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Man Booted From Southwest Flight and Threatened With Arrest After Critical Tweet

blippo Re:Customer service? (891 comments)

What's the point of that? Isn't it important to get the passengers to board as fast as possible?

I just came of a flight without assigned seats, and the only explanation I could figure out was that it's because the software couldn't handle a multi-leg flight.

about a week ago

Google: Indie Musicians Must Join Streaming Service Or Be Removed

blippo Re: People pay for music? (364 comments)

Well...what would actually happen years and years before the level of AI that is required for prime directives, is that a slight error in the *very detailed* map used for navigation - in combination with an unexpected external factor, will cause a car to happily run over half a school class without even noticing.

And it will be so far from human reasoning and performance that self driving cars will be banned.

about a month and a half ago

Mad Cow Disease Blamed For Patient's Death In Texas

blippo Re:Of course they have no concerns, they don't tes (132 comments)

To answer Your rethorical question: No.

More than 90,000 cows are slaughtered every day.

So slightly more than 1 / 1000 of the cattle is tested.

about 2 months ago

Game of Thrones Author George R R Martin Writes with WordStar on DOS

blippo Re:640k isn't enough for everybody (522 comments)

Maybe, but unless a 25 year old with a hat has reinvented that in a browser, it doesn't count.

about 3 months ago

Are Habitable Exoplanets Bad News For Humanity?

blippo Re:Maybe not extinction... (608 comments)

I think we have lost a fair amount of Helium though.

Selling the surplus of Helium at a discount seems to be unusually shortsighted since that's more or less what's left on earth and the alternative is to mine it from space somehow.

about 3 months ago

Is the Tesla Model S Pedal Placement A Safety Hazard?

blippo Re:Tesla (394 comments)

I can top that; I did exactly that in an intersection while towing a trailer. :-)

The clutch requires rather more force than the brake so it really puts the car to a stop, and you have absolutely no idea why.
If you are driving a manual, try braking gently with your left foot to see what I mean...

I've stomped on the brake at least once almost every time i've use a manual car, and it's certain situations that triggers it - typically when I'm focused more on navigation than driving...

Seems to be hard to unlearn... ( Like those random emacs sequences that sometimes spontaneously emits while I'm using other tools...)

about 4 months ago

Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie

blippo Re:It's about time! (1431 comments)

No it isn't.

It's a total loss for civilization, what it is.

There is now a disabled widow and a fatherless child.

A moviegoer have been killed because he texted his (presumably) babysitter, *before* the movie.

As a moviegoer I'm not really seeing the upside of getting shot, so I guess I'll just stay home.

And as several idiots at slashdot has modded this comment, not as troll, or even funny, but fucking insightful,
I've come to the conclusion that I've wasted too much time in my life reading comments on Slashdot,
which was apparently totally pointless too.


about 7 months ago

Ask Slashdot: What To Do With Misdirected Email?

blippo Re:Happens to me a lot with my own domain (388 comments)

How they managed to lose a package out of an aircraft is beyond me.

Imagining that is +1 funny.

about 7 months ago

Oracle Promises Patches Next Week For 36 Exploits In Latest Java

blippo Re:concerning is ... (154 comments)

Running an old C or C++ program with newer libs isn't exactly without risks either. Even if the abi is the same, the behaviour might have changed, unintentionally most of the times.

It's more a question of what you can manage to test and support. Large applications are more expensive to test, so you are reluctant to upgrade infrastructure components. (Be it Windows versions, JRE:s, dll:s, database servers, etc)

about 7 months ago

Oracle Promises Patches Next Week For 36 Exploits In Latest Java

blippo Re:again? (154 comments)

Spot-on about java.

Regarding Slashdot, I think that Slashdot just reflects the state of affairs in software development (or the world) in general. Younger generations appear clueless, since they don't know certain obvious things. They will therefore reinvent a lot of wheels, and while doing that, inventing a few new things, some other things just like before but a bit different, while all the time making some old stuff irrelevant.

It is to expect, but It might get worse. I'm a bit worried that a lot of young people don't seem to be able to read, as in "read a lot of text, fast". One indication is that a lot of new projects have video introductions and video tutorials instead of text documents.

I mean, why watch a 40 minute long video to figure out if a toolkit might be of use or not, instead of skimming through a few documents for 2 minutes.
But then, It's clearly is a huge effort for many to read a long document - maybe they can't skim or speed read and they need to subvocalize but a lot people don't like to read long texts.

If it's "quicker" to watch a video then less is learned since it's not as efficient as speed reading. Maybe the youtube generation have learned to skim through videos quickly but I doubt it.

Also, the universities are not exactly excelling at producing good developers ( the trade , not researchers ) . Further, very little seems to be focused on "modern history" other than unproductive academical anecdotes. I think that schools should stay away from teaching "products" but maybe there is value in exploring historic and existing products and ideas. There are some giant's shoulders to stand on, or at least code monkey shoulders, actually, but it's hard to know since some of the knowledge is stored in long boring texts, and most just exists in wetware outside academia.

I mean, no one would have been using PHP (or creating PHP) if they had paid a minimum of attention to what's been happening the last 30 years.

about 7 months ago

Oracle Promises Patches Next Week For 36 Exploits In Latest Java

blippo Re:again? (154 comments)

I actually do like Java - the lanugage. It is very stringent and well defined and not sprinkled with random syntactic sugar. Quite the opposite to PHP actually.
The core libraries are mostly nice, except some pre 1.2 crap and some outdated javax junk.

Some of the 'code bloat' has been fixed, and more is fixed in the coming versions, so that's getting better.

A lot of 'code bloat' is actually culturally inherited 'architecture bloat' since IBM decided to market a servlet container + transaction manager as a e-commerce platform, and puked out the worst programming model ever. Enterprise Java was then abused by thousands of programmers and attracted hoards of useless "architects" and consultants that built "enterprise" applications and sprinkled them with billions of lines of xml configuration.

However, the jvm is still unbelievably slow to start. As it's rather fast while actually running, it seem to me that it should be possible to fix with some reasonable effort, like not loading every class in the known universe during startup for instance, and not jit-ing unless the program has been running for a while.

Java is also confusing from a user perspective since Sun messed up with executable jars, which could have been fixed by just using a separate suffix, like jxe . which even looks cool. Some more polish on the look-and-feel, and perhaps a better looking default font, and then it's done :-)

about 7 months ago

Do Non-Technical Managers Add Value?

blippo Re:Maybe, maybe not (249 comments)

I think the most important work for a manager is to :

a) Find, Recognize and Hire talented people.
b) Make sure that the talented people figure out how to work together.
c) Improve and optimize the processes and the organisation ( continuously and in small steps.)
d) Arbitrate discussions and help making decisions, but do not take them on your own
e) Especially in larger organisations, evangelise about skills and every good thing that has been done by your teams.
f) Have an eye on the horizon now and then. Engage the teams in strategic discussions and long term planning.

To do these things well a deep knowledge about software development is required. ( Or about teaching, or medicine, or whatever it is the organisation is doing.)
It's not possible to get this sort of insight without having practiced the trade for some time. Yes, it possible to manage without, but then there is a high risk that things go wrong in some - and then maybe all - of the above areas, simply because it is easy to misunderstand some things and fail to recognise others.

Another risk is that the important things are replaced with less important things:

v) Make sure that everyone is aware of deadlines, project plans, priorities.
x) Order stuff that is needed.
y) Make budgets, and report progress.
z) ...or even : Handle and approve vacation requests

Sure, these things must be done, but it isn't exactly rocket science and everyone and their dog is capable of handling these tasks.

Less knowledgeable managers and project managers tend to focus a lot on status reports and reminding of deadlines,
sadly adding about as much value as an automated mail could have done (I'm looking at YOU tick-box-guys) while missing the important stuff.

One problem with non-technical managers is that they may 'accidentally' accept unfortunate (technological) decisions made outside the team without challenging them, or even worse make their own, perhaps because they fail to see the implications. They will then end up defending senseless decisions or policies against the team, generally having to revert to "just because" arguments, and since the decision may not be easy to back from once committed, everyone involved will become angry or whiny and the team will become generally obstructive and unhappy.

about 7 months ago

Google Sues Consortium Backed By Apple and Microsoft to Protect Android

blippo Why is Sony in bed with Microsoft and Apple (150 comments)

Can someone enlightened explain why is Sony in bed with Microsoft and Apple against Google - Sony's only hope for their mobile and tablets division?

Is it the media and games departments that are fighting a war against their own company?

As soon as I think that Sony might be doing something right, they shove their heads up their arse again.

about 7 months ago

Sun Not a Significant Driver of Climate Change

blippo Re:every year we have winter summer cased by sun (552 comments)

I don't think that statement is correct unless you remove water too.

Water vapor is the main greenhouse gas, and CO2 absorbs just a few percent of what water does.

about 7 months ago

Swedish Man Fined $650,000 For Sharing 1 Movie, Charged Extra For Low Quality

blippo Re:What the hell is the point of these huge number (366 comments)

The thing is that the breakdown is just plain silly.

It doesnt really make sense to have both a "licence cost" ( pulled out of a hat ) PLUS compensation for lost sales.

A compensation as a licence cost * penalty factor OR a compensation for the actual lost sales makes sense.

Both the licence cost or the claim about lost sales are in reality just made up, since there is no equivalent licence available,
and there is no way to actually calculate the damages for lost sales.

If they invented a list price for 10 trillion dollars for an "online unlimited redistribution licence" or claimed 6 billion lost sales,
it would have been obvious that they were just arbitrary numbers. As it is now, they somehow managed to convince the laymens that
contitutes the first instance court in Sweden that the number are solid.

I think it would at least have been possible to argue against the claims. If the ruling is appealed,
and with a new laywer, there is a high probability that the ruling will be different, even though the courts in sweden
are lobbied hard with "immaterial rights conferences" and interest groups sponsored by the media companies.

about 7 months ago

Google Makes It Harder For Marketers To Collect User Data

blippo Re:And google will retain that info exclusively. (195 comments)

Isn't this what everyone does today? I thought the whole point of tracker images was personal urls like 'img158294.png'.

It won't help the users privacy a bit, or actually make it worse since users can't ignore image attachments anymore - google automatically hit the tracker url for them...

about 8 months ago

Why Cloud Infrastructure Pricing Is Absurd

blippo Re:Private cloud (191 comments)

I don't know, I think it's only Larry Ellison that calls heaps of servers in the basement for "personal cloud" ....

about 8 months ago

Imagining the Post-Antibiotic Future

blippo Re:terrorism! ha! (453 comments)

No, it doesn't work that way.

If you are sick and poor and potentially malnutritioned, it's a higer risk that you wont be able to cope with a serious infection.

Maybe some people have better immune systems, but if you get MRSA - and get sick, it's a coctail of very expensive antibiotics and possibly surgery that will save you.

about 8 months ago

GCHQ, European Spy Agencies Cooperate On Surveillance

blippo Re:Really? (145 comments)


Germany has a population of 82 million. It's about 1/4 of the population in the US, and about 3/4 of Russias. Only US, India, China and Russia have larger economies. It is also one of the worlds most technically advanced countries. They certainly could have technical and economical capability to monitor american politicians.

  It is only for political reasons they probably not are doing that, but you can be certain that they monitor the political situation and the military capabilities of all relevant parties,

about 9 months ago

Has Flow-Based Programming's Time Arrived?

blippo Re: "easier for non-programmers to build applicati (268 comments)

You are making it sound easier than it is.

If its an actual complicated problem, the parts interacts. The complexity is in the interaction.
It is also a matter of "leaky" abstractions. There is always a corner case where the abstractions isn't enough.

Business problems, like all real life problems, are hard- but in a toally different way.
You can't rollback death and not even a spoken word, and you may spend days thinking about unsolvable problems,
but the reality is normally not as rigid and fragile as the abstractions and rules of a computer system.

In real life you can bend the rules.

All tools that tries to remove complexity are fighting against the law of thermodynamics.
Or put in another way, they will make simpler problems simpler, and the rest of the problems harder.

There is probably a sweet spot somewhere around where most popular programming languages are today,
somewhere between assembler code and bpel.

It is possible that the expressability can be improved for some types of problem. It is for instance rather strange that no popular language natively can describe relations between entities, and are forcing us to work with data structures from the 60ies as a workaround for the lack of relational constructs.

about 9 months ago


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