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IRS Warns of Downtime Risk As Congress Makes Cuts

gov_coder Re:One has to wonder (253 comments)

As a recovering former IRS employee; I can answer some of this. Mostly it boils down to leadership (a lack thereof). The IRS puts all of its most critical "features" towards the end of their multi-year development projects. So, as an example, the "document matching" components in the IRS's ACA processing systems that help identify fraud won't be built until 2018 or somewhere around that time frame. Leadership hopes that this will somehow prevent steep cuts; but as we have seen this really doesn't work (anymore). Beyond that; the U.S. government as a whole desperately needs better identity management. Something like the HSPD PIV card for all citizens (or the DoD Common-Access-Card) would solve a ton of identity management issues. But politically, I don't think people are ready for that. The advice I give to my friends is that until the identity management stuff is fixed; always file your returns early. This dramatically reduces the chances that you will be an identify theft victim with the IRS.

about a week ago

Unbundling Cable TV: Be Careful What You Wish For

gov_coder In other words ... (448 comments)

Absolutely. The bigger surrounding problem is the current state of anti-trust enfarcement. A tiny number of media companies controls nearly everything people see, hear, and read. I wish we could have another president T.R. Its amazing how many of our current problems stem from this single (ignored) issue.

about three weeks ago

Mixing Agile With Waterfall For Code Quality

gov_coder Re:Quality and Productivity (133 comments)

I couldn't agree more. The only thing I would add is that Zed said it best. No methodology in the world can make up for a lack of skill.

about 3 months ago

Ask Slashdot: What Do You Do If You're Given a Broken Project?

gov_coder Code Coverage of Unit tests? Interface Boundaries? (308 comments)

When I was doing maintenance work I would take on P.O.S.s all the time and clean them up. Usually I would find missing / lacking unit tests and set about filling those gaps. This really gets you into understanding how the code works. Then, if I found stuff that was particularly stinky; I'd move it behind and interface and set about improving upon the implementation. This is aided with unit-test coverage tools like Emma (for java), BTW. Having a Jenkins/Hudson or similiar continuous-build/integration tool really helps, too.

about a year ago

Things That Scare the Bejeezus Out of Programmers

gov_coder IBM Rational ClearCase (641 comments)

I've seen this shiny DEUCE of an SCM literally eat code in 3 different development projects.

about a year and a half ago

IBM Predicts the Next 5 Years of Computing

gov_coder My predictions for IBM's technology... (93 comments)

1) IBM Rational ClearCase will continue to stink
2) ClearCase users will develop blindness as a result of continued exposure
to the eye-sore that is the clearcase-ui
3) ClearCase will create a new disease in the enterprise called CC-Shingles
as it infects every application that touches it with needless process steps
4) Cubicle neighbors of CC-users will soon be donning noise-cancelling ear-muffs to block
out the loud cursing of the ClearCase users around them
5) ClearCase market share will continue to dwindle below its already measly 2 % market share
as more and more workplaces find CC to be the most dis-tasteful source control product ever.

more than 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: How Do I Stay Employable?

gov_coder Find the Fun (708 comments)

If you just can find-the-fun; the skills will blossom almost with you noticing it.

I'm about your age and recently had 3 job offers to decide from. I think what made me marketable was all the fun development projects I work on outside of work.

Years ago it was text-to-speach apps, new readers, and personal search tools that I enjoyed working on. Today I'm having fun building software for home-security (facial recognition and object recognition libraries are fast maturing) and helping my neighbors set up their own home-security systems based on this stuff (for free of course).

There's so much cool stuff in OSS to learn about; you are almost crazy not to be into this stuff.

I learned a ton about MySQL when I built my first mythTV DVR; and would never want to go back to watching TV any other way.

My Rss reading project taught me a ton about XML and XML-Schema; plus it cut down on the amount of surfing I do.

For my next home project I'm probably going to build some tools for my son's MineCraft worlds.

And I can't wait to start playing with the android SDK a bit more so I port some of my favorite projects over to my tablet.

more than 2 years ago

Ask Slashdot: How To Give IT Presentations That Aren't Boring?

gov_coder Forget the Slides; Do a Demo (291 comments)

Showing beats telling every time.

more than 2 years ago

Casio Paying Microsoft To Use Linux

gov_coder Judge Penfield Jackson said it best... (262 comments)

The original ant-trust breakup judge, Penfield Jackson nailed it:

Most harmful of all is the message that Microsoft's actions have conveyed to every enterprise with the potential to innovate in the computer industry. Through its conduct toward Netscape, IBM, Compaq, Intel, and others, Microsoft has demonstrated that it will use its prodigious market power and immense profits to harm any firm that insists on pursuing initiatives that could intensify competition against one of Microsoft's core products. Microsoft's past success in hurting such companies and stifling innovation deters investment in technologies and businesses that exhibit the potential to threaten Microsoft. The ultimate result is that some innovations that would truly benefit consumers never occur for the sole reason that they do not coincide with Microsoft's self-interest.

more than 3 years ago

Cancer Resembles Life 1 Billion Years Ago

gov_coder Definition of Life and Cancer (223 comments)

Life: the decision of approximately 4 billion cells to be 'you' for a while.

Cancer: When some of the 4 billion cells decide to form a 'tea party'.

more than 3 years ago

Senate Votes To Turn Down Volume On TV Commercials

gov_coder MythTV impact? (625 comments)

I was a bit worried that this might impact MythTV's commercial detection capabilities, but according to this page, it would appear that volumne levels are not part of the determination.

Any MythTV devs reading this know for sure?

more than 4 years ago

Stewart and Colbert Plan Competing D.C. Rallies

gov_coder Re:I will be there (696 comments)

John Stewart's march is the one advocating tolerance.

Colbert's march is the sarcastic counter to that (Keep-Fear-Alive!).

Sounds like I touched a nerve with you, though.

Perhaps you should change out your colostomy bag, dude. Clearly your current one is all backed up.

more than 4 years ago

Stewart and Colbert Plan Competing D.C. Rallies

gov_coder I will be there (696 comments)

- and am really looking forward to it.
I'll be in the Colbert - 'Keep Fear Alive' side.
My sign will read;
'The New American Tea-Party;
Harnessing the Power of Stupid.
Finally, A Renewable resource all republicans can agree on!'

more than 4 years ago

One Video Card, 12 Monitors

gov_coder Finally... (262 comments)

A suitable wall-covering for my man-cave. If only I could afford the inevitable divorce that would stem from spending thousands of dollars on the stuff.

more than 4 years ago

Revenge of the Cable Customer

gov_coder sucky DVRs (397 comments)

As far as I can tell; no TV service provider makes a DVR as awesome as my MythTV box. Once you've got automatic commercial skip -- you never want to go back. Naturally, this means I only get OTA local channels; but there just isn't enough decent programming on cable or satellite to take me away from automagic commercial skipping. For the few non-OTA shows I do want to watch (SCIFI stuff mostly) -- I use hulu. I've had this setup now for about 4 years and have saved a ton of dough.

more than 4 years ago

Black Duck Eggs and Other Secrets of Chinese Hacks

gov_coder Re:Chinese espionage is not innocuous (220 comments)

China is not trying to 'kill' America. They are simply trying to steal from it. And that potentially amounts to a slow and painful 'death'. That the author advocates being cognizant of these facts is not ignorance or racism, but rather prudence. Like all facts, they must be balanced with others, for a wise perspective to take form; but surely the scale of Chinese espionage is something all of us can see as a significant problem.

more than 4 years ago

What Happened To Obama's Open Source Adviser?

gov_coder Re:Hi, Summary: RTFA -- one paper was asked for (296 comments)

Wish I had found that article before I posted the question. Thanks for sharing it. But then, if I had found that article -- I wouldn't have needed to 'ask slashdot', would I?

Unfortunately, while the article you reference refers to a whitepaper and a presentation made by Scott McNealy, those materials are not published anywhere that I could find. If you know where they are -- please tell.

The need for a federal CIO is certainly a good part of the discussion, too. That there is not a federal CIO is very strange indeed. It sounds as though Scott did get his chance to make the pitch for using OSS to build vendor neutral enterprise environments. I hope that message doesn't get drowned out by the lobbyists.

more than 4 years ago

What Happened To Obama's Open Source Adviser?

gov_coder Re:Do Some Research!!! (296 comments)

I did some research. Actually quite a lot. If you read the title of the second link you referenced above it says:

"Sun's McNealy Advises Obama Administration on Open Source".

Even if we assume advising the administration is simply just writing a white paper, the question still remains where is that white paper?

The reason I posted the question to 'Ask Slashdot' is that question has not, in fact, been answered.

Whatever did in fact happen, the Obama administration clearly has forged ahead with its use of open source.

On whitehouse.gov alone:

- Drupal for Content Management
- Solr/lucene for search
- apache web server
- redhat OS for servers

more than 4 years ago

Google Readying To Pull Out of China

gov_coder Rob Enderle's wikipedia entry (343 comments)

From his wiki page:
- Orange Coast College -- Associate's Degree in Merchandising
- CSU Long Beach -- BS in 'Man Power'
- PACE U -- certificate in 'Market Analysis'

This guy has always seemed to me to be the very essence of F_ _ _ TARD.
If I want to listen to the mindless ravings of tards, I'll turn on fox-news.

more than 4 years ago



What Happened to Obama's Open Source Adviser

gov_coder gov_coder writes  |  more than 4 years ago

gov_coder (602374) writes "Back in January of 2009, various new articles announced that former SUN CEO, Scott McNealy was to become the Obama administration's Open Source Technology adviser. Currently, however, a search for Scott on the whitehouse.gov website yields zero results. Searching a bit more — I found that Scott is currently working on CurriWiki, a kind of wikipedia for school curriculum. So my question is what happened? Did some lobbyist block the appointment? Did Scott decide his other activities were more important? Scott, if you are out there — please tell us what happened. There are many people working in government IT, such as myself, who were really excited about the possibilities of an expanded role for open source software in government, and are now wondering what went wrong."
Link to Original Source


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