Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!



If the Programmer Won't Go To Silicon Valley, Should SV Go To the Programmer?

hot soldering iron Re:Micro-management kills this idea every time (294 comments)

That's partly what killed our office. Unfortunately, the PHB that did the deed was the owner of the company, and we eventually found him to be a lying ass hat. Tip: don't lie to database analysts, they are used to digging for data and finding inconsistencies.

about a month ago

At 40, a person is ...

hot soldering iron 40 is an artificial boundary (286 comments)

I'm with you. At only 48 I'm in better shape than when I was a kid in the Infantry. And I don't have to sit at the children's table during Thanksgiving anymore!

As the years progressed I slowly started improving my diet and lifestyle to help counter some heart disease and diabetes on my dad's side. I went to the 75th wedding anniversary of my mom's grandparents (triple digits!), and her mom lived to 97. Mom is still kickin' it in her mid 70's!

I sat with my grandmother once while she told me about living through WWI, The Great Depression, moving to Kansas in a covered wagon, rural electrification, WWII, telephones, cars(!) and planes(!), Korean War, Vietnam War, JFK, landing on the moon, computers, medical marvels, and the Internet. My mom told me about hearing stories from her uncles about when they fought in the Civil War. The big thing that I got from their retrospective is this: The most important thing in life is how we treat each other, and how we respond to events. In some ways we've gotten better, but in others worse.

The public perception of our leaders used to be that we were choosing among the best of us, now we feel like we just get the most corrupt with the deepest pockets. Grandma was very disappointed with the administrations of the last 50 years. But she was so proud of her children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and the couple great-great-grandchildren.

I figure, with luck and progressing tech, I'll have a long life in which to play with toys and more grandkids.

about a month ago

LibraryBox is an Open Source Server That Runs on Low-Cost Hardware (Video)

hot soldering iron I like PirateBox better (47 comments)


It's open source, anonymous, keeps no records, and acts as an off-line file-sharing system. you can pack it in your lunchbox, or even smaller. You can have it sitting in the bottom of your backpack, and have everyone in the food court up/downloading *ANYTHING* without worrying about getting nailed by "The Man". I don't think that it would be that hard to have it securely wipe it's storage clean at shutdown or startup, so there is no evidence of anything being stored on it, in case of seizure. It's been out for over a year and runs on multiple platforms.

about 3 months ago

It's Time To Revive Hypercard

hot soldering iron So, you're saying "Python"? (299 comments)

I ran into a "hypercard"-like app for the C-64 back in 1986, that involved you building a flowchart of your app, answer some basic questions, and it would generate the Basic code for it. It was pretty spectacular for the day. There are quite a few code generator programs available today, just get one that runs on Python and give it a snazzy GUI. There you go. A nice easy to understand app generator that's cross platform, multiple output languages, open-source, self-extending, etc. etc...

You would spend more time on the design of the GUI, writing the help files, and creating tutorials, than anything else. The user wouldn't even have to know ANY particular language, just the logic they needed.

But that's just my opinion. I just build stuff.

about 3 months ago

Google Wants To Test Driverless Cars In a Simulation

hot soldering iron Re:Simulations are limited by imagination (173 comments)

"simulation" is also a technical description of "driving game". Let them also put the simulator on-line, to provide environment and background as hundreds of thousands of crazed and insane real humans try to crash into the auto-piloted cars. Each time someone succeeds, buff up their capabilities and give them credit and recognition, and develop response scenarios. That's how you "sim" car combat with real humans - you use real humans. It would be just like the dogfighting flight sims they use to train pilots. AI drivers will probably seldom, if ever, exceed the creativity of their programmer, while real humans can be fscking insane and unpredictable. If an auto-pilot car can avoid getting nailed by a coordinated assault team of five people actively trying to ram it, then I would rate it much better than all of the drivers on the road, save some of the elite counter-ambush drivers.

about 5 months ago

By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' and That Could Be a Problem

hot soldering iron Re:AI is always (564 comments)

Wow, I could say that about most people, also...

about 7 months ago

Linux Mint 17 'Qiana' Released

hot soldering iron Re:This is so 1990s (132 comments)

"normal people don't care about the OS". So? Why are you even bringing up "norms"? They don't come here, they don't know how to spell "OS", and don't know that a good OS can keep everything working like a fine watch ... or keep crashing your all-important app. You sound like a "norm" that's stumbled in here, and trying to sound "technical".

about 8 months ago

Measles Virus Puts Woman's Cancer Into Remission

hot soldering iron Re:Oh just perfect (74 comments)

Too late, I've already got Asperger Syndrome (autism-lite), so that makes me immune to the full-blown version. Right?

about 8 months ago

Why Tesla Really Needs a Gigafactory

hot soldering iron Re:Random thoughts... (193 comments)

30 minutes? After driving for a couple of hours, I'm ready to take a 30 minute break and stretch my legs...

Hydrogen? Seriously? 45 years ago, when I was little, they were saying Hydrogen was only 30 years away, and would roll out demo cars to prove it. I think they just said the same thing last week.

I used to think the same thing, until I actually looked at the engineering realities regarding hydrogen. It's the lightest and smallest element on the Periodic Table, so it will migrate through steel, making it brittle as it goes. The only way to make hydrogen in the industrial quantities needed is with steam reforming of petroleum based hydrocarbons (check Wikipedia if you don't believe me). Then there is the energy density and storage nightmare of hydrogen which isn't even nearly as good as current gen car batteries.

And that is just to replace the current fuel in an internal combustion engine (not so efficient) with a lower density fuel (even worse efficiency). Now a fuel cell, where the fuel is converted directly into electricity is promising, except that to produce the amount of power needed to drive a vehicle would require an oxidation rate right up there with a controlled explosion trying to go uncontrolled.

And you still haven't gotten away from using petroleum, or the wars,corruption and crime involved in dealing with it. So, hydrogen isn't really looking too good now, is it?

I would think that just changing the power generation method for a hybrid from an IC engine to a micro-turbine generator, with it's higher efficiency, flex fuel capability, fewer and more reliable parts, would provide the fast recharge capability that you say you want. In fact, some companies are starting to do this already. Neil Young's LincVolt was such a conversion, by H Line Conversions in Wichita, KS.

But I think that, except for niche applications, the end of life for the internal combustion engine is in sight. It has to be over-sized and over-built for performance use, and can't compare (favorably) to microturbines for power generation. They are expensive, complicated, dirty, and require an expensive and violently fought over fuel.

about 9 months ago

Goodyear's New State-of-the-Art Airship Makes Its First Flight

hot soldering iron Any idea what these are running, price-wise? (66 comments)

I think with the appropriate paint job, and a larger gondola for cargo, there could be airship pirates in our future! Anyone feel like signing up for a (short) life of adventure and riches?

about 10 months ago

Microsoft's Ticking Time Bomb Is Windows XP

hot soldering iron Re:The Solution is Obvious (829 comments)

Microsoft will never Opensource XP. Mostly because it would be a major liability with no benefit to them. Yes, liability. If you have your programmers going through the code and find a module that obviously didn't work like it was supposed to, and exposed the machines to a 0-day hack, your lawyers would race to file law suites against Microsoft to compensate for the companies losses. Or lets say you figure out what ALL the settings in the registry do, including the ones for exclusive use of the FBI/NSA/Microsoft. Now you know that they were fully able to bypass the Microsoft supplied firewalls, and grab whatever info they wanted. And you would spill that knowledge all over the net.

Where is Microsoft's benefit in all this? It's just not there.

The only project to Opensource XP that I've heard of is ReactOS, and it is STILL in Alpha stage, even after all these years. I suppose if the demand for it is there, some companies could be encouraged to donate time/money and accelerate the project, for their own benefit.

about a year ago

Ask Slashdot: Can Commercial Hardware Routers Be Trusted?

hot soldering iron Re:No. (213 comments)

This is exactly one of the attack vectors used by China when they went after Google. They slipped some backdoors into the firmware code at the manufacturers facility in Korea. Even if the Google office was running SELinux, all it took was a port knocking to have full access to the machine, totally bypassing the high level security.

about a year ago

Nobody Builds Reactors For Fun Anymore

hot soldering iron Re:On whose planet? (326 comments)

Study that a bit more. More eagles drop dead of heart attacks than die from windmills. They are used to dodging moving objects. Windmills don't make a ton of noise, either. The industrial sized ones are fairly dangerously tall, though. And the people building them are whining about how they can't get anyone to risk their life climbing and servicing them for only $20/hr. That's about $0.10/ft of height above ground. Back when I used to climb, the going rate was $1.00/ft, because of the danger.

about a year ago

Excite Kids To Code By Focusing Less On Coding

hot soldering iron Re:For loops and printfs aren't fun (207 comments)

I hate to say it, but some people can't think even if forced to at gun point or with the promise of vast wealth. I (as an adult learner) was in a class of high school students learning CNC and manual machining. I told them about my father, a CNC programmer of over 40 years experience, and how his tax refund was almost always more than I made for any given year. The instructor backed me up, stating that he made a lot of his yearly income doing side projects and contract work during the summer.

I couldn't believe it. Some of these kids had "squirrel brains", as one so eloquently put it. Many of them dropped out of the class to become welders. It really was the best they could do. I was shocked at the demonstrated lack of (talent/drive/intelligence - pick one).

Give some people tools to build great cities with, and all they can do is use them to crack walnuts. I don't think I've been surprised by stupidity since those classes. Even the average Vo-tech student was smarter than the average high school student, due to additional filtering.

about a year ago

RF Safe-Stop Shuts Down Car Engines With Radio Pulse

hot soldering iron Re:Just wait until... (549 comments)

Like possibly, a pacemaker?

about a year ago

How Microwave Transmission Is Linking Financial Centers At Near-Light Speed

hot soldering iron Re:But (236 comments)

So you're blaming an economic system for retarding technical development? Odd... I was taught that technical development is a major driver of economic competitiveness. That's why a major indicator of a declining company is if they cut their R&D budget.

I would think that you might assign blame to the individual decision makers. Just because someone is ostensibly playing the same game, doesn't mean that they have the same end-goals. Some people want to build a company to create income for the owner/s, some want to LOSE money as a tax write-off for the parent company, and some are to affect the market in some manner and their individual profit is meaningless.

about a year ago

DOJ: Defendant Has No Standing To Oppose Use of Phone Records

hot soldering iron Re:POLICE STATE AMERICA (396 comments)

An improper warrant results in dismissal of the evidence it produces. It's called "fruit of the poisoned tree". I'm not a lawyer, but our lawyer used it in court once to keep my brother out. When police raid a house without a warrant, everyone walks. When police get evidence without a proper warrant, it is removed with prejudice. A proper warrant is a vital requirement for the collection of evidence.

This is basically accepting someone else's word, their records about you, as evidence. It is now legally acceptable for the government to enter "hearsay" as evidence against you. You aren't even allowed to challenge it, like you can any other evidence. It basically boils down to, "You're guilty because we say you are. Now take it like a bitch!"

about a year ago

Ask Slashdot: How Do You Fight Usage Caps?

hot soldering iron Re:Start your own provider? (353 comments)

Did you even read the parent post? He said Physical access to customers is monopolized... by government regulation, paid for by industry through their highly paid lobbyists. You can start an ISP, if you can pony up a couple million to buy a lobbyist, and more millions for equipment, lawyers, employees, and then more millions for finally getting to tap into a backbone for bandwidth...

Artificially imposed monopolies throw a monkey wrench into the theory of free enterprise competition and technology improvement driving down costs of goods.

about a year ago

Parallels Update Installs Unrelated Daemon Without Permission

hot soldering iron Re:Lost a customer (170 comments)

Wow. For an Anonymous Coward, you sure sound like a paid shill.

about a year ago


hot soldering iron hasn't submitted any stories.


hot soldering iron has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?