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To me, lotteries represent ...

dazedNconfuzed Re:Good beer for $1 (301 comments)

Make it.

Don't fantasize, make your dreams happen.

more than 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Living Without Internet At-Home Access?

dazedNconfuzed Been there, done that, so true. (462 comments)

Those of us born before 1985 or so can remember we LIVED WITHOUT INTERNET. We got by just fine. We went to libraries and subscribed to periodicals and bought books for information. We wrote letters on paper, used stamps, and waited days for mail turnaround. We read National Geographic for education and other activities. We survived, we liked it, we didn't notice much missing.
No 'net?
Been there.
Done that.
Was nice.
Don't wanna go back.
Pity the person who does.

more than 3 years ago

DC Reboots Universe

dazedNconfuzed East vs. West (292 comments)

In the Kamigata area, they have a sort of tiered lunchbox
they use for a single day when flower viewing.
Upon returning, they throw them away, trampling them underfoot.
The end is important in all things.
- Hagakure (The Way of the Samurai)

more than 3 years ago

Including webcams, phones, etc, I own X cameras:

dazedNconfuzed A solution looking for a problem? (248 comments)

Having seen enough similar "out there" products - at least when they were first conceived of - my reaction to your funny was "holy crap he's right!" and started wondering what could be done to bridge the gap from humorous absurdity to marketable product. The sound industry has long touted "1-bit digital audio" - similar concept awaiting for imaging?

more than 3 years ago

Professor Questions Sink-Or-Swim Intro To CS Courses

dazedNconfuzed /. ate my operator (606 comments)

Sorry, /. ate the insertion operator in my example.
Heck, that improves the example: if you can't fix the bug in that after 15 weeks of study, reconsider whether you're willing to work as hard as you'll need to for the certification.

more than 3 years ago

Professor Questions Sink-Or-Swim Intro To CS Courses

dazedNconfuzed I teach intro CS. Sink-or-swim is good. (606 comments)

If you can't grasp the basics of variables, decisions, loops, functions and classes in 15 weeks then you are not ready for what comes next. I've had students who truly could not, and it would be cruel to let them continue on, only to get mired ever deeper and rack up more debt. If prerequisites, declared or implied, are not fulfilled then one is in no position to go farther. Those who take it again and struggle thru may pass (rare), but they have already shown that - aside from special cases and remarkable effort - they are just not equipped to compete in the complexity and speed of the subject.

If you can't grasp
class C { public: void d(int n){ for(int i=0;in;++i) cout”Hi! "; } };
void main() { C c; if (true) c.d(); }
in four months, you're not cut out for the career.

I get students who don't grasp the concept of variables. I mean they truly do not grasp the concept of x=3.
Maybe they can get it at some point, but they don't keep up.

If you can't play standard scales in 4 months, you're not up to compete against talented musicians.
If you can't dissect a frog in 4 months, you're not cut out to do surgery.
If you can't write a poem in 4 months, you won't be teaching college English.

Sure we can hypothesize special cases, or give contrary anecdotes. Building policy on that is like not driving to work because you might be killed in a crash. I know Einstein failed math; he overcame, and so can any special cases - it's not like one is forbidden from the subject everywhere for life.
If you can't grasp a bare minimum level of competency in four months of six hours a week lecture time plus up to all waking hours for assignments, take the hint - go find your talent, which isn't this.

more than 3 years ago

Mozilla Labs: the URL Bar Has To Go

dazedNconfuzed The flaw in FOSS (591 comments)

Hence my #1 general complaint with free open source software: developers tend to fix what they want to fix, not what must be fixed. Stuff which is hard to do, uninteresting, and little-observed (whether during development or in the bug report bin) tends to be passed over by those who have no incentive to do it other than in return for cold hard nasty cash.

more than 3 years ago

Google To Offer Chrome OS Notebooks For $20/month

dazedNconfuzed EDGE fallback? (277 comments)

Lacking 3G coverage, most areas have EDGE network available, and the 3G radio should fall back to that.
Yeah, it's slow - but at least it works (big difference between "slow" and "nothing"). 'tis rare that my iPad gets no service whatsoever, as most "middle of nowhere" areas still have EDGE at minimum.

Upshot: if your cell phone works, and you're not doing international roaming, it will at least function passably until you return to suitable civilization.

more than 3 years ago

Google To Offer Chrome OS Notebooks For $20/month

dazedNconfuzed So ends an era (277 comments)

I was about to make a snarky comment about turning in your geek card, but then realized we now have a generation of geeks who legitimately don't know that ^W = Control-W => Delete Word.

more than 3 years ago

Is Process Killing the Software Industry?

dazedNconfuzed Design != build (460 comments)

You are suffering the same confusion I'm trying to point out.

Software engineers (and their management) confuse the blueprint with the finished product. Your source code is not the final product, it is the complete detailed blueprint of how to build the final product - from which your compiler chain then builds the final executable (in a manner nigh unto instant and free).

This confusion leads to misapplication of processes, which in turn lead to silly assertions such as TFA. As build time approaches zero, so does the imperative to do correct design.

more than 3 years ago

Is Process Killing the Software Industry?

dazedNconfuzed Distortion: construction is free (460 comments)

In most engineering disciplines, the process of actually building something is long, hard, expensive, and persistent. If the project is build a bridge, you spend a lot of time making sure the design is right; why? because the process of actually building the bridge takes months or years, costs many millions of dollars, and once built is not easily replaced. There is no room for error, so process is taken very seriously as a central part of ensuring timely cost-effective correctness.

In software, the process of actually building something is instant, easy, free, and transient. Type "make all" and go get some coffee; find a bug? tweak a couple lines and do it again. This distorts the development process; "process" gets snubbed as a costly distracting annoyance instead of the means of assuring that what gets delivered is correct, because it's just so dang easy to fix and rebuild in seconds ... losing sight of the long-term cost of not doing it right the first time.

more than 3 years ago

Creating a "Force Field" Invisible Touch Interface

dazedNconfuzed Welcome to 1983 (138 comments)

Main feature of the HP-150.

more than 3 years ago

AT&T Admits Network Can't Handle iPhone, iPad Traffic

dazedNconfuzed Small wonder... (298 comments)

Small wonder they dropped the "unlimited flat rate 3G" plan a month after the iPad 3G was introduced.

Makes me wonder how far the gap between the wonder and the reality of "cloud computing" is. Sounds great to keep all your data/music/video in the "cloud", but throwing around that much data grinds any capped data plan into the ground.

(Advantage to the early adopters: some of us still have that glorious "unlimited 3G" plan. Yay! FYI: they're transferrable.)

more than 3 years ago

Ask Slashdot: Are You Streaming-Only For Home Entertainment?

dazedNconfuzed Should be a /. poll (697 comments)

...as that's what TFS asks.

My answer:
AppleTV ($99 flat) + Netflix ($13/mo) + Hulu+ ($9/mo).
Considering I'd have Netflix anyway, and will dump Hulu+ for inadequate content, that's cheap and makes upgrading the hardware easy (can upgrade to the latest ATV each year and still save 10 months' cable costs).

more than 3 years ago

Piracy Is a Market Failure — Not a Legal One

dazedNconfuzed Why DVDs? (591 comments)

DVD, WTF is that and why do we still have them.

Because some people want to have unilateral possession of content, not subject to the decisions of others. What is available for streaming now may not be in the future, for many possible reasons. Ownership matters. I've put a lot of movies on my Netflix Instant Queue, which are now not available either via streaming, or at all.

Example: I want a full collection of Looney Tunes, the same ones I grew up with as a kid. Can't get 'em now because many episodes are "politically incorrect". Ditto Disney's "Song of the South".

It's why people buy books instead of relying entirely on the public library. Borrowing (which streaming amounts to) is fine for most content, but sometimes you want to own a copy not subject to whether the library has it available or not, either for your own convenient access or to satisfy "I own a copy."

more than 3 years ago

My $200 Laptop Can Beat Your $500 Tablet

dazedNconfuzed Tablet + Desktop Laptop (789 comments)

You carry a laptop because your desktop is too big to haul around. To get portability, you compromise power & capacity to achieve size and weight.

The iPad-style tablet is a recognition that something like 80% of what you do with a computer doesn't need the capacity, power, and I/O of a desktop, so leave that stuff on your desk and take the screen, connectivity, and not much else with you instead.

A laptop computer is a compromise. A tablet is meant to complement a desktop.

more than 3 years ago

System Measures Stress In Emergency Callers' Voice

dazedNconfuzed The Freaked-Out Future of Humanity (238 comments)

Natural selection will provide some interesting long-term consequences.

more than 3 years ago

Browsers — the Gaming Platform of the Future?

dazedNconfuzed Browser-OS fusion? (95 comments)

So when will the browser and operating system achieve a seamless integration? Why do we keep thinking in terms of "browser" and "web page" for what's becoming just another storage/source of executables?

This has been attempted several times in the past (Java Launcher (?), Active Desktop, etc.). Just fuse them already; the concept of "browser" is becoming an obsolete construct, impeding semantic progress.

more than 3 years ago



Whither the 19th IOCCC?

dazedNconfuzed dazedNconfuzed writes  |  more than 5 years ago

dazedNconfuzed (154242) writes "Pardon the reverse-news item, but ... whatever happened to the 19th IOCCC? The opening thereof was announced at http://developers.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=07/01/03/1430238 and the winners' names were posted on http://www2.us.ioccc.org/whowon2006.html , but the source code was never released — leaving the results of the 2006 contest unknown as we get well into 2009. Emails to questions@ioccc.org just bounce. Surely the quiet absence of a high point of geekdom becomes news at some point!"


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