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Comments

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Why the New Guy Can't Code

EvilTwinSkippy Re:This is bullshit. (948 comments)

You know a craftsman by his work. Programmers, real programmers, are always fiddling, and love to show off. Imagine if you were hiring a mad scientist, and he came to the interview with zero crazy schemes for world domination and had never grafted a deadly weapon to a deadlier life form. Would you take her seriously? Would you hire an astronomer who never looked through a telescope beyond school hours? No. Would you hire a ballplayer who just majored in the sport, and had never played a single game?

There are doers and couch warmers. Doers know doers. Couch warmers know couches,

more than 3 years ago
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Why the New Guy Can't Code

EvilTwinSkippy How do you get all of the way... (948 comments)

...to the first interview without having developed something? I got into programming because I loved programming. I was writhing games in BASIC at 10. By 16 I had picked up C. My freshman year of college I was running servers on my machine in the dorm. By my junior year I was coding professionally. (Never did end up graduating come to think of it...)

When employers want to hear about hobbies, they want to hear about hobbies like mine. Writing web registration apps for large non-profits. Building IPhone apps. Programming micro controllers.

Coding is a lifestyle, it's not a major.

more than 3 years ago
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Android Text Messages Intermittently Going Astray

EvilTwinSkippy Re:It's open source (325 comments)

For $600 you could have gotten an iPhone with all of that. In 2007. Today, you could pick up 6 late model, or two high end, or one gold plated latest model with the extended warranty, tinted windows, and curb feelers.

What was the argument for the Android again?

more than 3 years ago
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Exam Board Deletes C and PHP From CompSci A-Levels

EvilTwinSkippy Re:Maybe I'm missing something (663 comments)

No actually, I would argue that it's better to simply start with the basic concepts of C and then get more complicated. Sorta-teaching kids a half dozen languages is meaningless, if our stated goal is to turn out competent IT people.

It's not exactly like C::Java as Integral Calculus::Algebra

Java is a complex monster all it's own, and half the complexity is because it tries to get cute with pass by references, garbage collection, and all manner of things that would only take a week of class time to teach a sufficiently curious individual.

With C, most of the complexity is in dealing with the limitations of the computer itself. It can only do one thing at a time. Memory is finite. If you allocated it, you have to free it.

(When you start getting into object systems, my argument is to ditch compiled options and layer on a scripting language like Python or TclOO that can better handle the Kama-Sutra like transformations abstract objects need to perform.)

more than 4 years ago
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Exam Board Deletes C and PHP From CompSci A-Levels

EvilTwinSkippy Re:Maybe I'm missing something (663 comments)

Well, if you don't understand memory addressing... how do you understand programming to start with? It's so simple "I want a block of memory" is malloc(). I'm done with a block of memory is free(). A pointer points to a block of memory that was malloc()'ed.

I was 16 years old, reading a xerox copy of K&R's "The C Programming Language", and my only prior experience was BASIC. (Where the looping construct was "GOTO")

The problem is, kids aren't learning programming languages because they are fun. They are learning them in class, and under the gun. It takes years of playing with these concepts before they make sense. And we don't have the kinds of curriculum that stress "this is a multi-year discipline in which what you learn in year 1 forms the basis for year 2." Instead, we reward kids one correct answer at a time, and never mind that the 9 questions they got right were useless, and the one question they got wrong betrays a complete misunderstanding of the subject, it's an "A".

more than 4 years ago
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Why Do So Many Terrorists Have Engineering Degrees

EvilTwinSkippy As an engineer let me say... (736 comments)

The problem isn't an engineering education. The problem is a complete an total lack of humanities while undertaking said education. Well, not total lack, but a general consideration that it's a pain in the ass and not required to get your job done.

I nary saw a history class, and the only "humanities" we were offered were labeled such. (I.E. a premade minimal class just to say were had it.)

You also have the problem in that Engineering degrees are so in demand, our engineering schools have become diploma mills. Self-contained enclaves. There was no effort on the part of my school to connect what we were learning to anything else. If anything the attitude was "Engineers were special", and everything (including basic math) had a "For engineers" in the title.

more than 4 years ago
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Why Do So Many Terrorists Have Engineering Degrees

EvilTwinSkippy Re:Lets see (736 comments)

And not all religious people are terrorists.

/Yes I am an engineer, why do you ask?

more than 4 years ago
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The 87 Lamest Moments In Tech, 2000-2009

EvilTwinSkippy Re:Y2K (328 comments)

Heck, I worked at a museum that ended up spending 6 figures to wholesale replace their IBM System 36 accounting system with an AS/400. (Including having developers completely rewrite the RPG code...)

In 2001 we had several companies that wanted to donate System 36's to be museum displays. We ended up telling them that we already had 2 of our own!

more than 4 years ago
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The 87 Lamest Moments In Tech, 2000-2009

EvilTwinSkippy Re:KDE 4.0 and KDevelop 4 (328 comments)

KDE 4 is the reason all of my users boot into XCFE by default.

(Shudder)

more than 4 years ago
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Metadata In Arizona Public Records Can't Be Withheld

EvilTwinSkippy Re:Cutting edge? (103 comments)

And given that 9/11 happened in 2001, it'll be back to decades old in a two years...

more than 4 years ago
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No Hand-Held Devices In Ontario Cars

EvilTwinSkippy Re:RTFS (584 comments)

And actually, the way the law is worded, my iPhone would be exempt. It's docked into a charger/fm transmitter station.

more than 4 years ago
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No Hand-Held Devices In Ontario Cars

EvilTwinSkippy Re:They've taken a leaf out of the UK's book (584 comments)

True, but that would require law enforcement actually out and patrolling. With a tickbox system, they can just sit on the shoulder with one eye on the Radar gun, and another on the lookout for those hooligans who ride in the HOV lane with a single rider.

more than 4 years ago
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No Hand-Held Devices In Ontario Cars

EvilTwinSkippy Re:It does not go too far (584 comments)

I take it somebody has never had a bad day and found him or herself on the wrong side of the law.

more than 4 years ago
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The Economics of Federal Cloud Computing Analyzed

EvilTwinSkippy Re:Economies of Scale (85 comments)

What kind of "economy of scale" is there to throwing out working systems and replacing them?

Oh right... this is management types we are talking about...

more than 4 years ago
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VASIMR Ion Engine Could Cut Mars Trip To 39 Days

EvilTwinSkippy Re:Sound (356 comments)

Or Blur's "Song #2"

more than 4 years ago
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VASIMR Ion Engine Could Cut Mars Trip To 39 Days

EvilTwinSkippy Re:No quite yet. (356 comments)

One minor knit to pick. The momentum doesn't double with a doubling of the speed of the reaction mass. It quadruples. Remember your high school physics: KE=0.5*m*v**2

If anything, it only reinforces your point.

more than 4 years ago
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VASIMR Ion Engine Could Cut Mars Trip To 39 Days

EvilTwinSkippy Re:No quite yet. (356 comments)

Nuclear reactors don't have to be all that heavy. The Pioneer and Voyager spacecraft had plutonium power cells. You pretty much can scale nuclear power to whatever size and power you need. (We don't usually use small power plants simply because it's more cost effective to power devices other ways.)

more than 4 years ago
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Best Developer's Laptop?

EvilTwinSkippy Re:Why I chose Apple for my dev laptop (672 comments)

Nothing personal against you, but I've been programming since the age of 10, I've held the title of "Senior Network Engineer" at a research institution for 11 years. And right now I design simulations for the DOD out of bare metal, C, and Tcl/Tk.

And I use a Mac. And in fact, everyone I know who knows what the hell they are doing uses one too.

STFU. Please.

more than 4 years ago
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Best Developer's Laptop?

EvilTwinSkippy Re:Why I chose Apple for my dev laptop (672 comments)

Ok... we just bought a macbook for our new developer. And, with all the fixings it came out to $1159.

Kindly STFU.

more than 4 years ago

Submissions

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15th Annual Tcl/Tk Conference to be held near DC

EvilTwinSkippy EvilTwinSkippy writes  |  about 6 years ago

EvilTwinSkippy writes "If anyone is making plans for October, particularly in the Washington DC area, clear a spot on your calendar for the 15th Annual Tcl/Tk Developer's Conference. There will be two days of tutorials starting October 20. Papers and Keynotes begin October 22. Tune into official site for details and registration.

Our own Evil Twin Skippy is the site chair for this year. Fun topics include "Tcl 9...oh God", and happy military uses for scripting. The Wine BOF is always a good time, and the crowd is pretty friendly as far as most programmer's conferences go."

Link to Original Source
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EvilTwinSkippy EvilTwinSkippy writes  |  more than 7 years ago

EvilTwinSkippy writes "The Philadelphia Inquirer has the story of one principal's crusade to turn a school around. It involved inventing extra paperwork teachers had to file to fail a student. When that failed, she simply went into he computer and changed the grades herself. With No Child Left Behind's emphasis on school performance, you have to wonder how often this is happening and teacher's don't blow the whistle. Especially in lights of the fact that the article mentioned this has happend before, in the same district."
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EvilTwinSkippy EvilTwinSkippy writes  |  more than 7 years ago

EvilTwinSkippy writes "As reported elsewhere, Federal rules are finally taking effect that require companies to have electronic documents and email archived in a manner for quick retrieval by law enforcement and litigation.

Technically speaking companies have always been technically on the hook. Now thought there are specific regulations and guidelines that have to be followed, particularly for employee emails and Instant messages. But to make a long story short, it's not longer an option to simply not track email."

Journals

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My Journal

EvilTwinSkippy EvilTwinSkippy writes  |  more than 11 years ago Folks, I just find it too much of a PITA to maintain a dozen accounts everywhere. You are welcome to check out my website: http://www.etoyoc.com/yoda

I have a section for "The Book of Sean", my brain dump onto the web. I also have photos from my various nerdy projects.

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Tips for Xterminals

EvilTwinSkippy EvilTwinSkippy writes  |  more than 12 years ago Little tweaks required for getting an xterminal to really work well.

  • Designate a master in the /etc/hosts file
  • Create an xterm init script that basically calls: X -query master
  • Strip down runlevel 4. (Including xfs)
  • Add xterm to runlevel 4.
  • Tweak the /etc/X11/XF86Config file. Change FontPath to FontPath="tcp/master:7100"

On the server, tweak /etc/X11/gdm/gdm.conf (next journal entry.)

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