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Tech Looks To Obama To Save Them From 'Just Sort of OK' US Workers

xanthos Outsource Joe Green (441 comments)

Hey Zuck! There is a whole army of non-US Ivy league MBA's who will be more than happy to produce the same BS as Joe Green for a fraction of the cost. Don't you want to work with the "Best"? Doesn't Joe Green want you to?

about a month ago

Adobe Creative Cloud Is Back

xanthos Adobe better take a look at their SLA (74 comments)

If one of our sites was down for as long as Adobe's was, heads would roll.

What took so long to restore? Crappy process for restoring server images or recovering a database?

Or, as others have speculated, was there a security breach and they couldn't bring it back up until all the evidence was gathered and the vulnerability was closed.

Oh wait, this is Adobe we are talking about. Their code doesn't have vulnerabilities.

about 4 months ago

50 Years of BASIC, the Language That Made Computers Personal

xanthos Re:LISP instead! (224 comments)

LISP - Lots of InSipid Parenthesis

about 5 months ago

Born To RUN: Dartmouth Throwing BASIC a 50th B-Day Party

xanthos Remember, the B in BASIC is for Beginners (146 comments)

Surprised at the number of hateful comments regarding BASIC. Even when it was created it was aimed at novices not experts, hence the name: Beginners All-purpose Symbolic Instruction Code. The true value was that the simple syntax made learning programming concepts much simpler. I used to teach a beginning programming class in the 80's that used BASIC. I always felt that I was able to instill a better understanding of what was going on with the simple Line # VERB parameter syntax of the early language. Breaking things down only four Verb types ( Definition, Assignment, I/O, Control) , the operators, and the two type of variables/constants (string/numeric). That's all there is folks. Would I want to try and write a compiler in it, no, but that is not what the language was written for.

Dinosaur trivia points: why do loops commonly use the variable i. (Hint: int does not stand for index.)

about 5 months ago

Ask Slashdot: How To Reimagine a Library?

xanthos Puzzles! (231 comments)

Puzzles, puzzles and more puzzles! Number puzzles, word puzzles, shape puzzles! Tangram! Origami!

Things that make you think! Things that give you a sense of accomplishment when completed! Things that make you feel as smart as you are!


about 8 months ago

Hacker Says He Could Access 70,000 Healthcare.Gov Records In 4 Minutes

xanthos or Nieman Marcus (351 comments)

somehow I don't think that a group of people looking for government subsidies for their healthcare represent the best targets for identity fraud.

about 8 months ago

Why People Are So Bad At Picking Passwords

xanthos False Conclusion (299 comments)

I hate studies like this. Do people pick common passwords, of course they do. Does everyone pick an easy to guess password, of course not. Can it be blindly determined, for any given user, if their password is "simple" or "complex"? No.

The article puts the blame on the end user, when the truth is the problem is with the websites storing the passwords in plain text or as un-salted hashes and not locking out brute force attacks. What the researchers are really arguing is that
    1) your account may be compromised if hackers break into the website and steal all the passwords.
    2) your password might be easier to guess if it is related to you, hackers are targeting you personally (not likely), and the website doesn't lock the account out.

Don't blame the user, blame the developers and administrators for being lazy and/or inept and failing to protect people from themselves.

about 10 months ago

My NSA-induced paranoia level:

xanthos The Marketers are who scare me (290 comments)

I'm too small a fish for the NSA to care,

It's the marketing people who will correlate every facet of my life in an attempt to wrest every last penny from my fingers that scare me the most.

about a year ago

How Did You Learn How To Program?

xanthos Ollevetti! (623 comments)

I started about the same time on a Ollevetti 401 I believe. A glorified numeric key pad for input and a red light, a green light and a cash register style tape for output.

I believe you will never really understand how a computer works until you have done two things:
built a compiler/parser and have done machine language programming (which was what you did with the 401).

about a year ago

Average latency to

xanthos TOR! (558 comments)

varies depending upon the exit node.

about a year ago

Fusion Rocket Could Take Us To Mars

xanthos Let me guess - in 20 years? (171 comments)

We are talking about fusion here so of course it perpetually will be available in 20 years.

about a year and a half ago

Ask Slashdot: Do-It-Yourself Security Auditing Tools?

xanthos Go check out (116 comments) has a comprehensive list of tools with explanations of what each one does. Look at the web tools and the vulnerability scanners and you will find something you feel comfortable using. Most of the other tools mentioned so far can be found there. Also, the Open Web Applicaiton Security project ( has some good information on secure app development.

good luck.

about a year and a half ago

Gnome Goes JavaScript

xanthos Lead or Follow? Gnome chooses Follow. (387 comments)

From the article: "Gnome, the graphical desktop environment for Linux, may not be as influential as it once was."
Add to it, "use of JavaScript in WinRT, Chrome Apps, and FirefoxOS apps" and you probably get a lot of the reason for the decision.

Pity they didn't use the Hackfest to design something innovative to energize their base and make working with Gnome cutting edge. Instead it appears that they settling into comfortable middle age.

about a year and a half ago

Timothy Lord Discovers the Good Night Lamp at CES (Video)

xanthos Will it always be ad free? (236 comments)

I see the shiny white side of the house and think "rear projection screen for ads". Damn, now somebody will do that for real.

about a year and a half ago

Perl Turns 25

xanthos Re:Why perl? Because .... (263 comments)

There is more than one way to do it.

Perl can pretty much integrate anything with anything. Hardware or Software.

It is the Duct tape of the interwebs.

It is a swiss army chainsaw.

And yes,it can be nearly impossible to decipher what the code is doing, Oh, but the moment of enlightenment you have when you do figure out an obscure but elegant piece of code.

That, my friend, is "Why Perl?".


about 2 years ago

Congressional Committee Casts a Harsh Eye On Vaccination Science

xanthos Ignore the lawyers behind the curtain (858 comments)

Helicopter mommies don't buy congressmen, lawyers do.

Product liability lawyers don't want this potential cash cow to die just yet. All they need is a judge who doesn't believe in science because they personally "know better."

about 2 years ago

The Evolution of the Computer Keyboard

xanthos Old Farts and Model M's (201 comments)

When ever a keyboard article come along you get a bunch of old farts pining away about their venerable old Model M keyboards.

I know. I am an old fart and I have one. I love it but unfortunately it ruined me. I am totally unable to use a laptop keyboard.

They all suck. suck suck suck. The keys are in the wrong place, they don't feel right, and I keep hitting the effing touchpad with my thumbs and suddenly I am typing a porn url in the browser bar.

Now get off my lawn!

about 2 years ago

AMD Trinity APUs Stack Up Well To Intel's Core 3

xanthos APU better than CPU+GPU for HPC (223 comments)

from the 2011 Symposium on Application Accelerators in High-Performance Computing (

"Depending on the benchmark, our results show that Fusion produces a 1.7 to 6.0-fold improvement in the data-transfer time, when compared to a discrete GPU. In turn, this improvement in data-transfer performance can significantly enhance application performance. For example, running a reduction benchmark on AMD Fusion with its mere 80 GPU cores improves performance by 3.5-fold over the discrete AMD Radeon HD 5870 GPU with its 1600 more powerful GPU cores."

So if your interest is in crunching lots of data, you can do it a lot more efficiently with an APU since you don't have to shuttle across the bus.

about 2 years ago

I go through keyboards ...

xanthos Model M vs Cats (341 comments)

My cat likes to knock eveything off my desk. She can't move my Model M, it weighs more than she does.

about 2 years ago



Space vehicle unveiled at EAA

xanthos xanthos writes  |  more than 5 years ago

xanthos writes "Sir Richard Branson was at the annual Experimental Aircraft Assoc Fly-in to show off EVE (previously known as White Knight Two), the launch vehicle for Virgin Galactic's commercial space operation. Test flights for SpaceShipTwo are slated for next year with the first paying passenger's going up in 2011.

What surprised me was the following from the article:

"So many people have signed up already, Whitehorn said, that the company has collected $40 million in deposits with orders to build five spaceships to meet the demand."

Will this mean that the $200k price tag may be dropping?"

Link to Original Source


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