Beta
×

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!

Comments

top

Should programming be a required curriculum in public schools?

pxc Exposure is more important than mastery here (313 comments)

A single class before high school should be required, and 3-4 classes should be available during high school. A single middle school class oriented toward problem-solving and constructing small projects would be a good way to reveal to talented students that this is something they're good at and might enjoy, which is an experience many students don't get a chance to have until college. And of course it should be available as an elective in high school, perhaps being one of several options for fulfilling some math/science/finance/logic-themed area required for graduation.

about 7 months ago
top

The Business of Attention Deficit Disorder

pxc Re:Business Plan (246 comments)

I think it might be just you. But then, I'm a student, so I have little experience with typical workplaces at all, never mind the ‘old workplace’, whatever that was like. But I do know something about this, as I take drugs for clinical depression every day (and several times a week, drugs for ADHD). Antidepressants don't really cause persistent euphoria once you've been on them for a couple of days or more. I take an atypical antidepressant called Bupropion, which is a pseudostimulant (it also helps with my ADHD, and that means I get to take less methylphenidate, which I like to avoid taking), so my experience is probably different from those experiences of people who take SSRIs. Nonetheless, I feel very much ‘like myself’ on my anti-depressant medication. I don't think most people would describe me as ‘cheerful’, and certainly none would say I'm a ‘positive’ person, although I like to joke and play. I have several friends who are also prescribed pharmaceutical treatment for depression, and you probably wouldn't be able to pick them out from a crowd because of some strange, numbed, or overly happy-seeming behavior. Anti-depressants aren't really happy-pills.

That's why I instead call mine ‘my don't-kill-yourself’ pills.

Again, just my 2. A lot of people are on different drugs, and even among people I know personally I've seen very different responses to the drugs I take.

about 9 months ago
top

Satanists Propose Monument At Oklahoma State Capitol Next To Ten Commandments

pxc Re:Fireworks in 3...2...1... (1251 comments)

These guys (like the vast majority of Satanists) are atheists.

about 9 months ago
top

The Cybersecurity Industry Is Hiring, But Young People Aren't Interested

pxc Re:This article makes no sense (289 comments)

Fourthly, even if a generation of kids with a strong anti-authoritarian streak (and who were shocked and appalled by various US administration's behaviour from Guantanamo Bay to Snowden while growing up) aren't interested in doing cybersecurity for the US government or bureaucratic defence contractors, that's a totally different thing to "not being interested in cybersecurity at all".

This is the most important point. As a soon-to-graduate computer science and math major for whom cybersecurity is a possible career option, this is my biggest concern as far as working in cybersecurity goes. It's also a problem more generally. I want as little to do with the military-industrial complex as possible. Here in Tucson, Raytheon is one of the more popular targets for student internships in CS and engineering, but I'm not interested. I don't think I could work for a weapons company, or any the imperialist public structures that support them, in good conscience.

But if I continue to study mathematics and computer science after I finish my undergraduate degrees, I would be very happy to work on projects like Tor and Freenet, or crypto-currencies. There are alsocommercial security technologies I'd be happy to work on (like privacy-enhancing desktop & smartphone apps, a là TextSecure).

about a year ago
top

Silicon Valley In 2013 Resembles Logan's Run In 2274

pxc Re: 29 years old (432 comments)

Technically it should be ‘Neither Google nor Facebook...'.

about a year ago
top

Silicon Valley In 2013 Resembles Logan's Run In 2274

pxc Re: 29 years old (432 comments)

A foreigner gets caught up in their own idioms and sometimes erroneously imports them into their understanding of English (and we do the same in other languages). My girlfriend is from Mexico City, and she's likely to occasionally say ‘of X’ rather than ‘X's’. She also sometimes confuses gendered possessive pronouns, because in Spanish the gender is determined by the gender of the object, whereas in English it's determined by the one who possesses it.

A lot of Latinate languages (Spanish and French are the only ones I know well enough to speak for) use two-part negations, which might sometimes seem like double negation to an English speaker. As it happens, we use a two part negation for disjunctive lists as well: neither/nor; neither/or is wrong. It looks like the writer here just didn't know to attach the negation to the word or rather than placing the negation after it.

I would also argue that your position is wrong generally: native speakers can happily pick up idiomatic irregularities by habit, but second-language learners are more likely to presume regularity and just run with it because they haven't had a chance to pick up the irregularities of our idioms by experience.

about a year ago
top

Pope To Resign Citing Advanced Age

pxc Nice try, I guess (542 comments)

Neither ‘news for nerds’ nor ‘stuff that matters’ is a proposition, and they can't serve as logical operands as-is. You'd have to change them into propositions, with the most likely and sensible conversions being ‘Slashdot hosts news for nerds’ and ‘Slashdot hosts stuff that matters’. You AND those propositions together, and then it is clear that articles may qualify for being posted to Slashdot without being both news for nerds and stuff that matters.

about a year and a half ago
top

The History of 'Correlation Does Not Imply Causation'

pxc Re:Correlation != causation. (223 comments)

But the goal in short-circuiting an argument is never to dig for truth or a solution, and the essential role of repeating the meme, 'correlation causation' is to implicitly assert that the correlation is irrelevant or coincidental.

about 2 years ago
top

Trying to Untangle Anarchist Attacks On Scientists

pxc Re:Why do anarchists hate science? (333 comments)

A few friends of mine who are philosophically-grounded, kind of hyperliterate anarchists have adopted alternative names for their positions because of those associations. 'Anti-statist' is a good one. A moderate friend of mine with strong anarchist sympathies calls himself a 'minarchist'.

I actually have seen a handful of anarchist protests. Here in Arizona, they're pretty recognizable because they march together in all black clothing, a loose sort of uniform. Sometimes anarcho-communists and anarcho-syndicalists are included, but I don't think I've personally ever seen them with a communist flag. 'Round here they serve an especially nice function as (often armed) counter-protesters during Neo-Nazi rallies, to whom the police are sometimes, astonishingly sympathetic (although most of the time it's pretty clear that they're just trying to keep the peace and prevent the white supremacists from being injured by angry crowds).

more than 2 years ago
top

B&N Pulls Linux Format Magazine Over Feature On 'Hacking'

pxc Re:Good for them! (301 comments)

This is fucking ridiculous. The Linux magazine selection at B&N is pitiful. I used to go to Borders pretty much exclusively while it was still open for that reason. Now Linux Journal doesn't do print. What good print Linux magazines are left? Are any available at B&N?

more than 2 years ago
top

Stop Being Poor: U.S. Piracy Watch List Hits a New Low With 2012 Report

pxc Re:US, nobody gives a shit (310 comments)

I know that our cultures do have real, significant differences, but the notion that the US is ‘anti-social’ whereas China isn't does not adequately describe any of those differences. I know that the individualism of the US can seem cold or disconnected at times, but that doesn't mean that we don't have real friendships or that social connections still don't ultimately drive entertainment for us.

I spend a lot of my time listening to recorded music, and so do my friends. Part of what this lets us do is discover new music and develop specific tastes. What I love about it is that when my friends and I explore new genres, new styles, or particular artists, we have a chance to do it together. One of my favorite things to do with records is recommend them to friends. When I make a successful recommendation, I feel like I get to show a friend that I understand their taste, care about it, and want to share with them all kinds of things that I know they'll love. Often, I then later go out with those same friends to go see the bands to which we introduced one another at live performances. A couple of times, we've even all crammed into a car and driven for 6-9 hours to go to another state so we could go see someone play.

What I mean by all of this is that sometimes the specifics of the music being played are important, and they actually provide a way to show affection and build relationships rather than avoid them. And please, don't let the actions motivated by giant sacks of money in the hands of some of our most powerful industries pervert the way you think about American citizens. We have a lot of flaws, as do all peoples, but music is now and has always been a deeply social affair for human beings. It still is here, and for most ordinary citizens, the social aspect of music is more important than any industrial metrics. Some of us even remember that copyright is not an end-in-itself.

I wouldn't ask you to approve of all aspects of American culture, but please don't tell me that I don't love my friends or family because of some secondhand ideas you have about how I feel about copyright issues. I would always hesitate to jump to similar conclusions about you based upon your national policy.

more than 2 years ago
top

Valve's Steam & Games Coming To Linux

pxc Re:Sony v. Hotz (224 comments)

Geohotz wasn't acting in a professional capacity when he jailbroke the PS3. His ability to feed his family did not depend upon the kinds of limitations Sony imposed or hoped to impose with their PS3's DRM. The kind of subjugation I was talking about is ‘the kind of subjugation that makes you starve’. I also meant only those limitations imposed by restraining from violating the DRM, not the possible legal consequences of reverse-engineering it.

So, as I intended to say before: I don't think DRM on games is capable of imposing the same *kind* of subjugation on end-users, although it's still subjugation and it still sucks.

more than 2 years ago
top

Phoronix Confirms GNU/Linux Steam and Source Engine Clients

pxc Re:Good luck (324 comments)

(Almost) everything should be open source and (eventually) free; freely accessible and readily dissectable contributions to society put society in a better position than it had before. That doesn't mean that non-free software can't also constitute a contribution to the society, especially when it comes in the form of inessential software or art (i.e. video games) which serves (even incidentally) to support the general viability of a free platform.

And I think it's possible to express a preference for an open-source methodology to a company who sells or provides you with closed-source software without being a dick about it. The Desura Linux client was eventually open-sourced, after the Linux Desura community had been suggesting it for some time. Most of those suggestions came in the form of ‘an open-sourced client would be awesome; thanks for all you've done so far’. I hope and expect that in the Steam case, us F/OSS people who request or suggest that they open-source the Steam client do it with an air of gratitude, as was done in the Desura case. As customers, we have a reasonable right to tell the companies who've chosen or might choose to serve us what we would like from them. So long as those demands are expressed civilly, with an attempt toward persuasion rather than insults or tantrum-throwing, I don't think we ever owe it to Valve (or anyone) to sit back down and say that forevermore ‘we are pleased’. Saying that you'd be even happier if things were a little different isn't really biting the hand that feeds.

more than 2 years ago
top

Valve's Steam & Games Coming To Linux

pxc Re:Finally! (224 comments)

Linux's success in the server arena definitely doesn't mean that the desktop is ‘in any way, shape, or form at a usable level’ — the desktop experience stands on its own.

more than 2 years ago
top

Valve's Steam & Games Coming To Linux

pxc Re:Finally! (224 comments)

Stallman is actually less (ethically) invested in the freedom of works of art than he is about practical software tools. He probably wouldn't like Steam's DRM, but I don't think DRM on games is capable of imposing the same kind of subjugation that he sees done by companies who produce tools which are more strictly necessary to the lives and livelihoods of their customers.

Although I'm not a proper Stallmanite, I do see a powerful ethical dimension to the motivations for producing free software (and free culture as related to education). I don't see anything evil in the minimal kind of DRM imposed by Steam, and although I would praise any game company who opened the source code to their engine, or Valve if they opened the source code to the distribution system itself, I don't feel compelled to condemn game companies who don't do so. Those are my two cents, for whatever they're worth, as someone intellectually and ethically committed to the principles of free software.

(I wouldn't call it a religion for me because my views about the importance of share-alike copyright licenses, like the GPL, are grounded in other principles that could yield different prescriptions when applied in novel circumstances. But I do often do things make the choice to use free software out of principle, even where technically superior non-free solutions are available. You decide if my views are radical enough to for me to speak on behalf of the subset of the F/OSS community you'd like to address.)

more than 2 years ago
top

Congress Capitulates To TSA; Refuses To Let Bruce Schneier Testify

pxc Re:What kind of congress is that? (435 comments)

Yeah. It's always seemed to me that because Slashdot generally consists of an intelligent, well-educated readership (bullshit posts and nonsense traditions aside), they have inherited some liberal social views, but the engineering contingent here is too strong to allow anything but a very pragmatic sort of outlook, because of which Slashdot tends to leans toward more conservative attitudes about the nature of ideas and justification. The libertarian streak within /.ers I think is mostly rooted in a kind of skepticism toward policy.

But yeah. Slashdot definitely has an archetypal political outlook, but it's not one quite so simple as ‘liberal’ or ‘conservative’.

more than 2 years ago
top

The Numbers Behind the Copyright Math

pxc Re:Losses, but due to piracy? (311 comments)

I could support this view. Copyright, with some corrections/restorations, can stay as a part of the new plan to encourage creative works. It should simply be acknowledged as a temporary monopoly on distribution (rather than property, which it is not), and recognized as a tool rather than an end in itself.

more than 2 years ago
top

The Numbers Behind the Copyright Math

pxc Re:Losses, but due to piracy? (311 comments)

I think it may have to do with the fact that the youth have little or no income, and so their choice is between copying music and just not having it.

But what does 'learning how the world works' really mean here? Which part of learning how the world works might bring this sense of guilt? Is it becoming more familiar with societal expectations? Is it a richer understanding of how laws like copyright seek to support the arts? Is it a more altruistic idea of fairness?

You may be right, but I do wonder just which part of learning how the world works may produce this effect.

more than 2 years ago

Submissions

pxc hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

pxc has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

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>