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Using Your Open-Source Contributions To Land a Full-Time Job

Hadlock It worked for me, running a game server (25 comments)

I ran five Battlefield 3 servers on two continents for a group of about 3500 registered users, and before that a Bad Company 2 server in America for a year or two. We had a Steam chat bot (IRC is Dead in this era, especially for games) that you could interact with and kick unregistered players. The first version was crude PHP run off of a godaddy account to register your account for Bad Company 2. The steam chat bot was some ruby glue code triggered by an AutoIt script/executable.
 
But later with Battlefield 3, we rewrote the whole system from the ground up. ChewieBot was a C# program that used an OpenSteam API dll, and called a URL via json which authenticated against another guy's custom Steam Authentication db (he handled the backend registration using the offical Steam API) and then we ran a python script from there to actually connect to the server and kick the guy(s). This actually ended up being so successful that we were blacklisted by the reddit guys on multiple occasions despite being a top 10 server. Another guy did the website redesign including custom CSS work. I didn't do very much of the coding, most of my skills were in project management and having the technical knowledge to pull together resources and people and make them work.
 
Over four years I worked with about 20 people in total to make the system happen and keep it running, plus bringing in regular funding to pay for the servers, mumble servers, and the actual game servers (never pay for your own servers, you're already giving them your time). All in all the project spent about $3500 in hosting, mumble server fees and the lion's share, top notch game servers (about $114/mo each) over four years.
 
I ended up getting the job with those project management skills I learned while putting everything together. I write a lot of server scripting/automation and also project management working with business analysts and our appdev team(s) for various internal groups' dashboards, interfaces and whatnot.
 
At least one other guy used the ChewieBot project to get a job as well, he added the json capability to give him a talking point in interviews. The guy who did our db back end already has a job doing C# stuff at an advertising data mining company in the UK but is pretty fantastic at what he does. With all the API hooks, free or nearly-free VPS hosting and a popular game it'snot difficult to build a reputation and portfolio (not to mention the real-world skills of dealing with true nerds) that will take you places.

about an hour ago
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The Magic of Pallets

Hadlock Re:Like many inventions ... (230 comments)

The Ford Transit was designed specifically to hold two euro-size pallets. Apparently the american pallet is about 30% larger than a euro pallet, but the euro-pallet is a lot easier to get up narrow stairways common in the ultra-dense cities of europe, south america, india, china etc and the smaller size allows the vehicle to get down streets and alleyways that a standard UPS van might not be capable of.

yesterday
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Librarians: The Google Before Google

Hadlock The New York Public Library Desk Reference (91 comments)

This is an actual book, you can follow the guy's instagram or you can just buy the book. I had the 1993 edition (thanks, Scholastic Books!) in elementary school and it was basically google-lite, especially for a kid in a town of 10,000 and > bicycling distance from a major city with a Real Library (back when those mattered).
 
Old editions (1990's-early 2000's) of the The New York Public Library Desk Reference go for the cost of shipping.
 
  It's a huge tome of information, roughly 8x10" pages and 500-600 pages of them, a couple inches thick. Many rainy saturdays were enlightened as a kid waiting for dilbert cartoons to load via dialup.

yesterday
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The Case For Flipping Your Monitor From Landscape to Portrait

Hadlock Re:Have Both (567 comments)

Most first gen 4K displays are 2x 2k displays sharing an uncut panel requiring funky software and/or driver gymnastics to get it to work well. 2nd gen 4K displays generally have the two separate display drivers condensed down to one input, but third gen 4K displays where it's a true "plug and play" single display device through-and-through are still fairly rare. This is changing though.

about two weeks ago
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In Iowa, a Phone App Could Serve As Driver's License

Hadlock Re:Uh huh (207 comments)

If you can access the data with a PIN wirelessly, why does the "owner" of the license even need direct access to it? At that point it's the issuing authority's responsibility to be able to access it using the owner's given PIN.
 
To condense the argument down, "why do you even need a phone app? why can't you just give your last name and PIN to the officer?" All the phone app is doing here is validating that you know the PIN.

about two weeks ago
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Army Building an Airport Just For Drones

Hadlock Re:Southwest Airlines (48 comments)

As they're finding out, the military drones are actually better at landing themselves, instead of letting the pilots land them remotely. Under ideal conditions it's very likely that a computer will be better than humans when taking off and landing. Computers can read and process sensor data a lot more efficiently than a human's eyes and ears. We're just made out of meat, after-all.

about two weeks ago
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$35 Quad-core Hacker SBC Offers Raspberry Pi-like Size and I/O

Hadlock Re:XBMC Finally? (140 comments)

The onboard PWM for the arduino is fantastic, but there's not enough dedicated PWM for robotics unless you're just doing a 4DOF robot arm or something, which is why I mentioned the 16 channel PWM, which allows you do do 4DOF per limb. I have the PWM shield from adafruit, just picked up their non-denominational daughterboard (same chip, more generic mounting format) for the A+ this week.
 
And yeah those CH340G based Arduino Nano clones you can pick up off of ebay for $4 shipped are pretty amazing, they run for over a day off of an old nokia candybar cellphone battery, I have one running an SSD1306 OLED and temp sensor that stays charged off of a tiny solar panel.

about two weeks ago
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$35 Quad-core Hacker SBC Offers Raspberry Pi-like Size and I/O

Hadlock Re:XBMC Finally? (140 comments)

Can you share your code on that project? That's actually a very useful tool.

about two weeks ago
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$35 Quad-core Hacker SBC Offers Raspberry Pi-like Size and I/O

Hadlock Re:XBMC Finally? (140 comments)

The Raspberry Pi A+ is a good Arduino competitor; I2C, SPI, PWM, the PCB is actually smaller than the Arduino Uno R3 (standard Arduino footprint), and uses 100mA at idle (compare to 35mA at idle for the Arduino idling in non-sleep mode).
 
I haven't measured the A+ with the HDMI port turned off but at 100mA it's very competitive powerwise and runs a full linux stack, but has enough horsepower to do computing like OpenCV, encrypted wifi, and has full access to mathmatica and it's API now for highly optimized computing tasks, making it ideal for a robotics project. The Native PWM isn't so great but with I2C you can talk to a 16 channel PWM daughterboard for about $15 more.
 
Oh, and it's about half the weight of a BeagleBone Black, even if it's less powerful.

about two weeks ago
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Chinese Government Moves To Crack Down On Puns

Hadlock Re:Well, Grass Mud Horse to them! (156 comments)

Because most people's roommates don't speak mandarin,
 
link to explanation

about two weeks ago
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Why Elon Musk's Batteries Frighten Electric Companies

Hadlock Re: Oh BS (461 comments)

Yeah 800w in that case is peak. If you're not home during the day and it's cloudy, that's still 200w going in to your batteries for use when you get home. If it's raining and you're home on a Saturday playing video games with the electric heater on at 9am, it's likely you're draining your batteries much faster than solar is feeding them. It really depends on your residential use scale. As a bachelor I don't have daytime power needs, but a stay at home mom or elderly retired may have a constraint drain.

about two weeks ago
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Why Elon Musk's Batteries Frighten Electric Companies

Hadlock Re:Oh BS (461 comments)

Germany is cloudier than Seattle and yet they're the global leader in solar power. Go figure.
 
Have you looked at the price of Solar these days? In bulk it's down to less than $2/watt and that includes the inverter. You can install 800w of capacity for $1200 these days (plus batteries) so you're looking at $3000-4000 for 1KW professionally installed with lead acid battery backup. I pay about $1500-1800 a year for electricity in Texas and that would cover about 70% of my peak usage and would pay for itself after the third year. Solar is good for about 18-20 years and drops below 80% of it's nameplate rating after about 25 years. After year 5 you can just take your savings and roll it in to buying additional capacity/maintenance.

about two weeks ago
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Using OwnCloud To Integrate Dropbox, Google Drive, and More In Gnome

Hadlock Owncloud option that is _NOT_ written in PHP? (30 comments)

Anyone have a suggestion of a dropbox/owncloud replacement that is NOT written in PHP? PHP projects tend to be "babby's first project" and riddled with issues, security holes etc. Owncloud has been out for a few years but I'd like to avoid PHP if at all possible in the age of Ruby, Python, etc.

about three weeks ago
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Chromebooks Overtake iPads In US Education Market

Hadlock Re:simple (193 comments)

The motherboard is a one piece unit with soldered on eMMC, RAM, CPU etc, battery is glued in, etc. Basically you have a plastic clamshell around the display, and a plastic clamshell around the keyboard/motherboard, and battery glued to the clamshell.

about three weeks ago
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Chromebooks Overtake iPads In US Education Market

Hadlock Re:Uh yeah? (193 comments)

They're drop shipped directly from the manufacturer to the school district. Same as how enterprise computer sales work. There is no big box "chromebooks for schools!" retail outlet that superintendents and CIOs drive to once a year with their SUV to stock up on the latest school technology, and then drive home with it to wrap it up in christmas paper.

about three weeks ago
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Finland Dumps Handwriting In Favor of Typing

Hadlock Re:1994 (523 comments)

Generally when I come across cursive I just look for the d, b, p, g, t, y, i and j's (the letters with limbs or dots) and then piece together the word from the visual pattern they create. I'm pretty sure that's how your brain parses printed text as well.

about three weeks ago
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Finland Dumps Handwriting In Favor of Typing

Hadlock Re:1994 (523 comments)

We were the last class in our elementary school to learn it... in 1989 or 1990. This was up in washington, we were still playing Reader Rabbit on an Apple II that the 2nd grade classes all shared. Outside of my Grandmother's letters I can't remember the last time I used cursive, reading or writing. The Constitution is some illegible form of cursive and my signature these days on credit card receipts is an "X" to save time.

about three weeks ago
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Russia May Be Planning National Space Station To Replace ISS

Hadlock Re:What do you mean "may be"? (236 comments)

The rocket motor on the Zvezda module has only fired twice, the second time happening 7 years after the first time. Resupply ships dock with the ISS and just before they leave, they boost the orbit until they have just enough fuel left to deorbit. Since the ISS' orbit degrades approx 1-2 km/month they boost it anywhere from 50-100km using resupply ships. The ATV has boosted the ISS numerous times.

about a month ago
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NASA Offering Contracts To Encourage Asteroid Mining

Hadlock Re:For the novelty! (153 comments)

What's it like, being a former Enron accountant

about a month ago

Submissions

Hadlock hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

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stillborn

Hadlock Hadlock writes  |  more than 8 years ago

i thought i'd go ahead and write one more article in here, since the other article is so blah and that's what comes up when you click on my journal. this slashdot journal system really was a stillborn project; i'm not sure if they keep it around because cmdrtaco and friends still use this thing, or if there's actually people who use this on a regular basis. either way, this is the first post in four years or so from me; i was using lj before, and will continue to do so despite compeitors like myspace. here's to another 4 years of not posting in this.

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life sucks

Hadlock Hadlock writes  |  more than 12 years ago

i've run out of new stuff to do. or so it seems. booooored. also slightly pissed off that brian couldn't get me my hard drive today. grr. that's probably what got me in such a pissy mood. oh well. now im off to english where i bs my way through MORE work. sigh. i hate school.

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LC case mods....

Hadlock Hadlock writes  |  more than 12 years ago

Well fuck this. I'm getting my fucking work done; I'm just bored and relaxing. I would have this fucking shit done by now if I hadn't goddamned fucked up with the whochamacalit. Chapter 7 instead of chapter 5. Grrrr. Spring break in like, 3 days. Sigh. Umm what else to talk about? After looking at case designs for my mac, I looked at the case for my mac, and specifically noticed that the fan on the bottom sucks in A LOT of freaking air. Wow. So that limits my positioning of the fan. I guess I could mount the fan as an exhaust fan pressed directly up to the power supply, as the only thing I really need to worry about is the powersupply, it gets fairly warm without any decent airflow. Warm isn't really a problem; but I want things as cool as possible. Maybe mount a heatsink or 9 on it? Hmmmmmmm. SCSI drive is just going to run hot regardless. Put it near the convection vent on the bottom, and let the cool drafts passively cool it. I don't really have to worry much about the motherboard, as it doesn't create enough heat to warrant active cooling. If it's not warm enough for apple engineers, it's not warm enough for me. Hell, it's $5 hardware. Crazy that it used to be worth $1200. Crazy. I really need to go get that $5 LC II from allen, and build a mockup of what I'm going to need to do for my final case design. At least if I fry that hardware, I still have a backup or 2. The only things I'm worried about are my HD and NIC card; the rest are pretty easy to get as salvage. Well I have an extra hard drive, so I guess all I need to do is buy a spare NIC card and I'm set. Some foam on the lid and back would probably provide decent sound insulation. In the final model made of aluminum and plexiglass, I could probably make some metal mounts and epoxy them to the inside of the aluminum cover, and then have the hard drive pressed against the lid. I'd need a slightly longer SCSI cable, so I don't tear up the motherboard when I open the lid? Internal lighting (blue neon light) would be bad-ass. Need to work on a way to run power cables up to the case....hmm. possibly that external SCSI CD rom drive's powersupply; that could potentially power both a second HD and/or a neon light. I could power it off of the LC's powersupply, but that would really just be overtaxing the power supply and a dumb design flaw on my point. I guess the dealy-o (yo), would be be to have a tube of some sort carry the power cable for the LC, 12 DC wires running up from a wall wart, and the RJ45 connection all inside a black or white, possibly light grey flexible tube. I think you can buy this at places like home depot. One idea I've been throwing around recently is that if I'm going to light this case internally, a frosted, or textured type of plexiglass, instead of the really hella clear plexiglass that shows srcapes and scratches really easily. I might have to sand blast my own? Hmm another idea- make the case out of clear plexiglass, and then tape down a cardboard picture of an apple, and sandblast the whole thing, removing the cardboard to give a relief of a clear apple. Kinda cool, but not exactly what I'm looking for. What I want is the front of the server case to look like the back of my powerbook - glowing white apple surrounded by brushed metal. I'd have to get the metal laser cut and then stick in some opaque plastic to be backlit. It'd be tight.

On an unrelated note, you could potentially cool a system with chlorine or argon gas, as they're element numbers 17 and 18 on the periodic chart. Instead of nitrogen, #8, with an atomic weight of 14; while chlorine and argon have weights of 34 and 39.8, respectively. Nitrogen makes up something like what? 72% of the air? 78% according to my envy sys book (I knew it would come in handy for SOMETHING. Sigh. CO2 and O2/3 make up something like 21% of the remainder. Nitrogen weighs the most, at 14, oxygen 12 and carbon not far behind. By effectively changing the density of the air, in theroy, that should increase the heat absorbtion factor. Of course, you can't just buy argon, BUT, you can buy an argon something something canister for your inert gas wielder. My plan would be to create a closed system with some sort of radiator picking up the majority of the heat in a closed system. It seems damn complex though; still requiring a water pump - the only advantage is that you don't have to worry about condensation on the processor, as you'd flush out 95% of the o2/h20.

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perfume

Hadlock Hadlock writes  |  more than 12 years ago

i think i finally figured out why i'm constanly coughing when i'm @ program six... it's "summer" now, or one might suspect that from what the girls are wearing on the "not freezing" days and the amount of perfume they wear. that might not be a horribly big problem in a school like PSHS, which is designed to move ALOT of air all the time, but at program six, which is designed for about 60 people, tops, and add another 30, then air problems arise. 15 extra girls wearing perfume can make a HUGE difference in the air quality, and the amount of coughing i do in a day. colonge doesn't help much, either. don't get me wrong, you don't see me coughing when i wear colongne, but you'd cough too if you spilt the bottle on yourself.

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infinite number of monkies and a FINITE amount of time...

Hadlock Hadlock writes  |  more than 12 years ago

if you wrote a program that would grab all the words of a specific text into a wordbank database, and then randomly string them together in random sentences, adding punctuation with primitive grammar algorithms.
 
write a program that takes these sentences and strings them together into a screenplay that is a length between x chars long and x sentences (ap strings?) long....say about the length of a shakespeaian play.
 
output this to a .txt file, and write a program that matches the .txt file up against the original document, saving those documents that match up to 75% or higher. would be interesting to read. sounds like a fun project.... or somthing.

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english

Hadlock Hadlock writes  |  more than 12 years ago

Blah. English is an old art form, but doesn't exactly mean it is one that should be learned or practiced for more than 2 years in high school. I'd much rather have an option to take two years of art appreciation instead of my last two years of english. As I understand it, we're learning about t the process of how one reads a book, and then goes out and reads other's views and opinions of that book,, and then eventually decide to write their own review of the book, for others to read. From my (probably) skewed view, reading slashdot isn't too horribly different from this. Someone/some company creates a new techonology or does something extremely creative, that took a lot of combined effort and talent, and shows it off to the world on the internet through pictures and words. On slashdot, this is reported, and many people are allowed to read about this wonderous new techonology or obscure and cheap hobby, then read and write their own reviews (post) about it. It's a community that is constantly feeding itself with new content, providing an outlet for idle thought and time. As with writing, only a small given percentage at any one point is idly working on their "next big project", while fewer are producing a finished product to the community each day. This example is almost mirrored on slashdot, which has a community approaching half a million users (although my guess would be that there are only about 100k active users), where 10 to 12 things per day are posted, and usually about a hundred or so comments are given to each post, while many more people simply read the comments, or "Review/critisisms". There are even two users who regularly do literary things in their comments; one writes haikus, while the other has the user name "grammar nazi". You can guess what he does. I'm already actively parparticipating in a large group that critisizes and compliments eachother's works. Why must another established group's thoughts and beliefs be foreced upon me, especially when I have already been exposed to the culture and clearly don't like it? Taking humanaties 1& 2 in my freshman and sophmore years was far more interesting, and covered far more information of interest. Not suprisingly, english was the least covered in depth. Of course, that's offset by the fact that we already have an ingraied and indeph english progam in most, if not all high school programs around the nation. Still, it's good to not be seeing more literature than I want, and the little you do see, is the eccentric kind and might actually be enjoyed at it's face value, without the complex need to dissect and analyze every small bit. Satire is a favorite of mine: easily recognizable and gets I's point across easily.

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