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Former Nokia Exec: Windows Phone Strategy Doomed

sgt101 Apple for you MS haters! (447 comments)

Watch Steve Job's come back key note : MS supported Apple because they saw them as an important eco-system player. This is what they are doing with Nokia now. Without a successful Nokia MS is looking at Apple and Google/Motorola carving up the market. They are not prepared to allow that.

more than 2 years ago
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James Whittaker: Focus on Ads and 'Social' Destroying Google

sgt101 Re:Google missed an even bigger opportunity (236 comments)

The issue here is that Google's technology depends on patterns of use; in the past on patterns of linking, but subsequent to the internet becoming an eco-system on patterns of click through.

Intranets do not fit to this model. Intranets are about finding specific information rather than popular information. It's a different information retrieval problem and one that Google has never majored on.

more than 2 years ago
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New Exoplanet Is Best Yet Candidate For Supporting Life

sgt101 only 22 (288 comments)

Ha ha 22 lightyears, or 208,131,625,000,000 kilometers

more than 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Re-Entering the Job Market As a Software Engineer?

sgt101 Your startup (435 comments)

You have an asset - which is your time and skill, so use it in two ways.

Start a company which is really your way of making contacts who will give you a job, offer a b2b service - for example faqs or self help services and do it really, really slickly. Make it clear that you do contracts on the side to "get cash flow for the company".

more than 2 years ago
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Russia Botches Another Rocket Launch

sgt101 Botched (119 comments)

Really inappropriate word. This shit is really hard.

more than 2 years ago
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Graphene Spun Into Meter-Long Fibers

sgt101 Re:I predict cancer (159 comments)

Why do you expect this : have you done phage tests? Do you have information on the stability of the reduced material with respect to physical disruption?

more than 2 years ago
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Will NASA Ever Recover Apollo 13's Plutonium From the Ocean

sgt101 Re:A small leak indeed. (263 comments)

Ahh ha! You have failed to understand that all radiation is not equal, and also mechanisms of exposure are not equal.

If someone made a bet with me that I should swallow a pellet of plutonium in a plastic case or something bad would happen to a loved one, I would swallow the plutonium and trust to my digestion and the container. If I had to breath in the plutonium in a dust instead I would still do it (for love) but I think it would be the death of me.

So - looking at the radiation released in total : has there been a massive increase in deaths due to atmospheric testing. Of course, we can't say so because there is no control and there are many confounding factors. But I offer the following for consideration.

1. Atmospheric testing was a massive propaganda tool and an excellent way of developing weapons. It is now banned and never done even by lunatics like the North Koreans. Why?

2. Cancer rates have increased substantially in the period - this is not evidence of causality, but if they had not then we could say that it would be evidence of absence of causality.

3. There is not much mention of this ever in the media.

4. There is not much to be done about it now.

more than 2 years ago
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Will NASA Ever Recover Apollo 13's Plutonium From the Ocean

sgt101 Re:"a small leak" (263 comments)

http://www.ead.anl.gov/pub/doc/plutonium.pdf

It's at the bottom of page 3. The risk is life time cancer mortality.

The folks at Argonne are often thought of as competent, I note that you happily use nCi in the rest of your post.

The thing is that radiation comes in different flavours. Some radiation (the stuff that plutonium majors in) can be stopped by a barrier like a bit of paper. We call this "alpha" radiation. If one breaths in a source for this radiation (for example a particle of plutonium) you are in trouble because your lungs don't have an inner paper coating. If you receive it from a decay in the atmosphere you are not in trouble because nature and evolution have equipped you with a layer of dead cells we call skin.

The trouble with the plutonium particle is that not only does it produce one decay - it sits in your lung repeatedly producing alpha particles which go on to do all sorts of mischief.

more than 2 years ago
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Will NASA Ever Recover Apollo 13's Plutonium From the Ocean

sgt101 Re:"a small leak" (263 comments)

I can't think how you got that from what I wrote, however here is where I got my figures from.

http://www.ead.anl.gov/pub/doc/plutonium.pdf

This is a document published by Argonne National Laboratory, in a form that they call "a fact sheet".

You can see that there a thing called a radiation co-efficient chart. This provides the risk of death that can be expected by exposure to 1pCi. If you don't like reading things then you can find the table at the bottom (right hand) of page 3.

If someone was exposed to 9000^12 pCi via inhalation I think that they would die in about 3 minutes - due to suffocation. Afterall - we are talking about some kilos of material.

None of this is comic.

The extrapolation lies in the likelihood of exposure to individuals, and the error I made is that in fact we are talking about 18000 * 10^12 pCi, not 9000. At the top end we are talking 200 million human deaths from cancer due to that accident. I think it would have required a very deliberate regime to do that much killing with that much plutonium, but you get the significance of the event from that (remote) possibility.

more than 2 years ago
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Will NASA Ever Recover Apollo 13's Plutonium From the Ocean

sgt101 "a small leak" (263 comments)

The snap-9a accident was not a small leak.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_military_nuclear_accidents

Indeed NASA (in the 1995 Cassini FEIS)[35] indicated that the SNAP-9a plutonium release was nearly double the 9000Ci added by all the atmospheric weapons tests to that date.[40][41]

1 pCi exposure typically will kill in 10^-8 of cases, but there were 9000^12 pCi dispersed by SNAP9. You can take any view you like about how many of them have actually been exposed to humans.

more than 2 years ago
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Career Advice: Don't Call Yourself a Programmer

sgt101 Not many programmers needed (422 comments)

Very few people working in software today are actually programmers. Most people are software developers, some are architects. Both of those groups do some significant programming very occasionally.

Most work is maintenance - adding features and interfaces to working systems; the skill is the utilization of the components to hand. After that, configuration and customization; taking the wrappers off something and making it work in our environment and process. The next biggest activity is development - bringing a set of components together and getting them to do something new. Finally architecture - thinking at a high level about how the infrastructure will work.

Some places have a need for programmers - people who implement sophisticated algorithms over complex data structures day in and day out. Not that many though.

more than 2 years ago
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Bill Gates On What Business Can Teach Schools

sgt101 Teams (272 comments)

Because, just like in every big company in the world, in teaching it's all down to an individual heroically battling the odds to make a success.

Reward that hero, beat those who stand in the way, throw them to the dogs or the dole queue.

What is most important is that those that do what they are told, and tell you how good things are, are rewarded. And you will retire (in 18mths with $40m in the bank) sure in the knowledge that all will be well forever, or at least until the next fucking lunatic with a year of business school shows up to mess with everything.

And now they have jumped over the cage bars and into schools. Great.

about 3 years ago
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UN Bigwig: The Web Should Have Been Patented and Licensed

sgt101 Re:Their Goals (411 comments)

And as for patents, they have a purpose of guaranteeing publication of . If you abolish them altogether get ready for more black boxes and permanent monopolies on ideas via trade secrets.

about 3 years ago
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UN Bigwig: The Web Should Have Been Patented and Licensed

sgt101 Re:Their Goals (411 comments)

How would writers (novelists for example) make a living without copyright? Isn't society enriched by their work? My mind is enriched by their work - isn't it fair that they are compensated for the work and value that they create?

about 3 years ago
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MS Buying Yahoo? Bad Idea, Even At a Discount

sgt101 Re:Are we talking about the same Microsoft? (141 comments)

Every developer I know wants to use Linux or a Mac to produce code. I think catering for CIO's is why Windows is the most widespread OS.

about 3 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Does Being 'Loyal' Pay As a Developer?

sgt101 Re:Why not use it as a bargaining chip? (735 comments)

Worth saying that :

1. If they don't match and give you compensation for the commute then it's a sure sign that they would get rid of you without a moments thought if they needed to.

2. If they do match then it's a good bet that they will hang on to you in hard times.

about 3 years ago
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BT Promises 300Mbps FTTP By 2012

sgt101 Re:Only a decade behind (121 comments)

Well - you know; the industrial revolution thing; the development of aircraft thing (as in jet engines); the development of computing thing (colossus); anti-biotics and a few other bits and bobs.

about 3 years ago
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Oracle: Proud, Self-Reliant, Increasingly Isolated

sgt101 Re:Oracle and the Java Community (119 comments)

I honestly just don't get the anti-java thing in the developer community.

It's fantastic. It's amazing.

Eclipse, testng, guice, java, hibernate : bloody marvelous.

about 3 years ago
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Java 7: What's In It For Developers

sgt101 Re:Improvements (338 comments)

If I was doing this I would use an in memory database. I would talk to that database using Java.

I developed in C++ for 5 years, I have thanked Jesus and his angels every day since Java came to save me.

more than 3 years ago
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Motorola's Identity Crisis

sgt101 Value chain play (135 comments)

People can't match the iPad for price and performance because Apple are pulling money from the whole value chain - the complete user experience. They are not sharing margin with anyone with iTunes, iOS and the iPad.

Google wants the same end to end play and has the internet position and software to pull it off ... if it can get the right hardware made. This is all about getting the right hardware made, and getting it made in quickly.

This is a brilliant acquisition for them

more than 3 years ago

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