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The Flaw Lurking In Every Deep Neural Net

byteherder Re:Errors, what do we do (230 comments)

We have trusted the computer to do math perfectly.

Its none ideal to have a single computational route and unit on safety critical systems.

I agree, the space shuttle had backup and redundancy for all the safety critical systems.
'We have trusted the computer to do math perfectly.' and then along can the Pentium Bug.

about 3 months ago
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The Flaw Lurking In Every Deep Neural Net

byteherder Errors, what do we do (230 comments)

We know there will be errors with the neural nets. There will be edge cases (like the one described with the cat), corner cases, bizarre combination of inputs that result in misclassifications, wrong answers and bad results. This happens in the real world too. People misclassify things, get things wrong, screw up answers.

The lesson is not to trust the computer to be infallible. We have trusted the computer to do math perfectly. 1 + 1 = 2, always, but is not so for neural nets. It is one thing if the neural net will not tag the photo of your cat on Facebook even if there are 100 other pictures of your cat on your account. It is another if your photo get misidentified as being a terrorist on the "kill on sight" list.

The question is what do we do with the errors?

about 3 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Intelligently Moving From IT Into Management?

byteherder Teach him well, grasshopper (125 comments)

You need to teach everything you know to your new sys admin and then let him fly on his own. Sooner or later every bird must leave the nest.

As a manager, you also need a backup plan if he should get hit by a bus or leave the company one day.

about 4 months ago
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Apple, Google Agree To Settle Lawsuit Alleging Hiring Conspiracy

byteherder No Deterrence (108 comments)

If I was a CEO of a Tech company, I would be calling up all the other CEOs and saying, "Let's do this again". Why? $2.7 billion reason why.

Apple, Google, Intel, and Adobe conspired to hold down salaries of their employees, saving their respective companies $3 billion. When they got caught, they paid a $300million settlement and walked away. Net saving $2.7 billion. No admission of guilt, no one goes to jail, no one gets fired.

There is no deterrence for them to not do it again. No penalty, just a slap on the wrist. The penalty has to be at least the damage down in real terms. When you conspire to do something illegal and they only penalty is that you make $2.7 more in profit, you will never, never stop this behavior.

about 4 months ago
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Minerva CEO Details His High-Tech Plan To Disrupt Universities

byteherder Chemisty Lab (106 comments)

Chem lab should be fun. Watch a video and then go mix up some chemicals. No professor present. No adult supervision.

What could possibly go wrong?

about 4 months ago
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California Utility May Replace IT Workers with H-1B Workers

byteherder Re:What is an H-1B worker? (220 comments)

A H-1B worker is a worker on a temporary work visa in the U.S. They are usually IT workers.

Company bring them in claiming they cannot find 'qualified' U.S. worker but really do it just to hire cheaper foreign labor.

about 4 months ago
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Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

byteherder Re:Million Dollars (467 comments)

Not exactly instant if it takes 30 years.

Not exactly instantly but it is typical of how people purchase a home.

Plus you're going to end up paying 3 million when interest is included with that principal, so your plan actually requires someone to pay 3 million in order to have 1 million.

Actually you will only be paying $616,560.88 total interest with a 3.5% mortgage over 30 years, $1,616,560.88 in total payments. The upside is that you are not paying rent and you get 30 years of appreciation in the home. Look at the price of home 30 years ago and compare them with today. That $1 million home could be worth $3-5 million.

about 5 months ago
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Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

byteherder Re:A million is easy (467 comments)

Except 401k, IRA, and S&P500 index funds don't pay interest.

S&P 500 does not pay interest but it does pay dividends, currently around 2%. 401k and IRA can pay interest depending on what they are invested in. You are never going to reach $1million if you rely solely on traditional savings accounts paying 1%. If you limit your investment choices to only the safest ones, you will always get the lowest returns.

Compound that all you want and you're still going nowhere in a hurry.

Compounding is exactly what I want. 10% compounded over 7 years doubles my investment, 7 more years and it doubles again. With enough time all those doubles will turn a small investment into a large one.

about 5 months ago
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Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

byteherder Re:A million is easy (467 comments)

Depending on your time frame it could be closer to 7%. Here are the numbers.

S&P 500 Index Avg
.Yr. . .1 Yr. . . . 5Yr . . 10Yr . .20Yr . .25Yr
2013. 29.60% 17.94% 7.40% 9.22% 10.27%

about 5 months ago
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Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

byteherder Re:A million is easy (467 comments)

It comes down to basic math. Save regularly and let the compound interest work for you.

The alternative to saving for retirement is just to work until you die.

about 5 months ago
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Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

byteherder Re:A million is easy (467 comments)

Most Software Developer in the US make significantly more than the median household income of $50K. A first year college grad in CS can make that much. After 10 years experience, many are making $100K. If you are making $100K+, $21K a year is not that hard to save.

about 5 months ago
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Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

byteherder Million Dollars (467 comments)

1. Buy a million dollar house
2. Spend the next 30 years paying off the mortgage
3. Poof. Instant millionaire.

about 5 months ago
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Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires

byteherder A million is easy (467 comments)

If you can't find a way to get to a million by retirement, something is wrong.

Here is a simple way to do it. Put $16,000 in your 401k and $5,000 in your IRA every year. Investing in a good S&P500 index fund which will return about 10%. In 18 years, you will be a millionaire.

Now getting to $10 million is tough.

about 5 months ago
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Judge (Tech) Advice By Results

byteherder One answer (162 comments)

What happened to the one question per post rule? That should apply to the OP too.

I am only going to answer one of the questions. " ... the metric by which ...(I)... usually judge tech advice"
I judge tech advice (and most advice) by asking if the person giving the advice has done it before. If I am trying to set up a webserver, I will take the advice of someone who sets them up for a living over someone who has just read the manual. There is little substitute for practical hands-on experience.

That goes for a lot of other things in life too, skydiving, race car driving, investing, dating, scuba diving. fire walking.
;-)

about 5 months ago
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More On the Disposable Tech Worker

byteherder Re:learning is personal responsibility (323 comments)

Your numbers are so far off that I can see where it is effecting your conclusions.

Let's look at the training costs. It does not take $60k (six months of lost productivity plus $20k in training) to train someone on a new technology. More like $5-10K plus 1 month productivity loss to be up to speed on said technology. It could be 1 month at 100% or 2 months at 50% if that employee is still doing is old job. If it takes longer, you should fire them for being a dumb-ass. I have learned new technology in a week at a conference for only $1K so is possible that is may cost less. There is also an opportunity cost for that first month while that employee is becoming proficient.

On the other side, you have to find the new hire with this hot technology skill while every other company is looking for him too. This is not going to be easy or fast. It can take 3 or more months to find someone like that maybe longer. You also have to train him on the company, systems, environment, team, duties, adminstrative proceedures. This also takes time, usually much longer than training on hot new technology takes. This can be as much as 1-3 months depending on the complexity of your organization. All of this searching for, hiring and training of new employee comes in the form of lost productivity and lost opportunity costs.

Let's run the balance sheet for both scenerios.

Current employee, training - $5-10K, lost productivity - $100/12 = $8.3K, opportunity cost - $50K/12 = $4.2K. Total = $17.5K - 22.5K

New employee, training - $0K, lost productivity - $100/12 = $8.3K (for 1 month, could be as high as $25K), opportunity cost = $50/12 * 4months = $16.7K (3 months candidate search + 1 month productivity, could be as high as $25K). Total = $25K - $50K.

That fallacy of your argument is that some new hire with the hot new technology skills can be instantly found hired and brought up to speed. This is never, never the case. Also, the training costs and lost productivity with the current employee is not $60K. If your employees, are that bad, you would be better off firing them all and starting over.

about 5 months ago
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More On the Disposable Tech Worker

byteherder Re:learning is personal responsibility (323 comments)

This is just wrong thinking on so many levels and it is what drives executives to make bad decisions. Let me give you an example to make it clear.

Let say you are earning a salary of $80K and your company needs someone to come up to speed on "hot new technology". They could hire someone for $100K, if they could find them, but that would take months and you would have to take time to teach them all the company internals, lost productivity etc. Instead of trying to hire said new guy, they could send you to training and up your pay to $100K which is fair market value for "hot new technology". Now in the next year, you use "hot new technology" to create an extra $50K of value for the business. The business, over the next year, come out ahead $30K ($50K value - $20K extra salary).

Win for the business, win for the employee. The problem is that businesses are too stupid to see past the next quarter. They are all chasing lowest cost option even if it does not create long term value for the business.

about 5 months ago
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Fluke Donates Multimeters To SparkFun As Goodwill Gesture

byteherder Message to Fluke (250 comments)

Dear Fluke,

I use your multimeters and love them. Please allow SparkFun to have a one-time, royalty-free license to use your trademark for this batch of multimeters.

No one is going to confuse these multimeters with those of Fluke. And it will be a good-will gesture that those of us in the EE community would appreciate.

byteherder

about 5 months ago
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'Google Buses' Are Bad For Cities, Says New York MTA Official

byteherder Re:Dutta == Idiot (606 comments)

Twitter is headquartered on Market St. in San Francisco. So they are located in the expensive area of a really expensive city. Hardly what you would call the poster child for urban blight.

about 6 months ago
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'Google Buses' Are Bad For Cities, Says New York MTA Official

byteherder Dutta == Idiot (606 comments)

'...locate themselves in existing urban communities. Ideally, in blighted ones,'

You mean you want Google to locate its campuses in urban blighted areas (slums). No modern tech company will do that, no one would work for them. It is all about attracting the best and brightest minds. I have a suggestion, why don't you clean up your cities and get rid of the blighted areas and maybe companies will want to locate there.

about 6 months ago
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Top Coders Tell Agents, "Show Me the Money!"

byteherder Re:Hi Tech Agents (288 comments)

Whoosh....The whole concept went over your head and you focused on the most insignificant part.

As a practical matter, an agent would need to focus on those individuals that would be worth their time and effort. A reasonable cut off would be $100k+. Some agents would work just with elite programmers ($250k+) and some would cover a broader range. There is no reason that someone making $100K+ should not have an agent.

By the way, I have over 20 years experience in the industry and am well in the elite range so the Dunning-Kruger effect does not apply. Dubious comments by AC posters do not further the dialog.

about a year ago

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