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Comments

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US Government Fights To Not Explain No-Fly List Selection Process

twdorris Re:Loose Lips Sinik Ships (218 comments)

It should be noted that in the seminal case that established the state secrets privilege, United States v. Reynolds, the government used the national security argument to hide negligence.

That original claim to privilege was retested in the early 2000s once those "secret" documents had been declassified and *still* the court found that the government had *not* abused its state secrets privilege. It may be your opinion that the government tried to hide negligence, but that's not the accepted opinion and not the one reached by many trained scholars (judges, lawyers) actually practicing in the field on a daily basis. So perhaps you should remove the tin foil hat covering your eyes every once in a while and consider that there may be more to some things than you might first think.

Now, that said, I'm no big government promoter. Far from it. You can read some of my prior comments for examples. What I don't want are for people to discredit the entire concept of major government reform by making such broad statements without addressing the (potentially legitimate) counter arguments. Taken in context, those original claims to state secret privileges seem relevant to me in this particular case.

10 hours ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Wish You'd Known Starting Out As a Programmer?

twdorris Code less, get out more (548 comments)

I wish I had learned to balance real life with coding life sooner. I used to do the same zillion hour marathons everyone else did at one point or another in their coding careers. I loved the challenge and being the one producing the results. But then, eventually, I realized there's really a LOT more out there than that tiny little challenge/reward cycle. Biking, hiking, sports with friends, whatever. You can easily burn through 10-15 years of your YOUNG life living the code only to realize later when you're not so young any more that there were TONS of things you would have enjoyed doing more. You can make up some of that, but not nearly all.

about a week ago
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Unintended Consequences For Traffic Safety Feature

twdorris Re:The problem with traffic engineers... (579 comments)

As it turns out, people are stupid.

Truer words have never been spoken. People are stupid and you can't fix stupid. You'd think they'd weed themselves out eventually, but as it turns out, we're all people. And we're all stupid. We're just stupid at different times.

I've nearly run into the back of someone at a stop light when they started rolling forward and then suddenly slammed on the brakes because they didn't see a car coming into the intersection. I was glancing around checking for traffic I might have been concerned with and nearly ran into the back of him because I just assumed he was going to continue rolling forward like the hundreds of others before him I had been behind at other intersections.

A single moment of inattention and a single false assumption nearly caused a wreck. I was stupid. We're all stupid. We all need some engineered help against stupid from time to time. A sensor that detects an impending crash with something right in front of me would have helped. Lots of cars have these things now. That's an engineered solution to a moment of stupidity.

Not everything can be fixed with engineered solutions, but we can't assume modifying behavior is a fix-all either. In fact, I would give behavior modification a far less chance of success given how random and clueless we meatbags are.

So I vote for more engineered solutions, not less. But the solutions need to involved some human behavioral analysis as well. I mean who in their right minds couldn't have predicted that passing motorists would see these count down times and use them to speed through intersections? And who wouldn't have predicted that this would leave to an increase in accidents on average? Duh. That should have been taken into account and a different solution should have been investigated.

All that said, I also feel like we need to define some acceptable limits here. I mean we can't go making every single intersection 100% secure. If some accidents are happening at an intersection, let's talk about the *rate* and decide if that's just an acceptable rate or not. The fact that there are accidents or that accidents are happening a little more often now than they were before is a little meaningless without numbers to compare to. I find that we have FAR, FAR too many laws and regulations trying to bring fatalities and liabilities and accidents to near zero already.

about 2 months ago
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Happy Software Developers Solve Problems Better

twdorris Re:Therefore... (121 comments)

The beatings will continue until the smileys stop. If you're so happy, get back to work.

about 2 months ago
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Happy Software Developers Solve Problems Better

twdorris Re:News flash (121 comments)

People who are happy do better at things.

Its more like individuals achieve better performance when they are happy. Either way that is really good news. :-)

OMFG...why do people have to reply like that? "It's more like", "Not only that, but", "It's worse than that because". Ugh. The one-up-manship drives me nuts.

How is "individuals achieve better performance when they are happy" any better than "people who are happy do better at things"? Seriously? How is one "more like" the article than the other when the whole purpose was to provide a sarcastic summary of a long-winded project to show some obvious results?

And the little smiley at the end does NOT make it all OK. It's not smart. It's not humorous. It's nothing but a bunch of drivel so you could hear your keyboard clack away.

And while you're at it, get off my damn lawn!

about 2 months ago
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The Internet's Own Boy

twdorris Re:Internet bullies (194 comments)

First, that 13 year old girl was bullied on My Space, not Facebook. Prosecutors tried to go after her, but ultimately she was acquitted of the main felony charge anyway. So maybe nobody is going after the "bullies" in this case because they know better. If they can't even get a 3-year sentence to stick on an "uneducated, immature soccer mom", what chance do they have against high ranking officials that will be even harder to pin down anyway? Seems like a good call to me.

about a month ago
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Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

twdorris Re:Compromise is implied by multipurpose (432 comments)

You're full of shit. Modern engine management systems take care of it all.

I can't tell if you're joking or not.

The computer can adjust for the change in stoichiometric ratio (mixture), obviously. And to some extent I'm sure they have fiddled with the ignition timing and maybe the open loop mixture tables as well. But you're stuck with whatever compromise in compression ratio they decided on when they designed the hard parts. And who knows if valve timing might be better tweaked as well. Cars that don't have adjustable valve timing will have a compromise there too.

I'm fairly certain the OP's point is valid that somewhere in the system some number of compromises are made to allow for the multi-purpose operation.

about 3 months ago
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eBay Compromised

twdorris Re:link? (193 comments)

This retech user has provided advice in his signature as to how to best respond to his posts.

about 3 months ago
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FCC Proposes $48,000 Fine To Man Jamming Cellphones On Florida Interstate

twdorris Re:Darwin shot and missed on this one (427 comments)

Who is the asshole now?

Oh, just some anonymous coward who thinks it's OK to go all vigilante on everyone around them without thinking through the all unintended consequences.

about 4 months ago
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Western Digital 'MyCloud' Is Down 5 Days and Counting

twdorris Re:whats the surprise again? (127 comments)

I hate this hacker crap.

But I'm loving this 3D Linux file system manager!

about 5 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Consider Elegant Code?

twdorris Re:Elegance only exists in textbooks (373 comments)

Most code will not fall into the "elegant" category. The reason is that real-life software has to deal with exceptions, language crocks, patches/modifications and bug-fixes.

And those damn users. I can write what I (and seemingly others) consider "elegant" code. But that's usually only possible down in the bowels of a microprocessor where you have known constraints and no meat bags randomly typing shit at you that you have to parse and decipher and then present a myriad of exception messages back to, etc., etc.

about 5 months ago
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Krita 2.8 Released

twdorris Re: tired of the lack of progress on GIMP (75 comments)

GIMP is way over-promoted by FOSS zealots who usually can't accomplish much more than cropping a picture and applying a few filters to the entire image.

This. I really, REALLY want to use GIMP; I do. And I've tried; several times. But I just can't. It's just too clunky and slow and not well thought out in any reasonable manner. Windows pop up in wrong places with wrong Z order, making them impossible to find sometimes. *Common* features (like adjustment layers) are simply missing or work in horrible, horrible ways (like drawing a @#$!@%$ line with an arrow point end).

No, GIMP is not what some people make it out to be. I'd rather use an old Paintshop Pro 6 release than anything GIMP related. And I would except Corel does a better job at screwing up their own products than any other company I've seen in ages. I've actually bought and paid for several versions of Paintshop Pro in the past decade only to have my license mysteriously stop working. "Too many installations" they say. But this message comes up randomly when I haven't done any new installation in months. And then, suddenly, my workflow is halted in its tracks and I'm back to trying GIMP one more time.

My requirements are not steep. I'm not a pro graphics artist by any means. But there doesn't seem to be any good open source graphics editors out there and Krita doesn't seem to fit the bill either. Bah.

about 6 months ago
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Examining the User-Reported Issues With Upgrading From GCC 4.7 To 4.8

twdorris Re:Duh? (148 comments)

The linked "bug" is here: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/19350097/pre-calculating-in-gcc-4-8-c11 - which says, "Hey, this certain optimization isn't on by default anymore?" And to which the answer is, "Yeah, due to changes in C++11, you're supposed to explicitly flag that you want that optimization in your code."

That linked "bug" appears to be an actual "bug" since a fix for it was posted to 4.8.2. See here.

http://gcc.gnu.org/bugzilla/show_bug.cgi?id=57511

about 7 months ago
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Why Cloud Infrastructure Pricing Is Absurd

twdorris Re:Sentence doesn't make sense (191 comments)

Verbs are not things; nouns are things.

A gerand is a verbal noun. Does that make it a thing?

about 9 months ago
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Is the Porsche Carrera GT Too Dangerous?

twdorris Re:When you have a bad driver ... (961 comments)

When it comes to cars, I wont be happy until human-driven cars are outlawed on public roads. Just so we are clear on where i stand on risk vs safety.

Interesting. You're still accepting risk, though. You've just defined your limit to be so small that I dare say it's bordering on insane; IMO anyway.

Ah...if only we could all just wake up and have an automated machine put our clothes on for us, transport us where we want to go and put us to bed at night. That'd be great. Then all we'd have to do is sit around and think while we stare blindly ahead.

Again, no thanks.

Life isn't worth living without experiences. Seriously, it's not. And experiences have risks. They just do. I risk tripping and stabbing myself with a scissor every time I walk across the floor with one in my hand. That's a risk I've learned to accept. I could put the scissors in a box and gently nudge it across the floor with my shuffling feet I suppose. But that's not an acceptable "safety vs. risk" trade off I'm willing to make. We all make these trade offs every day.

All we're talking about here is how far to take it. I can see now that you're willing to take this particular one far, far further than I would have ever imagined any sane person to consider. If enough others think similarly, then I may need to modify my definition of sane I suppose.

about 9 months ago
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Is the Porsche Carrera GT Too Dangerous?

twdorris Re:When you have a bad driver ... (961 comments)

I assure you it was people like you being parodied.

By people like you that aren't actually thinking through the implications of a totally safe environment.

Wait, what? You never said you wanted a totally safe environment? Ok, then I guess even you find some amount of risk acceptable. No?

So we both accept some risk. All we're babbling about here is how much. I think we're there. I think we've been there since anti-lock brakes were introduced. Everyone else seems to want to keep tacking on more and more laws to getting that 0.001% more warm and fuzzy feeling out of it.

No thanks.

about 9 months ago
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Is the Porsche Carrera GT Too Dangerous?

twdorris Re:When you have a bad driver ... (961 comments)

Public roads are not a place for taking risk.

Are you f'ing kidding me again? Not a place for taking risk? ANY risk? What's your acceptable limit of risk? ZERO? Don't drive. That's the only way to get zero risk of getting injured while driving due to someone else's mistake. If you're not willing to stop driving, then accept some risk. And ask yourself if we really need MORE laws on the books to keep us every MORE safe. My answer...a resounding HELL NO.

You are free to run as hot and loose as you want on private property.

Oh, I do. As often and as hot and loose as I can get. Which is exactly why I don't want every car on the road dumbed down to keep bubble boy safe up there.

about 9 months ago
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Is the Porsche Carrera GT Too Dangerous?

twdorris Re:When you have a bad driver ... (961 comments)

Trading safety enforced by law for the freedom of choosing not to be safe? Are you fucking serious? Do you also not wear a seatbelt because that would go against your freedom not to wear one?

Hyperbole alert! Hyperbole alert! See, Kielistic, I'm not the only one.

You people are funny. You're not actually READING what I said. I never @#$!%$! said I want NO SAFETY so I can do whatever I want. I said I'd be willing to trade a LITTLE safety for a LITTLE more choice. Holy crap. Everyone wants that. Everyone does that. Why can't you people see that?

Didn't you get the real meaning of my own hyperbole? It was to point out how stupid it is to keep putting safety first over everything else. How many laws are you willing to tolerate to be a little more safe? At what point do you draw the line? That's all we're talking about here. Where's the line? Is it zero safety features? No. Is it every safety feature? No. It's a little safety in exchange for a little choice. At some point, there's a diminishing return to take into account.

I just get sick and tired of reading people's comments like the one I originally replied to calling for everyone to do everything they can to keep everyone else uber safe. It's retarded. Consider that you HAVE to STOP restricting choice in exchange for safety at some freaking point. We're beyond that point. STOP!

about 9 months ago
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Is the Porsche Carrera GT Too Dangerous?

twdorris Re:When you have a bad driver ... (961 comments)

It's funny that you perfectly match adolf's parody above but are totally serious about it.

It took me a bit to figure out WTF you were referring to without a link to the parody in question. Thanks for that, BTW.

But now that I read it, I can tell you with 100% certainty that I did not "perfectly match" his parody. In fact, it wasn't even close. I specifically limited my willingness to give up a "little" safety in exchange for a "little" choice. Either you can't read or you're not bothering to do so or you just looking for someone to poke at. If it's either of the first two, bugger off. If it's the later, bring something meaningful to the discussion or move along.

about 9 months ago

Submissions

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Is E85 dead now?

twdorris twdorris writes  |  more than 2 years ago

twdorris writes "With a stoichiometric ratio far lower than that of gasoline (much lower than the price difference), buying E85 instead of gasoline was already hard to justify. Unless you raced your car on a track where E85 provided a GREAT alternative to race fuel, it really didn't make financial sense. And there are other reasons not to buy E85 too. Like the impact corn-based ethanol is having on food prices or the questionable emissions results (link to paper).

So now that the ethanol subsidies provided by the United States federal government are scheduled to end this summer, it's going to be even harder to justify E85 (at least in the US). This change will basically make a gallon of E85 cost the same or slightly more than gasoline.

With so many things working against it, are the days numbered for readily available E85 at your local gas station? And should it have ever even been made available to begin with? How much did all that government-backed R&D and tax credits cost us for something that was pretty clearly questionable to begin with?"

Link to Original Source
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SOPA and PIPA dead in the water?

twdorris twdorris writes  |  more than 2 years ago

twdorris writes "Is this an example of our 3-part government actually working as intended? It seems the executive branch doesn't agree with the legislative on a key piece of lobby-induced insanity.

http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/471520c6-3f9f-11e1-ad6a-00144feab49a.html#axzz1jYVL1BbO

Quote FTFA:

“While we believe that online piracy by foreign websites is a serious problem that requires a serious legislative response, we will not support legislation that reduces freedom of expression, increases cybersecurity risk, or undermines the dynamic, innovative global internet,” the White House said in a blog post."

Link to Original Source

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