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Ask Slashdot: Compensating Technical People For Contributing to Sales?

Rantastic It is called a Sales Enginner (331 comments)

...or sometimes a Solution Architect.

Most big tech companies (think SAP, Oracle, IBM, Red Hat) have a specific role for this. It is someone who could be an engineer but is specifically assigned to the sales process. Once the sales person has found the lead, the SE works with the customer to identify their needs and how best to meet them with the company's products. The sales person writes the deal and handles all the "sales" stuff.

Oh, and the SE gets a set percentage of the commission.

more than 2 years ago

FTP Is 40 Years Old

Rantastic Re:Kenny Should Learn History (253 comments)

Correction: FTP is only 3 years older than TCP. Still, it predates TCP and is really damn old.

about 3 years ago

FTP Is 40 Years Old

Rantastic Kenny Should Learn History (253 comments)

According to Kenney, the standard has grown from 'a simple protocol to copy files over a TCP-based network [to] a sophisticated, integrated model that provides control, visibility, compliance and security in a variety of environments, including the cloud.

Actually, FTP predates TCP by 10 years and 679 RFCs. Hint: TCP is defined in RFC 793.

about 3 years ago

Census Tech Makeover Includes Innovation "Oasis"

Rantastic Re:Soaring costs? (62 comments)

"The problems resulted in soaring costs"

That's weird, I thought the census was $1.6 billion under budget.


I live in the DC area and I was offered the job of lead architect/consultant overseeing the building of the datacenter for the 2010 census. In fact, I was offered this job six times in various forms over the last 6-8 years. I turned it down because I already have a good job. Not to mention the long ass commute out to the boonies of MD everyday. From what I understand, they had a lot of trouble finding good talent for the job.

Also, the various offers told a tale:

  • Deploy Red Hat
  • Finish incomplete Red Hat deployment
  • Migrate from incomplete Red Hat deployment to SuSe
  • Finish incomplete SuSe deployment

about 3 years ago

Case Closed On Jerusalem UFO Video

Rantastic Re:Carl Sagan (336 comments)


Here's a US Army Colonel who contradicts Sagan:

The evidence he speaks of includes the hard data of sensor technology that has frequently confirmed the reality of physical craft and the high quality of extremely reliable eyewitnesses who are "neither misreporting facts nor delusional."

You're kidding right? If I claim I have evidence of a mountain of gold hidden under Yankee Stadium, including all manner of sensor data, are you going to take me at my word? People make claims like this all the time. Guess what? The evidence never turns up, or if it does, it is found to be mistaken or fake. Every time.

Personally, I doubt we are alone in the universe. However, there has never been any validated evidence of any visitation to Earth. What Sagan points out is that we have very good answers to the question "How can otherwise reasonable people be utterly convinced that they have been taken aboard an alien craft when there is a lack of any evidence to show it actually happened?"

about 3 years ago

Samsung Galaxy Ad Misleads With Fake Interviews

Rantastic Re:I'm confused... (224 comments)

Why can't we go back to the good old days when the marketing meant finding out what people want* and directing R&D toward that thing, instead of what we have now, where they take any old product and just tell people it's the thing they want....

Let's see, which makes more money... Convincing people to buy things they don't need or want, or the first way.

about 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: How Do You Choose a Windows Laptop?

Rantastic Re:easy (898 comments)

2001 called, they want their troll post back

about 3 years ago

Facebook-Direct Phones — and Facebook Right On the SIM

Rantastic That's just great! (113 comments)

...and here I am all irritated that I can't remove the stupid Facebook app that came with my phone. I refused to use AOL the first time around and I won't started using it now just because they call it Facebook.

more than 3 years ago

Some Hotmail Accounts Wiped

Rantastic Re:And that boys and girls (298 comments)

Hotmail doesn't use cloud computing though.

Is that supposed to be a joke?

more than 3 years ago

Take This GUI and Shove It

Rantastic Re:Well there's another side to that (617 comments)

So a good sysadmin that knows GUI is cheaper on the payroll than say, a sysadmin that can master a CLI. Good to know that when standing in the unemployment line. Learn your freaking GUI for a job!

Yes, you will find that vast majority of small companies looking to hire a "computer guy" to click on the GUI are not going to pay very much and they are going to get exactly what they pay for. If they do manage to hire someone with real skills, that person will be gone within a year or two because they can get a hiring paying job once they have some experience.

more than 3 years ago

Take This GUI and Shove It

Rantastic Re:Well there's another side to that (617 comments)

I find it rather disturbing the UNIX ideal that sysadmins should be programmers. The opinion seems to be that it is perfectly ok for someone to need to do a fair bit of programming work to solve a system problem.

Not only have I spent over 10 years as a professional *nix system administrator, I currently work training professional system administrators. I don't know *anyone* who thinks that a system administrator should be a programmer. That being said, shell scripting is a tool of the skilled system administrator. Writing simple scripts is nothing like programming. While shell scripts can be quite complex, most that a system administrator would write are very simple. Really just a series of commands.

I know more than a few programmers that are abysmal at system administration...

And how! The vast majority of developers I know are terrible system administrators. There is a reason we keep them as far from the production systems as possible. The problem is that they think they do know system administration, but they have a completely different mindset.

...this attitude smacks of the "People should just get down and code what they need," thing. No, not really. Not everyone should have to learn that skill, and you could well be excluding people you want by requiring it.

Again, I don't know anyone who thinks this. People should learn the tools they are being paid to work with. That includes shell scripting. Now, some shops like to write a lot of in house tools in perl or python and will look for people skilled in system administration as well as those languages. Most big shops have a small number of sys admins who can write such tools. Don't confuse the tools team with the rest of the sys admins. This is a specialized role.

Also there's the simple matter that GUIs work better for unfamiliar situations. While it might be easy to just say "Well a good admin should know about this," that is rather stupid. Nobody knows everything, you never get someone with limitless experience. Part of systems administration is being able to solve novel problems.

I could not disagree more. While a GUI might help someone plod through without really understanding what they are doing, this is not a good thing. I agree that no one knows everything. However, a skilled sys admin can research and learn new things when needed. Most GUIs just get in the way of learning and deeply understanding. Then when something doesn't work as expected, you are SOL. Or you miss a subtle issue that bites you in the ass later.

I'd like to point out that I use GUI tools all the time. However, I make a point of learning the technology I am paid to understand. When I use a GUI it is because it is the best or most convenient way to get something done. I can also tell you all the places on the system that GUI changed and what to do if something went wrong.

That can make it much faster to deal with something you are not familiar with. This is important and useful in real IT work.

I have worked in IT for long enough to know this isn't true. The simple reality is that most people working in IT suck. Seriously. I have interviewed and worked with more than enough of them. They use GUIs as crutches. They are over worked and have no time to learn anything even if they were so inclined. They have a very shallow understanding of the technology they are paid to understand. They choose "easy" tools instead of tools that require learning. It is the sad state of things that truly skilled system administrators are a rare find.

Should everything be CLI? Of course not. Should everything be GUI, of course not. However, to say that GUI tools are better because you don't have to be familiar with them is a very scary attitude if you ask me.

more than 3 years ago

iPhone DSLR Prototype 1.0

Rantastic Re:uh, samples? (172 comments)

It could be done with any phone, but it wasn't, because it's so incredibly useless and indulgent.

No, actually it can't be done with any phone. It doesn't work.

Elsewhere on the same site, the designer says:

While all the part fit to make a decent looking iPhone DSLR, the results of the configuration are completely useless.

How naive I was to think that snapping all these pieces together would just work.

I don't know why this is on Slashdot. The headline might as well read "Neat looking was to disable your iPhone's camera"

more than 3 years ago

Best Format For OS X and Linux HDD?

Rantastic Re:No Filesystem (253 comments)

As to encryption, you just encrypt the file before you tar it. In fact, with gpg you get both encryption and integrity checking.

Gnupg is available in Mac Ports and comes with just about every linux distro.

more than 3 years ago

Best Format For OS X and Linux HDD?

Rantastic Re:No Filesystem (253 comments)

With that said, tar is a bad solution because it doesn't include any type of CRC or encryption. But it's a good idea, and certainly a million times better than a file system of some type.

True, but simply hashing the file at both ends solves that. Both linux and mac support shasum.

more than 3 years ago

Best Format For OS X and Linux HDD?

Rantastic No Filesystem (253 comments)

If you are only moving files from one system to another, and do not need to edit them on the portable drives, skip the filesystem and just use tar. Tar will happily write to and read from raw block devices... In fact, that is exactly what it was designed to do. A side benefit of this approach is that you won't lose any drive capacity to filesystem overhead.

more than 3 years ago

Best Format For OS X and Linux HDD?

Rantastic Answers Own Question. (253 comments)

My default is to use HFS+ without journaling but I'm looking to see if there are better suggestions that are reliable, fast, and allow read/write access in OS X and Linux.

So I see you're the "if it ain't broke fix it anyway" type.

more than 3 years ago

Google To Add Pay To Cover a Tax For Gays

Rantastic Re:Why so discriminating? (1036 comments)

Sure, that filthy hippy Jesus waffled some peacenik tree hugging propaganda...

Actually, Jesus was a tree killer, not a tree huger.

Matthew 21:18: Early in the morning, as Jesus was on his way back to the city, he was hungry. Seeing a fig tree by the road, he went up to it but found nothing on it except leaves. Then he said to it, "May you never bear fruit again!" Immediately the tree withered.

Just sayin

more than 3 years ago

The Tuesday Birthday Problem

Rantastic Re:Ordering and Convergence (981 comments)

When you eliminate one wrong answer, the probability of the remaining answer being right is 50%.

This is a common misconception. When you eliminate 1 wrong answer, the probability of the remaining unchosen answer being correct is 2/3, not 1/2.

Wikipedia offers a simple explanation: "...switching loses if and only if the player initially picks the car, which happens with probability 1/3, so switching must win with probability 2/3."

more than 3 years ago



RIP newzbin.com

Rantastic Rantastic writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Rantastic (583764) writes "NewzBin is no more, leaving behind only the message "Regrettably the Newzbin website has to close as a result of the legal action against us." and a link to a blog post which speculates that they simply could not afford to go on in the face of the legal judgements against them, "Word is that they owe they MPA £230,000 just in interim costs, and that’s without a full costs ruling or a decision on damages. Apparently they also owe a software development house over £500k."

For those unfamiliar with the site, NewzBin was a British Usenet indexing website notable for its introduction of new technologies and search techniques that aid users by facilitating access to content on Usenet. Most notably, creation of the NZB format."

Link to Original Source

AMD to combat 'Intel Inside' with 'Who cares?'

Rantastic Rantastic writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Rantastic (583764) writes "Betanews reports that in a press event held at its Austin, Texas headquarters today, AMD celebrated the final stage of its Vision brand rollout. From now on, all consumer-grade desktop and notebook PCs containing AMD CPUs will be eligible for co-branding based on four tiers of functionality, with each tier designating the everyday, real-world tasks that its PCs may perform. AMD is now quite literally and specifically suggesting that OEMs provide this information instead of explicit specifications (which they seem to feel consumers don't understand or care about anyway). HP, Acer, and Dell all appear to be in agreement."
Link to Original Source

800,000 US Households Ditched Cable/Sat TV in 2009

Rantastic Rantastic writes  |  about 4 years ago

Rantastic (583764) writes "Have you had enough of paying your cable company through the nose for 800 channels, when all you really watch is maybe 20 or 30? The numbers are still small, but last year an estimated 800,000 U.S. households cut the cable cord altogether, according to a new report by the Convergence Consulting Group. By the end of next year, that number is forecast to double to 1.6 million."

Microsoft Shares Plunge On Windows Decline

Rantastic Rantastic writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Rantastic (583764) writes "According to Information Week, Microsoft said sales of its core Windows operating system declined 29% in its fiscal fourth quarter due to weakness in the personal computer market and deferred Windows 7 revenues. Microsoft shares were off more than 8% in early Friday trading on the news."

Former McCain Insider Charges Election Fraud

Rantastic Rantastic writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Rantastic (583764) writes "Check out the revelations of Stephen Spoonamore — a lifelong Republican, erstwhile member of McCain's campaign, and a prominent expert on computer fraud. Spoonamore has copious hard evidence revealing that Bush/Cheney stole a number of key races, starting with Florida eight years ago. He has named names, and has the goods to back up every claim. Plus, he knows quite a lot about plans to use illegal methods to make McCain America's next president (which is the reason he quit McCain's campaign)."
Link to Original Source



Sticky Keys

Rantastic Rantastic writes  |  more than 11 years ago So there I was, impressing people with my knowledge of linux, when I spilled Dr. Pepper into my laptop! Well, I got most of it out, but a few keys are still sticky. Namely, the left hand shift, the tab, the 1, and the q. Everything else is ok. I need to get to a Toshiba warrenty center for a new keyboard...

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