could never figure out what to do in the endgame.

For ancient and obscure roguelike fun, I used to play Oubliette back around 1983. It was also pretty unique in that it supported up to 6 characters and implemented the idea of multiple trips to the dungeon with realistic amounts of time required for resting and healing in between such that aging became a factor. It was pretty buggy, but did an amazing amount of stuff in an executable that was all of about 40k in size (with about another 60k or so in data). I figured out the semi-trivial encryption used in the data files with a friend and wrote a suite of Turbo Pascal programs to modify the game files (for instance a utility to reset the ages of your characters so they wouldn't get old and die). We also hacked our way to level 9 with a maxed out party just to see what it was like and experienced a TPK in the first encounter most of the time. I never legitimately got past about level 3 or 4, and I seriously doubt it was even possible to get down to level 9. Fun times.

about two weeks ago
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It's Not Developers Slowing Things Down, It's the Process

ConceptJunkie Re:Nope... (186 comments)

They key word here is "small". The complexity of managing a company grows at an geometric rate as a function of employees. The complexity of a project grows at an exponential rate as a function of the number of developers (at least after you get past a handful of people). Small companies that don't produce quickly die. I work at a medium-sized company where the scaling issues I described above really apply, so even though it's a good environment and management isn't a hindrance to making things happen, there's no way I would say work gets done quickly. However, the work does get done, and the environment is such that I feel like I can really make a difference. This contrasts to when I worked for a large company where I felt like nothing I said or did mattered in the long run (even though I did really good work for them.).

It sounds like you are in a good situation, and I hope it stays that way.

about a month ago
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Visual Studio 2015 Supports CLANG and Android (Emulator Included)

ConceptJunkie Re: Embrace has started (192 comments)

I very rarely saw XP crash in a way that wasn't obviously attributable to a hardware/driver issue. Vista blue-screened on me a couple times, but I stopped using after about 2 months because it was such a turd. Windows 7 was better, and Windows 8 is too, once you do what you can to eliminate all the "Metro" stuff. Both of them are still slower than XP in my experience, especially when copying across a network to a Samba share, which I do a lot. But blue-screens are almost a thing of the past in my experience.

about a month ago
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Study: Body Weight Heavily Influenced By Heritable Gut Microbes

ConceptJunkie Re:Oh no (297 comments)

I learned less from the Minnesota Starvation Experiment than I did from the Minnesota Spankological Protocol.

about a month ago
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Microsoft Makes Office Mobile Editing Free As in Freemium

ConceptJunkie Re:It is to laugh. (98 comments)

In my experience, most people do the same thing, but using Word. It's really annoy when someone sends you a screenshot and it arrives in e-mail or a Bugzilla attachment as a .doc[x] file. :-/

about a month and a half ago
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Mathematical Proof That the Universe Could Come From Nothing

ConceptJunkie Re:Nothing? (429 comments)

Indeed. Only 3 can be properly done on a sofa.

about a month and a half ago
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Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most By Obamacare

ConceptJunkie Re: how many small businesses has Obama killed? (739 comments)

Yeah, that ship has sailed. Now it's Federal Government uber alles and the states can, um, I guess they can still vote whether or not they use Daylight Saving Time.

What 10th Amendment?

about 2 months ago
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Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most By Obamacare

ConceptJunkie Re:how many small businesses has Obama killed? (739 comments)

I think the moderators have adjusted your score because it's plus 5 informative now.

Also, a lot of those "last minute concessions" were nothing but naked bribes. Those "conservative" Democrats who voted for ACA were bought and sold.

about 2 months ago
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Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most By Obamacare

ConceptJunkie Re: how many small businesses has Obama killed? (739 comments)

And Romney wasn't just some RINO rebel GOP governor in a backwater state that the GOP could write off as being a product of a liberal constituent... he was who the GOP chose to be the shining star and face of their party to combat the derivative of the very plan Romney pushed for in his home state.

You really don't understand the Republican Party if you think those things are mutually exclusive. Nominations are as much a smoke-filled back-room process as they ever were and the leadership of the GOP neither respects, nor is respected by, the majority of people who consider themselves Republican.

about 2 months ago
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Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most By Obamacare

ConceptJunkie Re:how many small businesses has Obama killed? (739 comments)

Saying, "if you don't like it, move" is just naive.

I don't think anyone thinks this is socialized healthcare, but it is closer to socialized healthcare than it was before. The most important point is that it is not a free market. Not even close. So anyone expecting any of the benefits of a free market aren't going to find it. All that's happening is that the government is distorting the market in order to fix problems that were largely caused by the government distorting the free market. It's a vicious cycle of trying to fix the broken fixes with more broken fixes, with the same results.

Also, enacting ACA has just replaced, "If you don't like it, move to another state." with "If you don't like it, move to another country." I've moved between states (for job reasons, not policy reasons) and it wasn't any more effort than getting a new driver's license and figuring out a new state income tax form. People move all the time. It's really not a big deal.

However, I don't think leaving the U.S. is quite that simple. Plus it's the U.S. It's the country everyone in the world goes to to escape the crapholes they currently live in. I'd prefer we not ruin it.

So your argument is, if I my be so bold, just a little flawed.

about 2 months ago
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Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most By Obamacare

ConceptJunkie Re:how many small businesses has Obama killed? (739 comments)

> In theory that works great, in practice it does not work at all.

Actually, it works just fine. The problem is that the people adversely affected by bad policies don't realize the bad policies are to blame and keep voting for them.

See Detroit.

about 2 months ago
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Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most By Obamacare

ConceptJunkie Re: how many small businesses has Obama killed? (739 comments)

You sound like you think you are a free and sovereign citizen of a republic founded on the inherent rights of the individual as bestowed upon by his Creator.

You have no place in the United States.

about 2 months ago
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Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most By Obamacare

ConceptJunkie Re: how many small businesses has Obama killed? (739 comments)

so (for example) insurance companies aren't allowed to waste more than 20% of what you pay them, resulting in $billions in refunds being sent to customers who were previously being really ripped off.

I'm sure this is a consolation to those folks who lost their policies. Or those folks whose premiums doubled and deductibles quadrupled.

Fortunately, no one seems to mind the President arbitrarily, and unconstitutionally pushing the employer mandate back past successive elections, because once that kicks in, it will really hit the fan.

Must be nice, passing a big boondoggle like ACA, taking all the credit and making sure all the bad stuff happens when you're out of office, or almost out of office, and are regardless, wholly unaccountable.

about 2 months ago

Submissions

ConceptJunkie hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

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Viruses

ConceptJunkie ConceptJunkie writes  |  more than 11 years ago

This whole "viruses/virii" argument is so stupid. First off, there are the Latin speakers who will argue 37 different reasons why such a word would or would not exist. Then there are the people who insist that virus is simply an English word and takes English pluralization.

Here's how it works. Hacker slang (or jargon, as in the "Jargon file") allows for the Latinesque construction of plurals by replacing "us" with "i", or "um" with "a" (or Anglo-Saxonish pluralization like "vaxen" or Hebrewish pluralization by adding "-im". Is this grammatically correct Latin (or Middle English, or Hebrew)? It doesn't matter... it's a play on words. The only point is that it is consistent with similar words.

What I find incredibly annoying is that people insist on using the "ii" suffix even though there is no precedent in real Latin, fake Latin or anything in between, presumably because it looks cool, or they have heard the word "radii".

Anyhow, that's my rant, and I'm sticking to it.

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Microsoft Rules

ConceptJunkie ConceptJunkie writes  |  more than 11 years ago

I like Microsoft rule #3 so much I hate to change my sig to #4.

These are certainly not real rules, but are rules that Microsoft appears to follow by their actions.

Here are the others I've come up with:

Microsoft Rule #1: Every app must be expanded until it can be used as a vehicle for a virus that can trash the system. (In fact, no app is useful _unless_ it can be used as a virus vehicle. If MS wrote edlin today it would have scripting that could be used to access kernel functions via TCP/IP.)

Microsoft Rule #2: Flexibility in UI is acceptable, but defaults must confuse new users and frustrate experienced ones.

Microsoft Rule #3: GUI standards are no longer necessary. Shiny objects are always user-friendly.

Microsoft Rule #4: No useful thing can be designed unless by committee. Consistency and clarity are not signs of maturity. Simplicity is for amateurs. (Breaking up Microsoft would have about as much effect as asking a blind guy if he would not look over people's shoulders during the final exam.)

Microsoft Rule #5: Security has less "gee-whiz" factor than skinning and is therefore a less important feature. (Plus it's just too darn much trouble to check each memory buffer copy, especially when we'd rather spend time making the media player look like eyeballs.)

Microsoft Rule #6: Dominating a market is the same as excelling in a market ("Economic might makes right", or more simply "A monopoly means God smiles on everything you do.").

Microsoft Rule #7: Change is improvement by definition. (But this is universal among software companies...)

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