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Harvard's CompSci Intro Course Boasts Record-Breaking Enrollment

NitsujTPU Re:Linux, cryptography, HTML and JavaScript. (119 comments)

I can shed some light on this.

This course is an introductory course for non-majors. That's why it's not like "Intro to Computer Science."

The big deal with Harvard's CS50 course isn't that everyone wants to enroll in computer science, but that it is being taught in a very unorthodox way. Students have the option of attending lectures or watching video lectures online. There is a great deal of supplementary online material. They have all night coding sessions with food and games which are sponsored by businesses such as Microsoft and Google.

More info can be found here:

3 days ago

ACM Blames the PC For Driving Women Away From Computer Science

NitsujTPU Re:CS Core Curriculum? (329 comments)

Where did you go that theory *wasn't* part of your core?

Also worth noting is that the reason that we teach so much programming is because that's the job associated with the degree. If you don't plan on programming with your degree in computer science, then you'd probably better plan on some graduate school. I suppose you could treat it as an, "I just needed a degree" subject, but it's a lot of work if all you're after is the ability to say that you finished your BS.

about three weeks ago

California May Waive Environmental Rules For Tesla

NitsujTPU Why not let this one go? (327 comments)

California already has number of big, powerful companies headquartered there. They've got a number of great universities. Why pull out all of the stops to get Tesla to set up shop in-state? The US is a big country, and a few other states might want a share of the wealth that a company like Telsa could bring in.

about a month ago

Point-and-Shoot: TrackingPoint's New Linux-Controlled AR-15s

NitsujTPU From the hip? (219 comments)

Really? You're shooting an AR-15 from the hip at a range where a trackpoint system would be helpful?

about a month ago

Ask Slashdot: Preparing an Android Tablet For Resale?

NitsujTPU Selling for parts (113 comments)

Just a quick note. You probably won't make much on the proceeds for a sale for parts. Used tablet parts don't fetch very much on the open market. If the tablet is non-working, there is no guarantee which parts work and which don't. Taking tablets apart is difficult and time-consuming, so there is a lot of labor involved. Also, due to the ways that tablets tend to be assembled (lots of epoxies and thin plastics), it is very easy to damage the parts during disassembly.

about a month and a half ago

Largest Collection of WW-II Buckminster Fuller Domes

NitsujTPU Fuller Dome (1 comments)

Interesting, though, when one cites a Fuller Dome, people generally expect a geodesic dome, the design for which Buckminster Fuller is better known: These DDUs are an entirely different design.

about 8 months ago

Xbox One Controller Cost Over $100 Million To Develop

NitsujTPU Re:Wow... (206 comments)

They *did* invest in the Kinect 2. The Kinect 2 has also been a major success.

about 10 months ago

Xbox One Controller Cost Over $100 Million To Develop

NitsujTPU Re:Wow... (206 comments)

This is actually the opposite of something that's wrong with a company. They used the money that they had in order to fund research in order to produce a better product, and somewhat simply to do new and interesting research. I can't see why you would think that this is a bad thing.

People cite the "nimble" bit when they mean that a company is stuck in its ways or unable to adapt to change. Doing major research and development is the opposite of that. It's where people who are experts in a field use their talents to really thoroughly explore new ideas.

Moreover, your assertion lies on the idea that, somehow, this research isn't paying off. The consequence of that would be that they somehow fail to make money on the XBox One. It's a little early to be calling the XBox One a commercial failure, given that it won't be.

about 10 months ago

Should the U.S. bomb Syria?

NitsujTPU Re:should slashdot be asking if the U.S. should bo (659 comments)

I agree, and I mean no offense to the admins when I say this. If every tech site tries to be a general news site, there will be no tech sites. Content like this dilutes the technical content of sites like Slashdot. There are plenty of places to talk politics. There should be a place to talk tech.

1 year,5 days

Rob "CmdrTaco" Malda Resigns From Slashdot

NitsujTPU Thanks (1521 comments)

Honestly, Slashdot has been one of my favorite websites ever since it was shown to me in high school. Within a year or two after I started reading Slashdot, it became *the* place to become "in the know" with what was going on in technology.

A big part of the direction that Slashdot has moved in has been a product of this. More and more people knew that Slashdot was a place to go to to get "in the know," but the pool of truly enthusiastic, sharp, science and engineering minded people became diluted with people who simply wanted to be associated with that. Everyone wanted to participate, and the signal to noise ratio went down. It's unfortunate, but the thing that initially attracted people here was largely due to your vision and your efforts. I don't believe that your departure is likely to improve the site. I know that I, at times, have been critical of the direction that Slashdot has gone in (and at times you have expressed frustrations with the site yourself, or at least, frustrations with what you should do with it), but this change in direction has largely been a product of the change in readership. It has been your vision that has managed to keep it sane.

What is truly unfortunate is that, looking around the Internet for a site that gives me the same enjoyment that Slashdot did in its heyday, I have come up empty-handed. It really does feel like there is nowhere online for the old-school geek anymore. Everyone wants to be part of that now. In fact, being a "hipster" now involves saying how geeky and quirky you are. It's pretty annoying seeing kids who can't even program move in on my turf like that.

Anyway, thanks for all of the effort that you've put into this site, and I honestly do hope that we meet at an Open Source convention of some sort someday. If we do, I'll buy you a beer.

about 3 years ago

All the Best Games May Be NP-Hard

NitsujTPU Re:Just to throw this out there (322 comments)

You know, I just shouldn't have chimed in. I'm beginning to regret that I did.

Thank you for speaking down to me. Now, lets get to business.

I get it. I actually understand computational complexity very well. Had you read the follow-up post, which was posted well before your post, you would see that I added the caveat "if P!=NP", long before you had a chance to talk down to me.

more than 4 years ago

All the Best Games May Be NP-Hard

NitsujTPU Re:Just to throw this out there (322 comments)

I actually threw in the caveat in a follow-up post (since I wasn't very atomic about it) that this was if P!=NP. Nothing that I said affects class inclusions once that caveat is thrown in.

more than 4 years ago

All the Best Games May Be NP-Hard

NitsujTPU Re:chess and go aren't np-hard, but they are also (322 comments)

The generalizations of both games are NP-Hard. They're only constant time because of the fixed number of pieces and places for those pieces to go.

more than 4 years ago

All the Best Games May Be NP-Hard

NitsujTPU Re:Just to throw this out there (322 comments)

I should caveat all of this. The "no polynomial-time algorithm" bit is only true if P!=NP. If P=NP, then there is a deterministic polynomial-time algorithm for NP-Complete problems. NP-Hard, however, just means that it's at least as hard as NP, so, it's possible that there's no algorithm for that harder problem. You have to be really really precise when talking about this stuff.

more than 4 years ago

All the Best Games May Be NP-Hard

NitsujTPU Just to throw this out there (322 comments)

Since I had to suffer through at least one professor who didn't understand basic complexity theory last night, and I know that Slashdot generally screws it up to.

NP-Hard means that there's no (deterministic) polynomial-time algorithm to solve the games. Additionally, you always have to generalize these games in order to make that claim. Since computational complexity is defined in terms of the length of the input, and certainly all of these games are being played on an input of fixed length.

However, there are effective approaches to solving NP-Hard problems. There are solvers for known NP-Hard problems. If you Google "sat solver" you'll find at least 5 that you can just download. SAT solvers are used in VLSI validation and other practical things. These solvers use heuristics to improve search performance, generally proposing answers and checking them (for NP-Complete problems).

Also, there are tons of games known to be NP or PSPACE complete. The reductions for those games are kind of a standard problem, since the AI community writes a bunch of these solvers.

more than 4 years ago

I've originated Q Wikipedia articles, where Q =

NitsujTPU Corrected Math (256 comments)

I've never originated one, but I've found incorrect mathematics in a few of them and corrected it if time allowed.

more than 4 years ago



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