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Microsoft Lays Off 2,100, Axes Silicon Valley Research

justaguy516 Re: Multiple cuts (91 comments)

Machiavelli: If you have to do bad things, don't do them by dribs and drabs. Do them upfront in one fell swoop.

13 hours ago
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Scientists Twist Radio Beams To Send Data At 32 Gigabits Per Second

justaguy516 Re:Spiral filter, and a Tardis (119 comments)

Thanks. This is a little more understandable, once I read the wikipedia entry and saw the phase diagram.

yesterday
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Scientists Twist Radio Beams To Send Data At 32 Gigabits Per Second

justaguy516 Re:At what signal to noise ratio? (119 comments)

No wireless link operates at an SINR of -40dB. You are mixing up SINR and RSSI. An SINR of 19dB is actually very reasonable; LTE will achieve its top rates only at SINR of 30dB or so.

yesterday
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Ask Slashdot: Have You Experienced Fear Driven Development?

justaguy516 Re:TDD FDD (231 comments)

Till the point where the 'automated' is considered more important than the 'testing' part and people stop tinkering with the software anymore ; oh, the automated tester will test __everything__.

2 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: Have You Experienced Fear Driven Development?

justaguy516 Re:Fear of changing code.... (231 comments)

That may be, but there are other issues as well. As a tech lead, I frequently hear from a developer, "for feature X, we can either create a brand new state machine, or add to that for existing feature Y; its not too big a deal." Which we finally do also depends on my judgement of this person's capability to make changes to the code-base (it can break a new guy's confidence to be given something too big for him/her to chew, even if they volunteered for it), how much additional testing (regression testing) will be required, whether I need to tell the customer or not (I work in communications software and we can barely test 50% of our feature set in the lab; there are always things happening in the field we don't anticipate).

If we write a new state machine, there may be subtle things that the old state machine handled, which we haven't thought of. On the other hand, if we modify the existing state machine, we may break existing stuff. In either case there is a chance of getting it wrong, but fear causes you to suspend judgement and replace it by paranoia or wishful thinking. Worse, your developers get infected by the same fear and start suspending their judgement.

2 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: Have You Experienced Fear Driven Development?

justaguy516 Fear of changing code.... (231 comments)

[2] is a very common problem, not just because of a badly written code-base, but mostly (IMHO) because of people not having the time to understand a complex piece of code. Ends up in 'nearly' the same code being written in a dozen different places. In my knowledge, it doesn't immediately screw things up, but, over time as the garbage accumulates leads to extremely interesting failure scenarios.

2 days ago
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The MOOC Revolution That Wasn't

justaguy516 Re:Learning is hard (182 comments)

One of the reasons why classrooms work is that the students, knowingly or unknowingly are being constantly evaluated. A good teacher makes a statement (or writes a theorem on the board) and then looks around the class; one look is enough to let her know how many of the students understood, how many didn't and how many (as my father, a professor of EE for 42 years says) haven't even understood that they haven't understood - usually the vast majority. She then restates it, or provides a counter-example, or asks one student to tell her what he understood. This allows the teacher to 'pace' the class. A good teacher also provides breaks within the delivery, to allow the students to sit back and digest what they have heard. This cannot be done fully aposteriori. Each class is different and requires a different pace at different parts of the course. I don't see how this gap is handled through online lectures.

Nevertheless, successful MOOCs have been around for 500 years; they are called textbooks. I am teaching myself Riemannian Geometry using Prof. doCarmo's book as numerous amateurs and auto didacts have done before me. Books, with supporting online forums for specific questions (such as stackexchange) allow one to try and follow at one's own pace, find alternate proofs and alternate explanations of material (for me, it usually takes two good text books).

5 days ago
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When Scientists Give Up

justaguy516 Re:Doesn't surprise me (348 comments)

I was indeed thinking of Giordano Bruno, but he was one of many. The astronomer Cecco d'Ascoli was also burned alive for suggesting that men may live on both sides of a round earth.

about a week ago
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When Scientists Give Up

justaguy516 Re:Doesn't surprise me (348 comments)

You realize of course that there was a time about 500 years back, when scientists were actually burned at the stake for having the wrong theory?

Bernhard Riemann came up with his 'The hypotheses that lie at the fundamentals of geometry' in a lecture which was part of his interview process. He was trying to get a position as a teacher in Heidelberg University where they wouldn't' pay him a salary; just give him a room to hold lectures in and a percentage of the fees that students would volunteer to pay. And this was fairly typical of scientists in the past. Other than a select few, scientists lived in rags, home-taught their kids (since they couldn't afford good schools) and died in penury. Things have been much, much worse for scientists in the past.

I don't want to trivialize the issues that scientists are facing today (my own sister is a scientist and I hear her fights for funding all the time), but please understand that things are way better today than they were in the past.

about a week ago
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Mysterious, Phony Cell Towers Found Throughout US

justaguy516 Re:sensationalism, ahoy (237 comments)

Its unlikely that it is able to "hack into" the base band processor. What it probably does is to pose as a genuine tower and offer to carry the cell phone signals. This then causes the baseband processor to start negotiating with it and bingo, all kinds of stuff is revealed about the phone! That kind of thing would be nearly impossible to keep hidden from the operator; operators routinely do drive by tests using handheld testers and they would know for sure. Given that the operator hasn't done anything about it is fishy.

about two weeks ago
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Reported iCloud Hack Leaks Hundreds of Private Celebrity Photos

justaguy516 Re:Here they come... (336 comments)

Paraphrasing something I just read somewhere on the Internet:

When somebody says 'the cloud', mentally replace it by 'somebody else's computer'.

about three weeks ago
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Islamic State "Laptop of Doom" Hints At Plots Including Bubonic Plague

justaguy516 Re:Tax evasion (369 comments)

Muslim rulers in India have always had soldiers and generals of all religions. Aurangzeb was hardly anybody's idea of a "liberal" ruler; he re-imposed jaziya and banned music from the court, among other things and yet his principal general was Rana Jai Singh of Amber, a Rajput Hindu.

about three weeks ago
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Islamic State "Laptop of Doom" Hints At Plots Including Bubonic Plague

justaguy516 Re:Tax evasion (369 comments)

zakat is not entirely a tax, it is supposed to be a voluntary donation of about 10% of one's income to charity. It goes directly to the wakf, the charitable board, which maintains mosques, feeds the poor, etc. The purpose of jaziya is also to balance the fact that non Muslim conquered people were not required to serve in the army (in fact, there was an actual prohibition) but Muslims were. /Indian Hindu, but I see the logic, really.

about three weeks ago
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Email Is Not Going Anywhere

justaguy516 Re:Duh. (235 comments)

Wierdest is when folks IM you asking for your extension number, so that they can call. When there is a fully working directory service. One of the reasons I had to permanently log out of sametime.

about a month ago
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If You're Always Working, You're Never Working Well

justaguy516 partly as a result, work culture is also haphazard (135 comments)

As it happens, Americans are too nice about their own time. If a meeting is more than 5 minutes overdue Scandinavians (and Germans) will brusquely get up and leave. Americans sit around and chew the fat waiting for somebody else to make the move.

about a month and a half ago
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35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

justaguy516 Re:It's healthcare debt, stupid (570 comments)

In many countries, these problems are partially solved by having third party administrators, who actually take care of verifying medical bills and making payments - insurance companies are not directly allowed to process bills, they only administer the policy and calculate premia, etc.

about a month and a half ago
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Ask Slashdot: Joining a Startup As an Older Programmer?

justaguy516 Re:Take some leave some (274 comments)

If nothing else, you may be able to help some of these twenty somethings as they transition into becoming mature adults with families and children in their lives. I have one such guy in my team now - he still doesn't understand that with a pregnant wife, he had better damned well push back on unnecessary stuff so as to go home in time every evening. None of the other guys, including the completely asocial punk of a team lead understands; I am the only one who can stick up for him, having been in the same situation 10 years back.

about 4 months ago
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You Are What You're Tricked Into Eating

justaguy516 Re:Ass time (499 comments)

Its more complex than that. People who tend to eat much more processed food also numb their tastebuds, so freshly cooked, mildly flavoured food actually is tasteless to them. The problem is that their tastebuds no longer work. It takes some time for a person to start enjoying home cooked food - their tastebuds have to catch up

about 5 months ago
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You Are What You're Tricked Into Eating

justaguy516 Re:Not possible. (499 comments)

Plus they will drop dead earlier due to colon cancer, from eating too much meat.

about 5 months ago
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Why the IETF Isn't Working

justaguy516 Re:Most organizations break down (103 comments)

I have seen IETF in operation about 12 years and I have worked with industry bodies such as 3gpp - worked on one particular standard which actually went through the standardization process. Standards bodies are supposed to be slow and stodgy, that is their purpose. There was a time when we used to get objections based on corner cases which (we believed) were irrelevant, but, in any case, the objections were made in good faith. I used to enjoy the debate, trying to get another, obviously very smart person to see my point of view. Nowadays we get objections which, you know, are because of some directive from the other guy's C*O level or some legal or marketing directive, which he is powerless to oppose. You feel embarrassed for the guy, because you know that he isn't allowed to change his stance and therefore all debate is immaterial. This is the effect of corporatization.

about 5 months ago

Submissions

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Aspect Oriented Programming

justaguy516 justaguy516 writes  |  more than 6 years ago

justaguy516 writes "Recently, I was asked to attend a session on aspect oriented programming, which is being rolled out in our organization. I was pretty aghast; we are creating a way to bypass the (imho) the only useful feature of OO. In my mind it is a complete recipe for disaster. We are a software services organization (focussing on the communications domain) and mostly C/C++/embedded in nature, and reliability is a very important aspect; 99.99% availability is a standard requirement. Anybody has any stories/experience to share in this?"
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