top BlackBerry's Survival Plan: the Internet of Things
I have two family members that use new Blackberries. One has a model from about 14 months ago and my brother just got one about a month ago. They are both somewhat limited in terms of apps but conversely, they both have stupid amounts of battery life and they Just Work(tm). They're business phones so obviously they aren't getting stressed with Youtube/Netflix/etc. Still, it appears to be a solid product, if probably unsexy to the people always on my lawn.
top Ask Slashdot: How Should a Liberal Arts Major Get Into STEM?
You may have already realized this but engineers operate on facts/empirical evidence and it is absolutely critical to identify screw-ups (both individual cases and as a per-person trend) and call them out so we don't repeat the same mistakes. Far too often, I've worked with people who were more concerned with negative perception than with shipping product. Understand that we who are trying to produce care less about your feelings than your work product. Constructive criticism only works if the person being criticized can personally accept responsibility for failure. Without that bit of introspective honesty, we who can are not going to be predisposed to helping you find yourself.
about a month and a half ago
top An Algorithm To Prevent Twitter Hashtag Degeneration
I just peeked in to see what the comments said (obvious concept of moderation applied to hashtags is obvious) and see that most of the comments already covered what I was going to say. Bravo, folks.
about a month and a half ago
top Gridlock In Action: Retailers Demand New Regulations To Protect Consumers
Here we see people clamoring for government regulation of tech issues after numerous stories on that same government's lack of understanding of tech issues. Really?
If the banks charge the retailer that suffered the breach for the damages resulting from the breach, then only the offenders suffer rather than making everyone suffer under onerous and ill-conceived regulations. Not to mention that charging for the damages from a breach means the punishment will actually fit the crime. Further, punishing a single guilty retailer for a breach means the customers can go to another retailer that is not having to raise prices to cover a breach fine, which is even more incentive for a company to protect against a breach in the first place.
And all this takes place without the need for 2000 pages of regulation that nobody will be able to understand and no risk of unintended consequences resulting from it that nobody can fix because of the same gridlock the article summary complains about.
It's like that scene in Kill Bill where Budd's manager tells him that "fucking with your cash is the only thing you kids seem to understand."
top Ford Develops a Way To Monitor Police Driving
Police departments nation-wide have placed on hold all orders for Ford Taurus police models and have now moved unfulfilled orders to Dodge Chargers and Chevy Malibus.
top What Will It Take To Make Automated Vehicles Legal In the US?
If anything is gonna kill/delay the automated vehicle market, it's gonna be people suing the shit out of car manufacturers when anything at all goes wrong. And make no mistake, it's gonna be up to the manufacturer to prove it wasn't their hardware/software that caused it.
And unfortunately, the people that would normally argue in favor of being reasonable with new tech will be suffering from inner turmoil as that idea conflicts with the "big corporations are ruthlessly profitable" belief.
It's gonna be interesting to watch, for sure.
top Will Fiber-To-the-Home Create a New Digital Divide?
Witness the increase of standard memory configurations in PCs from 512-1GB to 8-16GB and the same with 5400RPM ATA HDDs versus SATA 6GB/s SSDs. The former is 16-32x more memory and the latter is in some cases two orders of magnitude faster, yet people in the millions still use these older PCs to use the internet. They won't be able to watch 4k HD video, possibly, but it's not going to be an exclusionary evolution.
Man, some of you people are just hell bent on dividing everyone up into classes. One wonders if the very existence of such arbitrary divides (and, concomitantly, the bigotry of anti-individualism that necessarily underlies it) and the loud excoriations of such are indicators that we have nothing better to complain about and should appreciate that we have the luxury to sink to such busy-body mundanity.
top Ebola Does Not Require an "Ebola Czar," Nor Calling Up the National Guard
Fear is relatively easy to manage if you actually have, you know, the peoples' trust. Imagine that. Why, if the public was actually used to the government telling the truth (including telling them when something was actually potentially detrimental to national security, rather than using that as an excuse to obscure _everything_) I'll bet you could just be honest with them and people would be rather rational about the whole thing. Lie through your teeth and then blame it on your predecessors or people you have appointed and you get the current situation.
Then again, who among us today has any experience in an environment where people were actually being honest, even a majority of the time, and especially in any governmental context? The closest you'd get to that today would be certain military units and small teams at companies.
top Who's In Charge During the Ebola Crisis?
Drop. In. The. Bucket versus what's coming across our southern border. Watch the news in El Paso or Nogales some time.
top Google To Require As Many As 20 of Its Apps Preinstalled On Android Devices
The market never gets to choose.
Because the market is always skewed in favor of the people who control the market.
And they don't want it to be free and open, they want your money and ad impressions.
The manufacturers don't give a damn what you or the market wants.
"People that control the market" only control it until someone else innovates, meaning they never controlled it in the first place. Did Google control the market when they created Android? Did Nokia control the market when they created their handsets? Did Facebook control the internet when they came onto the scene?
Tell us: what's the alternative?
top New Details About NSA's Exhaustive Search of Edward Snowden's Emails
We can exhaustively search all of Snowden's emails by restoring from backup tapes but we can't find a single one of Lois Lerner's or other IRS emails because hard drives crashed?
I'll take Double Standards for $500, Alex.
top Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio
"rather than scientific processes" does not mean "rather than the scientific method." But like any other vaguely worded law, it will be up to the enforcers to decide what constitutes "scientific processes." Frankly, if you want to weed politics out of the "science," the ONLY way to do that IS the scientific method. Which would mean, forming your own opinion based on the evidence you as an individual observe. With that in mind, neither side wants people forming their own opinions. Congratulations. We are now reaping the results of you people using government to get what you want from other people.
Good intentions my pasty white ass.
top Linus Torvalds: 'I Still Want the Desktop'
He mentions something in the article about devs having newer hardware and everyone else having older stuff. That's a point, to be sure, but in my experience, there's enough info on the web to make fixing drivers doable. The bar to adoption is mostly user interface design. Lack of offline help, inconsistent UI guidelines, inconsistent context-menu-access, difficulty in figuring out why you can't enable certain options (because the GUI doesn't tell you that other options are available with a package download), inconsistent hotkeys, etc. On any windows machine, I can blindly press a few keystrokes and both launch apps and navigate their menus. Not to mention that menus and common buttons are almost always in the same place and look pretty much the same.
My family has expressed lots of consternation over some of the changes even within the Windows ecosystem (start menu layout changes, control panel layout/submenu changes, Office quickbar, etc.).
But instead, we're focused on the latest new shiny thing rather than making it all work consistently and intuitively. I mostly use bash consoles so I don't really bother with the GUI but you'll never get anywhere by trying to revert today's typical OOOSHINY wanna-be nerd to use that when they can just pay a few hundred extra bucks and get something that does the same thing the same way every time they click or tap in a specific spot.
top Supervalu Becomes Another Hacking Victim
If I had them, all my mod points are belong to you.
top How California's Carbon Market Actually Works
...if everyone in the process is at least partially corrupt, undiligent, or just plain out to lunch, and there's no hard accountability designed into the system, no measurement criteria, and no way to balance out abuses on both sides, then the whole things becomes just another talking point that someone can use in an election campaign?
What's new here?
top The ESports Athletes Who Tried To Switch Games
Knowing the game mechanics notwithstanding, it still takes muscle memory for the mouse movements and keystrokes. I was readings something about baseball pitchers and how it takes some ludicrous amount of hours of the same motion for the muscle memory to set in. I can't imagine any other "sport" that uses a physical interface would be any different.
top Why the "NASA Tested Space Drive" Is Bad Science
It is important and necessary to independently verify and reproduce these results, meaning that if you detail the setup and methods, anyone else can achieve these results for themselves with the proper equipment
Interesting. I wonder what other popular and controversial "science" is missing this particular step.
top San Jose Police Apologize For Hiding Drone Program, Halts Until Further Review
"We're sorry we got caught. Consider us chastised. It'll never happen again. Honest. For real this time."
top Passport Database Outage Leaves Thousands Stranded
Sic the healthcare.gov guys on it. I'm sure it'll be right as rain in no time.
top The Daily Harassment of Women In the Game Industry
You wonder why we have so much dysfunction going on today?
Pervasive culture of butthurt = CHECK
Any perceived insult is by default true = CHECK Special protected classes that can do no wrong = CHECK Litigious society causing zero tolerance including honest mistakes = CHECK Rampant immaturity = CHECK General abdication of personal responsibility = CHECK
Let's pose a hypothetical, here. Let's say you (Linda, a woman) work for a company A. A has Big Boss, Linda, Tom, Fred and David as employees. The four of you report to Big Boss.
Situation A: Tom says something mean to Fred. Fred tells Tom to go fuck himself. Big Boss hears about it and calls them both into his office. Big Boss tells Tom to square his shit away or he's fired. Big Boss admonishes Fred to come see him about this in the future rather than responding in kind. Tom and Fred go on about their work and are a bit more careful about their interactions. This is a regular thing for Tom as he's brilliant but a loose cannon verbally. Big Boss talks to Tom and admonishes him that if he can't keep his asshole comments to himself, he will end up fired with prejudice.
Situation B: Linda says something mean to Fred. Fred tells Linda she can go fuck herself. Other employees hear the latter half of the exchange. Linda goes to Big Boss and complains about Fred using foul language around her. Big Boss calls them both into the office. Linda tells her story and Big Boss asks her to return to her desk. Big Boss then lectures Fred about the sensitivities of women in the workforce and how the small company cannot afford to defend against a "workplace harassment" lawsuit. Fred complains that Linda started the whole thing. Big Boss says it won't matter because a jury will default rule in favor of the woman because of articles like the above. Fred points out that justice is supposed to be blind. Big Boss points out that in cases of harassment, lay-wisdom holds that when women harass men, the men need to grow a pair, but when men harass women, it is only right and proper to expect better decorum out of the men. Big Boss never says anything to Linda because it could be construed as the abuse of power in a workplace environment.
Now, you may laugh at this but these are actual shit storms I've seen happen. The problem is that while most women aren't self-entitled whiners and most men are not adolescent assholes, we can't catch a break because the lawyers and bean-counters won't let a manager fire the shit out of someone just for being a prick/cunt. As George Takei said, we've reduced ourselves to the lowest common denominator of butthurt.
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