Slashdot: News for Nerds


Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!



Laser Eye Surgery, Revisited 10 Years Later

j2.718ff Re:Because (413 comments)

As a glasses wearer all my life, my eyes have stabilised. But laser-eye surgery is not only vastly oversold by marketers posing as doctors, but also not permanent.

Please explain what you mean by "not permanent". I had LASIK 15 years ago. In that time, the only change to my vision is that my close-up vision isn't as good as it used to be. I'm also approaching 40, and am quite certain I'd be experiencing the same close-up vision now had I not had the surgery.

6 hours ago

Laser Eye Surgery, Revisited 10 Years Later

j2.718ff Re:not a permanent fix (413 comments)

my gf got it about 7-8 years ago and is very annoyed that it has 'worn out' (of course that's just macular degeneration or whatever) and assuming it could be done again it would still cost her another few thousand

I suspect you're using the wrong vocabulary here. Macular degeneration is a serious (usually age-related) condition, where the retina is essentially in decay. LASIK will neither cause nor cure it. It should be treated as soon as possible, as it can lead to blindness.

6 hours ago

Favorite "Go!" Phrase?

j2.718ff Re:MAKE IT SO (700 comments)

"Make it so" means do what needs to be done. That means it might happen instantly, or it might take some time. It might require doing some research, or re-configuring things before it can happen. But "engage" implies that everything is ready, and you're just waiting for approval to press the final button.

So "Engage" is more appropriate for this survey.

3 days ago

Unintended Consequences For Traffic Safety Feature

j2.718ff Giving drivers information is bad? (579 comments)

Does this mean all those countries that giver a driver warning before the light turns green (generally by red and yellow lights being on simultaneously) are doing it wrong?

about three weeks ago

I suffer from jet lag ...

j2.718ff Depends on the purpose of the trip (163 comments)

Traveling for pleasure: no jetlag. I keep my schedule vague, so when at my destination, I wake up and sleep at times my body feels are appropriate
Traveling for business: jetlag sucks. It's typical that I have to be awake early the next morning for work. And then people usually want to go drinking in the evenings (I try to avoid this as much as possible, but still feel obligated to socially be part of the team), meaning that my body must conform to the assigned schedule. It protests.

about a month ago

The Rise and Fall of the Cheat Code

j2.718ff Easy / Difficult modes (178 comments)

When I was a kid, I didn't have the hand-eye coordination to beat the tough video games. Cheat codes (and I include things like warp zones in this category) allowed me to beat the game and feel cool. When I was older, and decided to dust some of these games off, playing the whole way through without cheating provided a new level of fun. I suspect that cheat codes helped make games appealing to players of different abilities.

about a month ago

The Rise and Fall of the Cheat Code

j2.718ff Monkey Island 2 (178 comments)

I believe the code was Ctrl-Alt-W, which allowed you to instantly win the game. It was awesome because of how pointless it was. It brought you to the final scenes of the game. In one of them, a character's dialog was replaced with something like "I wonder why I'm standing here", because if you cheated you way to the end, you wouldn't know the story.

about a month ago

Harley-Davidson Unveils Their First Electric Motorcycle

j2.718ff This is news because it's Harley (345 comments)

When companies like Zero and Brammo actually produce and sell electric motorcycles, it isn't news. But when Harley-Davidson announces that they will do the same at some point, it's big news.

That said, I do applaud this effort -- the more companies that make electric vehicles, the better.

about a month ago

Ask Slashdot: Anti-Theft Products For the Over-Equipped Household?

j2.718ff get to know your neighbors (408 comments)

If they don't know you, they'll probably leave you alone, and generally ignore whatever happens are your house. But if you know them, then they'll think of you as a person. If something suspicious is happening at your house, they'll call your cell phone to let you know. (And hopefully, you'd do the same for them.) If you get an alarm, tell them, and ask them to call you (or the police) if it's ever going off.

about 2 months ago

What It's Like To Be the Scientific Consultant For The Big Bang Theory

j2.718ff Hipster Nerds (253 comments)

I've watched the occasional episode and it seems more targeted at "fake nerds" - the type who like "I fucking love science" on facebook. The viewer isn't made to relate with the geeky characters, they're made to laugh at.

And with that, the Hipster Nerd is born. You're not a real nerd. You don't enjoy science correctly. I was a nerd before it was cool.

There is not one single kind of nerd. Deal with it. Also, we're talking about fictional characters in a television show.

about 3 months ago

Ask Slashdot: What Tech Products Were Built To Last?

j2.718ff TI graphing Calculator (702 comments)

Still works fine... and a quick glance on amazon shows it's still worth what I paid for it more than 10 years ago.

about 3 months ago

I expect to retire ...

j2.718ff temporarily, several times (341 comments)

Or is sabbatical a more accurate term? I've left, gone on to study an unrelated field, and came back to my original field. I'm sure I'll do it several more times in my life.

about 3 months ago

Slashdot Asks: How Do You Pay Your Taxes?

j2.718ff by mail because electronic isn't easy (386 comments)

I figured filing online made sense. But I didn't find a clear option. There were choices that require I make less than a certain amount of money to use. There were choices that direct me to 3rd party sites. Is the IRS really so inept that it can't show me a way to file online that isn't more complicated than printing my own 1040s?

It's odd that is generally well-organized, such that I can find any PDF form I might need without trouble. Why can't it be equally obvious how to submit?

about 3 months ago

Google Unveils Android Wear

j2.718ff Re:I kind of wouldn't mind a less fancy one... (103 comments)

I know a couple people who ordered Pebble watches. I haven't seen anyone who wears one regularly.

I own a pebble, and wear it every day. I love it for notifications -- I can tell who's calling/texting/e-mailing me, and thus decide if I feel like taking my phone out to interact with them.

But I would never use it to initiate anything. If I want to check the weather, place a call, do a google search, etc., then I'll use my phone -- no matter how good a watch's resolution is, it's just too small to do those things effectively.

about 4 months ago

Daylight Saving Time ...

j2.718ff Re:Are we not advanced enough to use UTC Time? (310 comments)

Who would benefit from using a UTC as you describe?

People making conference calls across time zones? I don't think that UTC would make that easier. I know that most people are awake and at work at 11am local time, so I can schedule a conference at that time. But if we used UTC, I would need a chart to know what the working hours are in each time zone so I don't accidentally schedule a conference for a time that people are usually asleep.

Does it make it easier for travelers? Not really -- each time I'm in a new time zone, I have to learn what time to set my alarm clock to wake up at a normal hour.

The people I expect would benefit the most from a UTC would be those who live in the border of time zones, and regularly cross it, or interact with people in the other time zone. However, to be blunt, as a percentage of the whole, there aren't a lot of people in that situation - I don't think we should change solely for their benefit.

Or is there a scenario I'm missing?

about 4 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Best Options For Ongoing Education?

j2.718ff Re:graduate certificates (149 comments)

The education industry, meaning colleges and universities, need a way to "add on" additional skill emphasis to degrees without requiring whole new degrees.

They are called graduate certificates. You take a couple of graduate level courses, and you get a graduate certificate. Often, you can get a certificate while you are on the path towards a masters.

Or, if you don't need a piece of paper, you can just find classes that interest you, and take them.

Where I work, tuition reimbursement exists if you are enrolled in a degree or certificate program -- it's much harder to get the company to pay for a single class. For that reason alone, graduate certificates are great.

about 5 months ago

How much of your media do you store locally?

j2.718ff Re:Huh? (187 comments)

I store all of my media locally. I imagine most people do.

Did the person who wrote the question actually mean something completely different? e.g. "How much of the movies, TV shows, and music that you watch or listen to originates from your own personal collection?

I suppose a person could post a video to youtube, and then misplace/delete the original.

about 7 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Why So Hard Landing Interviews In Seattle Versus SoCal?

j2.718ff Re:You aren't there (506 comments)

It's pretty simple. It's because you aren't there.

This, absolutely. I've tried looking for jobs where I don't live, and always failed. So I quit, moved, and had no trouble.

When I'm on the other side of the interview table, I do admit I am a little skeptical about someone who would need to move. Will he stay for the long-term? Is it possible he'll decide he doesn't like it here, and go back home? And, if we do hire him, how long will it take him to move? I'm not saying I wouldn't hire someone non-local, but given an option between two equally-qualified candidates, I'd absolutely pick the local one.

Anecdotal evidence: we hired a guy who moved about 1000 miles for this job. He was a fantastic employee, and we made the right choice hiring him, but after about a year, he said he decided to move back home.

about 8 months ago

Movie Review: Ender's Game

j2.718ff Re:Hitchhiker's Guide (732 comments)

I read the book, so I can't un-read it before watching the movie. However, I did my best to consider what it would be like if I didn't. And I felt all of the characters were incredibly flat. At no point was I convinced that Ender was particularly intelligent (at least no more than the other kids), nor did I see that he had any particular insight into anything. He just won at stuff because his name is in the title of the movie.

I believe this movie would have been much better if it followed the book less closely. They didn't do a great job with the initial setup, and the monitor, etc., and would have been better to cut it entirely. Same with Ender returning to Earth. Cutting details like this would have given more time for some actual character development during battle school.

about 9 months ago

How Early Should Kids Learn To Code?

j2.718ff Re:the earlier the better (299 comments)

When I was in school, I desperately wanted to program. But I was always told that I wouldn't be ready until after I'd take algebra. This is because the idea of variables couldn't possibly be understood by a young feeble mind such as mine. Fortunately, my parents (who knew nothing about computers themselves) found an enrichment program for me to do on weekends. Turns out, this coding stuff was easy.

I agree - the earlier the better. The more complicated question is what sort of projects can be done at what age. I believe I was in 2nd or 3rd grade when I started, and the programs I wrote were incredibly simple, but I had fun, and moved on to more advanced things when I was ready.

about 10 months ago


j2.718ff hasn't submitted any stories.


j2.718ff has no journal entries.

Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account