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How 'DevOps' Is Killing the Developer

Dynedain Re:Cross training (190 comments)

If you absolutely don't want to do any administration tasks, that's fine. But its a rare developer who doesn't throw a fit when management takes their admin/root privileges away on their own workstation.

It's legitimate for a developer to throw a fit. They should have admin access on their local box. There's an insane number of plugins, libraries, and frameworks they may need to install or test to determine if it's the right fit for their deliverable.

However, I fully expect DevOps to question every single add on and make the developer justify it before deploying to production. Just because I as a Dev want Ruby for compiling SCSS to CSS on my local machine to save me time, does not mean Ruby needs to be installed on the production environment. That's what build servers and deployment scripts are for.

SysOps on the other hand is far too prone to blanket say "No" or "We only approve this one obscure outdated fork of the package you want."

DevOps is the perfect position to reconcile developer wants with checks and balances against actual needs and responsible deployment.

13 hours ago
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How 'DevOps' Is Killing the Developer

Dynedain Re:Understanding each other's work is key (190 comments)

Your value isn't in being the guru. Gurus get replaced because of the risk in only one person understanding how things work.

Your value is in being proficient enough that you can jump in and get up to speed in different roles, but have a general understanding that lets you step back and see the big picture.

Yes, getting your hands dirty is different pieces is key to this, but being the leading expert in each individual piece is the road to being pigeon-holed.

yesterday
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How 'DevOps' Is Killing the Developer

Dynedain Re:Oh please... (190 comments)

Amen amen!

We have dev ops, and I RESPECT the guys.

Why?

Because I'm busy solving the client's problems, and I have developers underneath me building databases, front end templates, integration platforms, CMS implementations and the works. I DON'T WANT them patching AWS cloud servers for Heartbleed because THEY SUCK AT IT. Likewise, I don't want an IT guy who just installs patches and walks away. My IT department acts like that, and because of them, I still don't have VMWare and test machines in the office even though they were approved 2-3 months ago.

I want people who can setup Git and Jenkins without handholding or wasting tons of time. I want people who can manage security and system updates. I want people who can figure out and get the right versions of Python, JVM, or NoSQL-DB-of-the-month installed without micromanaging. DevOps is an incredibly valuable role if you find the right people to do it.

Hint: If it requires interfacing with the client, it probably isn't a DevOps task.

yesterday
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Slashdot Asks: How Do You Pay Your Taxes?

Dynedain Re:We don''t do tax returns in the UK,you insensit (370 comments)

We have that in the US as well. It's called witholding, and everyone not self-employed does it. If you don't there's penalties for underpaying come April 15.

The crazy part is that the US still requires everyone to self-report on this at the end of the year, even though they already collected the money. You're also expected to list all other forms of income, deductions, and credits and recalculate your tax burden yourself.

Annual tax review, reassessment, and filing should not be a multi-billion-dollar-a-year industry.

yesterday
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Comcast Takes 2014 Prize For Worst Company In America

Dynedain Re:What a joke (195 comments)

I had 2 options when provisioning UVerse.

Provision a multi-service line (and pay monthly for their modem/router) - or - Provision an Internet-only line and pay a one-time fee for their modem/router.

I did my research. The modems are different, and the line is provisioned differently. With the multi-service modem (even if I downgraded to internet only) I could setup passthrough and handle things with my own router. With the one-time-fee router, that functionality was blocked. Also, provisioning the line for multi-service and downgrading service to internet-only allowed for higher internet speeds than provisioning the line as internet-only.

So at least on UVerse, there was no option to not pay an equipment rental fee and get their maximum speed service.

about a week ago
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Windows 8.1 Update Released, With Improvements For Non-Touch Hardware

Dynedain Re:Why are you using the touch interface with a mo (294 comments)

We've spent 30 years training people that right-clicking is reserved for secondary extended behaviors, and left-click is for primary interaction.

And either way, I wasn't pointing to the fastest way to shutdown, I was pointing the defacto method of shutdown as encouraged by the interface that's explicitly designed to be intuitive for non-technical users.

Metro is a great concept, but fundamentally broken in its implementation as the vast majority of basic user tasks are overly complex, unintuitive, and don't even follow the standard UI practices introduced as part of Metro. Metro is literally inconsistent with itself.

Why is that popup menu I mentioned in the last step even there? I have yet to see that popup menu UI paradigm appear anywhere else in the Metro launcher UI. It's reminiscent of a secondary right-click menu on the desktop, but appears on primary behavior (tap, left click). Every other icon or menu I tap on takes me to a nested full-screen menu tree, tiles, or row of icons. Why does this one single menu get a floating menu relative to the button location instead?

about a week ago
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Windows 8.1 Update Released, With Improvements For Non-Touch Hardware

Dynedain Re:Why are you using the touch interface with a mo (294 comments)

I know I can rip this all out. I don't because this is a test VM for seeing what my average user sees.

If I perceive this as convoluted, confusing, and horrendously unintuitive, what does the basic non-technical user think? And they are supposedly the people this interface was built for.

about a week ago
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Windows 8.1 Update Released, With Improvements For Non-Touch Hardware

Dynedain Re:Why are you using the touch interface with a mo (294 comments)

Oh, I know. Windows+R, "cmd", enter. Type "shutdown /s"

I wasn't asking the quickest way to shutdown for a power user. I was pointing out the obtuseness of the basic, introductory way of performing a task. You know, the thing that should be the most intuitive, straightforward, process.

about a week ago
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Windows 8.1 Update Released, With Improvements For Non-Touch Hardware

Dynedain Re:Why are you using the touch interface with a mo (294 comments)

In what way is that remotely intuitive. Really? Ctl-RightMouse on brand logo?

Power-down is not an advanced user task.

And that logo doesn't even exist in Win8. It was reintroduced in 8.1

about a week ago
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Windows 8.1 Update Released, With Improvements For Non-Touch Hardware

Dynedain Re:Why are you using the touch interface with a mo (294 comments)

I just grabbed that as an example. Of course there are ways to work around the limitation, but the most basic elements of the UI have serious fundamental flaws. Some of these are easily correctable, but still haven't been 16 months and two major releases later.

Overall, I think the *idea* of Metro to be something interesting. A unified interface for both mobile and desktop devices is a cool challenge both from a tech and a design standpoint. It's also a bold direction for a company like Microsoft, especially Microsoft, to attempt.

However, the implementation completely fails. The graphics are great, the fonts, colors, etc, are fairly well thought out. The failure is in not thinking about the ramifications of forcing this interface onto the underlying OS layer that doesn't directly support it. Too many elements rely on older Windows interfaces (some going back as far as WinXP or Win2K). Too many basic user tasks (like shutdown) are hidden far deeper than they should because the interaction designers didn't consider them, and the downstream implementation teams just shoehorned them in wherever they would fit.

As someone who's done a lot of UI work, this is really challenging stuff to get right. What is intuitive is often counter to the aesthetic or the underlying technical behavior. It just amazes me how Microsoft let such a flawed experience ship. Why did they bet so heavily, but not put the resources in place to ensure success? Metro could have been a lifesaver for Microsoft if they had actually executed on it thoroughly instead of the usual approach of slap another UI layer on top of the most commonly used elements but leave everything underneath identical to previous versions.

about a week ago
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Google Chrome 34 Is Out: Responsive Images, Supervised Users

Dynedain Re:Rather have vector (115 comments)

Yeah, vector photographs, those work great!

about a week ago
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Windows 8.1 Update Released, With Improvements For Non-Touch Hardware

Dynedain Re:Why are you using the touch interface with a mo (294 comments)

How do you shut down Windows 8 with a mouse?

Let me walk you through the steps as I do them on my test VM (default Win 8.1 install, no added software)

Get the the top level of the Metro UI (I still have not figured out how to do this without hitting the windows key on my keyboard. If you're buried multiple levels deep in something, or running something in desktop mode, there's no intuitive way to do this without a touchscreen)

Move your mouse to the bottom right corner of the screen. A tiny transparent icon will appear in the very bottom corner that only displays while the mouse is in motion. This icon is the traditional "minimize" icon. Pretty intuitive that I should go interact with it to do something not present on the home screen.

Hover over this icon, but don't click or right-click! Even though every other interactive icon that appears in Metro requires clicking to engage. If you click it, it minimizes. If you right-click, some other weird bar pops up from the bottom of the screen. Hover, but don't click.

A row of icons will slide in. Most seem relatively intuitive. Other than the convoluted way to get them onscreen, I have little complaint about their appearance or overall functions (other than the one with the Windows logo which does ABSOLUTELY NOTHING because I'm already in the Metro home screen). Click on the one for settings. Really.... settings?

A new menu comes in, with some pretty useless options for Start, Tiles and Help a ton of empty space, and a row of buttons at the bottom. Oh, and another option under that, which looks like a label but is actually where all the "real" settings are hidden. Ignore that for now and click on the button labeled power.

A popup menu appears, select "shut down". I've gone through 5 distinctly different interface methods just to do a shutdown.

Meanwhile, Metro is trying to give me helpful hints to swipe in from the edge of the screen. These "hints" overlay the actual menus I'm trying to use, and have no way to dismiss. Metro really wants me to try swiping and won't dismiss these unless I follow the instructions, even though I have no touchscreen.

Why is it so difficult to just shutdown? Everyone has been taught for years that you must do safe shutdowns on Windows, so let's undo that all in swoop by making a safe shutdown exceedingly difficult to get to?

Here's another example. On my default install, I have news, stocks, etc on the main screen of Metro. OK, I don't care for it, but I can live with it. But the only application (outside of IE) that gets a tile for launching is Silverlight? Why in the world would Silverlight ever need a launcher? And why would that launcher ever need to be on the default start screen?

about a week ago
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Dyn.com Ends Free Dynamic DNS

Dynedain Re:On the same note, (239 comments)

Because setting up a working BIND installation is a pain. Sure, there are alternative DNS servers, but BIND is the preferred choice on Linux.

If there was a lot of demand for a click-and-go server and configuration, someone would have written it already. But then again, this is a big part of the Linux mindset. If tool A can be tweaked in a convoluted way to perform task B as a subset of its normal operations, then there's rarely incentive be build a dedicated tool for task B

about a week ago
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Dyn.com Ends Free Dynamic DNS

Dynedain Re:If you have Linode, then it is free ... (239 comments)

Now, you need to change the OpenWRT script above to contact the server that has the PHP script, and get the public IP address of the subdomain.

OpenWRT and DD-WRT and Tomato already have DynDNS support built in. No reason to setup a PHP and Apache server behind the router to do this.

You still need a public-facing nameserver somewhere to update the DNS to IP address mapping. That's the key service that DynDNS was providing. Reporting your IP is the easy part.

about a week ago
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Dyn.com Ends Free Dynamic DNS

Dynedain Re:On the same note, (239 comments)

Dyn.com pushes your IP address info out globally. So if you want a run-your-own replacement, you MUST have a working BIND installation. There's no other way to do it. Dyn.com was running a whole bunch of services that all map back to their BIND servers.

about a week ago
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Vint Cerf: CS Programs Must Change To Adapt To Internet of Things

Dynedain Re:He isn't wrong; but is myopic. (163 comments)

I think Vint gets that, and is speaking to the higher level and using "security" as an abstract generalization.

For example, the web was explicitly developed as a "pull" technology with declarative linking by reference with public visibility. Understanding the impact of that to how you build a security model governing access presents unique challenge. By comparison, Usenet is the opposite. It's essentially a syndicated push technology, more similar to a broadcast publishing method. As a result, the security model for how people gain access to resources, and what talks to what, is handled in a very different way.

Those are just two examples of content on today's general Internet which is an extension of Vint's work. When he talks about the Internet of Things, he doesn't merely mean the fad of sticking a web browser on a toaster. He's talking about the bigger vision of omnipresent computing and direct interaction of common devices to each other. Much like the Internet (specifically TCP/IP and DNS) was conceived as a way for computers to directly talk to each other (not going through a centralized hierarchy for approval and redistribution). We learned a lot of great lessons about how it would be used, the shortcoming, and the security ramifications. Now that we're in the fledgling stages of doing the same thing for a whole new are of automation and computing, there's great opportunity to think about and apply the lessons learned.

about two weeks ago
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Vint Cerf: CS Programs Must Change To Adapt To Internet of Things

Dynedain Re:He doesn't know what Computer Science is. (163 comments)

Understanding the impact of how the future world of always-on, always-available, omnipresent computing interacts at a high theoretical level is not programming and absolutely does belong in the realm of science of computing.

This isn't the realm of code monkeys, and I agree that's not what CS should teach. However, the theory of systems and interactions should be taught.

Where does researching AI, machine learning, or organic networks fall in your narrow definition? CS is maturing as a science and researching/designing the impact and how the science is applied by the world at large is a valuable endeavor that you shouldn't be so quick to dismiss and give away to some other field.

about two weeks ago
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Vint Cerf: CS Programs Must Change To Adapt To Internet of Things

Dynedain Re:Wrong, Expectations Must Change (163 comments)

I'm pretty sure the internet (and computers in general) has topped the printing press in that way.

In less than half a century, the Internet has gone from invention to be widely used in every nation on earth with more than a 3rd of the world's population* actively using it. The printing press, while wildly popular and transformative did not have nearly this level of adoption and impact.

You are right in how transformative the printing press was, and a great example of how we can expect the Internet to continue shaping humanity for the future.

*Source:
http://www.internetworldstats....

about two weeks ago
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Subversion Project Migrates To Git

Dynedain Re:April Fools! (162 comments)

Or you know, just drag and drop using my existing filesystem viewer and not need a special client to do something simple like renaming a folder.

Nothing like reinventing the wheel!

about two weeks ago
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Amazon Launches Android-Powered 'Fire TV' For Streaming and Gaming

Dynedain Re:Odd Market. (180 comments)

Simple answer:

Computer UIs universally suck for sitting 6-10 feet away on a couch. Keyboard and mouse (even wireless) is a pain compared to a single-hand remote.

The best UI I've seen in this space is still Windows Media Center, but MS is systematically killing it off. So, when my HD died on my HTPC last weekend, I replaced the whole box with a $99 top-of-the line Roku. A replacement HD would have been about $100, Win 8.1 license is $120, and then another $100 to get Windows Pro Pack with Windows Media Center (since it's not included in Home anymore, and it's a real PITA to do fresh installs when your start from a WinXP Pro Upgrade license). Combine that with all the hassles of drivers, anti virus, and the fact that every week my HTPC would start doing something different (because of driver or automatic software updates) and the ease of a Roku or AppleTV is incredibly tempting.

about two weeks ago

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