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Google Suggests Separating Students With 'Some CS Knowledge' From Novices

mnooning Similar to Affirmative Action - a white man (305 comments)

This was played out already, albeit in a different scenario.

Over 25 years ago I was admitted into the SUNY Binghamton (NY) CS masters degree program. I had no CS training at all and did not qualify. However, their affirmative action program included something like extra entry points for veterans so I got in. I was required to take tough summer long CS course, along with many African American and female students. It brought us up to speed enough to compete next semester with those who were already knowledgeable . Otherwise we would not have made it.

Affirmative Action students spent their own money and their own time. The reward for America was a raising of the skills level for a lot more people, white (me) as well as black. I don't know if AA like this is still legal, but what Google is suggesting - the effective sequestering of unprepared individuals until they are ready - is a good idea.

PS: I finished 11th of an original 100 on the MS overall final

4 days ago
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UK Announces 'Google Tax'

mnooning Re:Algorithm (602 comments)

I mostly agree, but let me add an additional idea.

Eaton Corp (large and small electrical controls devices) moved their HQ to Ireland a few years. They can claim the higher US expenditures and the lower Irish tax rates. Smart for the investors. Terrible for America as a whole. I tend to be right of center, but I see what the British are doing as a step in the right direction.

The real, permanent solution would be to eliminate corporate taxes altogether. Buildings and piles of corporate paperwork do not have feelings, for example "enjoyment of less taxation", so jealousy should not be aroused at this idea. Instead, just tax the profits of the people who own the corporation at a slightly higher rate. If those people want to move to another country to avoid the personal income taxes, so be it, but the majority would stay right here, and there would be no more Eaton style HQ transfers.

about two weeks ago
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Conglomerate Rock From Mars: (Much) More Precious Than Gold

mnooning Re:Something Doesn't Make Sense (65 comments)

Good critical thinking. Yes, indeed, you are right. Reminds me that NASA touted a Mars rock a number of years ago, and even suspected it had the remains of life on it. It turned out that it was not that old, but there were remains of life, early earth microbes.

about three weeks ago
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The Effect of Programming Language On Software Quality

mnooning No Ada? (217 comments)

In the pdf, the University of California studied the effect of programming languages on software quality without including Ada, the one single language that is designed for software quality. That says more about the U of C than the study says about it's intended topic.

about a month and a half ago
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Labor Department To Destroy H-1B Records

mnooning It cost more to destroy than keep (190 comments)

Keeping 1G of records on disk virtually free. Checking each and every record periodically for the 5 year limit costs money. It is all about deniability.

about a month and a half ago
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Power and Free Broadband To the People

mnooning Re:Why stop at Broadband? (262 comments)

Racist? Huh? White, Black, Hispanic, Oriental? You did not say.

Which of the White, Black, Hispanic, or Oriental are you assuming is looking to live off the rest of us. Which is it that you have such a low opinion of?

about a month and a half ago
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Power and Free Broadband To the People

mnooning Why stop at Broadband? (262 comments)

Wouldn't it be nice if they can all have free housing, a free car, free gas, and how about free food and clothing?

about a month and a half ago
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Pentagon Unveils Plan For Military's Response To Climate Change

mnooning Food will be more plentiful (228 comments)

Shortage of food? I don't think so. With global warming, won't the vast areas of Canadian and Russian tundra will be available for food production? The lower lying Florida and other coastal areas that might flood are miniscule by comparison.

about 2 months ago
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Tesla Announces Dual Motors, 'Autopilot' For the Model S

mnooning Re:Performance (283 comments)

Let me add to your reasoning. This is the same argument as for the television in the late 1940s, or the VCR in my own lifetime.

I remember many years ago walking out of a specialty store that sold VCR equipment. The prices were way high, and before I left I commented to the sales person that VCRs were a rich man's game. At that point, it was a true statement.

The 5% who can afford these electric cars will fund the initial manufacturing. Infrastructure will grow. Costs will come down. Given the power electricity has, and the relative safety of supplying outlets and other infrastructure, even more people will see the advantages, be able to afford it and buy it, and so on, increasingly, until it is being massed produced at ordinary consumer prices. The US, for one, is slowly but surely going to change in the transportation area.

Note: U.S. sales by luxury brands should easily top 1.8 million this year Source

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

mnooning Re:Free market (232 comments)

You misinterpret on at least two counts, but you bring up yet another good point

First the good point. If you just learn random things in general you will never use 90% of it. I agree, that would be a great time waster.

One cannot learn a real language in a week, though. Python or Perl can be learned enough for a small script in a week, yes, but beyond trivial subroutines there are stacks of advanced books in each language. Take the time to read them. Go through the examples line by line. Mastering a language will save you and your company untold hours a month because you know what can be done and, instinctively, how to approach things.

One cannot learn a technology in a short time, either. If you don't know TCP/IP or symbol tables or hashes, and you are a programmer, learn them. If you are a programmer in the coal or nuclear industry, for example, learn different aspects of it the steam cycle. Look into the marketing aspects. What do salesmen encounter? What are the competing technologies? Learn something about them.

I am not suggesting doing any of this using the company's money, either. If you work 12 hours and get paid for 8, then make sure you put in an honest 8 hours work.

I believe there is a strong payback for both the company and the workers if the workers have kept up. Companies show they agree with this in actual practice because it is not the worker who has kept his nose to the grindstone all 12 hours that gets the rewards. It is the one who has kept up and can therefore contribute more in the future.

about 3 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Have You Experienced Fear Driven Development?

mnooning Re:Free market (232 comments)

Over my 30 years as a SW engineer I have seen project managers get their projects by promising unrealistic time and costs to the president. They are under the gun to push an unrealistic schedule from the very start. Everyone knows it, including the president, but they also know that forcing 12 hr/6d work weeks is the great way to get a lot of free work from their employees. Saying that the schedule has slipped yet again actually does make workers think that somehow they themselves had a hand in the slippage, and the slight feeling of guilt shuts them up. That means you agree, by default to doing a tremendous amount of charity work for your company.

The worst thing you can do is acquiesce. If you do that for any length of time you will be pigeon holed into only having only the exact skills you are using, which will make you unemployable anywhere else. I am very capitalistic, but I have to say the company will own you if you let that happen. Your real shock will come when you are let go for a new person who has the updated skills they need!

You cannot let your family go. The precious little home time you have must spend time with them. So what do you do?

You must be fair to the company and work hard for them, at least 8 hours a day. However, your first loyalty is your family, and for them you must spend at least 4 hours a day honing your skills. Do your charity work at church where it belongs. Keep up or, eventually, become unemployed and unemployable.

about 3 months ago
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US Rust Belt Manufacturing Rebounds Via Fracking Boom

mnooning Re:Cure is worse than the disease. (191 comments)

The "fracking is bad" ideas are in the movies because they need bad guys in movies to create excitement. There are in reality only very small risks. No, I am not a shill. I am a retired person who took the time to look into it.

about 3 months ago
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US Rust Belt Manufacturing Rebounds Via Fracking Boom

mnooning Re:Fracking takes water out of action (191 comments)

.. water being taken out of the system? How many millions of gallons do our major rivers pour into the sea?. Saving water in a wet part of the country area will not help a dry area.

about 3 months ago
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Saturn's F Ring Is Now Three Times As Wide As During the Voyager Flybys

mnooning Re:Man made global warming (41 comments)

Poignant!

For those of you who didn't get it, it's called sarcasm. Very funny, too.

about 4 months ago
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Yahoo's Diversity Record Is Almost As Bad As Google's

mnooning Re:Bad? (435 comments)

My 15 year old niece wants to be a stay at home mom, just like millions of other women and girls. Add to that the many moms who are working outside of the home purely out of necessity. Stay at home moms are important, too.

about 6 months ago
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Fixing the Humanities Ph.D.

mnooning Re:market at work (325 comments)

Worthless? I think not. I for one would much rather have my fries served to me by a proper speaking philosopher than some random kid off the streets.

about 6 months ago
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SEC Chair On HFT: 'The Markets Are Not Rigged'

mnooning Re:Not a surprise (303 comments)

In theory that would work, but only if it was a system administrator within the stock exchange's server farm itself. He would have to route the TCP/IP packets to an HFT's server instead of the stock exchange servers, and when done, the HFT would have to reroute the packets back to the stock exchange. The number of hops (servers visited) is always part of the packet. So would the HFT's IP address be, being the last "source" to the last incoming stock exchange router. The HFT could become known far too easily.

about 8 months ago
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SEC Chair On HFT: 'The Markets Are Not Rigged'

mnooning Re:Not a surprise (303 comments)

This is the way the supposed scam is supposed to work. You click on "Buy". The TCP/IP (internet) packets magically go from your computer to some HFT trader's computer faster than it can get to the seller's computer. The HFT's computer does the calculations and sends his "Buy" order to the seller, and his packets, again, get to the seller's computer before the original "Buy" packets from the original seller.

The idea is absurd. The possibly thousands of in-between servers of the internet would all have to be rigged. The whole thing would take the cooperation of hundreds of system administrators.

about 8 months ago
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Bug Bounties Don't Help If Bugs Never Run Out

mnooning Re:Bennett's Ego (235 comments)

The old chestnut that if you cannot do everything, you should not do anything, is ludicrous. Will someone please let Bennett know he cannot eat just any time he wants?

about 8 months ago

Submissions

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Insourcing of Honduran laborers

mnooning mnooning writes  |  about a year ago

mnooning (759721) writes "At least ten Hondurans were outside of my Pittsburgh PA home today digging ditches for Verizon. They were digging up in preparation for laying down FiOS lines. There were two American supervisors. I attempted to speak with two of the Hondurans but they could not English. They recognized "where are you from" and told me Honduras.

It is apparently cheaper for Verizon to ship in foreign laborers than to pay US laborers."
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4.99 O'Reilly ebooks

mnooning mnooning writes  |  about 2 years ago

mnooning (759721) writes "At the risk of sounding like a shill, someone recently submitted a story titled "O'Reilly Discounts Every eBook By 50%". Well, the price dropped again. I just bought eight ebooks for $4.99 each. You need to register with O'Reilly, then register the paper books you purchased through them in the "Register Print Books" tab, under "Your Account".

Over the past 12 years I purchased a host of paper books from them. Many did not have an ebook copy at the time. If you bought the paper book and want the ebook, go to "Your Account", then "Print Books", which will show your registered books. You will see the upgrade offers beside the books you registered.

I registered the First Edition of Google Hacks, but they let me download the Third Edition's ebook. The Advanced Perl Programming ebook is the 2nd Edition, even though I bought and registered the original edition."

Link to Original Source

Journals

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Windows Temporary Internet Files are not so temporary

mnooning mnooning writes  |  more than 10 years ago Windows Temporary Internet Files are not so temporary On Windows XP Pro, I wanted to see why "Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files" was so big if it was really empty. I did Tools->Internet Options submenues to delete both cookies and temporary files. I then used the mouse with IE to click down to where I could see that C:\Documents and Settings\username\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files still had a size of 36MB. Yet clicking further down to Temporary Internet Files showed that there was nothing. My Windows command prompt shows only desktop.ini when I "attrib" in the said directory. I have cygwin (read: gnu unix on windows) and through the magic of cygwin I can see the directories and files in the supposedly empty directories. Apparently all them. They are still there. Windows only seems to SAY they have been deleted. What is going on here? I look and see a directory name in my cygwin box. In the windows command prompt box, I "cd cygwin_identified_name" and voila, I can do the cd. But "dir" in Windows showed nothing and shows nothing. In the cygwin box of course I can see voluminous files and directories. Again, what is going on here? Can it be true that temporary files and directories are really not deleted, even though Windows says they are? It looks like with cygwin, anyone can track where anyone else on the computer (or network) has been even though they wouldn't think I can. That's great if your are trying to catch crooks, but to me there is just something bothersome about it.

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