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Comments

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Ars Editor Learns Feds Have His Old IP Addresses, Full Credit Card Numbers

russotto Re:This just in: PNRs include notes (195 comments)

I know, Occam's Razor would explain this by simply having all airline employees be psychic, but in fact, when you call and talk to someone, they note what you talked about, then when you call and talk to an entirely different person who magically knows what you talked about before, they're just reading that note. OMG!

I've never actually had this experience when dealing with an airline; I typically have to explain the situation to each employee, often more than once.

yesterday
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US Senator Blasts Microsoft's H-1B Push As It Lays 18,000 Off Workers

russotto Re:Free market economy (514 comments)

I find it also exceptionally hilarious that this attack is coming from the Tea Party, considering that they are nominally libertarian. Buffet, Gates, and Adelson ARE their masters of the universe - at least, they would be, if the Tea Party or the libertarians had any sort of consistency in their beliefs. Instead, this diatribe exposes them for what they really are: run of the mill politicians who are just more xenophobic and nativist than the other politicians.

The idea that the Tea Party is libertarian is silly. The idea that Warren Buffett is libertarian is ludicrous. He's the guy who is well known for claiming he doesn't pay enough in taxes.

2 days ago
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US Senator Blasts Microsoft's H-1B Push As It Lays 18,000 Off Workers

russotto Re:Horrible PR move by MS (514 comments)

It's like the new CEO is bragging he purged more workers than the last CEO.

He is. Main Street isn't the audience; Wall Street loves downsizing.

2 days ago
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US Senator Blasts Microsoft's H-1B Push As It Lays 18,000 Off Workers

russotto Re:Not fungible (514 comments)

At which point they bring a foreign worker over and train them in J2EE and Joe Bob's Serialization Framework

Nope. They bring a foreign worker over who already has, on paper, the required (and often impossible) experience in J2EE and Joe Bob's Serialization Framework. The foreign worker then fakes it. And that's assuming the job ad wasn't just a phony to substantiate a green card application for the foreign worker already in that position.

2 days ago
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US Senator Blasts Microsoft's H-1B Push As It Lays 18,000 Off Workers

russotto Re:Free market economy (514 comments)

The problem with UI design is it is subjective, it depends heavily on who your target user is. The "good designers" of the past were catering to a particular type of user who no longer makes up the majority of customers. They were indeed good at what they did, but the market has shifted and thus a new crop of designers are trying to work out what serves the majority of user now well.

This is the UI design version of "the lurkers support me in email". The new crop of designers is enamoured with particular design principles which are simply bad. Pretty much every technically sophisticated user hates them, and many of us can explain in detail exactly why they suck. So the designers claim they're designing for a new kind of user who isn't technically sophisticated in order to silence their critics. Management is perfectly willing to buy this line of bull... at least until the bad design hits the regular users who may not know exactly what is wrong, but they DO know it is wrong, and out come the torches and pitchforks.

The good designers of the past were _already designing_ for the same sort of user the new designers claim to be designing for; that's been the case since about 1984. This new user who likes the new stuff... basically doesn't exist.

2 days ago
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US Senator Blasts Microsoft's H-1B Push As It Lays 18,000 Off Workers

russotto Re:Free market economy (514 comments)

"You must be stupid if you believe that" is not a logical fallacy. "You are stupid, therefore what you believe is false" is a logical fallacy (ad hominem). "People who believe things that are obviously false are stupid. That is obviously false and you believe it, therefore you must be stupid" is valid, assuming you accept the premises.

2 days ago
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ChickTech Brings Hundreds of Young Women To Open Source

russotto Perhaps not the best start (158 comments)

"ChickTech Brings Hundreds of Young Women To Open Source"... where they encounter Richard "THAT'S FREE SOFTWARE TO YOU" Stallman , Linus Torvalds, and Theo De Raadt and vow never to touch a computer again.

5 days ago
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Ask Slashdot: Future-Proof Jobs?

russotto Re:Plumber (505 comments)

In the future, they will have sensors that optimize the flush cycle, and use a pressurized system to automatically clear clogs, while using far less water per flush. They will use electrically actuated valves...

And you think all that will make toilets MORE reliable? Haha. Most problems with the mechanical parts of toilets result from wear to the valves, wear to the flapper, and debris clogging the valves. None of that is going to be improved by adding all the doodads you suggest; they're just new things to break.

And of course most of the problems with toilets aren't in the mechanical parts at all, they're just caused by people putting stuff in it that shouldn't be flushed. None of your doodads are going to help that either.

about a week ago
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Scientists Have Developed a Material So Dark That You Can't See It

russotto Looks like they'll get rich (238 comments)

This is the sort of material which could be used for artificial hearts for lawyers, bankers, and politicians.

about a week ago
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Fighting Climate Change With Trade

russotto Re:Get rid of them all (154 comments)

Wait, the gospel has changed from the old story about the horrible Westerners using 99% of the resources and producing 150% of the pollution by oppressing the poverty-stricken but frugal and in-tune with nature third-worlders? When did this happen?

about a week ago
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Fighting Climate Change With Trade

russotto Chinese corner the market (154 comments)

with stuff that's crappy but incredibly cheap in 3...2...1...

about a week ago
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Geographic Segregation By Education

russotto Re:Chicken or egg? (230 comments)

"I have voted for every park, every library, all the school improvements, for light rail, for anything that will make this city better. But now I can't afford to live here anymore."

Ha... cause and effect is a bitch sometimes, isn't it? No doubt she thought all those things would be paid for by other people. If she thought at all.

about two weeks ago
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Geographic Segregation By Education

russotto Confusing cause and effect (230 comments)

They're gaining access to high-cost cities like New York or San Francisco that offer so much more than good jobs: more restaurants, better schools, less crime, even cleaner air.

There's more restaurants because there are more high-income college grads to spend money there. There's less street crime because Johnny the Finance Douchebag isn't likely to do anything worse than public urination. (white collar crime is another matter)

As for better schools, hasn't happened yet at least in NYC -- the system is very uneven and the lengths parents will go through to get their kid in a better elementary school are legendary. Lose the battle, and welcome to the suburbs. If it does happen, it'll again be because the well-educated wealthy college students are there.

Cleaner air is mostly because there's little polluting industry left. Which means fewer blue-collar jobs.

The implied narrative that those rich overeducated scum are hogging all the good places and leaving the poor in high-crime areas with bad schools, dirty air, and no amenities gets cause and effect completely wrong.

about two weeks ago
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New Microsoft CEO Vows To Shake Up Corporate Culture

russotto The important bit (204 comments)

Most of it is empty business-speak; I especially like "Today I want to synthesize the strategic direction" for pure meaningless noise. However, there is one meaningful part: "We'll use the month of July to have a dialogue about this bold ambition and our core focus. [...]Over the course of July, the Senior Leadership Team and I will share more on the engineering and organization changes we believe are needed."

Meaning? They'll take July to make up the lists, then layoffs in early August.

about two weeks ago
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FAA Pressures Coldwell, Other Realtors To Stop Using Drone Footage

russotto This is just ass-covering (199 comments)

NRT, the parent company doesn't procure the footage in the first place. The individual agents do. They don't process it either; I'm not sure what that's all about. They didn't tell the local operating companies they'd be penalized by NRT for using drone footage, they just said of the operating companies "they may be held responsible for all fines, penalties, costs and fees related to the use of that photography". NRT just wants to be on the record as saying they don't encourage use of drones for real estate photography, that's all.

No real estate agent is going to stop using drone footage if it sells houses.

about two weeks ago
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Biohackers Are Engineering Yeast To Make THC

russotto Re:Holy grey area! (158 comments)

Yeah, but that was a more innocent time. We already have to talk to a pharmacist, show ID, and get in a government DB to buy decongestant. That's because you can use it to make meth.

Interestingly, the decongestant is made by yeast. Now all we need is for someone to come up with a yeast which makes the meth directly; no more need for the current sort of meth labs.

about two weeks ago
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Amazon Seeks US Exemption To Test Delivery Drones

russotto Re:Ballsy (155 comments)

So the FAA has no intent of developing regulations or considering their need, but they have created a UAS study program including six regional test sites. Interesting.

Seriously? That's one of the classic bureaucratic ways to block something, to form a program to "study" it.

about two weeks ago
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US Tech Firms Recruiting High Schoolers (And Younger)

russotto Re:Not new (253 comments)

What's often left off of these reports is amount that student aid has also grown over time. Few people pay the full sticker price.
The college board trends does have a chart of this, but unfortunately it wasn't adjusted for inflation.

The College Board charts are adjusted for inflation. Even with student aid increases, net college costs have increased over time. They are much higher than they were 30 years ago. And if your family makes more than median income, at public institutions that student aid increase doesn't amount to much.

about two weeks ago
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US Tech Firms Recruiting High Schoolers (And Younger)

russotto Re:Not new (253 comments)

College is no more expensive, taking inflation into account, than it was 30 years ago.

Oh please, that's an obvious falsehood.

about two weeks ago
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US Tech Firms Recruiting High Schoolers (And Younger)

russotto Re:actors and athletes get paid at 13 (253 comments)

Yes, but 13yo actors and athletes need special work permits and still need to attend to school whilst working.

These are summer internships; school is not an issue.

In many localities, they must have part of their earnings put directly into trust funds (e.g., a Coogan account in California) so neither they or their parents will blow all the money on something, or up something...

Four states, but the Coogan requirements in California and New York at least are specific to child performers, not all minors.

I doubt any of these internet companies are doing any of these even minimal best-practices/policies for these 13yo nerds (and these minimal things don't even prevent the Lindsey Lohans and Tracy Austins of the world)...

$18,000/year doesn't get you to Lindsey Lohan levels; she probably blows that in a night.

about two weeks ago

Submissions

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US Software Developer Wages Fall

russotto russotto writes  |  about a year ago

russotto (537200) writes "Despite all the talk of "skills gap" and "tech worker shortage", wages for the software industry are falling, not rising. Wages fell 2% to $99,000 in 2012. Correct me if I'm wrong, but doesn't basic economics state that if wages are falling, there must be a surplus, not a shortage?"
Link to Original Source
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Modern man result of interbreeding with Neandertal

russotto russotto writes  |  more than 4 years ago

russotto (537200) writes "It turns out Neandertal man could, and did, interbreed with modern humans. According a study in _Science_, 1 to 4% of modern DNA from Europeans and Asians comes from Neanderthals. So next time you call someone a knuckle-dragger, remember your great-to-the-Nth grandfather probably was one too."
Link to Original Source
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Man arrested for anti-cop video on YouTube

russotto russotto writes  |  about 6 years ago

russotto (537200) writes "In an apparent attempt to prove that while we may still have the Second Amendment, that pesky First Amendment is obselete in the digital age, Philadelphia police arrested and charged a man for posting a video on YouTube where he says that he rejoices every time a cop is killed. He was charged with aggravated assault, corruption of miniors, terroristic threats, and harassment. YouTube, demonstrating its commitment to free speech, pulled the video for "terms of service violations"."
Link to Original Source

Journals

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russotto russotto writes  |  more than 5 years ago Wow, someone out there really hates me. Used up all 5 mod points to score my comments as "Flamebait", when none of them were (and 4 of them clearly weren't).

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