Slashdot: News for Nerds


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!



The Psychology of Phishing

tsqr Re:If you tried fixing that you did it wrong (118 comments)

Even something as basic as the difference between To: and Cc:, I've seen people assume "first goes in To:, rest goes in Cc:, and that's not how it works.

Personally, I like the people who don't understand the difference between Reply and Reply All. When HR sends a company picnic invitation to Everybody, the invitation is immediately followed by a Reply All flood of RSVPs from that crowd. Lately, though, HR seems to have discovered the Bcc: field as a solution to that issue.


States That Raised Minimum Wage See No Slow-Down In Job Growth

tsqr Re: Local testing works? (774 comments)

People who can't move? Do you have any idea how many dirt-poor people moved out of the dust bowl during the Great Depression?

4 days ago

White House Punts On Petition To Allow Tesla Direct Sales

tsqr Re:What? (382 comments)

Not all popular idea's will go out or should go out, just because the majority wills it.

Or, as Edmund Burke put it back in the late 18th century, "Your representative owes you, not his industry only, but his judgement; and he betrays instead of serving you if he sacrifices it to your opinion."

about two weeks ago

Predicting a Future Free of Dollar Bills

tsqr Re:Cost of smartphone service (753 comments)

But then you have to pay hundreds of USD for an iPhone (or maybe one hundred for a compatible Android phone) and hundreds of USD per year to upgrade from voice-only cellular service to smartphone service. Or what am I missing?

That most people already have a smartphone.

The data plan issue is a bigger one, I think.

According to this survey, 56% of all US adults have smartphones (61% of cell-phone users). So yeah, "most", but not exactly an overwhelming majority. Note also that smart phone ownership is heavily skewed toward the upper income brackets, especially among older age groups.

about two weeks ago

Predicting a Future Free of Dollar Bills

tsqr Re:Useless coins (753 comments)

On the other hand... have you ever had a wallet full of bills? Dollar bills, like pennies, can really add up. Add a couple fives, tens and twenties and your wallet will be about to burst, not wanting to close properly.

Right now I have $98 in currency in my wallet (mix of 20s, 10s and 1s), and my wallet is showing no signs of distress. Personally, I'd rather have eight 1-dollar bills in my wallet than a small pile of heavy coins in my pocket, all mixed in with my thumb drives, keys, and pocket knife. I also prefer not to make jingle-jangle noises when I walk, but I suppose some people like that sound.

Then the next time you pull your wallet out, you have to deal with the nightmare of wading through tens of loose pieces of paper, all folded and bent and deformed in any way imaginable, to get to the bills you need.

First world problem. If your currency is "all folded and bent and deformed in any way imaginable", you're not doing it right. Are you one of those people who keep their currency all wadded up in a ball? Anyway, if you think straightening out a pile of money is a nightmare, you should count yourself lucky in life.

about two weeks ago

Dubai's Climate-Controlled Dome City Is a Dystopia Waiting To Happen

tsqr Re:Global warming is only the start (265 comments)

What will happen when eventually, inevitably, the oil and gas of the UAE starts to dwindle, the economy correspondingly does the same, and the energy supply to keep the whole thing cool becomes prohibitively expensive?

Here's some information for you. Oil and gas are a minor (and decreasing) part of the economy. Not sure about pizza and beer, though.

about two weeks ago

ESA Shows Off Quadcopter Landing Concept For Mars Rovers

tsqr Re: This is not going to work. (104 comments)

Yes, it isgoing to work, actually. A proof of concept vehicle has already been flown in a chamber at Martian atmospheric pressure.

about two weeks ago

California Legalizes Bitcoin

tsqr Re:Bitcoin's day has come. (162 comments)

No one I know uses anything but Windows on the desktop (and a few OSX).

Allow me to introduce myself. I've been using Linux on the desktop since 1997. Also Windows from time to time, and for the last 7 years, frequently OS X. Maybe I've been at war with myself, but casualties have been very light.

As to the parent AC's reference to "desktop wars" being rendered irrelevant, it's probably with respect to those whose computer requirements are sufficiently trivial that they are satisfied by a smartphone and/or tablet. I have an Android phone and an Android tablet, and I enjoy using both of them for casual content consumption; but, they aren't anywhere near adequate to do most of what I use a desktop or laptop computer for, either at home or at work.

about three weeks ago

What's Your STEM Degree Worth?

tsqr Re:Worth mentioning (148 comments)

However, getting a STEM Ph.D. closes nearly all doors except becoming a researcher or teacher in your field.

I guess it depends on the field. I have a lowly BSEE earned many years ago, but where I work (small aerospace company), you can't walk from your office to the coffee room without tripping over a couple of PhDs. They're not here to teach or to do research.

about a month ago

Workaholism In America Is Hurting the Economy

tsqr Re:I sleep less. (710 comments)

Something a lot of people forget is that with a 2-income home, we get a 2-income lifestyle. You could probably still do what they did in the 50s, but you would have to give up a lot of what we value more.

My wife quit working 12 years ago. Financially, we're doing better than we did while she was working -- spending less on commuting, clothing, food (dining out is a treat, not something you have to do because no one has time to cook), laundry (they actually sell these machines that enable you to do it yourself instead of paying someone else to do it; all it takes is time) and not having to hire a house cleaning service, and avoiding the "marriage income tax penalty" imposed on the second income, we actually have more disposable income than we did when she had a paying job. We don't have small kids at home, but if we did we'd be saving even more, on child care.

Then there are the emotional benefits. A lot of people need a career to feel fulfilled. My wife liked her job, but she truly despised getting up in the morning and going to work. She likes taking care of the household, and she's a lot happier when I come home in the evening than she used to be. The saying, "Happy Wife; Happy Life" has a lot of truth to it.

I'm not suggesting that this is a successful strategy for everyone. As I said, some people need a career to feel fulfilled. Some couples won't save any money on some of the items I listed above, because even with two incomes they can't afford to eat out often or pay for laundry and house cleaning services. But it's worth sitting down and running the budget numbers to see if it can work.

about a month ago

Florida Man Faces $48k Fine For Jamming Drivers' Cellphones

tsqr Re:here's what's wrong with that (358 comments)

my IQ is 30% higher than the average person

I look down at my phone [while driving] to see what the heck happened

If you're as bright as you say you are, you'll realize that those two statements are mutually exclusive.

about 1 month ago

San Francisco Bans Parking Spot Auctioning App

tsqr Re:Communism (404 comments)

if they're privately owned parking spots then this should be allowed

From TFS: "People are free to rent out their own private driveways and garage spaces should they choose to do so."

about 1 month ago

The Bursting Social Media Advertising Bubble

tsqr Re:No one is ever influenced by advertising (254 comments)

You've never met someone with an IQ less than 100? That must be nice....

Apparently, he's never had to respond to a jury service summons.

about a month ago

X Window System Turns 30 Years Old

tsqr June, 1997 (204 comments)

On a re-purposed Win NT 4.0 box running OpenCaldera 1.0. That was when I first dipped my toes into the Linux pool, and I've been swimming happily ever since.

about a month ago

Average HS Student Given Little Chance of AP CS Success

tsqr Re:Really? (293 comments)

High School is completely different than college. If you show up to class in Highschool it is the teacher's job to make sure you pass, and courses do not cost you money either way, so almost no one drops courses

I guess things have changed quite a bit since I was in high school back in the stone age. Difficult elective classes had a significant drop rate, with the droppers usually opting to transfer into one of the "manual arts" (e.g., auto shop or wood shop) classes.

about a month ago

EU's Online Shoppers Get an Extended "Cooling Off Period"

tsqr Re:Commentator's Remorse (140 comments)

From TFS: This 'cooling-off period,' during which a refund can be requested without being required to give a reason for the cancellation, ...

In other words, "I changed my mind and I want my money back; never mind that the product is exactly as desribed and functions perfectly." This new law is specifically to cover buyer's remorse, not cases of defective product or packing/description.

about a month ago

EU's Top Court May Define Obesity As a Disability

tsqr Re:This reminds me of a great Simpsons episode (625 comments)

Deprivation is a miserable weight loss strategy and almost always fails after a short struggle.

Cutting caloric intake to a reasonable level below the amount you burn doesn't have to be "deprivation", at least the way most reasonable people understand the meaning of the word. I've been losing 1-1/2 pounds per week since the end of February. I just stopped snacking between meals and started having salads for most lunches instead of big sandwiches, pizza or burritos; also started taking a walk around the building at work 4 to 5 times a day to get away from my computer monitor for a bit. I'm not feeling any urges to binge, and I don't feel deprived at all, but I sure feel a lot better than I did 3 months ago.

Starvation diets aimed at losing a lot of weight very quickly, though -- that's a whole different story. That has a high likelihood of putting your body in the "holy crap; I better start storing all the fat I can to survive this famine!" mode.

about a month and a half ago

Teacher Tenure Laws Ruled Unconstitutional In California

tsqr Re:You make it... (519 comments)

Your post, if accurate, is quite an indictment of the public education system. However, it certainly isn't clear why a tenure system that starts with only two years of experience (in Callifornia; mileage may vary in other states) is needed to protect highly experienced teachers from being laid off in favor of new teachers making only half the salary.

As to termination for cause, that is very difficult in the state of California, short of the cause being a felony conviction. The process is very complex, resembles a legal proceeding, and can take two to three years to complete and cost several million dollars. During the 2011-2012 school year, LA Unified School District initiated termination procedures against 758 teachers, and it made the news because it was an order of magnitude increase compared to historical averages. Of course, that only represents 2.5% of the LAUSD teacher population, and only 56 of them were tenured. I wasn't able to find a source citing how many of those 758 dismissals were appealed, but I can tell you that the state panel that hears appeals has historically sided with the teachers. By contrast, in the past year the company I work for laid off nearly 25% of their Engineering workforce; by the way, the overwhelming majority of those who lost their jobs were not older, higher paid people. The difficulty in terminating "bad" teachers may be the primary reason they end up being transferred to "bad" schools.

about a month and a half ago

Teacher Tenure Laws Ruled Unconstitutional In California

tsqr Re:History (519 comments)

Tenure in elementary and secondary schools makes good sense. Otherwise, the school administration. ever eager to save a buck, would lay off the older, higher-paid teachers, and hire new ones at lower wages.

There is scant evidence to support the contention that in California, school administrations are particularly eager to "save a buck."

about a month and a half ago


tsqr hasn't submitted any stories.


tsqr has no journal entries.

Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

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>
Create a Slashdot Account