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Verizon About To End Construction of Its Fiber Network

Slashdot Parent My experience with Fios was largely negative (191 comments)

I tried out Fios for a while, but I have to say, I wasn't that impressed. The service went out from time to time, and YouTube and Netflix wouldn't play worth a damn. Also, they really trick you with their advertisements of low prices. Sure, the prices look good, but then you can't use your own hardware and you have to rent their proprietary hardware, which adds considerably to your service cost. And then you find out that those good prices were only intro prices and then they jack up your rates sky high.

I cancelled Verizon and went with the local cable company, if that tells you anything about Fios!

2 days ago
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Fighting Tech's Diversity Issues Without Burning Down the System

Slashdot Parent Re:Look To History (479 comments)

This is silly. I don't feel like digging out the numbers, but there used to be a ton more female programmers. Of course, they began leaving the field in the 1980s. Why? I don't know. But it's worth trying to find an answer to that question, because programming wasn't always male-dominated.

4 days ago
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Fighting Tech's Diversity Issues Without Burning Down the System

Slashdot Parent Re: Honest question. (479 comments)

Why don't some of these diverse talents get together and trounce the white male at his own technological game?

I frankly have no idea.

If what all of the chatterers say is true, it should be trivial for a "diverse" team to utterly destroy a white male team because as I am being told constantly, men cost 33% more than women to do the exact same job. So how could a team that is 33% more expensive, which is completely ignoring all of the super talented "diverse" people, possibly be competitive?

4 days ago
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Fighting Tech's Diversity Issues Without Burning Down the System

Slashdot Parent Re:Honest question. (479 comments)

As far as I can tell, the primary reason is that they are completely unable to manage and plan long term and agile is a perfect refuge for those who lack these skills but nevertheless covet the 'manager' title.

There is no process that can fix substandard management.

The agile projects that I've worked on have been successful and decent to work on. I'd attribute this to the following things:

1. All of the developers were paid hourly, so there was no financial incentive to overwork them.
2. Business team was genuinely in charge of defining and prioritizing requirements.
3. Technical teams were genuinely in charge of estimating tasks and were not forced to revise estimates.
4. Management reviewed the data on "points" accomplished during the sprint and continually tried to assign the teams a realistic number of points to complete during the sprint.

Given the above good intentions, I suspect that these projects would have been successful without agile. However, agile did help managers in focusing on the functionality that mattered the most and getting it delivered when it was expected to be delivered.

4 days ago
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Is 'SimCity' Homelessness a Bug Or a Feature?

Slashdot Parent Re:Not a problem (393 comments)

He was trying to learn from their mistakes by trying to pass Single Payer Healthcare, but you assholes wouldn't go with that so we had to compromise------ON ROMNEYCARE.

I'm sorry, but the Affordable Care Act was no compromise. A "compromise" is a meeting of the minds based on negotiation. The Affordable Care Act was forced down the GOP's and the American people's throats. Polls showed that the American people didn't want Obamacare at the time, and that we don't want it today. I predict that tomorrow, we still won't want it.

Even though you claim to detest MassHealth(Romneycare), you refuse to call it Romneycare but have no qualms calling the Affordable Healthcare Act Obamacare as that carries a negative connotation.

For what it's worth, I didn't intend that as a slight. MassHealth is just not as commonly called "Romneycare", so I don't refer to it as such. Indeed, when I google for "MassHealth", I get 456,000 results, but when I google for Romneycare, I get only 298,000 results. On the other hand, when I google "affordable care act" I get 23,400,000 results, but I get 38,000,000 results for "obamacare".

So, based on my super serious and rigorous scientific research, "Obamacare" is more familiar than "Affordable Care Act" and "MassHealth" is more familiar than "Romneycare". That's why I used those. If it makes you feel any better, I'll just come right out and say that MassHealth was then-Governor Mitt Romney's policy.

about two weeks ago
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Is 'SimCity' Homelessness a Bug Or a Feature?

Slashdot Parent Re:Not a problem (393 comments)

Had Republican Mitt Romney not implemented socialized medicine in his state, there wouldn't have been the impetus to force it on the rest of us.

This is not a reasonable argument. There are many places in the world where the government runs healthcare and central to both Clinton's and Obama's presidential campaigns were a promise that the federal government would take over healthcare. Socialized medicine was coming irrespective of the Massachusetts experiment.

However, since Mitt felt it was perfectly acceptable to force people to hand over their money to private companies, one can't complain when the President does the same thing to everyone else.

This is ridiculous. Why could President Obama not have learned from the mistakes of MassHealth?

All of the Republicans' warnings about what would happen under Obamacare, which all came true of course, where do you think we came up with those objections? Off the top of my head: We warned that employers would drop coverage for their employees because it happened in MA. We warned that doctors would stop accepting Obamacare plans because that's what happened in MA. We warned that it would be expensive for both the taxpayer and the policyholder because that's what happened in MA. We said that it still wouldn't cover everyone because that's what happened in MA.

For this we were labeled obstructionist. But when the president is in the process of fucking up by not learning from the mistakes made in MA, obstructing was the proper course of action! Now we have to live with the consequences. My insurance costs tripled because of Obamacare and the coverage is worse and my taxes are higher. This is the exact opposite of what President Obama promised me would happen, and I am not happy.

about two weeks ago
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Is 'SimCity' Homelessness a Bug Or a Feature?

Slashdot Parent Re:Not a problem (393 comments)

Uhhh... Why are you giving credit to Mitt Romney for President Obama's signature legislative achievement? Romney has never held office in the Federal Government and anyway hasn't held any office since 2007.

If you don't like Obamacare, that's fine. But realize that the reason that you have Obamacare is because President Obama wants you to. He burned every last iota of his political capital to get it passed. Obamacare is 100% Obama.

about two weeks ago
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Would You Rent Out Your Unused Drive Space?

Slashdot Parent You missed the madness (331 comments)

it was just evidence (photo and/or video) of folks actually raping kids. [...] And if it puts a dint in the practice, I don't think I'd characterize aggressively pursuing leads, as madness.

What you have just described isn't madness at all. I would argue that it makes perfect sense for law enforcement to treat child pornography as evidence of serious criminal activity (child rape) and to pursue aggressively the perpetrators of such a crime.

Unfortunately, there is madness in Western countries surrounding the issue of child pornography and pedophelia. Here are some examples:

  1. In the US, any image of an unclothed child is considered to be a serious crime. There have been many documented cases of photo labs reporting photos of unclothed babies in the bathtub (in no sexual context) to the police, and then the babies were taken from their parents and the parents were charged with manufacturing child pornography, a sex crime.
  2. In the US, while it is perfectly legal for 17-year-olds to have consensual sex with each other, if they happen to take a photo of this lawful sexual activity, they could be charged with manufacturing child pornography. Several teenagers have been charged with the sex crime of manufacturing and distributing child pornography for simply texting their boyfriend or girlfriend photos of their unclothed selves.
  3. In Australia, adult women with small breasts are considered to be children for the purposes of child pornography laws, so they may not appear in any adult entertainment without it being considered to be child pornography.
  4. In the US, all doctors and mental health professionals must report to the police anyone who comes to them seeking help with sexual attraction to minors. This discourages pedophiles from seeking the help that they need to avoid committing actual offenses against children. In our lust to burn the witches at the stake, we put real children at risk because pedophiles aren't getting the treatment that they need.

So, yes, our hysteria surrounding child pornography does rise to the level of madness. I'm not sure how we fix it, because it is political suicide to appear to be soft on pedophilia, but in the meantime, the madness is definitely doing more harm than good.

about two weeks ago
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Tips For Securing Your Secure Shell

Slashdot Parent One more recommendation (148 comments)

PasswordAuthentication no

If SSH connections are coming in from the public Internet, you shouldn't be allowing password-based authentication. Let the bad guys have fun trying to brute force your RSA key for the next 14 million years.

about two weeks ago
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Unbundling Cable TV: Be Careful What You Wish For

Slashdot Parent Re:And? (448 comments)

The cognitive burden of facing all those "decisions" and the constant bombardment of the nickle and diming fees makes the entire experience less enjoyable for everyone.

The way that I handle this is to say to myself, "Self, realize that under the old regulated airfare structure, adjusted for inflation, this ticket would have cost $3000. So just pay for what you need to be comfortable and be happy that you're paying 1/5 of what it otherwise would have cost!"

about two weeks ago
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Unbundling Cable TV: Be Careful What You Wish For

Slashdot Parent Re:And? (448 comments)

I dunno. I just flew roundtrip between PHX and LGA and brought a bunch of food from home (sandwiches, veggies, fruit rolls, almonds, and anything else I'm forgetting about). TSA never said anything to me about it.

I know a person who lost a small jar of peanut butter, and was told that if it were spread on a sandwich, it is a baned item still.

Well, this must not be enforced, because my sandwiches were peanut butter sandwiches. My flights were last week, so this is fairly current information.

about two weeks ago
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Unbundling Cable TV: Be Careful What You Wish For

Slashdot Parent Not channels (448 comments)

Any solution that contains the word "channel" is the wrong solution for 2015. People don't watch channels. They watch shows.

Let me pay to watch shows, not channels. I'm throwing my money at the monitor trying to pay. Who will take my money?

about two weeks ago
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Unbundling Cable TV: Be Careful What You Wish For

Slashdot Parent Re:And? (448 comments)

I'm pretty sure that general aviation is just a wee bit more expensive than flying commercial!

about two weeks ago
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Bots Scanning GitHub To Steal Amazon EC2 Keys

Slashdot Parent Re:I guess i am old (119 comments)

He's surprised what he thought was keys to S3 unlocks the entire kingdom.

Why? Is there even such a thing as an "S3 key"? I've been using AWS for a long time, and I've never seen one of these (unless you count the goofball time-limited key pre-signing thing, and those keys can't be used for any purpose outside of S3).

There are, of course, AWS keys, and those keys can be granted privileges. If you grant an AWS key full access, then yes, it can be used for any API call. But really that's bad practice. If your application needs only access to a specific S3 bucket, you'd create an AWS key for your app and grant it access only to that bucket.

Since I haven't done it in a while, I tested this out. I just created an AWS key and here's what I found: it has no access at all. I can click "attach user policy" and it gives me a ton of choices for what type of access I can give the key, including "Amazon S3 Full Access" and "Amazon S3 Read Only Access", or I can use a custom policy generator.

So I think AWS is doing a halfway decent job here, giving people simple options for simple situations and complex options for complex situations. If a user is going to create an admin-level AWS key and post it to github, what is AWS supposed to do about that?

about three weeks ago
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Bots Scanning GitHub To Steal Amazon EC2 Keys

Slashdot Parent Re:Sounds like multiple failures (119 comments)

Okay, so you might not find it intuitive that S3 keys can lead to new EC2 instances - I wouldn't have guessed that either, even though I've used both repeatedly.

Actually, S3 keys either can or can't be used to launch EC2 instances, depending on user configuration. Using IAM, you can grant AWS keys only as many rights as are necessary, so if your program only needs to write to a certain S3 bucket, you should grant access to the key only to write to that bucket. Then, that key couldn't be used for any other purpose (like launching EC2 instances).

Also, IAM roles can be used to avoid using AWS keys in your code/config files at all if your code will be running within EC2. Just give your instance an IAM role with permissions to make only the necessary calls, and let AWS handle your key acquisition and rotation for you.

about three weeks ago
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Doxing -- Something To Expect More of In 2015

Slashdot Parent Re:The problem with doxing (171 comments)

The problem with doxing Is that everyone has some skeletons in the closet they're hiding.

That's small potatoes compared with the real problem with doxxing. The real problem is that once the doxxed person's info is public, any asshole on the Internet can and does start harassing the victim both online and offline. Threats of violence, harassing the victim's employer, trying to get him/her fired, swatting, etc., are all common consequences of doxxing.

It's a really shitty thing to do. I don't really give one tenth of one flying fuck if someone finds out that I smoked weed in high school or banged my girlfriend in high school. Hell, if you asked me those, I'd just tell you the truth. But if I'm getting death threats left and right and people are calling my clients and saying that I am a terrible person or whatever, that's when shit starts to get real.

about three weeks ago
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Using Your Open-Source Contributions To Land a Full-Time Job

Slashdot Parent Re:Lots of Interview but no job... yet (45 comments)

Amazon interviewed me 3 different times, were completely confused and in the end , rejected because I don't have a degree...

Somehow I knew that you were going to say this because many large tech employers, often to a fault, insist that all applicants have a CS degree. I bet a lot of these teams wanted to hire you but couldn't get you through HR because of this stupid, inflexible requirement.

about a month ago
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Ask Slashdot: Is an Open Source .NET Up To the Job?

Slashdot Parent Re:Why bother? (421 comments)

In my organization, we have purchased Java applications from vendors that are based on all of these: Oracle Weblogic, IBM Websphere, Apache Tomcat, Redhat JBoss, and Apache Geronimo, and we have to figure out how to admin and support them all.

Why in the actual fuck would you want to do that? For the love of all things holy, pick one of those (or one commercial + one free, if that is more appropriate to your company) and standardize. Do you support half a dozen office suites as well?

So I really don't understand where this bashing of .Net comes from, but I'm guessing a lot of it is from open source fanboys that love to hate Microsoft and have never taken time to use the recent (last 3-5 years) iterations of it's products.

Lack of familiarity. MS was extremely opaque about what the hell .NET even was when it first came out until they finally admitted that it was their version of Java. And since there was no reasonable free way to get started with it (and I don't think it's cross platform, right?), most devs and universities standardized on Java.

At this point, from my point of view, there is little point in ever learning .NET since it offers nothing over the Java ecosystem. My next language will probably be either Python or Scala.

about a month ago
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Putting Time Out In Time Out: The Science of Discipline

Slashdot Parent Re:Spankers and spankees trend toward Republicanis (323 comments)

I wish you would have read the next sentence:

This could help explain why changing methods of discipline is so difficult and why science faces an uphill battle in facilitating change.

They managed to get an anti-science dig in with their prone-to-violence dig. This is the typical crap that you read in The Atlantic.

about a month ago
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Putting Time Out In Time Out: The Science of Discipline

Slashdot Parent Re:I don't even... (323 comments)

I'd be curious to read what exactly these people recommend in place of timeouts. I mean, I'm always up for learning new parenting techniques, but I just don't see how a "teachable moment" tactic will work in the real world. Certainly with younger children.

As you well know, when a parent corrects a young child's behavior, the typical response is to either engage in a debate or to throw a tantrum. In neither case is the child internalizing the lesson behind the "teachable moment". A timeout effectively avoids both of those responses because once the child is placed into a timeout, there is no one to argue with, and there is no one to watch the tantrum.

So that would be my question: how does this new technique compensate for the real-world problem of toddlers acting like toddlers?

about a month ago

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