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Magnitude 6.0 Quake Hits Northern California, Causing Injuries and Outages

cbybear Middle of San Francisco (Eureka Valley) (135 comments)

I woke up a few minutes before and was just getting back to sleep when it happened. It was a long quake, a good 15 second at least. The room shook side to side with a rough swaying. I started slow (like a big truck driving by the house), ramped up really quickly, held that for most of the time, then damped out.

All Lego displays remained intact.

about a month ago
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Do Apple and Google Sabotage Older Phones? What the Graphs Don't Show

cbybear iPhone fast enough now (281 comments)

I've had each version of the iPhone (app development), so I've been privy to the speed profile personally. I don't think there is anything weird going on. Just hardware optimization and adding more software. And since my iPhone 5S, I've had no complaints about speed. It's been flawless.

--kev

about 2 months ago
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Glenn Greenwald: How the NSA Tampers With US Made Internet Routers

cbybear Re:Nice job NSA (347 comments)

No, this is all on the NSA. They had no legal or moral right to take it as far as they did. Blaming those reporting the story is inappropriate.

about 5 months ago
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Glenn Greenwald: How the NSA Tampers With US Made Internet Routers

cbybear Nice job NSA (347 comments)

You just single-handedly killed the entire US tech industry. You murdered trust. No one will ever trust US hardware again.

about 5 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Joining a Startup As an Older Programmer?

cbybear Do your job and do it well... (274 comments)

and it won't matter that you don't show up to every outside team-bonding event. Good people won't fault that you already have a life outside of work. If they do, you might reconsider working there for that reason. Otherwise, focus on the work, be engaged and open-minded, and you'll be fine.

Let go of the age thing. That is all a state of mind. And if applied right, your experience will be valuable. I say this from experience. I'm almost always the old guy now. But I keep my skills sharp and current and I listen to what others have to contribute. My age gives me experience, but I can always benefit from more energy and bold new ideas.

about 5 months ago
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GoPro Project Claims Technology Is Making People Lose Empathy For Homeless

cbybear Re:Wrong, it's not the tech (320 comments)

San Francisco has tons of programs to help less fortunate people. So I don't buy the argument that we are ignoring history and repeating it. We have people who just don't want to work. Go spend time near Haight-Ashbury. See young kids, not interested in actually contributing to society, instead burning bags of shit in the middle of the street. This is an otherwise normal neighborhood except for proximity to Golden Gate Park, which is now a haven for ne'er-do-wells who then prey upon tourists and the people that live in the Haight. That is just one instance of what we deal with in San Francisco. And we don't have epic blizzards to reset things every year.

about 5 months ago
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GoPro Project Claims Technology Is Making People Lose Empathy For Homeless

cbybear Wrong, it's not the tech (320 comments)

It's having to step over trash strewn everywhere around refuse cans. It's having to avoid unknown streams down the sidewalk and then getting a lung-full of the reek of old urine. It's the constant begging. That is why people are less empathetic. After years of this and nothing working, you have to ignore it or go crazy with the constant assault.

about 5 months ago
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Getting Evolution In Science Textbooks For Texas Schools

cbybear The End of Texas' Reign (710 comments)

I think this will create backlash and before you know it, Texas is no longer the gold standard for text books. Sigh, Texas is becoming more and more of a joke every day.

about 10 months ago
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Snowden Seeks International Help Against US Espionage Charges

cbybear You know that oppressive regime we all feared... (351 comments)

well, it's here. Snowden just exposed it, granted in a very crass way. More refinement would have been nice, but that might have cost him doing anything at all. The NSA is out of control.

The US government has no business doing what it is doing with such a vast and broad spying program. I personally am looking at ways to secure my personal and business transactions, knowing I'm in an arms race with every government on the planet who will be trying to crack open my data to see what is inside. I just wish my own government would help me with this instead of adding to the list of entities I have to defend against.

about a year ago
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LinkedIn's New Mobile App Called 'a Dream For Attackers'

cbybear Re:Why is anyone surprised? (122 comments)

Bingo! You nailed it exactly. No sense of morals or social obligation. Just does whatever comes to his little mind and thinks he is the most clever thing since the last shitstain to come along and think he know more about tech than everyone else. What he fails to understand is that the people that created all this stuff we use knew how to do all this evil stuff, they just had better guiding values. Heck, they had guiding values period!

about a year ago
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How Safe Is Cycling?

cbybear Re:It would be safer if cyclists followed traffic (947 comments)

That's sad. I am a respectful cyclist, obey signals and signs and such. But it is the cars, who see ALL bikers as a menace, that pushed me off the road. So while you are right about a large number of cyclists behaving irresponibly, that guy on the bike you just fucked with, well, that was me and I was just commuting to work and believe in the laws as much as you do. At least I did until you did that. Now I'm afraid for my safety and more willing to break laws to keep myself safe.

You are escalating the situation instead of growing up and acting the adult, even when tons of people aren't. But I suppose "everyone else is doing it" is justification enough for you.

about a year ago
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Patent Troll Goes After Facebook, Apple, Microsoft, Yahoo, IBM, Others

cbybear Turn the RIAA/MPAA on the Trolls (171 comments)

When the patent trolls come out, start the sniffing their torrent traffic. I'd almost bet one of the Personal Blah Blah Blah company's employees has downloaded copyrighted content from torrents. Maybe they did at home. All it takes is catching one of them and the company's argument is damaged. True, not really a proper legal thing to do, but in this case, I think a bit of creative hacking for those of us who actually care about these kinds of things would be nice. Not that I am advocating anything illegal...

about 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Is the Best Position To Work For Long Hours?

cbybear Standing (262 comments)

I've been using a standing desk for over 5 years now and would never go back. I can go for hours on end without problems now. It also makes it easier to stretch and move around, which is more healthy. For me it was the only answer after watching my mid-section deteriorate from sitting for hours daily.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: What's Holding Up Single Sign-On?

cbybear What you really want is to get rid of passwords... (446 comments)

which is a different thing than having single sign-on. I personally like the following approach to reducing the number of passwords, especially for throw-away or low-concern sites.

http://rip-van-webble.blogspot.com/2012/06/using-asymmetric-keys-for-web-joinlogin.html

It depends on HTML5 local storage and uses asymmetric keys for doing the join and subsequent login. While I wouldn't necessarily jump to this for a financial website, for things like slashdot, facebook, news websites, etc., it would be a boon.

--kev

more than 2 years ago
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Facebook iOS App Ditching HTML5 For ObjectiveC

cbybear Re:Worse problems than HTML5 (240 comments)

The thing I wonder about though, is the app size. Now that could be a bunch of artwork not being used, but the iPhone app I wrote (Phresheez, a tracking app) is a UIWebView with a few other view controllers and views, is around 750K in size, with the required retina artwork (of which there isn't a lot). So why should the FB be so large if not for overall sloppy design and implementation? At any rate, I think the whole thing smacks of publicity scrounging to let people know the iPhone experience "won't suck much longer". The excuses for the slowness are meager and not even really relevant to the discussion. Does it matter why it is slow, just that it is and they should fix it.

You can be in control of your caching behavior on iOS. There are delegate methods that let you hook into the HTTP process for doing a variety of interesting thing, including managing your own client-side cache.

more than 2 years ago
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Facebook iOS App Ditching HTML5 For ObjectiveC

cbybear Worse problems than HTML5 (240 comments)

The UIWebView on the iPhone is plenty snappy enough.

I venture to say their network communications layer is poorly implemented. The app is a memory pig. The app is a battery pig. It is 10.5 MB for what? A portal to browse the FB website. Seems way over-engineered to be that big and have a little functionality as it does.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Ambitious Yet Ethical Software Jobs?

cbybear Re:Visual FX (559 comments)

And I suppose I could plug

http://www.animationmentor.com/seminar/?mkt_tok=3RkMMJWWfF9wsRokuqnPZKXonjHpfsX96%2BgvX6Og38431UFwdcjKPmjr1YsETtQhcOuuEwcWGog8wQJRF%2BGBdY9O9%2FBTH06g

if you are curious how an animated shot is broken down. It will focus more on the story aspect of breaking down the shot, but you should also get some insight on tools and other processes, especially if you watch the details. Of course this is assuming you are somewhere in the Bay Area. You should also do some web searching for "visual fx shot breakdown". That should return lots of articles describing (at a high-level), the assembly of a single VFX or CG shot. The challenge is making hundreds of those all at once and the explosion of data that goes along with that.

Also, check LinkedIn for various visual effects and pipeline groups (careful with 'pipeline', still lots of oil and gas going on out there!). They have a lot of noise often, but it will give you a flavor of what companies are looking for skill-wise, where the jobs are, etc.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Ambitious Yet Ethical Software Jobs?

cbybear Re:Visual FX (559 comments)

I do. I've worked on VFX, CG and games for just over 15 years now. I ended up in the industry because of my knowledge of Perl (back in 1997). Yeah, go figure. As a skilled software engineer, however, I was a rare commodity at the time since I was willing to play in the realm of data modeling, databases, asset management, systems engineering, etc. Basically not the sexy stuff like writing a renderer. More building the machine to run the renderer on millions of frames of a movie. 'Natch.

It would seem to be a competitive field, but honestly, most of the resumes I've seen have not been very impressive. We have a hard time finding motivated, skilled candidates. People think it is all about CG and 3D. That is a small, important part. But by no means the end of it. If you have the chops (and you know if you do, confidence is a big part of this), then get your resume out there. (As a side note, get an English major, e.g, an excellent tech writer, to proofread your resume. Make it look nice and organized. Nothing turns me off more than a poorly organized resume. Find a good resume and emulate it).

You can target the usual suspects. Dreamworks, Pixar, Digital Domain, Weta, and EA. Stay through the credits of any CG or heavy VFX movie and you'll see all the names of all the companies you should be investigating. Check out Autodesk, The Foundry, PipelineFX, and other companies that write software for the CG industry.

Did I mention staying through the credits? I'm saying it again. You've seen the movie, honor the people who worked on it that you didn't spend the last couple hours seeing directly on the screen. It is not often in our world we can see how an individual contributed to a larger work in such a direct fashion.

As for spotlight tech, knowing Python is key. It is used by major tools in the industry like Maya, Nuke, and Katana. If you don't know it, learn it. It is also very helpful to know Linux (yes, command-line Linux). Learn all about queuing systems. Know your C and C++ (interfacing with third-party libraries from within Python can be highly useful).

Go to SIGGRAPH. It is in LA this year. I won't be going myself, but it is always a great networking opportunity. Attend interesting talks. Stay after and talk to the speakers. Ask interesting questions. Listen well. You might even get invited out to a dinner or a party. Do it. Listen more.

It will be all worth for the first time you see yourself credited on-screen. I still get all giddy when I think of Antz and my first movie credit as "TD Tools Programmer". So watch Antz, find that credit, and you'll know who I am... (No cheating using IMDB, really, go watch the movie).

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Ambitious Yet Ethical Software Jobs?

cbybear Visual FX (559 comments)

More and more simulations are happening in VFX and CG animation. Cloth, hair, smoke, fire, water, etc. all require simulation on top of or in addition to the hand animation you see. The data are getting larger every year and the management of the tech to produce these things is highly complex. I love this playground and the only ethical dilemma I face is the crappy movies Hollywood has a tendency to put out.

more than 2 years ago

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