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Workaholism In America Is Hurting the Economy

chstwnd Dead wrong (710 comments)

The majority of engineers value getting the job done and extra pay, not merely working longer hours. The companies that employ them often egregiously take advantage of these particular aspect of the work ethic and draw them into working longer hours to the point that it becomes commonplace. This is a big reason for the current trend towards wholesale contract workforces. and there is an ebb and flow to it that will reverse soon enough. companies will realize that they're paying the contract workforce much higher then they would directs and they're not all that much more disposable because it now takes up 75-80% of their total headcount. So they'll try to pull in more to directs at lower rates, arguably more perks and the illusion of increased stability. If you've been talking into believing that simply working a longer day is at the heart of a strong work ethic, you're clearly not thinking for yourself. and, with that, you're probably not truly an engineer (applies hard sciences vs. "sales engineer", "social media engineer" or any of the drivel). I still remember a remark one of my professors made about an intrinsic characteristic of engineers: we're lazy. we're always trying to find simpler, better ways to do mundane, time consuming tasks LONG TERM and we're willing to put in 100 hours now if we anticipate it saving us and a million other people 1000 hours of work down the road. benefits always have to outweigh the risks and costs.

about 6 months ago
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Crucial Launches MX100 SSD At Well Under 50 Cents Per GiB

chstwnd not going to be suckered into reading the ad (107 comments)

but here's my observation .43 * 128 != 79.99 so, right off the bat, whatever this drivel is may be assumed a lie, garbage or both.

about 7 months ago
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'Curiosity' Lead Engineer Suggests Printing Humans On Other Planets

chstwnd Re:Yeah, no... (323 comments)

Actually, I would argue that it will be considerably easier to bio-engineer unicorns before the....er, highly improbable bioprinting function. And even if you were able to "print" living, functioning beings with immediate, intact knowledge so they could be productive starting on day 1.....why in the hell would you make them HUMAN? We're fragile, ephemeral, generally quite stupid and inefficient.

about 7 months ago
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Studies: Wildfires Worse Due To Global Warming

chstwnd Re:LOL (379 comments)

"It's all agenda driven." I would mod you up to a "5-Insightful" if i had the points. Actually, anyone who makes that astute observation.

about 7 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: How To Convince a Team To Write Good Code?

chstwnd make them depend on it (366 comments)

well, I think a relatively straightforward approach would be to have them tag-team assignments. not the resource you're talking about, but individual subroutines/functions. if you can afford the individuals' downtime, have them rewrite the code from scratch. have pairs work on one subroutine, but not simultaneously. half way through the initial writing phase, force them to hand off to their partner without the benefit of a handoff or status briefing. when they realize that they're taking more time to interpret the code than to finish it because it has obscure variables or function calls or zero commenting, they'll start doing it on their own. it would speed up the process if you made inputs from the individual coders fold into an annual review.

about a year ago
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Ask Slashdot: How Many of You Actually Use Math?

chstwnd Re:Field dependent requirement (1086 comments)

in programming, integrals are calculated using the rough form of an integral. that is, the solution to an integral is the sum of f(x) dx. typically, you evaluate the function at x in a DO/WHILE/FOR loop in a function or subroutine and pass the value back to main to add to the previous delta value. since integrals are done over a range (or ranges, with double integrals), you just create a loop with the appropriate beginning and ending indices or the appropriate number of iterations and you only have to figure out how to code the equation once. programming in such a way is often done concurrently with studying beginning calculus. really once you understand limits, sums, and series, you're pretty much good to go. But you have to understand them first to know what they're telling you and, ultimately, what you're looking for. I can't speak for game programming exactly, since you can really arbitrarily define rules in any game world, but games are looking more and more like technical simulations with the incorporation of PhysX and Havok, and the more something in a 3D game responds the way you would expect it to in real life (like the trajectory of a bullet, including gravitational, wind effects, deceleration, elapsed time, etc.), the deeper the immersion. For that you need not just math, but physics with advanced math. for the record, fortran is much better for number crunching than C/C++. and use of float variables, even double precision ones, is not strange.

more than 2 years ago
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Blocking Gun Laws With Patents

chstwnd Re:Damn! (1165 comments)

you, sir, are an idiot.

more than 2 years ago
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The Rise of Chemophobia In the News

chstwnd Re:frist (463 comments)

And don't forget, scare tactics and sensationalism bring eyeballs and ad revenue.

don't forget political power and government funds.

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: How To Enter Private Space Industry As an Engineer?

chstwnd Re:Worcester Polytechnic Institute (283 comments)

you're delusional. WPI is NOT right beneath MIT in terms of "highly regarded schools". On top of that, it would be out-of-state tuition for him. OP, take a look at this list and pick the best compromise between cost/rank. http://grad-schools.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-graduate-schools/top-engineering-schools/eng-rankings/page+2 Looks like you're going to be paying high tuition if you pick off that list, but there are reasons that colleges make those lists. And, more than the people you go to school with, the school's name on your degree will help with your career. Well....maybe. I got my degree from UT Austin (#8 on the list above), and got a job at NASA after graduation. I got it through connections, so those are important, but not "sell yourself into slavery for life because of student loans" important. Engineering is different from most other careers; engineers are largely pragmatic, skeptical and antisocial. So, the rules of thumb that apply to things like business and marketing and other no-value-added careers don't tend to apply. Now onto the more editorial portion of my reply. You might want to consider going ME instead of ASE, because the degree itself (assuming you only want undergrad) could be a limiting factor on your career. Aerospace is one of the most volatile career fields to get into. It's blown by every wind of political change you can imagine, and, in the private sector, everything is so highly marginalized that the top companies usually resort to massive layoffs in order to make their bottom lines look better when projects start getting into cost overruns. If you'd like, I can continue this more later, after dinner.

more than 3 years ago
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UCLA Engineers Create Energy-Generating LCD Screen

chstwnd there's already something superior to this (108 comments)

saw a video from a tradeshow (thought it was CES, but can't find the video right off the bat) about two years ago of a transparent overlay for any media screen. the demo showed a VERY rigged version of the product over an iphone and coupled to a multimeter displaying its active voltage as the reporter checking it out moved it with respect to a light source. and it was completely transparent. does anyone remember this??

more than 3 years ago
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Cop Seeks Wiretapping Charges For Woman Who Videotaped Beating

chstwnd Re:What freedom are you interested in? (662 comments)

shot? what about tasered? tasers were supposed to be ONLY an alternative to deadly force (used in place of shooting an armed or otherwise deadly assailant), but cops use them regularly to "put people in their place". after they were introduced in that manner, authorities quickly put in place use of force guidelines that give them license to use them pretty much whenever they want to. a conversation with a cop should NEVER allow for the possibility of saying "but..." leading to a partial electrocution.

more than 3 years ago
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Netflix Deflects Rage Over Price Increase

chstwnd Re:2nd Price Increase in less than a year (722 comments)

I've been wondering about just that aspect of this whole thing. As Netflix tries to choke the DVD side of its business model to death (and, apparently, bidding good riddance to the loyal customers who allowed it to bloom into the business it is today), will ISPs choke Netflix to death with more stringent bandwidth caps or (more likely) port throttling?

more than 3 years ago
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Fable III Dev: Used Game Sales More Costly Than Piracy

chstwnd Re:Of course (342 comments)

except that the trade-in value for a used game is virtually negligible. Resale value never factors into my purchases. The biggest factor in my game purchases is "$50/60 is way too much for a game that I may finish in 20-30 hours and then never play again". after that, it's a question of quality - will it be so buggy that it annoys the crap out of me, and will it actually hold my attention for those 20-30 hours (minimum).

more than 3 years ago
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HDMI Brands Don't Matter

chstwnd Re:True, but $5 are still worse... (399 comments)

um, wrong. gold is an excellent electrical conductor. nickel is about three times worse than gold for conductivity. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electrical_resistivity_and_conductivity the only two metals that exceed it's low resistivity values are silver and copper. and by "non-corruptible", I have to assume you mean that they won't corrode. this is true, but gold has a much lower wear resistance than the steel used to actually make the connector sheathing underneath, and too many connections/disconnections would eventually wear through the gold. of course, the number of cycles to do that is in the hundreds or thousands depending on the plating thickness.

more than 3 years ago
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AT&T Says Net Rules Must Allow 'Paid Prioritization'

chstwnd Re:Actually.. (390 comments)

Competition actually would be great. If it existed. Right now, most markets experience competition solely based on having two different sets of wires going into their business/residence. Generally, one company has exclusivity on phone/DSL lines and another company has exclusivity on the coax lines, and the service companies associated with each of them offer dissimilar services, so there isn't a direct correlation to compete against. Essentially, this creates local monopolies that can pretty much do whatever they want. I love my FiOS connection, and I would consider their rates to be reasonable, but it is unavailable in the house we're moving to. Not because of cabling in the neighborhood, but because exclusivity is granted to AT&T for phone service and related passthrough in that area. And AT&T is so shady that I have to turn to my only other option for internet: Charter communications. And then you have to consider that if you're specifically eyeing U-verse or FiOS, they tie into your coax infrastructure to prevent you from using one service for cable and another for high-speed internet. It's all collusion and corporate price fixing. The only real way to combat it is to actually be able to walk away from whatever company or industry that is doing it.

more than 4 years ago
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Unique ID In India Causes 'Fear of the Beast'

chstwnd Re:Blah (725 comments)

Never good to see condescending asses anywhere in the world. I hope you're not in the USA.

more than 4 years ago
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Cancer Cells Detected Using $400 Digital Camera

chstwnd Re:FDA approval (90 comments)

I think sycodon's point was that the bureaucracy of the FDA will add testing, regulation, certification and licensing fees to the "simple solution" such that it is no longer simple or cost effective. In fact, if there's a $10k machine that does this already, the manufacturers of said machine will probably lobby for just such onerous regulations.

more than 4 years ago
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For-Profit, Illegal Movie Download Sites Threaten MPAA

chstwnd Re:from the good-luck-shutting-those-down dept. (387 comments)

I don't know if you'd call it the "same" rules. I'm no fan of the RIAA, and I think they might just pee their collective pants - and unfortunately pick up a few tricks - when they start trying to steamroll more senior criminals that aren't afraid to take out a hit on someone who annoys them slightly too much.

more than 4 years ago
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Fallout Online Website Arises Amid Legal Battle

chstwnd Re:Post Apocalypse (85 comments)

obviously, you have not heard of Fallen Earth. Haven't played it, myself. at debut, it was considered a spiritual offspring of FO for the MMO world when the real FO:OL was vaporware (and may still be). There are several MMOs in development with a PA setting. Afterfall seems the most ambitious after Fallen Earth. And there are dev videos available on YouTube. For reference: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Post-apocalyptic_video_games it would be nice if this list broke it out by SP/MP/MMO

more than 4 years ago

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