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Latest Wikipedia Uproar Over 'Superprotection'

donscarletti Re:Too much good content is deleted at Wikipedia. (122 comments)

Notability is important for preventing a potentially slippery slope towards Wikipedia being expected to have an article on every shop, every street, every apartment complex, every popular teacher, and every creative work ever appreciated by more than 10 people.

However, there is something frankly awful about the way it is handled.

Deleting an article should be a grim and thankless task, carried out in the stoical way that a county bailiff would hang or brand a petty thief. Instead, it seems to be a matter of great pride and satisfaction to those who elect themselves to carry it out. These folks really seem to enjoy making up pedantic excuses to remove things, even when faced with strong opposition and enough evidence to at least raise reasonable doubt. When I have checked many of these editor's commit logs, I frequently find that they do little else but marking other articles for deletion, adding "citation needed" after junior highschool level facts and giving barnstars to other like minded nimrods.

If one has contributed in good faith to an article that has been marked for deletion or even appreciated reading one of these articles, it is hard to maintain one's passion for the project. Back when I was a regular contributor, I was creating articles for large international airlines and the like. Then when those were all finished, I made ones for well known video games, books, composers, etc. After those were done, there seemed like nothing remaining but the obscure. But at this time, it was so hard to be excited when one needs to justify each time why Wikipedia would not be better off if what you just wrote was erased, So for the last 7 years, I've pretty much just changed a comma or semicolon here and there.

13 minutes ago
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News Aggregator Fark Adds Misogyny Ban

donscarletti Re:Sigh (711 comments)

there were endless posts about how "just not liking gays" was somehow a perfectly okay position to take

Who determines what positions are and aren't OK to take?

2 days ago
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Entire South Korean Space Programme Shuts Down As Sole Astronaut Quits

donscarletti Re:So no engineers? Scientists? Designers? (186 comments)

There has never been an Australian citizen in space.

Of the two Australian born persons who have been in space. One of them took American citizenship in order to join NASA's astronaut program, the other already was an American Naval Officer when he joined NASA.

The only British Citizen that has been to space went up with the Soviet space program.

To my knowledge, the NASA human spaceflight program was for Americans only since its inception.

about a week ago
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Apple's Diversity Numbers: 70% Male, 55% White

donscarletti Re:Or don't be... (557 comments)

What's the percentage of white male computer-science and technical graduates?

If I can recall back to my university days, approximately:

  • 100% - A - B
  • Where:
  • A = percentage of East Asian males
  • B = percentage of Indian males

about a week ago
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The Fiercest Rivalry In Tech: Uber vs. Lyft

donscarletti Re:In London, Lyft/Uber are intelligence tests. (125 comments)

The other options to the Falcon 9 are the Atlas 5 and Delta IV, they are now sold as complete vehicles by United Launch Alliance (a consortium of the two) and were before 2006 sold as complete vehicles by Lockheed and Boeing respectively. Or one could use an Ariane 5 (Airbus) or Proton (Khrunichev), also complete vehicles.

NASA's policy of farming out to different contractors was only ever done for their megaprojects like Saturn rockets and the Space Shuttle and this was only because they were also designed to drive research and provide economic stimulation (or pork as one may cynically call it) rather than be practical solutions to mundane problems like Falcon 9 (as well as those other Rockets I mentioned) is designed to be.

If NASA, for the first time in its history chooses the Falcon as their man rated rocket of choice, this is because they have absolutely no other candidates. If Boeing wants to, they can choose a supplier of a capsule (RSC Enegia, SpaceX and others) and create a man rated Delta rocket to provide another option to NASA. At any rate NASA and Congress would do better at picking ready made vehicles to buy than they did in organising the Orion project.

about two weeks ago
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The Fiercest Rivalry In Tech: Uber vs. Lyft

donscarletti Re:In London, Lyft/Uber are intelligence tests. (125 comments)

Really good post.

Until you got to the Beeching Axe and you started sounding like a nostalgic train anorak.

Then you got to Boeing and SpaceX of all topics and it just went worse from there on.

The Beeching Axe almost got British Rail back to profitability. SpaceX is just a competitor for Boeing Defense, Space & Security, which Boeing damn well needs, after acquiring all of its previous competitors like Rocketdyne, McDonnell Douglas and Hughes.

about two weeks ago
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City of London Police Take Down Proxy Service Over Piracy Concerns

donscarletti Re:Corporate Cops, eh? (133 comments)

The City of London Police have their powers, policy and jurisdiction defined by the Police Act of 1996, the same as the Metropolitan Police. Their powers come from the House of Commons, not the Guildhall.

about two weeks ago
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Facebook Seeks Devs To Make Linux Network Stack As Good As FreeBSD's

donscarletti Re:Biggest troll on Slashdot ever (195 comments)

As a programmer, project manager and substantial shareholder in my own company, I'm always grateful when people point out things I do that could be done better.

If I was just the former and not the latter two, I think the relative importance of my ego and the quality of the product would be shifted somewhat.

Most, Open Source programmers tend to value recognition pretty highly relative to absolute merit of the product. To your average guy, if you say "your project sucks, we'll pay you to fix it" means that you will get the credit when it is fixed. If you say "your project is good but it could be better" means you will give them the credit either way.

about two weeks ago
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Microsoft's Nokia Plans Come Into Better Focus

donscarletti Re:It's a funny world (149 comments)

He also rejected ME and Vista too. Give him some credit.

about three weeks ago
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Sony Agrees To $17.75m Settlement For 2011 PSN Attack

donscarletti Re:The games (66 comments)

Metacritic rating of 82, GameRankings rating of 83.13%. I'm guessing that quite probably there are a lot of worse racing games.

about a month ago
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White House Approves Sonic Cannons For Atlantic Energy Exploration

donscarletti Re:Lol (272 comments)

I thought it was in retaliation for the shelling of York (Toronto). At any rate, the British reaction, safely evacuating and then burning public buildings in the war of 1812 was far better than the Americans policy of simply lobbing bombs at loyalist civilians and exterminating British friendly native tribes.

about a month ago
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Microsoft CEO To Slash 18,000 Jobs, 12,500 From Nokia To Go

donscarletti Re:And in totally unrelated news.... (383 comments)

Here's the thing.

We are moving now to start reducing the first 13,000 positions, and the vast majority of employees whose jobs will be eliminated will be notified over the next six months."

They are announcing layoffs that will not be implemented, in some cases for over 6 months in the future. That means, for over 6 months, Microsoft employees won't know for sure whether they will be laid off or kept. In management terms, that is going to result in dramatically lower morale and productivity for half a year for what? So that Microsoft can announce 5,000 more layoffs than they are actually capable of firing right now.

It really just shows how much more Microsoft cares about stock value than running a good company.

about a month ago
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Geographic Segregation By Education

donscarletti Re:bars, restaurants, dry cleaners, art galleries (230 comments)

There is no culture in rural areas. There is no learning. For the active mind, it is a fate worse than death. Intelligent people want to be around other intelligent people. Who wants to live in the country with a bunch of bigots who dismiss any ideas they don't agree with?

You don't think the thing you just said then was maybe, well, super bigoted?

I grew up in the country, there are smart people too. The town's "intellectual elite" tend to know each other and be friendly regardless of their profession, age and views, meaning that if you're smart, you get a diverse group of friends. In cities, people form microcosms of folks just like them, with roughly the same job, the same age, the same personality and the same views. A metropolis is the antithesis of diversity, they bring every kind of person together from all over the world, so you can find the ones just like you.

The only thing bad about the country is the job situation. And the lack of entertainment and fine dining. And there being no choice in schools. And the Internet being slow and expensive. And that you have to drive everywhere. And it is inconvenient to take international flights. And consumer goods are expensive. And quite a few other things.

about a month ago
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Normal Humans Effectively Excluded From Developing Software

donscarletti Re:Cry Me A River (608 comments)

However, one thing that has always bothered me is when we say "well we're using ruby xx.xx (or node xx.xx or php xx.xx or whatever) on our development machines, so we must install that version on production" and then the hoops taken to do that. It should be "production can run ruby xx.xx so that's what you have to develop against".

I doubt that will ever be the case.

The main issue is, developers usually have a work backlog and those in charge have very little interest in what version everyone is running. If it already works on _a_ platform version, then chances are that the users will get better value for the developers time through adding another feature to the web app itself, than whatever benefits the upgrade or downgrade in platform version will bring.

You can try negotiating with the development team before the work commences though, or putting it in the initial delivery requirements if it is outsourced. It's just you would have to take initiative here, since nobody in your average business would consider operations to be a stakeholder until the system is live, so nobody is going to go out of their way ask you.

about a month and a half ago
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How Did Those STAP Stem Cell Papers Get Accepted In the First Place?

donscarletti World loves a cute little Obokata (109 comments)

Everyone also wants to believe pretty little Dr Obokata, who is has adorable cartoon characters on her lab equipment and wears a cooking apron while experimenting managed to cure mortality. I mean, she would be such a fantastic science poster girl.

I mean, I just looked at her pictures and completely forgot about anything scientific. One look and I was: "Forget about the chimeric rats, lets see if I can inject some of my non-pluripotent cells into her and create some embrionic stem cells!"

about a month and a half ago
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Eric Schmidt and Entourage Pay a Call On Cuba

donscarletti Re:Good luck with that ... (190 comments)

So Cubans are oppressed but Americans deserve to be punished?

Man, you should be writing speeches for anti-American demagogues the world over (apart from Raul Castro of course).

Also, lots of blacks in Cuba. Cuban censuses distinguish "negro" from "mullato", whereas they are all called "black" in the US, but put them together and the numbers are much higher in Cuba. So your little eugenic theories below don't even work.

about 2 months ago
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Eric Schmidt and Entourage Pay a Call On Cuba

donscarletti Re:I live in Canada (190 comments)

also known as the Republic of China.

Officially, Taiwan is simply a province of China. Whether it is a province of the Republic of China or of the People's Republic of China is still a matter of disagreement.

about 2 months ago
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The Simultaneous Rise and Decline of Battlefield

donscarletti Not EA's fault. (208 comments)

DiCE was bought out in 2004, Battlefield 1942 came out in 2002.

Did anyone play BF 1942 when it came out? It was still far buggier than to BF2 or BF3 on release. It's just that people didn't care back then because:

  • It was ground-breakingly awesome.
  • Computers just crashed randomly anyway back then because a lot of folks were still using non-NT Windows systems.

I think it's been a long standing policy to push forward on optimisation and game refinement at the expence of stability. Which does work for a lot of teams and seems to be standard practice in Sweedish studios, which can be inferred by looking at games like Magica, Goat Simulator or even to a lesser extent Minecraft. You cannot blame EA for this.

about 2 months ago
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Average HS Student Given Little Chance of AP CS Success

donscarletti Re:So China is the new Japan? (293 comments)

I work in China and recruit Chinese game developers.

It is just amazing the difficulty to find developers with technical proficiency. Everyone who can code worth a damn has a job that pays very well, and you're stuck training kids from scratch every time. Luckily there are always clever kids willing to learn, there just seems a lack of people able to teach them.

"Game planners" here, which kind of work a little like designers in the west can not and will not learn basic scripting. Show them a few lines of Python or Lua and they will throw up their hands saying "it's all in English! I can't read it!" They also have no inclination or ability to learn the basics about what engine you're using, what it can do and how it does it. Meeings with them feel like meeting with the marketing department, the same level of technical know-how and coherency of suggestions, just without the understanding of the marketplace.

And game programming and programming in general pays fantastically in China, 2x what a doctor is paid at least, it's just there are so few candidates.

The other thing is kids graduate from a computer science degree without ever writing an entire program. I've taken to hiring maths graduates recently, since they have no less hands-on experience, but actually know basic linear algebra, quaternions and other useful stuff.

about 2 months ago
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Grand Theft Auto V For Modern Platforms Confirmed

donscarletti Re:Big deal (133 comments)

No, still Rockstar North.

It would have made sense if the ultimate gaming tribute to California was made in San Diego, but no, it was made at the foot Carlton Hill in auld Edinburgh and dare I say many a wee dram was imbibed during crunchtime.

The dead givaway though was the Forth bridge appearing in San Fierro.

about 2 months ago

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