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Comments

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'Just Let Me Code!'

JimFive Re:"Just let me build a bridge!" (368 comments)

We need thinkers who can define requirements precisely, designers who can describe processes to produce those results, and then turn the design (UML. Warnier-Orr, Flowchart, etc.) over to a generator

We already do this, that generator is called a compiler. By the time you have specified a design to the same detail as an engineer specifies a bridge you have already written all the code. Engineers specify a design down to every individual bolt. Software specifications do not design down the individual line of code. This is the difference between engineering and programming: in engineering when a design is completed then the object still has to be built, in programming when the design is completed then the program is done.
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JimFive

about a week ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

JimFive Re:We shall see. (285 comments)

We definitely had that multiplication table nonsense when I was in school. The result was that most people forgot most of them and ended up having to calculate them manually.

Seriously? You think that MOST people in your class forgot single-digit multiplications (even as they continued to use them daily) and started counting on their fingers (or drawing dots on paper)? Because that's what "calculate them manually" means, doing it by hand. There are 3 ways to do single digit multiplication: memorize, count, or restate the problem into problems that you have already memorized. Restating requires that you have a sufficient number of the problems memorized for it to work.

They are. I saw it in action myself. The 'teaching' methods you describe don't go into the full picture at all.

The teaching methods I describe are first grade and addition/multiplication using tokens is a perfect example of what those operations actually are and quite helpful in moving from physical manipulation to the symbolic manipulation of arithmetic. If you think that there is more to either of those operations than can be shown by an array of stones on a table then please, enlighten me. That grid of tokens can show commutation, distribution, association, primality, squareness, divisibility, etc. Moving that physical representation to a symbolic system is what arithmetic in lower elementary is about. I submit that knowing the answer to those 45 problems without having to spend time figuring them out every time is useful to the student and everyone who has ever complained about cashiers being unable to make change agrees with me.
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JimFive

about a week ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

JimFive Re:We shall see. (285 comments)

So, when you do the problem 7*8 what is your thought process?

You seem to be hung up on the idea of a literal table of math problems, while I think I've been pretty clear that I'm referring to a figurative table that is the collection of 45 single digit problems that make up the basics of symbolic arithmetic manipulation. And, I think it is safe to say that you have a significant number of them memorized.

about a week ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

JimFive Re:We shall see. (285 comments)

If you know 9x6

I actually don't. I had to think about it for a split second.

Sure and what did you think? You certainly didn't think 9+9 is 18 and 18+9 is 27 and 27+9 is 36 and 36+9 is 45 and 45+9 is 54, which is what you get from "an understanding of multiplication" without having any memorized answers. You seem to believe that you haven't memorized these things but if you are not counting on your fingers to add numbers together then you HAVE memorized these things, and you probably memorized them so long ago that you can't remember not knowing them. Certainly, there are tricks that make mental math easier, but those tricks still rely on you having memorized a sufficient set of single digit addition and multiplication problems.

I don't buy your logic that because someone has to think about it for a second, then they suddenly won't know what's going on.

It's not a second. If it's a second then they have enough stuff memorized to do the arithmetic. It seems that you've never worked with a student struggling with basic arithmetic such that it takes them 15-30 seconds to do 15+27, if they do it all without giving up. By that time the teacher is on a different problem and the student is falling further behind.

Using a tool often does not mean you don't understand how and why multiplication works.

Using a calculator before you understand how and why multiplication works means that you are likely to never understand. You seem to be under the impression that memorizing of tables is used in place of teaching how the operations work. Children are taught to add using tokens on a desk, dots on a line, and marks on a page, then they are pushed to memorize the single digit answers. Multiplication, similarly, starts with making rectangles of tokens and then moves onto paper before memorization of the answers.

The basic material is important. Memorizing a table or results, however, not so much

In arithmetic the only thing more basic than single digit addition is the numbers themselves.

The problem with rote learning is not in the memorization of simple arithmetic facts. The problem with rote learning in mathematics comes when you start doing mathematics instead of arithmetic.
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JimFive

about a week ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

JimFive Re:We shall see. (285 comments)

Did you know that current tests are absolute garbage and are part of the reason the education system itself is abysmal?

You're talking about standardized tests, I'm referring to in classroom tests.

I never truly memorized the table and yet I understand math

You are being disingenuous. If you know 9x6 without thinking about the answer then you have memorized it, whether you ever filled out a grid with the answers is irrelevant to whether you have memorized the material.

It's absolutely ridiculous to say that someone cannot follow along in a fucking algebra class if they don't memorize the results of calculations

If the teacher is demonstrating a problem, e.g. 6x-27 = 15 and for the next step writes 6x=42 it is surely easier for the student to follow along if they can quickly see that 27+15 = 42 without having to write it out and calculate it.

tool-using creatures

You can't gain understanding if you fall back on a calculator for basic knowledge. Now, whether you think it is valuable to be able to do long division it is practically impossible if you don't know single digit multiplication. A student who knows the multiplication table will be able to complete a quiz on division while the student who doesn't, won't. I'm not saying that students should never use calculators, I'm saying that learning the basic material is important and until you've learned it a calculator is a hindrance.

As an aside, they don't seem to actually teach it as a table any longer, which is good because learning them as separate facts prevents relying on the patterns of the table format.
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JimFive

about a week ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

JimFive Re:We shall see. (285 comments)

Math is not about speed to begin with.

It is when you have maybe 45 minutes a day to teach it and you have to give timed tests. Memorization of the addition and multiplication tables is not done just for its own sake; it is done to facilitate later learning. It is done so that in classes such as algebra the teachers can skip a couple of details and still expect the students to follow along. It's done because dealing with big numbers is easier if you already know the answers for small numbers without having to calculate it out every time.
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JimFive

about a week ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

JimFive Re:Yeah, students will use bandwidth (285 comments)

Funding overall may be going up, but at least around here, general funding isn't very good. iPods, etc are bought with grant funds while teachers are paying out of pocket for basic classroom supplies.
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JimFive

about a week ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

JimFive Re:Yeah, students will use bandwidth (285 comments)

That is not happening in a household where the single parent works 3 jobs.

The way to fix that is after school clubs and activities.

No, the way to fix that is to structure our society so that a person only needs to work 1 job to support their family. Potential ideas might include subsidized daycare, wage supports, basic income, increased availability of and respect for adult education, better transit systems, etc.
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JimFive

about a week ago
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The First Person Ever To Die In a Tesla Is a Guy Who Stole One

JimFive Re:Why is this news? (443 comments)

How about pushing the pedestrian cross walk button? If there isn't one then probably the only "legal" way to cross is to dismount (become a pedestrian) and walk across. Also, I think there is a law for dealing with lights that are not functioning properly which probably says treat it like a stop sign.
JimFive

about two weeks ago
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UK Computing Student Jailed After Failing To Hand Over Crypto Keys

JimFive Re:But it wasn't for "national security" (353 comments)

Everything you have said appears to be true in the US legal system. However, if there is any such thing as an inalienable right, then "the right to remain silent" is it.
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JimFive

about three weeks ago
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No Shortage In Tech Workers, Advocacy Groups Say

JimFive Re:Not somuch (401 comments)

Random example: You could greet an American female colleague with "hello, gorgeous" with very little chance she'd be offended. You never ever should greet an Indian female co-worker the same way.

Actually, the American colleague will also be offended, she just won't raise a big fuss about it.
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JimFive

about three weeks ago
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Use of Encryption Foiled the Cops a Record 9 Times In 2013

JimFive Re:I smell a rat. (115 comments)

You forgot:

5) Most crimes leave evidence that is not on the criminal's computer.

about a month ago
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The Government Can No Longer Track Your Cell Phone Without a Warrant

JimFive Re:The US Government can overrule anything (173 comments)

You do realize that the President is the Chief Executive, the head of the Executive branch of government. That is the president's primary role, even before that of Commander in Chief. While it is true that he cannot "control what everyone in the Executive Branch does" it is his job to set and communicate the guidelines for how they do their job.
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JimFive

about a month and a half ago
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Google Engineer: We Need More Web Programming Languages

JimFive Re:Unfortunate realities (309 comments)

There is no reason that a single /language/ could not support efficient hardware manipulation and also run in a sandbox (with C-like efficiency).

Sure there is. For one thing, a sandbox by its very nature must always impose some overhead, which is anathema to systems programmers. Another paradox is that when you're building the layers in your system, something has to be at the bottom, and that can't be sandboxed.

You're conflating the language with the runtime environment. There is nothing that prevents you from compiling C code to target Machine Language, or JVM Bytecode, or .Net bytecode.
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JimFive

about a month and a half ago
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Toyota Investigating Hovercars

JimFive Re:I get enough flying priuses already. (186 comments)

Better yet, try driving in the left lane on a road that isnt limited access, a speed limit something around 35mph, and see how many people completely lose their minds despite the fact that what youre doing is entirely legal.

No, it isn't legal. Look up Impeding Traffic. You aren't allowed to impede the normal flow of traffic, even if that traffic is violating the law.
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JimFive

about 2 months ago
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For the First Time Ever, the FAA Is Trying To Fine a Drone Hobbyist

JimFive Re:Below 500'? (297 comments)

You are confusing "Controlled Airspace" with FAA jurisdiction. Unless otherwise classified (by the FAA) airspace below (I think) 700 feet above ground level is uncontrolled (Class G) airspace. Each airspace classification has specific rules for its use. The FAA still has jurisdiction even the airspace is uncontrolled.
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JimFive

about 3 months ago
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White House: Get ACA Insurance Coverage, Launch Start-Ups

JimFive Re:I went back to corporate America because Obamac (578 comments)

First: 240/mo is pretty close to 3K/yr so the premiums are about the same. 3K deductible seems pretty high, but in the individual market is probably fairly normal. You might note that there are certain things (annual wellness visit, etc) that are covered even before the deductible is met.

As for "Why not remove so many of the minimums...(...I don't need prenatal coverage)" The answer is: The exchanges are an attempt to bring the benefits of group rating as enjoyed by employer sponsored insurance to the individual market. Those benefits include preexisting condition coverage and overall lower premiums. The cost of those benefits is that everyone in the group gets the same coverage. So, while you, personally, may not need prenatal coverage, people in your group that are helping to keep your insurance rates more stable and (hopefully) lower than they otherwise would be will need that coverage. Likewise, coverage of contraception keeps rates lower because pregnancy is expensive.

Now, are there going to be people for whom the new system is worse than the old one? Sure. And if you're one of them it kind of sucks. But the expectation is that the people who are harmed will have enough options to be able to deal with that harm while those who are being helped did not have any options without the implementation of this law.
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JimFive

about 5 months ago
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How St. Louis Is Bootstrapping Hundreds of Programmers

JimFive Re:Let's call a spade a spade (147 comments)

Interesting, but since Aristotle was Greek what word did he use where we use spade (and what did/does it mean)? A (very) cursory google didn't come up with anything.

about 5 months ago
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Killing Net Neutrality Could Be Good For You

JimFive Re: riiiight (361 comments)

why can't a provider pay for a similar "bigger pipe" TO the ISP?

Well they could, but the provider doesn't have a pipe to the ISP, the provider has a pipe to their own ISP (Let's call it BackBone) and the consumer ISP also has a pipe to BackBone. The provider and the consumer ISP are both paying for their own pipe and the Customer is is paying the consumer ISP for access to that pipe. In this diagram there is no business relationship between e.g. NetFlix and Comcast and any effort by Comcast to get NetFlix to pay is basically extortion (nice user base you got there, be a pity if something happened to it). It might also be fraud as the Comcast customers are paying for a connection to the broader internet, not just those entities that Comcast "likes".

If NetFlix wants a faster pipe to Comcast customers they could certainly negotiate with Comcast to by a direct connection into the Comcast network and cut out BackBone.

None of this is meant to imply that Comcast can't do traffic shaping on their network, but that shaping should be part of improving the customer experience, not blackmailing content providers.
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JimFive

about 5 months ago
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US Treasury Completes Bailout of General Motors

JimFive Re:You have no idea... (425 comments)

more and more people will realize they don't need to own a car when they can just as easily rent one on demand just by pulling out a smartphone

And then they realize that everyone needs cars at the same time. Rush hour doesn't go away just because cars are autonomous.

Autonomous rental cars are going to need to be cleaned, or at least inspected, after every use because no one wants a car that smells like someone else's cigarettes--or vomit.

There are reasons that owning a car is cheaper than renting a car for most people. Those reasons don't disappear with autonomous cars. The cost discrepancy might go down, but if I have to rent a car to and from work every day and to the store once a week and on the weekends to visit the parents or go to the beach, I might as well buy a car.

What autonomous cars might do is decrease the need for every household to have 2 or more cars.
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JimFive

about 8 months ago

Submissions

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Flying Cars

JimFive JimFive writes  |  more than 4 years ago

JimFive (1064958) writes "For years we've been waiting for the flying car to arrive. The FAA has made an exemption that moves this one step closer to reality. Terrafugia has been granted a weight limit exemption for a "Roadable Airplane". Next up is passing the federal highway safety tests. The press release is here.."
Link to Original Source

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