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Comments

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Introducing Slashdot's New Build Section

just_another_sean Re:"new" (34 comments)

Thanks for the clarification Timothy. I appreciate your work at /. - warts and all!

yesterday
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Interviews: Ask Bjarne Stroustrup About Programming and C++

just_another_sean Re:Is the complexity of C++ a practical joke? (425 comments)

A practical joke? Are you joking? C++ is not designed so that every feature must be learned and used. It's complexity derives from the fact that it supports OOP, functional programming, generic programming and I'm sure others that Bjarne would happily describe to you and the reasoning behind supporting features being included in the language. Those that are confused by C++'s complexity are doing it wrong. As with Perl it's OK to use only what you're comfortable with, no one is going to make fun of you for not using advanced features and if you like you can keep a C++ program pretty basic.

But it supports all these features to give people what they need to get their jobs done. Lambdas looked a little strange to me at first too but as I studied the examples in Bjarne's book they became clear and I think they are quite expressive, easy to use and worth looking into, especially when you combine them with the types and algorithms in the STL.

Look, I'm a Bjarne fanboy, have been since I started programming in the 90's so maybe my bias is showing through but I never thought I'd come to an article about C++ on /. and find the only comments above a 3 were people whining about how complex a programming language is. Programming is complex, system's programming doubly so and C++ is designed to help reduce that complexity, while at the same time remaining resource efficient, when it's used correctly. If it's too hot to handle for you there is always Visual Basic.

about a week ago
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Wikipedia Gets Critical Reception from UK Press at Wikimania 2014

just_another_sean Re:Criminal Jimmy (113 comments)

as criminal Jimmy says, " we refuse to allow facts on wikipedia".

* citation needed

about a week ago
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Wikipedia Gets Critical Reception from UK Press at Wikimania 2014

just_another_sean Re:Meanwhile the general public in London... (113 comments)

WikiNews is news so maybe I should have mentioned it as well. I don't necessarily agree with the sentiment expressed in the article, just pointing out a related article.

My take on Wikipedia with regard to news is that it probably can't be trusted at face value as most "news" these days is so controversial and people on the fringes of opinion have a huge bias and interest in spinning this news.

Wikipedia works for me as a starting point for serious studying of a subject (e.g. the list of references in the better articles), a quick answer about pop culture and figuring out in what order I should watch some of the cartoons I've recorded on my DVR.

News? Not so much; but given the tabloids and crap journalism has gone through recently in Britain I can't say I'm surprised by the results of the poll in the article.

about a week ago
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Wikipedia Gets Critical Reception from UK Press at Wikimania 2014

just_another_sean Meanwhile the general public in London... (113 comments)

A yahoo news article claims the general public in England trusts Wikipedia more than traditional news outlets.

And "defamed" or called out on something questionable? Genuinely asking, I never heard of this British journalist until today...

about a week ago
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Hackers Demand Automakers Get Serious About Security

just_another_sean Re:Hackers (120 comments)

Yeah, I noticed that after I posted. You'd think I'd learn to RTFA before posting!

Security Week can do better than that! :-)

about two weeks ago
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Hackers Demand Automakers Get Serious About Security

just_another_sean Hackers (120 comments)

So is it "Hackers" demanding better security or is it "a group of security researchers"? Because the inflammatory headline surely conjures the modern, media definition of Hacker and not "A person who enjoys exploring the details of programmable systems and how to stretch their capabilities, as opposed to most users, who prefer to learn only the minimum necessary". And the headline certainly doesn't make me think of security experts at all!

Come on /. , you can do better than that...

about two weeks ago
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Yahoo To Add PGP Encryption For Email

just_another_sean Re: Metadata (175 comments)

Yeah, that's some scary stuff and given your findings I guess it blows my analogy out of the water. I still say whether it's snail or email the fact is we need routing data to be readable but that doesn't mean it should be collected and collated for any other purpose.

about two weeks ago
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Yahoo To Add PGP Encryption For Email

just_another_sean Re:Metadata (175 comments)

It's not the postman reading it though is it? There is a difference between an employee of the post office reading an address to route mail properly vs. gathering all address, storing them and creating programs to discover all connections and relationships between addressees.

It's not that they read the meta data that's the problem, it's what they do with it.

about two weeks ago
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Yahoo To Add PGP Encryption For Email

just_another_sean Great (175 comments)

If they can lead the way on this it shouldn't be long before others follow - gmail, live, etc. Does Yahoo still have a large enough user base to really make others take notice and react if they pull this off?

about two weeks ago
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My degree of colorblindness:

just_another_sean Re:How should this poll converge? (267 comments)

I've only glanced at this in passing so I'm not 100% sure how accurate/legit it is but an interesting read non-the-less... Social Media demographics

Main takeaway:

Most male-dominated site? Slashdot (87% males) is the standout, followed by Hacker News (77% males) and Stack Overflow (76% males). In general, the more tech-focused sites in this survey have more male users than female.

about two weeks ago
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Google Will Give a Search Edge To Websites That Use Encryption

just_another_sean Re:So now Google establishes Internet standards (148 comments)

but once they open the door once to arbitrary ranking changes done on a whim, that door can be opened again.

Was that door ever closed? They're ranking algorithm has been arbitrary since the beginning and has changed very frequently over the years in an effort to reduce gaming the system and to generally improve results. If anything I'd say it's nice that they're at least telling people about this change vs. just quietly adjusting things and leaving site owners to wonder what happened to their page rank.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: "Real" Computer Scientists vs. Modern Curriculum?

just_another_sean Re:ASM (637 comments)

Excellent article, thanks!

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: "Real" Computer Scientists vs. Modern Curriculum?

just_another_sean ASM (637 comments)

Learn some assembly. Not because you will use it every day (or ever) but because it helps remind you that all the code we typically write is just layers of abstraction on top of a machine (which even assembly is, albeit very low level abstractions).

An old boss from years ago (a mentor for me really) watched me troubleshooting a network issue in an application. He said to me "you seem to be having trouble spotting the problem. Have you tried going lower down the stack?". So I tried ping by name, nothing, ping by number, nothing, etc. Finally after reviewing ip configurations, arp and routing tables and probably a few other things I forget I figured out I had a bad cable.

That taught me a lesson that I've applied to many areas of computers, including programming, over the years. If something seems like it should work but does not maybe something underneath it is the problem. If you want to be able to debug code at the library level or interfaces to lower level languages it helps to understand things like memory layout, registers, the call stack, etc.

My $.02.

about two weeks ago
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Aaron's Law Is Doomed and the CFAA Is Still Broken

just_another_sean Re:Face it ... (134 comments)

And what, as American Citizens, would you have us do? Rise up in arms? Overthrow our government? I participate in the civil process, I encourage others to do so, I write my politicians when I'm concerned about specific issues. What else is there?

I agree the country is going to hell in a hand basket but fuck that "you get what you deserve" bullshit. Not everyone in this country lives on the fringe of political opinion; the majority do not. Yes, fuck our government for ignoring the will of the people but fuck you for your lack of compassion towards those people. Yes, some of them sit back and enjoy it or take it depending on their status but, again, most of them don't and are as appalled as you are at the state of this country.

And where are you from AC that's so much better? How did your country's people prevent this from happening? Any useful suggestions or did you just come to hate?

Me, I'll continue to participate in the political process, teach my children to do the same, encourage others to do so (whether I agree with them or not) and hope that eventually the process wins and the fuckers that are taking us down the tubes are finally voted out of office for good.

about two weeks ago
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The CIA Does Las Vegas

just_another_sean Re:It's better to hear people you might disagree w (124 comments)

The slashdot equivalent would be that such people should not be getting +5, but rather -1.

I'd add to that the karma system that keeps them from getting mod points and silencing others is also an important aspect. If we're going to allow for some light censorship (modding down to -1) we must also ensure that those doing the censoring are doing so responsibly and for legitimate reasons. (E.g. troll comments vs. I simply disagree with you)

about three weeks ago
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Unesco Probing Star Wars Filming In Ireland

just_another_sean Re:Today I Learnt that... (181 comments)

Seems to me that they have a nice cache of Star Wars alien/animal names all provided free of charge by the nice folks in Ireland...

A herd of guillemots sure sounds scarier to me than a herd of nerfs. And I'm sure it's a total pain when your inside an asteroid and a bunch of filthy kittiwakes start chewing on your power system. And of course storm troopers riding around on storm petrels is too obvious to pass up!

about three weeks ago
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Countries Don't Own Their Internet Domains, ICANN Says

just_another_sean Re:Of course ccTLDs are property..! (113 comments)

I'm not sure I can go along with that. No disrespect to Mr. Hanks, but, yeah, just no.

about three weeks ago
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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

just_another_sean Re:And... (296 comments)

Well, if you read TFA (no, I'm not new here) they have a sidebar call out that answers your question...

"Software licenses for productivity suites cost Toulouse 1.8 million euro every three years. Migration cost us about 800,000 euro, due partly to some developments. One million euro has actually been saved in the first three years. It is a compelling proof in the actual context of local public finance," says Monthubert.

So about 8K in migration costs vs. 18K in licensing. Assuming another 2-3K of unforeseen support over training issues or missing features that haven't been caught yet it should be a significant savings. And if you factor in the migration cost as a one time payment and assume support costs go down over time as people get used to the new system than the savings become very large indeed after the three years cited in the article.

about a month ago
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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

just_another_sean Re:Good to hear (296 comments)

Most of what I've ever had to use it for was pretty simple so genuinely asking here; is Dia not a good Visio replacement? Are there features in Visio that make it more attractive for even simple stuff or is it that Visio has advanced features that haven't been replicated elsewhere?

about a month ago

Submissions

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Russia offers $110,000 to crack Tor

just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  about three weeks ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "The BBC reports that Russia is trying hard to get volunteers to crack TOR so that its users can be identified. The contest is open to Russians only and contestants are required to pay 195,000 roubles (~ 5,460 USD) to enter the contest.

Considering TOR is heavily backed by various US Government agencies is this just another front for a new Cold War?"

Link to Original Source
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Quality: Open Source vs. Proprietary

just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  about 4 months ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "Coverity Inc., a Synopsys company, released the 2013Coverity Scan Open Source Report.
The report details the analysis of 750 million lines of open source software code through the Coverity Scan service and commercial usage of the Coverity Development Testing Platform, the largest sample size that the report has studied to date.

A few key points:

* Open source code quality surpasses proprietary code quality in C/C++ projects.

* Linux continues to be a benchmark for open source quality.

* C/C++ developers fixed more high-impact defects. Analysis found that developers contributing to open source Java projects are not fixing as many high-impact defects as developers contributing to open source C/C++ projects."

Link to Original Source
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Lessig Wins Fair Use Case

just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  about 6 months ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "An Australian record label that threatened to sue one of the world's most famous copyright attorneys for infringement has reached a settlement with him.

The settlement includes an admission that Lawrence Lessig, a Harvard Law School professor, had the right to use a song by the band Phoenix."

Link to Original Source
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Milton Everett Olin Jr. Killed in Bike Accident

just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  about 8 months ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "Milton Everett Olin Jr., A former chief operating officer of the online file-sharing service Napster was killed when he was struck by a sheriff’s patrol car while riding a bicycle, authorities said Monday.

The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said Olin and the patrol car were traveling in the same direction on Mulholland Highway in suburban Calabasas when the collision occurred.

The deputy, who was not named, was taken to a hospital for treatment of cuts and bruises. The cause of the crash was under investigation."

Link to Original Source
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Rebuilding the internet

just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  about a year ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "Alex Polvi is living the great Silicon Valley archetype. Together with some old school friends, he’s piecing together a tech revolution from inside a two-car Palo Alto garage.
In a nutshell these guys are trying to use Linux to give the masses a cheap and reliable way to build server farms similar to Google or Amazon. It's an open source project called Core OS. Is "rebuilding the internet" on a single, standard server platform a good idea or is such an homogeneous environment an undesirable security problem waiting to be let loose?"

Link to Original Source
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FSF on Oracle v Google, software patent threat

just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  more than 3 years ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "The Free Software Foundation has chimed in on Oracle v. Google. The main
point they make is that Oracle is only going to hurt Java in the long run by doing this. They mention Sun and the GPL'ing of Java
in 2006 and Oracle's previous stance against software patents.
And of course they get a plug in for IcedTea (suggesting Google would have been better off using it instead of rolling their own).
More at Groklaw..."

Link to Original Source
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The Missing Link

just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  more than 5 years ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "It's a find that has even Google getting in on the action; scientists have discovered "the missing link", a 46 million year old skull in Africa.

Scientists working in Africa have discovered a Stone Age skull that could be a link between the extinct Homo erectus species and modern humans.
"[This skull] shows the continuity of the evolutionary record, so in that sense it is a link [between Homo erectus and modern humans]," said Scott Simpson, a paleontologist from Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine in Cleveland, Ohio.
Researchers discovered the skull five weeks ago at Gawis in Ethiopia's northeastern Afar region (map of Ethiopia). The area is rich in fossil and archaeological deposits ranging from 10,000 years to 5.6 million years in age.

"
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IBM to Linux Devs - Stop Copying Windows

just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  about 6 years ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "Bob Sutor, VP of Open Source and Standards at IBM tells Linux developers to "stop copying 2001 Windows. That's not where the usability action is."

Quoted at the LinuxWorld Conference in San Francisco, Bob thinks that what the open source community needs to make Linux popular as a desktop OS used by consumers and businesses are "some really good graphic designers."

This of course is on the heels of their announced initiative to partner with popular distros and push Linux out to the mainstream.

The article goes on to say

Sutor offered "predictions" that collectively seemed more like a roadmap of where IBM would like to see Linux evolve over the next 10 years. Among the areas developers should focus is in making the OS more green, Sutor said."

"

Link to Original Source
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R E S P E CT - Find out what it means to IT

just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  more than 6 years ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "Computer world has an interesting article up on why doesn't IT get the respect they deserve.
I'm sure a lot of it will sound familiar to the /. crowd but one thing I didn't expect is that the lack of respect by employees goes far beyond IT... If the survey cited is to be believed the problem presents itself in all aspects of an orginization and is generally caused by ... you guessed it ... clueless management.

From the article:
Why don't IT people get more respect? ...when it comes to how our fellow employees think about us, IT work is a train wreck. Users break the rules we set up, ignore the processes we develop and generally act as if we're clueless in what we do.

But why? As it turns out, it's not just us.

According to a recent survey... More than one-third of employees surveyed — 37% — said they ignore company rules when they've developed a better way of getting work done.
Sound familiar to any of you?"

Link to Original Source
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just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  more than 7 years ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "Todd Bishop has a post on his blog concerning some comments made by Eblen Moglen concerning the ramifications of MS distributing SLES vouchers once the GPLv3 goes into effect.

Eben Moglen, legal counsel to the Free Software Foundation, discussed the details of the draft General Public License Version 3 — including its defenses against the Microsoft-Novell deal — in an online seminar hosted by OpenLogic Inc. today. ... Moglen said the recent "saber-rattling" further illustrated the importance of protecting against Microsoft's attempts "to disrupt free software production through the inculcation of a large inventory of most-likely invalid patents."
If this is correct can Novell afford to stay on GPLv2 versions of all it's software? Does even one distribution of a peice of GPLv3 software under the MS/Novell deal render MS's patent claims moot? As usual, more coverage over at Groklaw."
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just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  more than 7 years ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "A 16 year old NY boy, Robert Santangelo, has responded to a suit brought against him by the RIAA and has filed a countersuit.

Quoth the article:
"Santangelo is the son of Patti Santangelo, the 42-year-old suburban mother of five who was sued by the record companies in 2005. She refused to settle, took her case public and became a heroine to supporters of Internet freedom."

Having dropped the case against Patti in December of 2005 the RIAA turned around and sued her children. The article goes on to point out that the daughter, Melissa, has a default judgment against her to the tune (NPI) of $30,750. The reasoning behind both Robert's defense and countersuit are discussed and finally the article quotes an RIAA rep:

"The record industry has suffered enormously due to piracy. That includes thousands of layoffs. We must protect our rights. Nothing in a filing full of recycled charges that have gone nowhere in the past changes that fact.""
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just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  more than 7 years ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "Big Business says Patents are Good for Small Business

An article at PC Pro UK (reg required) points out obvious big businesses bias and EU Patent Office collusion in a recent patent study. While this was supposed to be a comprehensive survey welcoming comments from many sources, in the end the study as published is nothing more then the opinions of a few big businesses (SAP and MS on the top of the list) and the European Patent Office. From the article:

A report published by an EU task force on intellectual property claims that small businesses benefit from a patent system, despite lacking almost any participation by the small business community.

Instead, the report, titled IPR (intellectual property rights) for competitiveness and innovation, was written up almost entirely by large corporations and the patent industry."
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just_another_sean just_another_sean writes  |  more than 7 years ago

just_another_sean (919159) writes "Techworld has an article up discussing a letter (pdf) leaked to them about OSS in Europe. Written by the ISC (Initiative for Software Choice) it claims that OSS is a serious threat to the "software eco-system" and that wide spread adoption would have "dire consequences".

Funded by Microsoft (and others) the ISC exists to convince large governments around the world not to invest heavily in deploying and using OSS. From the article:
-
Lueders sent the letter on 10 October to leaders of the Commission's Directorate General for Enterprise and Industry, in response to an EC-commissioned study into the role of open source software in the European economy (referred to by Lueders as Free/Libre/Open Source, or FLOSS).

In the letter, he criticized the study as biased and warns that its policy recommendations, if carried out, could derail the European software economy.
-
Is this a sign of desperation from the propriety world or just business as usual?"

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