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Google Suggests Separating Students With 'Some CS Knowledge' From Novices

bigwheel Re:Just let them test out! (307 comments)

(GP here) This is what I was referring to. Several of my undergrad classes were graded on a curve, where only the top percentage of students receive "A"s. If it happens to be an easy class or there are a lot of top performers, then nit-picky things become enough to push your grade down to a B.

That said, I don't know if Intro to CS was one of those classes. It was only an assumption. So, criticism of my earlier statement might be called for.

about a week ago
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Google Suggests Separating Students With 'Some CS Knowledge' From Novices

bigwheel Re:Just let them test out! (307 comments)

Same thing happened to me. (Long story as a cross-over from Physics.) As a CSci senior, they made me take the Intro class - even though I knew the material inside-out and was a tutor for the class. I volunteered to take every test in one sitting and write every programming assignment the same day. Instead, I got to sit through boring lectures and steal an A from some deserving student.

about a week ago
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JP Morgan Chase Breach Compromised Data of 76 Million Households

bigwheel Re:How much? (76 comments)

No. The US population is around 319 million. Also, JP Morgan handles the food stamp credit cards, which accounts for around 45 million. Finally, I assume that not all of the breached households are in the US.

about 3 months ago
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The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

bigwheel Re:I dunno about LEDs, but CFLs don't last (602 comments)

I've read that the Energy Star people admit they screwed up with CFL, but are determined to not make the same mistake with LED

In order to get the Energy Star label, a CFL bulb has to meet certain efficiency requirements. But the rating says nothing about longevity. In theory, fluorescent bulbs should last a long time. But the built-in electronics are the usual source of failure. This is particularly the case with ceiling lights and other bulbs where the electronics are on the top, and often in an area where they do not get much cooling. So, the cheap - or more importantly *Crappy* - bulbs can carry the same certification as the good ones. So, CFL got a bad name, which is also fail for the Energy Star folks.

With LED bulbs, the Energy Star people wanted to make sure that they don't make the same mistake. So, in order to get the label, a bulb has to meet the efficiency standards, plus demonstrate that they can handle the run-length requirements. And there are many different requirements, depending on the type of bulb and its intended usage. In order to get the Energy Star label, they are tested for something like 9 months.

So, the moral of the story is that if you buy an LED that carries the Energy Star label, it should not fail prematurely. But the down-side is that LED technology continues to improve, with the most recent chips putting out something like 250 Lumens/Watt. An agile manufacturer might be able to quickly get this technology to market with an excellent new bulb. But it cannot carry the Energy Star label until it has been through rigorous testing, which takes nearly a year.

about 3 months ago
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X Window System Turns 30 Years Old

bigwheel Re:DECwindows ;) (204 comments)

I remember when Sun made the switch from SunTools to X-Windows. 1987'ish I thought they were nuts using a (slow) client-server architecture when we were fighting for graphics performance. As usual, it turned out to be another smart technical decision by Sun.

about 6 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: PC-Based Oscilloscopes On a Microbudget?

bigwheel Product Review (172 comments)

Here's a product review of a handful of small, inexpensive oscilloscopes. http://www.jameco.com/Jameco/w... They look kind of handy compared to my ancient HP.

about 6 months ago
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Geothermal Heat Contributing To West Antarctic Ice Sheet Melting

bigwheel Re:Regardless (387 comments)

In that case, we should be focused on pollutants rather than CO2. CO2 is a trace gas that is essential to life.

CO2 is not even listed among pollutants in the Clean Air Act. It was put into that category by EPA as an executive measure, after the Supreme Court authorized them in 2007 to do so. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/M... This was done for the sole purpose of furthering the global warming agenda.

about 6 months ago
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Fixing the Humanities Ph.D.

bigwheel Re:market at work (325 comments)

You just proved his point. "spending your day correcting other peoples grammar"

about 6 months ago
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Why Snowden Did Right

bigwheel bait and switch (348 comments)

The linky points to a kernel hacking article.

about 7 months ago
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Driverless Cars Could Cripple Law Enforcement Budgets

bigwheel Re:Freeway Neutrality? (626 comments)

Or allow people to pay more for the luxury of driving 10 mph faster. (I'm being sarcastic.)

about 7 months ago
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Scientists Warn of Rising Oceans As Antarctic Ice Melts

bigwheel Re:In a century... (784 comments)

Good point. I just mentioned it because Antarctic ice extent was one of the measurements that was used for scaremongering in the past.

If we want to talk about actual ocean rice, then we need to look at the NASA data. http://www.nasa.gov/topics/ear...

NASA says that the mean sea level has been rising at the rate of 3.2 mm per year trend since 1993. At that rate, it will take 952 years before the ocean rises 10 feet. So, if you decide to hang out on the beach for the rest of your life, be prepared to lift your beer a few inches.

about 7 months ago
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Scientists Warn of Rising Oceans As Antarctic Ice Melts

bigwheel Re:In a century... (784 comments)

You don't even need to click on the TFA to see the glaring text: "The rise may continue to be relatively slow for at least the next century or so"

That's really lame scaremongering. And especially bad timing:

"The National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSID), with the support of the NASA Earth Sciences, just announced that Antarctic sea ice has expanded to all-time record levels for April. " http://www.breitbart.com/Big-P...

about 7 months ago
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VA Supreme Court: Michael Mann Needn't Turn Over All His Email

bigwheel Re:So what? (348 comments)

"Do you know how to use a search engine?"

I've heard of them. In addition to finding home pages, they can also turn up links to climategate emails like this: http://eric.worrall.name/Clima...

“I wouldn’t worry about the code. If FOIA does ever get used by anyone, there is also IPR to consider as well. Data is covered by all the agreements we sign with people, so I will be hiding behind them. I’ll be passing any requests onto the person at UEA who has been given a post to deal with them. I got a brochure on the FOI Act from UEA. Does this mean that, if someone asks for a computer program we have to give it out?? Can you check this for me (and Sarah)”

If I were defending a defamation lawsuit, these emails would be of particular interest.

about 8 months ago
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VA Supreme Court: Michael Mann Needn't Turn Over All His Email

bigwheel Re:So what? (348 comments)

What seems to be missing from this article: Mark Steyn, a conservative talk show host, called Mann a fraud. So, Mann is suing Steyn for defamation. As his defense, Steyn is trying to prove that the data was manipulated and cherry picked. Therefore, proving that Steyn's comments were justified. So, Steyn requested the data under the FIOA, since Mann's work was publicly funded.

But Mann - the scientist who warns us that global warming is real and dangerous based on a computer model - refuses to give out the computer code and data that he used to form his assertions. To me, this doesn't sound very scientific or very honest.

about 8 months ago
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Snowden Queries Putin On Live TV Regarding Russian Internet Surveillance

bigwheel Re:Useful Idiot (396 comments)

Snowden's best chance of survival is to stay in the limelight, where his keepers will risk public scrutiny if he is harmed. So, assuming that becoming a tool was Snowden's only choice, his required tool-task wasn't that bad. Just lob a softball question to Putin, and let Putin respond with propaganda. Snowden didn't have to lie or endorse anything, and it gave him the necessary renewal of his 15 minutes of fame.

about 8 months ago
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St. Patrick's Day, March Madness, and Steve Jobs' Liver

bigwheel Re:Fortunately for Jobs (129 comments)

GPL Sounds reasonable. In order to receive organs from other donors, you must also consent to be a donor.

about 9 months ago
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NSA and GHCQ Employing Shills To Poison Web Forum Discourse

bigwheel Re:I wonder (347 comments)

It is easy for an organization or agency to load up with sock puppets, and dominate the moderation process in addition to the discourse.

about 10 months ago
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Watch Bill Nye and Ken Ham Clash Over Creationism Live

bigwheel Re:debate (593 comments)

This.

There is an interesting and informative debate to be had. But like any debate, it is a waste of time for those who remain closed-minded (on either side of any issue) and only looking for a win.

Consider that the Big Bang happened 14 billion years ago, whereas Man has only been on the scene for about 200,000 years. There is probably a large pool of knowledge that is not available to Man. Based on elapsed time and size of the universe compared to Earth, you'd have to be pretty arrogant to think that Man has anything more than a speck of knowledge. And that is even with the assumption that time is linear. If you allow for screwing with the concept of time, then it gets even worse. What happened before the Big Bang?

Maybe the earth is just a petri dish or set of dishes, where "the creator(s)" used an eye dropper full of pond scum, to see what evolves. Maybe the creator is planning to keep the parts that have certain characteristics, and then flush the rest down the toilet. The truth is that we don't know. It could be possible that the creationists and evolutionists are both right -- or both wrong.

Hopefully, Nye and Ham will have a polite debate that attempts to search for truth, rather than merely trying to win a meaningless "gotcha contest".

about a year ago

Submissions

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NASA Study: Ocean Abyss Has Not Warmed

bigwheel bigwheel writes  |  about 2 months ago

bigwheel (2238516) writes "The cold waters of Earth’s deep ocean have not warmed measurably since 2005, according to a new NASA study, leaving unsolved the mystery of why global warming appears to have slowed in recent years. http://www.nasa.gov/press/2014...

Scientists at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California, analyzed satellite and direct ocean temperature data from 2005 to 2013 and found the ocean abyss below 1.24 miles (1,995 meters) has not warmed measurably. Study coauthor Josh Willis of JPL said these findings do not throw suspicion on climate change itself.

"The sea level is still rising," Willis noted. "We're just trying to understand the nitty-gritty details.""

Link to Original Source
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Microsoft updates Skype to use secure Linux servers

bigwheel bigwheel writes  |  more than 2 years ago

bigwheel (2238516) writes "Does this seem kind of ironic? "Microsoft has drastically overhauled the network running its Skype voice-over-IP service, replacing peer-to-peer client machines with thousands of Linux boxes that have been hardened against the most common types of hack attacks, a security researcher said.""
Link to Original Source

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