Beta
×

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!

Comments

top

Google and Adobe Contribute Open Source Rasterizer to FreeType

wootest Re:I wrote a CFF renderer in C# (77 comments)

Selectively varying the proportions of the glyphs or the spacing between them to produce crisper rasterized output.

about a year ago
top

GCC 4.8.0 Release Marks Completion of C++ Migration

wootest Re:Does it dance yet? (269 comments)

C compilers aren't well served by having GUIs, but IDEs are well served by compilers being libraries since it makes accurate and consistent analysis possible. If an IDE continuously uses compiler-like logic all the time anyway and has several files pre-parsed and in a known state, compilation can happen faster by not having to start over from scratch every time. And that's before we get to real semantic/static analysis and refactoring assistance.

GCC has been usable as a component in making some stuff happen, but as the OP pointed out, it was an explicit goal of RMS's to not make embedding too easy lest someone bake in the smarts without going whole hog GPL.

about a year and a half ago
top

Neal Stephenson Reinventing Computer Swordfighting, Via Kickstarter

wootest Re:Proprietary Hardware (151 comments)

One of those two projects I helped fund so that it ended up happening at all, and in the second of them I said that I was willing to order something, so that they could negotiate the right kind of price and put up enough money to start production.

Not sure when "funding" or "capitalism" became "begging for handouts", or when "asking a thousand people collectively" became filthier than "asking one bank".

more than 2 years ago
top

Neal Stephenson Reinventing Computer Swordfighting, Via Kickstarter

wootest Re:Proprietary Hardware (151 comments)

As someone who's currently reaping the rewards of both projects I sponsored on Kickstarter, I reject the insinuation that many or most Kickstarter projects are frauds.

There are crooks everywhere. Kickstarter, by making it easier for people to collect money, makes it easier for those people just as much as the legitimate users.

I understand where their position on refunds comes from even if I probably wouldn't be very happy about being in that situation. It's up to local law enforcement to deal with fraudsters, and as long as they've done reasonable due diligence (to the extent that they even can), I wouldn't be more comfortable if they suddenly had more power available to them.

If you want to raise complaints about Kickstarter, why not complain about their policy of blaming the stalked woman for being stalked? Their reaction and their policy is entirely under their control.

more than 2 years ago
top

In America, 46% of People Hold a Creationist View of Human Origins

wootest Re:Really? (1359 comments)

I think you read more into "implausible" than I do. Implausible just means not probable and is a relative term. Saying that we are circling around a giant nuclear fireball is "implausible" if you rewind human history enough, but it can be proven by observation once you figure out that stars are not celestial monuments of the dead but large nuclear reactors and that everyone's made up of parts of dead stars. You're right that there's nothing objective that you could point to to say that the idea of God is something that seems implausible, but is actually true, and in this way it is not science. However, I don't see why noting that is flamebait.

about 2 years ago
top

In America, 46% of People Hold a Creationist View of Human Origins

wootest Re:Really? (1359 comments)

I said God to mean the idea separate from religion that means a higher power that controls, created or interferes with the universe or its building blocks. If you say that just outside of all that we can perceive and measure, there's a guy named Thor with a big hammer, I don't think it's possible to prove that or disprove that, because it's built into the concept that he would then be immeasurable. (Don't worry, this doesn't mean that I think he does exist either, or that people that assert it is right.) For all I've heard, this is the argument that's actually being made whenever someone defends the idea of a God.

about 2 years ago
top

In America, 46% of People Hold a Creationist View of Human Origins

wootest Re:Really? (1359 comments)

Utter bunkum. Science has nothing at all to say even about dualism let alone about God because it (intentionally and by convention) only speaks to the material, while the "rationalizations that support the concept of God" have never been mere questions about how the material has changed from state to state.

Which definition of God have you heard that includes there being something that you can actually prove about it? Everything I've heard is inference of causality. X, therefore God exists because Y. Y is never objectively universal, X is often flimsy and the connection is never explained or defined.

The constant droning about imaginary tea cups is a bare faced straw man

Thus why I said "attempts". Just like everyone carrying the idea of God doesn't have a united front, there are people coming at it from all sides with varying arguments of varying quality. Doubting the existence of a tea pot doesn't disprove God, but it's supposed to illustrate that you don't have to assume that God does exists just because someone holds it on faith. Where it really falls down is that you actually could find the tea pot, whereas no one ever produces anything that unambiguously, to widespread agreement and without fail would prove the existence of God.

The way people "believe" in infinite universes is probably fraught with misuse too, but if there was no way of holding a working hypothesis in your head temporarily in order to work from it to build a model that could be tested, there would have been a lot less scientific progress.

about 2 years ago
top

In America, 46% of People Hold a Creationist View of Human Origins

wootest Re:Really? (1359 comments)

Science can't disprove God for the same reason that God can't be proven, but it can remove many of the rationalizations that supports the concept of God in the first place. What's left is something very implausible that you deliberately have to take on faith. The constant droning about imaginary tea cups in orbit (or not) around the moon are attempts to demonstrate why the same arguments wouldn't fly with anyone if you just changed the case from religion to something else that can't be proven. Without historical and cultural context, there's no reason to believe anything on the same premises other than simply wanting something to be true.

more than 2 years ago
top

How Steve Jobs Patent-Trolled Bill Gates

wootest Re:Disagree (307 comments)

Their marketing department is fantastic at knowing what people want.

Most are. I think the wave breaker is that their engineering department also has strong opinions on what people want beyond the individual components used to achieve parts of the design.

more than 2 years ago
top

VLC 2.0 'Twoflower' Released For Windows & Mac

wootest Re:Mac interface VASTLY improved (299 comments)

And yes, "App Store and Verified Developer" IS the default.

When I formatted a USB drive and did a clean install, the default was the "everything" option. Maybe this will be changed later, but it's not the default now.

more than 2 years ago
top

Google Releases Chrome For Android Beta

wootest Re:Didn't Android *always* have Chrome? (142 comments)

"SunSpider" is a JavaScript benchmark. Safari's JavaScript engine is called Nitro (formerly SquirrelFish).

more than 2 years ago
top

DigiTimes Lends Credence To Apple-Branded TVs For 2012

wootest Re:Not likely (232 comments)

> Apple is not going to enter a market that is already in an aggressive price reduction war.

They're not going to enter it with the same product that everyone else is pushing. The point is that the current TV market, plagued with razor-thin margins for years, is making all those cheap TVs to meet demand, but none of the players are turning profits from doing so. 3D and internet/"smart" TVs (with apps) are grabs to differentiate their product. They all want something that's so clearly more than "just a TV" that you'll pay the premium required for them to start making money again.

They did enter a similar market with their box, the Apple TV, but they're just now starting to really differentiate themselves there too with Airplay, with more widespread coverage from iTunes and with Netflix. It's not like Airplay-like functionality hasn't been on offer for years; it's that it's been buried under seventy different acronyms, some of which map to competing and incompatible standards, and the vast majority of those who could potentially be using them didn't know about them, get around to it or get it working. Apple TV alone is not enough.

People started talking about an Apple phone years before iPhones, an Apple tablet before iPads and Intel Macs before Intel Macs. Even longtime rumors sometimes come true, although not ever on account of being longtime rumors. In this case, it certainly helps that they've been having an average time with Apple TV for years and that Steve Jobs was quoted as saying he'd cracked the secret to "television".

Let's go back to what will save "TVs". Computers and mobile phones be damned, this industry has been fundamentally unchanged for 80 years. All you've really gotten is a better picture and new ways of bringing a repertoire of channels to your house. Every recent TV innovation of any value has been a case of patching the current system or taking advantage of the inadequacy of the medium - making it suck less. If you rewind all this and build a TV from the ground up based on what people really want, fundamentally closer to YouTube and podcasts and maybe some Tivo-like features, the world is your oyster.

more than 2 years ago
top

Why Everyone Hates the IT Department

wootest Re:Reflections (960 comments)

Didn't say that in the slightest. I said that when they need it, they should be able to get it so that the IT policy won't get in their way. This also means that if they don't need it, they don't necessarily have to have it. And it definitely means that when the time comes that they probably need it, getting a sysadmin to write scripts for them is probably not a good use of resources or indeed letting the right person do the right job.

more than 2 years ago
top

Why Everyone Hates the IT Department

wootest Re:Reflections (960 comments)

I don't think they *always* need them, but I suspect you're missing some combinations by saying "VM, next question". I can't name them offhand right now, though, although forcing some developers to essentially do all of their work inside a VM on an otherwise capable machine also throws away a bunch of computing power just to be safe.

more than 2 years ago
top

Why Everyone Hates the IT Department

wootest Re:Reflections (960 comments)

Oh sure, there will be automation (which is why my comment went on to discuss scripts), but my point was that sometimes the thing you have to do requires a task to be done that's much better left to you than to the sysadmin. Additionally, another, implicit point was that requiring everything to pass through the sysadmin in every case hobbles the developer and bothers the sysadmin. I don't suppose you're saying that developers shouldn't automate repetitive tasks by themselves just because they might involve acquiring new binaries.

more than 2 years ago
top

Why Everyone Hates the IT Department

wootest Re:Reflections (960 comments)

As part of a brief assignment I'm currently in a position where accidentally wiping out the database can happen daily. I can only do backups locally from the database/web server, its hard drive is very tight for space and there is a strict policy to not move the data to any other machine as they contain sensitive data, so I can't even move the backups to my own computer to swap space. The main production database *is* the development database, and the production web site *is* the development web site. It's so dysfunctional I only wish I was making this up.

I would love to have version control and a separate test database, but the policy prohibits this because it would give me too much power over my own surroundings and we can't have that. It is naturally completely possible technically since it's the way every other company does it. What's important to this company is locking everyone down and playing balance sheet politics, such that acquiring the software necessary, even if it's open source, requires a purchase from an installation service and impacts the bottom line.

I am a contractor on this assignment and it's the worst thing I've ever seen personally, although anecdotes on stack overflow and some The Daily WTF articles informs me that there's still a way to go until the bottom of the barrel. I should have asked five more questions during the interview and told them I wouldn't be taking it because I couldn't guarantee the level and pace of my work in such a constrained environment.

This sure as hell has to do with seeing IT as a cost rather than a valuable resource (this company is probably among the top 500 biggest in all of Europe), but in this case the attitude of the IT department isn't helping. The sad thing is that being such a large company, they're still probably serving 99.9%+ well, and whoever takes over after me will be another one in a relay race of the mysteriously disappointing consultants and the system will never actually improve.

more than 2 years ago
top

Why Everyone Hates the IT Department

wootest Re:Reflections (960 comments)

It's possible that this has happened to you. My own anecdotal evidence says that it has never happened to me or the people I've worked with. I'm sure there are some dolts that are willing to point the finger at the IT department and disassociate themselves from their own responsibilities at the earliest convenience, but it may be the case that they are not widespread.

more than 2 years ago
top

Why Everyone Hates the IT Department

wootest Re:Reflections (960 comments)

And what if your job is compatibility testing; making sure something works across a "zoo" of different environments? Having a "competent sysadmin" do something is well and good when it needs to work reliably in the same way for a number of people and be included in some sort of guarantee. The trick to IT management is to recognize which battles to fight.

Let's say only you required those things. The best thing would probably be for you to be given appropriate rein and to build it yourself. Being a developer doesn't lead you to be a security expert, but it means that you are probably more likely to bump into the limitations put in place to keep most people secure, and you shouldn't be constrained from doing your job.

Let's say five people required those things. Someone of the five could probably work out a way that would work, but that script or workflow doesn't have to be authored by the IT department because it's not the job of the IT department to write every scheduled task but to maintain the basic upkeep of the system and the environment. They shouldn't do it by default for the same reason that they don't write Excel templates for the accountants. On the other hand, depending on what kind of restrictions are in place, maybe the IT department and the developers will need to work something out to make sure they can run what they can run. It shouldn't be so tough to not trash the environment that the IT department is willing to support that only a sysadmin can deal with it at all.

more than 2 years ago
top

Pirate Party Gains Another Seat In EU

wootest Re:The only people in the world and the party that (156 comments)

Who said the Pirate Party held a green position? (And for that matter, who said greens were universally "against urbanism"?)

They're currently in the Green group in the European Parliament, because they presumably were most willing to agree to vote for the Pirate Party's positions on their core issues. In return, the Pirate Party votes for the green bloc's position in other places. That's how it usually works, except that when I voted for them I knew exactly which of their issues they'd be trading in (none) and what they'd vote for in return (according to their bloc for issues outside of their agenda; I would have preferred if they wouldn't have, regardless of bloc, but I'm happy to trade it for the leverage).

more than 2 years ago

Submissions

wootest hasn't submitted any stories.

Journals

wootest has no journal entries.

Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

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>