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Why Everyone Hates the IT Department

transiit why? (960 comments)

Why does everyone hate IT? Same reason everyone hates customer service, call centers, and law enforcement: You usually don't think about them until something's already gone wrong.

It's why I got out of sysadmin jobs. Management hated me because "Well, if they had done their job right, there shouldn't be problems for them to fix" and everyone else in the company was "Doesn't matter if I don't know what I'm doing, they aren't doing it for me. So I'm always going to save them as my excuse for why I had to miss a deadline: 'My system wasn't working and the IT guys couldn't get it working fast enough'"

I stopped reading it a long time ago, but it's why BOFH was funny.

about 3 years ago

Bing Is Cheating, Copying Google Search Results

transiit Re:Cheating? No. Bad analogy. (693 comments)

Did you just try to call corporate espionage ethical in the name of "improve your offering to give the customers what they want"?

more than 3 years ago

A Call For an Open, Distributed Alternative To Facebook

transiit Kept planning this... (363 comments)

Kept wanting to do this, but never find time to do a working implementation, so here's an idea if someone wants to run with it.

Use Git for the backend (so everything stays nice and distributed), then write a front-end in perl (or whatever). Store all the data as XML, work out sort of a red/black separation for public and private data. Seems pretty straightforward?


more than 4 years ago

Music While Programming?

transiit Re:As a PHB... (1019 comments)

I turned the ringer off on my office phone a couple years ago. Nobody's complained yet. Funny how that works.

about 5 years ago

Microsoft Takes Responsibility For GPL Violation

transiit Re:cluess about licensing... (364 comments)

More to the point, as a software engineer, or code monkey, or code master, whatever, you should be well aware that if it's code you didn't write, don't use it until you're clear as to the ramifications.

I avoid using any example code I see unless I can understand it and there's a clear statement of "Hey, this is example code, by writing this tutorial, we kind of expect you'll be making a derivative of it."

Treating GPL-licensed code (or some open source license) under the same regard is poor thinking. Passing it off that some manager will catch it is worse.

That strikes a little too close to "Sure, I plagiarized my college essays, but I didn't get caught, so I must've done the right thing." Unfortunately, fair use has not been well-defined with source code (or, anything, really), so where you could poke a hole in that analogy with "But I made appropriate reference!" (i.e., telling the person that paid you to do the work), becomes very fuzzy, very fast.

more than 5 years ago

Microsoft Takes Responsibility For GPL Violation

transiit Decent resolution. (364 comments)

So after reading many years' worth of Microsoft talking about how the GPL is the worst thing ever, I'll give them credit for dealing with this situation appropriately.

Granted, their risk profile of releasing the source for such utility is pretty minimal, but I'll give them credit for going the user-friendly route of complying with the GPL instead of trying to quash all distribution of the tool they were distributing.

It doesn't bring them up high on my measure of regard, but I'll give them the tip of the hat for aiming the right way on this one.

more than 5 years ago

Android Goes To the Battlefield

transiit But not really. (128 comments)

This is an article based on a Raytheon press release. What hardware does said application run on? Even the article suggested there's no established contract yet.

I like the idea that open source/free software is getting more traction in this area, but no platform, no contract suggestes this is just fluff. Whether or not your bullshit meter started twitching that they've been working on this for two years is up to you.

Bonus BS points that they throw in the "Oh, and it could also be a biometric scanner". Feature creep comes early.

more than 5 years ago

Researchers Discover "Magnetic Current"

transiit Magnetricity? (249 comments)

Seriously? Magnetricity? That's the best name they could come up with? Really?

I hope if they can't do better figuring out what term to measure in it, they at least pander to the attention it would gather and call the unit "Colbert"

more than 5 years ago

Console Makers Worry Over Growing Competition From Apple

transiit Re:Competition from What??? (281 comments)

Is that what's called a "flame" these days? How times have changed.

more than 5 years ago

Console Makers Worry Over Growing Competition From Apple

transiit Re:Competition from What??? (281 comments)

"Th-th-think of it this way."

Wow, you actually typed in your stutter? Really?

more than 5 years ago

Console Makers Worry Over Growing Competition From Apple

transiit Whew. (281 comments)

And here I was worried that I could play games without an annual contract to pay a telco every month. I mean, yeah, I could get an ipod touch, but wouldn't that be just like getting a DSi? Who would I pay every month? Gosh!

Everyone agrees that flatulence apps are not only worth paying for, they make having the AT&T contract worthwhile. Look how many people play WoW, clearly games are only fun if you're paying month to month, right?

more than 5 years ago

Bank Goofs, and Judge Orders Gmail Account Nuked

transiit Turnabout (594 comments)

Hopefully the email recipient gets notice before they lose all of their email.

And more hopefully, they find the offending message and forward it to the judge that made this ruling with a note akin to "Thank you for punishing me for having an email address. Here is the poison message, please order your accounts deactivated as well."

more than 5 years ago

Leaving the GPL Behind

transiit Re:misleading (543 comments)

Redhat seems to do a pretty steady business with a lot of GPL'd code, and while I don't care for their main product lines, you'd think them being listed on the S&P 500 suggest that they're at least doing something right business-wise.

Just because the standard "let's hide the secret sauce" model doesn't work well in the context of using GPL'd code, doesn't mean that a business can't adapt to it.

more than 5 years ago

IBM Withdraws $7B Offer For Sun Microsystems, Says NYT

transiit My two cents as a conspiracy theory. (291 comments)

It struck me when I read this article at MSNBC

The stock price doubled since the initial rumors? Really...so who stands to benefit from this? Are Sun and IBM execs pals enough to hint at talks (without committing to any deal)

Understanding that IBM has invested quite a bit in java, I can see how they'd like to acquire Sun. However, it's a bit odd that they'd offer a significant premium (unconfirmed) and then bail on the possibility of another company getting to bid. Yeah, I can see how they'd not want to get into a bidding war over this, but I would've thought they'd retracted their offer as soon as a hint of the possibility of acquisition became news/gossip without something legally binding in place. This is IBM, they aren't known for bold initiatives, after all.

Something about this sounds off, regardless of the rest of this article's speculation on who would be a better Sun benefactor.

more than 5 years ago

Utah's Third Attempt To Regulate Keywords Fails

transiit Re:But that's what government is for - to regulate (68 comments)

Your signature suggests a bias. Might look into changing that.

I think what bothers a lot of people is that we were told for many years "Oh, no. We have to have free markets. We must deregulate everything!", and then many decided to take an unethical approach to how they go about their business and it turned out that they might not have been trustworthy after all. In the last days of the previous administration, they reversed course into a "worst of both worlds" scenario: Remove all limitations and then fund them to keep them afloat when their machinations didn't pan out. (I don't know where the new administration is going with this, I'm giving them the benefit of the doubt that a huge policy swing towards "No more federal aid" might not make as much sense as a gradual approach towards change.)

But, to answer your question, heavily-regulated markets in Europe didn't keep them from investing outside of their local market. We fucked up, and so the impact doesn't stop at our borders, every foreign investor gets to feel the pinch as well.

more than 5 years ago

Could Fuller Take Trek Back To TV?

transiit groan (444 comments)

it's these sort of fanboy conversations that keep me from caring. Were Berman & Braga bad for the Star Trek universe? Probably, but was that universe all that phenomenal to begin with?

You like it or you don't. All this dick-waving about what was best just makes me dislike all of it.

more than 5 years ago

After Monty Python Goes YouTube, Big Jump In DVD Sales

transiit evidence? (281 comments)

I keep seeing this number of 23000%

Where does it come from? As I posted (#8 on the mashable thread), the link that you'd expect to back up the claims links to overlay ads on youtube.

Either I'm incredibly dense, or this is an elaborate experiment to see how far and wide people will push completely unattributed statistics. Well, maybe both.

more than 5 years ago

Running Android On Netbooks

transiit Re:Hurm. (203 comments)

No, the app-store is important to the kool-aid drinkers that believed Apple when they said "No, we only reject apps from our device/profit model to keep you safe."

The same kool-aid enthusiasts that shuffled off from the shareware-hell that was the Windows/DOS environment for the last 15 years or so.

There was once a world that didn't recognize this as logical. These days, they are keeping themselves busy with actual problems, enough so that even raising a 1-finger salute to your line of thinking is likely unworthy of their effort.

But hey, consume, consume, consume, man. I'm sure someone appreciates it.

more than 5 years ago

The Secret Origins of Microsoft Office's Clippy

transiit Huh. They might've forgotten something. (263 comments)

For an article interested in the "Secret Origins of Clippy", they did a good job noting that this all started with the failed Microsoft Bob ("I see you've mistyped your password. Would you like to change it?"

But for all the secrecy they've uncovered in these public patent filings, they seemed to have missed that the program manager of MS Bob was Melinda French, who later became Melinda Gates. I understand she later worked with the team that gave the world the MS Office Assistant (clippy) as well as the Search animations that show up starting around Windows XP.

I guess it's anyone's guess whether there was any nepotism driving this as a marketable feature, even when it was regularly reviled by their users.

more than 5 years ago

Technocrat.net Shut Down

transiit Godspeed, man. (326 comments)

It's been my experience that reading too much into an implied tone in the slashdot summaries just gets me in trouble, so in brief:

Thanks, Bruce, for your efforts and contributions over the years and may your next project(s) be successful and fulfilling.

more than 5 years ago



Philadelphia to close all libraries?

transiit transiit writes  |  more than 5 years ago

transiit writes "As seen on The Consumerist, it looks like the trigger has been pulled to start the shutdown of the entire Philadelphia library system due to a government budget battle."
Link to Original Source



Beware the poo-flinging monkeys!!

transiit transiit writes  |  more than 13 years ago

Fight the power.

A) Write a journal entry that is very profound and makes everyone think journals are a great thing that only adds quality.

B) Write a journal entry that shows how useless the journal system is, thereby making a mockery of the whole effort.

C) Write a journal entry that you can read next time this year and still feel like you can show your face in public.

D) Write a journal entry that doesn't suck.

Correct answer: C. A & B are too easy. Anyone can sound profound with a smattering of big words sprinkled upon nebulous ideas, and the local trolls would serve as a great template for generating noise. D is probably impossible.

So how long before the usual bullshit creeps in and people start doing stupid things like faking their deaths by writing about it as a journal?

5 weeks of integral calculus at 8am every day. My summer has been reduced to two days. God bless America.


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