Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Comments

top

Isaac Asimov: How Do People Get New Ideas?

Rob Riggs Re:Bell Labs (139 comments)

And yet C and Unix came about because someone wanted to play games.

So what is the excuse for the existence of emacs? Surely it wasn't editing text.

11 hours ago
top

Isaac Asimov: How Do People Get New Ideas?

Rob Riggs Re:Gosh! A friend of THE Isaac Asimov! (139 comments)

Nobody expects the grammar inquisition!

You haven't been on /. long if you didn't expect the grammar inquisition.

11 hours ago
top

Developers, IT Still Racking Up (Mostly) High Salaries

Rob Riggs Re: How many really make $140k ? (191 comments)

Any big tech area where you can wear shorts year round is a hell hole.

yesterday
top

Developers, IT Still Racking Up (Mostly) High Salaries

Rob Riggs Re:How many really make $140k ? (191 comments)

When someone says "Megacorp", they typically mean this. There are a few companies on that list that will pay that (GS, INTC, JPM, MSFT), depending on where you work. But the majority will not.

2 days ago
top

Developers, IT Still Racking Up (Mostly) High Salaries

Rob Riggs Re: How many really make $140k ? (191 comments)

You can made decent money outside the big tech areas, in the smaller cities where quality of life tends to be higher. The trade-off is that you have to be willing to uproot and move to a completely different small city to chase other job opportunities. The demand for tech workers (and the commensurate pay) exists -- they just are not concentrated in a small area. But if you are unwilling to move (and your potential employer knows this), then they have a huge advantage when its comes to negotiating salary.

2 days ago
top

Ubuntu Turns 10

Rob Riggs Re:debian to be forked (110 comments)

We definitely need a place for these dinosaurs to roam freely. It is really the perfect solution. They will build their own zoo. We can keep an eye on them from a distance.

2 days ago
top

Fighting the Culture of 'Worse Is Better'

Rob Riggs I agree!! (240 comments)

All of my competitors should adopt the author's philosophy of software development immediately. His ivory tower FP idealism is worthy of emulation by all.

I will keep muddling through based on years of experience, leveraging existing code and know-how, maintaining backwards compatibility, planning long-term changes that sometimes take years to complete, deprecating unneeded features in as non-disruptive a manner as possible. And then, when the opportunity arises to do something radically different (like with the C++ "auto" keyword), make it happen. We're called pragmatic programmers. We are clearly losers. Do not emulate what we do.

about a week ago
top

The Malware of the Future May Come Bearing Real Gifts

Rob Riggs Re:Malware (103 comments)

It's already here. They're called smartphone apps.

Exactly. If the ${INSERT_SPY_ORG_HERE} wants to know what you are doing, you will only be presented with a notice that one of your apps has been updated. The government with the most influence over the companies that control the app stores wins the spy war. There are three majors. They are all multinationals based in the U.S.

When any one of these companies stops playing ball with the U.S., their IRS tax bill will come due. That's your clue to how well they are protecting your privacy.

about two weeks ago
top

It's Banned Books Week; I recommend ...

Rob Riggs Nabokov - Lolita (410 comments)

Lolita is considered by many to be one of the 100 best books of the 20th century.

about a month ago
top

Astrophysicists Identify the Habitable Regions of the Entire Universe

Rob Riggs Re:How do we know life can't adapt to it? (80 comments)

To get a sense of the energies involved: if you're a light-year way from a supernova, the neutrinos will kill you, even though they barely interact with matter at all.

Complete and utter bullshit. You are pulling numbers out of your ass. I give you the truth. I stopped reading your post after that sentence.

about 1 month ago
top

'Why Banana Skins Are Slippery' Wins IgNobel

Rob Riggs Re:It's the early morning people who are nuts (127 comments)

Plural of anecdote = data?

And thus you prove to the world one and for all that all those young whipper snappers really are psychopaths.

about a month ago
top

iOS 8 Review

Rob Riggs Bluetooth SPP (216 comments)

Wake me up when Apple supports Bluetooth SPP on iOS.

about a month ago
top

ISIS Bans Math and Social Studies For Children

Rob Riggs Re:Anti-math and anti-science ... (981 comments)

You do realize that "gates of Vienna" is a reference to the Islamic expansion into Europe which was only halted at... Vienna?

If you want to know why people are a bit dismissive of the OP's post, please read this critique of the website the OP linked to. Trust me when I say that you don't want to get your history lessons from that site.

about a month ago
top

The State of ZFS On Linux

Rob Riggs Re:Still no SELinux support (370 comments)

many believe that SELinux is causes more problems than it solves

I've met those people. Not impressed.

about a month and a half ago
top

Universal Big Bang Lithium Deficit Confirmed

Rob Riggs !Big Bang (171 comments)

I guess that disproves the Big Bang Theory! Now what show am I going to watch?

about a month and a half ago
top

GM To Introduce Hands-Free Driving In Cadillac Model

Rob Riggs Re:Commercial Vehicles (185 comments)

Actually, that was my point entirely. I would like this stuff vetted by professionals first. My father was a long-haul driver, so I have quite a bit of respect for the profession. They are going to have a lot more valuable input on the safety of these systems than the general public.

about a month and a half ago
top

GM To Introduce Hands-Free Driving In Cadillac Model

Rob Riggs Driverless Indy 500 / LeMans (185 comments)

It's time to start having driver-less automobile races! I'd actually watch the after-race interviews with the pit crews and programmers.

about a month and a half ago
top

GM To Introduce Hands-Free Driving In Cadillac Model

Rob Riggs Commercial Vehicles (185 comments)

I would think that this sort of technology would be tried out on commercial vehicles (long-haul trucks, local delivery vehicles, taxis, etc.) first, before letting it loose on amateur drivers. I also think it is high time to replace Chicago's CTA drivers (especially on the 'L') with this technology.

about a month and a half ago
top

Ask Slashdot: What Are the Strangest Features of Various Programming Languages?

Rob Riggs Java Unsigned Int (729 comments)

Lack of unsigned numeric types, especially when dealing with binary (octet) data streams. Drives me up the fracking wall.

about a month and a half ago

Submissions

top

Economists: selfish bastards

Rob Riggs Rob Riggs writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Rob Riggs (6418) writes "Cory Doctorow has started an interesting discussion at Boing Boing based on research he's doing for a new book. The conclusion from the research he has found? Economists are more selfish than non-economists, and the more one studies economics, the more selfish one gets. Cory writes:

In the course of researching my next novel, I happened upon this old paper by Robert H. Frank, Thomas Gilovich, and Dennis T. Regan, "Does Studying Economics Inhibit Cooperation?" Its conclusions: Economics grad students are more likely to free ride than the general public. Economists are less generous than other academics in charitable giving. Economics undergrads are more likely to defect in prisoner's dilemma problems. Students are less likely to return found money after studying economics but not after studying another subject like astronomy.

"

Journals

top

JPackage is Evil

Rob Riggs Rob Riggs writes  |  more than 10 years ago I am leading a project at work where we are building components to extend an enterprise-scale software system. We are mostly a Sun shop. Most of the new components are being built to run primarily on Linux, Red Hat Enterprise Linux (AS3) to be exact. Some of the new components are being written in Java.

Most of the software installs for our in-house software is done using a rather archaic system and I want to do better on the Linux systems.

Being a long-time Linux user and admin, I wanted to make sure that we were managing our software installations and dependencies using the excellent package manager, RPM. When it came time to do the initial rollout of the first Java components, I looked around for pre-packaged components and was excited to find the JPackage Project. These guys have all of the most useful Sun and third-party Java software packaged up in RPM format.

I had no idea how evil these people were at the time.

Red Hat AS3 comes with its own set of Java components, including a JVM, ant (a common java build tool used to replace make) and a few others. The development servers seemed OK and the packages build. I installed the missing dependencies from the JPackage Project and everything was looking good. My workstation is a Fedora Core 1 box, so I had to install a few more components from JPackage on my machine than I did on the development servers.

I had all of the dependencies met for the software I was about to package up, and it took only a few minutes with wget and rpm to get there. I was ready to start building the package for the new software.

Here's where things start to go horribly wrong.

Ant would not work on my machine. I kept getting tracebacks about dependencies not being found. This was bizarre. Ant all worked on the development server. And ant worked on my workstation when run as root! I took me a while to look into all of the obvious potential causes: paths, environment, permissions, etc. Everything looked like it should work.

Then I decided to trace the script that instantiated the JVM and ran ant. It was setting different (and wrong!) environment variables. It was looking for its jar files in /opt/abacus, the location I have RPM configured (through my own .rpmmacros file) to use as the location to build packages for (the %_prefix). Why the hell was it doing that?

It took me a couple minutes looking at the the JPackage configuration system to discover, to my horror, that it was using the RPM build environemnt for runtime configuration. WTF?!? The RPM build environemnt is not a runtine configuration system. It is a build configuration system.

So now I am a bit disturbed that anyone would do such a thing. I sent an email to the person who built the ant RPM for the JPackage project:

I got your contact information from the JPackage RPM of Ant. I am trying to use Ant with RPM, but it seems to me that the Ant shell script that is provided with the RPM is doing some (IMHO) screwy things to set up its environment. It is invoking rpm to evaluate various rpm build variables to set up various environment variables. This completely breaks Ant when I need to change the %_prefix variable for RPM. The RPM build variables are just that: build variables. They have no relation to the runtime environment, which is what the Ant script is assuming. Do you know who is responsible for maintaining that script and how I can contact them?

This was forwarded to the JPackage mailing list and conversation ensued. There was at least one person who agreed with me about the problem, but the majority of responses were from the incredulous (saying I am doing something wrong) to the blasé.

The last quote in the thread were:

> I am still
> holding that %_bindir must be defined to `/usr/bin', and that if your
> build environment does not match your runtime environment then you're in
> serious trouble.
I agree. However it's not worth the arguing IMHO. Let people discover by
themselves the joys of using non-standard paths in a shared env.

And that, my friends, is just evil. Anyone who know RPM will know how evil that is. The JPackage developers do not understand RPM and are usurping it. This sort of attitude can harm RPM in the long run. And they don't care.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?