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Why Coding Is Not the New Literacy

Dcnjoe60 Cart before the horse (203 comments)

Coding as the new literacy is putting the cart before the horse. To be able to code, one needs critical thinking skills. They need to understand logic (and not just AND OR NOT, but real logic). Those are the skills required for the new literacy. Coding is just one way those skills can be applied, but it does not make one literate, any more than strumming a few chords on a guitar makes one a musician. It is the underlying skills and understanding that makes one a musician and likewise, makes one literate.

If you put enough chimpanzees in front of enough computers, eventually they will bang out all of the code for any piece of software. That doesn't make them literate. If you want people to be literate, they need to be productive and able to contribute to society. In the 21st century, this means teaching them critical thinking skills and logic, then they will be literate in whatever field they chose.

2 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: Is Pascal Underrated?

Dcnjoe60 Re:Modula-3 FTW! (484 comments)

The problem with Pascal is not that it is bad, but that it provides nothing of value to offset the cost of maintaining a separate toolchain, training programmers, building libraries, etc. What can you do in Pascal that you can't do in C++, or Python, or Java? Why do we need yet another language, that has no particularly useful features?

This could be said about any programming language. Back in my university days (we still had keypunch machines, then), I had a professor state that you could write just about anything in any language. For instance, you could write a banking app in FORTRAN or a program to calculate the trajectory to the moon in COBOL, but in the end, you should use the best tool suited for the job.

So, yes, Pascal can't do anything that C++, Python or Java can't do; that's not the point. Is Pascal better suited to some tasks than those languages? That is what the OP is really asking.

3 days ago
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Local Motors Looks To Disrupt the Auto Industry With 3D-Printed Car Bodies

Dcnjoe60 Nothing new (128 comments)

An modern auto plant turns out a vehicle approximately once every minute. These vehicles tax 44 hours per unit. The US alone purchases 16M vehicles/year. How will this ever be competitive?

Of course if one reads the article, they are mainly looking at this for prototyping vehicles, particularly military ones, but not the actual production of vehicles. So in short, this is about using 3D printing to prototype something before going to full production. Haven't we been doing that since the 1970s?

5 days ago
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Scientists Slow the Speed of Light

Dcnjoe60 Is it still a photon? (139 comments)

Photons travel the speed of light unless slowed by a medium. Since there was no medium involved, is what being observed still a photon or instead a photon like particle? Second, it would seem that conservation of mass/energy would indicate if this is a photon then something else must have changed. If there has been some other change, whether we detected it or not, would that not negate the experiment because of a state change (yes, the photon is going slower, but the system is not in the same state it was before)?

5 days ago
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Systemd's Lennart Poettering: 'We Do Listen To Users'

Dcnjoe60 Re:Lennart, do you listen to sysadmins? (551 comments)

Wrong. That base still wouldn't boot my server for me and the systemd people would still be spinning in circles unable to even conceive of a way to fix it. You see, I want the server to boot w/ btrfs in degraded mode should it suffer a drive failure. But systemd won't do it.

I don't know about Suse, byt Red Hat does not. Otherwise they'd have noticed that sysadmins are sticking with RHEL6 to avoid systemd trouble.

Since systemd can be configured to simply call the upstart or sysvinit scripts, why would it not work?

about two weeks ago
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Systemd's Lennart Poettering: 'We Do Listen To Users'

Dcnjoe60 Re:Can someone explain what the huge debate is? (551 comments)

Let me use a TV analogy. What systemd is doing to linux is like taking the script from Seinfeld and replacing it with Two Broke Girls, yet keeping the Seinfeld cast and set and claiming that the change is inevitable and for the better -- even though the humor is an utter mismatch. All the while, the producers cheer the fundamental change because now they can appeal to the younger generation where the big advertising money is.

No, what systemd is doing to linux is more like what a package manager does for installing software. If I apt-get install mypackage, it reads all of the dependencies and installs them. Of course, I could just manually go through and install of the dependencies. But, why?

If you want to use a TV analogy, the title of the finale of STNG would be better All Good Thing [must come to an end]. STNG still was going strong at the time and even had contracts with the actors for an 8th season, but the producers realized that there wasn't a future in the series.

Unix is over 40 years old. There are a lot of things done differently today than in the 70s. Computing needs have changed since then. If Linux wants to be relevant in the future, it needs to anticipate what future needs are instead of holding on to the past.

about two weeks ago
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Systemd's Lennart Poettering: 'We Do Listen To Users'

Dcnjoe60 Re:Lennart, do you listen to sysadmins? (551 comments)

Well, do you actually take on board the concerns of system administrators and enterprise users?

What a lot of people are concerned about is that this entirely new and largely untested (in the 'wild', as it were) and very very large, complex piece of software which runs at a very very privileged level in the operating system is going to become the main source of security vulnerabilities in Linux.

Can we have a cut-down, simplified version of systemd for servers and doesn't try to replace several layers of server side system functionality such as logging?

Its clear that you listen to desktop users. How about listening to the system administrators?

Well, even if he didn't take on board the concerns of system administrators and enterprise users, it's a safe bet that Red Hat and Suse does and yet they were still convinced that the pros of systemd outweigh the cons.

As for a cut-down simplified version, yes you can. Systemd only requires three base modules. All of the rest can be excluded. Really, it they had simply called the base systemd and everything else systemd extensions, this angst would be non-existent.

As for the not listening to the system administrators, again, even if that statement were true, Red Hat and Suse do and they still chose systemd.

about two weeks ago
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Pope Francis: There Are Limits To Freedom of Expression

Dcnjoe60 Re:Pope Francis - fuck your mother (893 comments)

As a small child I was taught that "Sticks and stones may break your bones but words can never hurt you."

Are the religious unable to comprehend this simple truth?

I think that the events in France show that words can hurt you. Every choice one makes, right or wrong, has consequences.

about two weeks ago
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Pope Francis: There Are Limits To Freedom of Expression

Dcnjoe60 Re:Pope Francis - fuck your mother (893 comments)

"I'm not saying you deserved to be raped, the rapist was definitely the one in the wrong there, but seriously what did you expect going out alone at night dressed like that?"

Non sequiter

about two weeks ago
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Pope Francis: There Are Limits To Freedom of Expression

Dcnjoe60 Re:Pope Francis - fuck your mother (893 comments)

The Pope is threatening violence if people say bad things about his religion. He is adopting exactly the same position as the scum who attacked Charlie Hebdo.

Ok he tries to weasel out of it, but what the hell does he mean by:

One cannot react violently, but if (someone) says something bad about my mother, he can expect a punch. It’s to be expected

"One cannot react violently but I will"

Fuck him for an appologist for murder.

What he said is that violence against those who mock religion is wrong. He also asked about why are we surprised that when we offend somebody deeply, they strike back? He was not condoning violence in the hypothetical defense of his mother. He was pointing out to the antagonist that there are those who will react extremely if pushed.

The pope upheld people's right to express their opinions but stated that there are limits as to the manner or form of that expression. But maybe he is wrong, as you say, and all forms of expression should be upheld. Even the freedom to express one's frustration by conducting the attack in France. After all, terrorism is just one more form of expression.

about two weeks ago
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Tesla To Produce 'a Few Million' Electric Cars a Year By 2025

Dcnjoe60 Re:Tell me it ain't so, Elon! (181 comments)

Corporate mentality doesn't care about anything but profit.

Nor do car dealerships or gas station owners. The only time we ordinary consumers benefit is when giants compete in a free level field. Right now it is tilted far too much towards the NADA.

Hopefully you don't believe this. The only time ordinary consumers benefit is when there are many small sellers, so supply and demand can actually function. When the field is dominated by a few giants, only the giants (and their shareholders) benefit. A free market depends on nobody, buyer or seller, being able to monopolize the market for their own advantage.

about two weeks ago
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Silicon Valley's Quest To Extend Life 'Well Beyond 120'

Dcnjoe60 Why not... (273 comments)

Why not use their resources and efforts to extend life so the youth in most parts of the world can reach adulthood without dying or being killed?

about two weeks ago
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Tesla vs. Car Dealers: the Lobbyist Went Down To Georgia

Dcnjoe60 Re:Lobby = Corruption (190 comments)

No, no, no! The difference between lobbying and bribing has nothing to do with whether or not the project or bill benefits the public at large. There are many public works programs, which undoubtedly benefit the public at large, but still involved bribery. There are many projects and bills that do not benefit the public at large, at least not without jumping through convoluted logic, that involve no bribery.

The difference between lobbying and bribery is in the matter of degree. Both are, by definition, influence pedaling. If I give you $50,000 in cash to vote a certain way, that would most likely be bribery. What if I fly you out on my corporate jet to spend a week in Paris, all expense paid, while we discuss the project/bill? Bring your family, too. Or what if I don't expel your kid from school for whatever reason? but, oh, by the way, that new highway research grant would sure help convince the curators.

Bribery is about influence pedaling and comes in many forms. It can involve money, things of value, personal favors, sexual favors, etc. It is just where society wants to draw the line that determines whether or not somebody is lobbying or bribing an official. In the US, common lobbying tactics today, would have raised charges of bribery not too many years ago.

about two weeks ago
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Tesla vs. Car Dealers: the Lobbyist Went Down To Georgia

Dcnjoe60 Re:Lobby = Corruption (190 comments)

Lobbying is the act of telling an official how to vote by making a convincing argument.. Bribery is paying money for a vote or action.

Are you under the dillusion that nothing of value exchanges between a lobbyist and a politician? No favors or future benefits? Bribery is giving something of value for a vote or action.

about two weeks ago
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Tesla vs. Car Dealers: the Lobbyist Went Down To Georgia

Dcnjoe60 Re:Lobby = Corruption (190 comments)

Lobbying, is corruption clear and simple. They should jail everybody connected to it.

When you do it in the US, we call it lobbying. When you do it in a foreign country, we call it bribery.

about two weeks ago
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Crowdfunded Linux Voice Magazine Releases Second Issue CC-BY-SA

Dcnjoe60 Re:Shame it's not open source (19 comments)

Sadly, despite all the criticism of the issue 1 release, they've stuck to their guns and released most of their articles as "object files" in PDF. To me, that feels like their being purposefully obstructive -- it is such a faff to extract text from a PDF file, and they must already have the article text in an editable format.

If you go to the download page, all the articles are available individually as PDF, but many also in text or html.

about two weeks ago
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SpaceX Rocket Launch Succeeds, But Landing Test Doesn't

Dcnjoe60 Re:Strange definition of success (213 comments)

The mission is to deliver cargo to the ISS for their client, NASA.
Landing the first stage is a separate internal goal and the data they got from this attempt is progress towards that goal.

And the Apollo mission was to land a man on the moon. There is an implied goal of returning safely. What is the point of SpaceX using a reusuable launch vehicle if it doesn't matter what happens to it on the way back? Again, by that measure, the Shuttle Columbia was a successful mission. They accomplished what they set out to do. Returning safely, was just an internal goal.

about three weeks ago
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SpaceX Rocket Launch Succeeds, But Landing Test Doesn't

Dcnjoe60 Strange definition of success (213 comments)

For SpaceX to be successful, it needs to be able to achieve it's mission in space and arrive home safely. I understand wanting to put a positive spin on things, but really, if only accompished your mission is space is the measure of success, then the last flight of the Shuttle Columbia was a fantastic success, too. A successful mission requires accomplishing the goals and returning safely.

about three weeks ago
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Anonymous Declares War Over Charlie Hebdo Attack

Dcnjoe60 Re:Best attack possible: (509 comments)

Just deface their twitter/blogs/Facebook accounts and fill them with images on "The Prophet" getting ass rapped.

End these people bigotry please.

You probably mean "raped" not rapped, but regardless, how would promoting your form of bigotry towards a group solve anything?

about three weeks ago

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