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Ask Slashdot: Rectifying Nerd Arrogance?

schroedogg Pursue Humility (823 comments)

Arrogance was a major reason I didn't go work for a large software development company out of college. Everybody there thought they were God's gift to humanity regardless of their true proficiency. It gets old fast. In my experience, you will be highly sought after if you can rid yourself of that arrogant attitude and treat people as if you are their humble servant. Here are some tips:

  • Think about all the things you don't know. Can you build a house? Can you engineer DNA? Etc.
  • Consider that others may come from a much worse background than you and may not have had the same opportunities or training.
  • Purposely associate yourself with non tech people on a regular basis before you're too far gone

about 2 years ago
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Etsy Hacker Grants Support Female Programmers

schroedogg Re:Sexism (211 comments)

Shouldn't a private company be afforded the freedom to offer a scholarship to whomever they please? On the other hand, I do question all the government sponsored programs designed to get more women in STEM fields. How many government programs target getting men in the family & consumer sciences fields or other areas where men are the underrepresented group? There's a kind of double-standard. There's also the obvious possibility that, by and large, women just don't WANT to be in the STEM fields as much as men. Not because they aren't able or aren't smart enough, but because they don't have the desire. My wife was a 4.0 student and is very smart, but has absolutely no interest in programming. She'd probably make a better programmer than many men as she's an excellent problem solver. Why spend so much money trying to lure people into a career that they don't desire in the first place?

more than 2 years ago
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US Asserts Super-Jurisdiction Over Dot-Com, Dot-Net, and Dot-Org Domains

schroedogg What? (395 comments)

All your domain are belong to U.S.!

more than 2 years ago
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IBM Snags Patent On Half-Day Off of Work Notifications

schroedogg Re:Add Minutes, Too! (163 comments)

OK, then I call the unix timestamp patent! I'll be out until 1326267061 and not a second later.

more than 2 years ago
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Why Fuel Efficiency Advances Haven't Translated To Better Gas Mileage

schroedogg Re:We've had an increase in gas prices... (891 comments)

Reading your reply reminds me of the same mental calculations I was doing when deciding whether or not to purchase our Jeep :). My experience is that the real life numbers are a bit different, though. So I have a Jeep Grand Cherokee, which is known for it's horrendous fuel economy. Trailblazers and the like typically do better. On the highway I get 19-20mpg (we just took a 4,000 mile trip and the overall average was something like 19.4). In town it's more like 14-15, but in town for me is never going over 30 mph and quite a bit of idling. Before the Jeep we had a 98 Camry 5spd that got about 25mpg in town and could get 33mpg on the highway. We average about 10,000 miles per year, which is probably about half in town and half highway. Using the 20mpg and 15mpg for the Jeep and figuring 5,000 miles each city & highway, the camry would use about 351 gallons in a year and the Jeep 583 gallons, a difference of 232 gallons. This past year I've been paying around $3.00 - $3.20 per gallon, so figure $3.10 and it's $719 more per year, which is a lot closer to the $500 mark. But our old camry got better fuel economy than most compact cars because it was a 5spd. So in 10 years, assuming gas prices don't skyrocket, we're looking at an extra $7,000 - $8,000 in gas. Add that to the the $7,000 and I've spent $15,000 in total. I could have purchased a new hybrid for $30,000+ but still would not come out ahead (unless gas surges to $10+ / gallon). Plus, the camry gave me back problems because it was very uncomfortable for a tall person. So I guess you could somehow factor in medical troubles. Add in all the advantages of the Jeep I mentioned earlier and it was almost a no-brainer.

I'll admit that there are a lot of people who really don't NEED an SUV. But I think that's a hard judgement to make. I really don't NEED an SUV. I don't even NEED a car. I could quit my job, live in a homeless shelter, and draw unemployment. In that case, there's very little I'd need. But I don't WANT to do that. And that's not a viable way for our society to survive. I can afford to drive my Jeep for now and it's been very helpful in many ways. I'm not generally speaking very wasteful. I save paper by doing things electronically. I save gas by burning wood fires. I conserve electricity, etc. I just don't think we should pick on the "SUV" crowd. They sell well for a reason. Perhaps we should be finding ways of making more efficient or even electric SUV & light trucks. That's what a majority of Americans seem to want, especially in more rural areas.

Anyway, thanks for the discussion.

more than 2 years ago
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Why Fuel Efficiency Advances Haven't Translated To Better Gas Mileage

schroedogg Re:We've had an increase in gas prices... (891 comments)

TV's are a complete waste of time and resources. So are latte's. So is eating out. There are tons of things that people could consider a waste of time and resources. I bet I could find quite a few things you do that I think are a waste. But I don't judge you for it. You're free to spend your money and time on the things you enjoy while others may wish to spend their efforts differently. I purchased an older SUV (Grand Cherokee) because I can't afford anything remotely new and because I like the storage space. I like being able to tow 6,500 lb. trailers, which I've done on several occasions. I like the occasional off-roading. And I like being able to climb hills covered in snow and ice. So for all these things combined I sacrifice 5-10 mpg and probably spend about $500 more per year in gas (at most). But had I bought a $30,000 car instead of a $7,000 one, I'd never have recovered that in gas savings (not to mention I could never afford that). Plus it wouldn't accomplish what I wanted it to. If you can make me an electric SUV that does all those things and that I can buy used for under $8,000, I'd take it in a heartbeat!

more than 2 years ago
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Mass Extinctions from Global Warming?

schroedogg The Cost of Fighting Global Warming (348 comments)

This idea that global warming is caused primarily by humans is speculative at best. In the past 120 years, the average surface temperature has only risen 1.2 degrees F in North America. Because measuring has not been as accurate as it is now, this may not be a totally accurate number. Plus, most of this can be attributed to things not caused by human action such as retreated glaciers, volcanos, etc. Do we really know for sure that WE are causing global warming?

Also, think of all the negatives of fighting this perceivedly harmful warming. One, the poor will become poorer because they won't be able to afford the latest fuel efficient cars, furnaces, etc. We just recently purchased a "new" (used) car and found that it was manufactured to meet california emissions standards, though we do not live in California nor was it manufactured there. Because of this, a simple $50 oxygen sensor that needs replacing is now going to cost $150. On top of that, it has not 1 but 2 catalytic converters, which are another expensive part to replace. Then think about the benefits of global warming. Warmer weather means a longer growing season, which could be a boon to agritculture in 3rd world countries. Also, more people die from cold each year than from heat, so a warmer planet could mean less deaths due to temperature.

Of course, these are assuming the warming doesn't eventually result in some sort of catastrophe, but I think the evidence for this is very shaky at best. Don't believe everything the media is spitting out currently. I think this whole catastrophe theory is a very politically motivated issue with a little bit of science behind it.

more than 7 years ago

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