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Comment I object to some of your comments.... (Score 1) 258

* its software is free as in beer (this is what made me try out linux)

For almost all practical purposes so is Windows and you can get all the good Linux software on Windows and Mac too.

NO, it is not. Mac OS is not either. Free as in beer means free as in beer - no cost. You cannot LEGALLY get Windows for free. Which leads to the OTHER free, which is free as in freedom - which clearly the other two are not either. You can get all the good Linux software on Windows and Mac? Hold that thought.

* its software is free as in software (this is what made me stay on linux for so long)

Like it or not, users in the vast majority don't care about that and it won't draw them to Linux. As far as the software is concerned that same free software like Blender, Gimp and LibreOffice are available on Windows and Mac too. No exclusivity to Linux.

Again... hold that thought.

* it has working package management. updating software is no nightmare. Windows has to force its customers to update it, because its a nightmare.

yep! But remember Windows has Chocolatey and Mac has Homebrew, this covers many of the free software options and for proprietary software you most often need to go through their updaters whether you're on Windows, Mac or Linux anyway.

It's great that it does what you need but you have to remember that above anything else a computer is a tool to run the programs a user needs and while Windows and Mac run pretty much anything Linux does the same cannot be said the other way around and most standard applications in industry support Windows & Mac but not Linux. It might be more secure and/or more stable and free of charge and open source but none of those things matter if it doesn't run the applications I need.

So it's a chicken and egg problem, if you want people to use it they need their applications to support it and to do that you need users. So what you need to offer is some disruptive innovation, some great feature that draws people to Linux, something so good that they would be willing to temporarily forgo the lack of applications and work through the kludge of dual-booting or VMs until their programs supported Linux as a first class citizen. But for the entire life of the hundreds of Linux desktop distributions none has ever offered the user such a feature(s).

Now you can pretend this isn't true, mod it down and fantasize about how desktop Linux is simple held back by a big conspiracy perpetrated by Microsoft and Apple but the fact is it has succeeded incredibly in pretty much all other markets including those in which Microsoft and Apple participate - and it dominates! Server? Dominates! Embedded? Dominates! Mobile? Dominates! Desktop? Utter failure!

So you say Linux dominates in server, embedded, and mobile. So remember what the question was - why do you use linux? The three word answer could very well be "Server, Embedded, Mobile".

And if you don't like the linux desktop because you like or use something that isn't supported on it, that is ok too. I don't think that is an utter failure, however. That is more up to the applications than the OS. There is nothing the OS is doing to prevent them from creating a version for linux. Which brings me all the way back to where I said to hold that thought. Do you know WHY apps that are on linux are also on Windows and Mac? Because of the openness, the other freedom mentioned above. It's not ABOUT exclusivity. It's not about cornering market share, or keeping secrets, or patents, or obscurity, or profits, or lock-out, or lock-in, or backroom deals, or crushing the competition.

I use it, and have used it exclusively outside of my job, since 1998. No dual boot, no VM. It does everything I want. I can't say it hasn't been frustrating at times, but I have never ONCE considered going to windows or mac. It meshes well with my brain and how I think. The desktop is great, and I find it much better than any Windows version (even 7)! But I think that the only thing that it is really missing is in the corporate space. That is where I use windows. There's no conspiracy theory there, they became the standard for that by any means necessary. (see those things above that linux is not about) And that's OK. It's fine to me that Windows has the corporate market, it doesn't really bother me. To me, that's work. It's using a few programs, to accomplish a few goals. Obviously linux is capable in that arena, but to be honest, too many people/companies have invested in the Microsoft way to choose another. I understand, it's a big leap to even consider moving away from Windows. That is really the only argument that I see when talking about why linux hasn't conquered the desktop. People use Windows at work, they use it at home. (not to mention when you buy a computer, it has windows on it) But I digress.

My three words as to why I use Linux: Because It's Linux.

Comment Re:Only Logical (and irresponsible) (Score 1) 401

I think it is interesting to see and note. It's data. More data gives you more things to compare. We aren't exactly comparing like for like here. The US is huge. Yet it is compared to European countries, some of which are tiny. Look, we're different. So that we work more is just a data point, and judgement shouldn't be passed down on that data alone. The type of work is relevant as well.

Moreover, how do other places like Japan or China or Australia compare? We likely won't have comparable data, so it makes coming to conclusions more tricky.

I get that this is a simple generalized comparison. Jumping to conclusions based on it is quite irresponsible, IMO.

Comment Agree ... Happy Birthday to my ex (Score 1) 127

I agree. Although for me the downfall wasn't going 'pretty', it was in instability. For almost a year I struggled with a bug where something would cause dbus to inexplicably eat 100% of the CPU and the only way to get out of it was to reboot. I could just restart KDE, but then it would come back. I had my machine on 24/7, and about once a week I would wake up to the cpu having been pegged all night. Sometimes it would happen while I was using it. It was maddening. I posted and searched, and nobody had an answer. I was running Kubuntu at the time, so I tried other things. I fell in love with the simplicity of XFCE and haven't looked back.

OK, I did look back once, but for me the magic was gone.
It was like I went to a bar to meet an ex-girlfriend. I could recall past memories, but it was uncomfortable. She never really supported me, we always had to do things her way. I realized we had just grown apart. I was happy for her, but I too was happier now.

And she wore WAY too much makeup.

Comment Yep...Everyone in our house has one...and more (Score 1) 310

All 3 of my kids (ages 7-11) have a computer. They were all hand-me-downs from friends/family who decided to upgrade. One is an i5, one is a decent dual-core, and the other is I think an i3 laptop. My wife has an i3 laptop. They all run Win7, and run just fine for homework, Minecraft, HumbleBundle games, etc. I have an older intel quad-core that I built probably 6 years ago that runs Mint18XFCE. I have a couple of other older systems that I have been trying to sell for really cheap that nobody wants.

Unless you have specific applications or needs (like gaming), you don't need to upgrade. I run XFCE, which I run because I like it not due to needing 'minimal resources'. There are times I would like some more horsepower (like when ripping/converting DVDs to mp4 for our media server) but for the most part it just runs great. I never get over 1/2 memory use, I have plenty of storage. I even run mine as a media server, it's on 24/7.

I don't see tablets or phones (or even laptops) taking the place of my home computer any time soon.
It's funny because at work I have a new i7 vPro laptop running Win10, and with all the corporate junk on it for scanning and stuff, it runs about as fast as any other work computer I have had. Still with freezes, crashes, etc. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

Comment Re:This is such a non-story.... (Score 1) 566

Well, tell me this - what good will it do you to worry about it? Or even discuss it?

You aren't going to change how a company runs. I am not even saying that there was an issue there or not. I am just saying that performance management systems are inherently broken, especially at large companies. I think i am actually a very good manager, because I don't rely on one-size-fits-all antiquated systems to determine how people are performing. I have been around enough large companies to know that there are loopholes in everything. I have also given up on trying to change those things. It is a waste of time. That is why I got out of the large corporate world. I have worked at two companies that had over 200k employees. No more of that for me.

Comment Re:This is such a non-story.... (Score 1) 566

I suppose it depends on how you define a problem. It could also be cooincidence. The point is we will never really know.

Look, I had a project manager get all over my case once for having 100% variance in number of forecast hours to actuals.
I let her vent at me, and then I said calmly "how many hours are we talking about?"

She paused, then started laughing. It was 1 hour. She was so used to dealing with large (300+ hour) estimates that 100% variance sent her off into thinking it was a big deal. We knew each other well, and this was really a non issue. But I always remember that when someone tells me a percentage of something - always check the numbers behind it. :)

Comment WOW... I had no idea (Score 4, Insightful) 523

I really had no idea about any of this.
And yet, it still doesn't change the fact that I care zero about what he thinks about the presidential race.
I don't care if he supports a re-animated Hitler for president. He makes a cartoon that I used to read and find very enjoyable. That is pretty much the end of Scott Adams' influence on my life.

The opinions of celebrities or well-known people carry no more weight to me than if it were an average person on the street. It is unfortunate that this has turned into people's opinions of the candidates instead of talking about their positions on issues. What really makes me sad is that whoever is elected, a large portion of the country will really hate them. I just don't understand it.

Comment This is such a non-story.... (Score 2) 566

There is nothing unique about this story. From reading the article, there is absolutely nothing that hasn't happened a thousand times over in other companies.

Review systems are inherently flawed at large companies. That's how people are able to hang out for years, just hiding in the woodwork. As long as you keep your head down, you can skate by for your whole career. It can take years to get someone fired, as long as they don't do anything terribly wrong. I once came into manage a team and inherited someone that never should have been hired, but there they were 5 years later and had always gotten "satisfactory" performance reviews. Usually it's because weak managers don't want to deal with problem employees. And you can't fire someone unless they have been on a performance plan. So technically they had 5 years with no problems. Nobody wanted to work with this person, they weren't given anything important to do, etc. It took over a year to get them out of there. (they refused to step up and improve). Why so long? Well, you have to wait until the annual review cycle to give someone a review. I joined in Oct, and the reviews were pretty much set for the year and I was just learning the team. So that person couldn't get a "not meeting expectations" until the NEXT year's review. Then you have to put them on a performance plan, and document everything and prove that they weren't meeting expectations. Then and only then are you allowed to fire them. You can try to encourage them to leave, but you can't fire them. If they are lucky, there are re-orgs (as there always are in big companies) and they get a new manager somewhere during this process, and the fun starts again.

The article talks about upper management changing ratings? Yeah, happens all the time for various reasons. It could have been that they had to fit people into the pre-defined bell curves. (e.g. 10% bad ratings, 80% ok or good, 10% great) As you roll up the ratings for a large organization, management has to do horse-trading and ranking of people. Top, bottom, and middle performers are safe - it's the ones on the edge of great and bad that usually get their rating changed. THEN if you throw in execs with biases, it adds layers of fun to all the built-in BS.

I have seen men and women get promoted for inexplicable reasons, and I have also seen people fired for no good reason (even despite the process I described above). And then there are the people that are just gone one day with no explanation. The corporate world sucks, and while I only know about this story what I read in the article, nothing in there sounds surprising. Even if it were true that she was doing a male purge, so what? Even in the male dominated IT world, I have seen women get fired because of the boy's club mentality. It's big business, don't try to make any sense of it.

Comment Is losing a billion on your tax return a bad thing (Score 1) 843

Am I the only one who thinks that it's possible that he was able to claim losses like that through shady (or quite possibly legitimate) ways?
You're assuming that by claiming losses, he ACTUALLY lost that money. I have more confidence that businessmen know how to cheat their way out of having to pay taxes, like hiring accountants/lawyers to find ways to shield their money. After all, the wealthy are the ones who pay to have laws passed that benefit them. So really all that a tax return is a CLAIM that he had a billion in losses. That doesn't make it so. And we all know Trump has no issue claiming things that aren't true.

There is a reason the wealthy stay wealthy.

Comment Lest you forget...the music industry is fine... (Score 1) 310

The music business is doing fine

HOW they are doing fine, I have no idea. I know I sound old, mainly because I am, but I am quite astonished what my nearly-teen daughter listens to. It's not that I don't get it... some of it catchy. But so much of it is just terrible in every way. I pull songs off of youtube for her, mainly because I can then monitor what she listens to and I can look up the lyrics as well. Also, she listens to things like parodies of songs and other things that aren't necessarily under the thumb of the music industry.

The other reason I can't believe they doing fine is because the entertainment industry has never really embraced digital music. If they had done so back in '98, '99, 2000, etc. they would have been able to capitalize on the desire for it. Instead, they fought against it. Just like VCRs, cassettes, CDR, DVDR, etc. They just can't loosen their grip on trying to maintain complete control. This is no different.

And I will say, I do listen to youtube at work, it's easy to just pull up some music. And if there is a particular old album out there that I don't have... it wouldn't be inconceivable to just download it from youtube, rip the audio, and run mp3splt with silence detection to get individual tracks.

Comment Re:How so? (Score 1) 210

You're confusing a diet strategy with physiological facts. Changing your diet can be effective because you feel full with fewer calories and because you can avoid rapid rises in blood glucose. Calorie counting often fails because hunger is a strong drive and people tend to cheat, so they take in more calories than they count (or should).

It's not about tricking your body into feeling full. You touched on it when you said glucose. It's about regulating your hormones. The most effective way to do that is through your diet! I know because I have been doing it for four years. Low-carb, high-fat (saturated), no grains (or grain products), or sugar, NO restrictions or even consideration of calories. I lost 15 lbs in the first month and it has stayed off. (I was only 170) No rigorous exercise plan. Joint pain - gone. Back pain - gone. I am not starving myself, I am not hungry. I am often in a mild state of ketosis, or can get there easily. Without 'punishing' myself. I can fast for 24 hours and feel great. I am telling you, calories are a red herring. They play a role, but if you focus on what is important, you can ignore them.

Stop putting things into quotes that I didn't actually say. I said that exercise "influences hormone levels". That is, the amount of calories you burn off with exercise is not that important; what is important is the improvements in mood and physiological changes it causes.

Exercise is great for you, and does influence hormone levels. But you can lose weight without it, it is not required. You can get healthy without it. Your diet is so much more important than exercise in losing weight and being healthy. I didn't mean that to be me quoting you, it was me quoting the phrase "burn off calories" because that phrase is misleading and very simplistic statement around a complex system. Moreover, it's not necessary! Because people think that you have to exercise heavily to burn burn burn away fat. You don't. The oft prescribed "diet and exercise" rarely works because exercising makes you hungry. (work up an appetite) So you eat more (usually carbs) and that gets stored as fat. It's a never-ending cycle, a battle. It doesn't have to be. All you have to do is retrain your body to not rely on carbs for energy. THEN it will use your fat as energy and you will lose it. It's how we came to be, it's in our genes. It's not starvation, it's not tricks. It's pure and simple science.

Comment Re:How so? (Score 1) 210

Fat accumulation is mainly driven in our bodies by hormones, most notably insulin. Learn how that works and what affects it. That's it.

Lucky, then, that you can influence hormone levels through what you eat, how much you eat, and how much you exercise.

You can lose weight and keep it off by changing your diet alone. The others influence it, but to much lesser degrees. If you change WHAT you eat the amount (in quantity or calories) is largely irrelevant. Exercise is good for you, but you don't have to kill yourself trying to "burn off calories"

Knowing your weight, or your physical activity level, means nothing about weight loss. Nothing.

Knowing your weight means determining whether the dietary changes you made in order to lose weight are working. That's important because different bodies react differently to diets and exercise.

Again, hung up on the old "diet and exercise" shtick. Diet, YES - but not "dieting". You don't need a scale to know or help you lose weight.

Calories-in/Calories-out is a small portion of the story,

No, they are actually the entire story: every food calorie that has been absorbed by your body either needs to be burned or stored (primarily as fat).

*sigh* It's like a finger pointing away to the moon. Don't concentrate on the finger or you'll miss out on all the heavenly glory.

Look at human history - allllll the way back. Do you think any of these fads helps us survive as humans? Do you have ANY idea how many generations of people have lived? How did they do it without scales and digital trackers?

Most of those generations lived in an environment of food scarcity and they frequently starved. And obesity isn't usually going to kill you before your reproductive period is over, which is why evolution has erred on the side of gaining weight. (They also lived without antibiotics, but that doesn't mean that antibiotics are useless.)

You really haven't looked at the numbers, have you? Let's roughly estimate.... over 2.5 million years of human evolution, if the average lifespan was 50 years that means that within 100 years there would be 3 full generations. (year 0 - 50 is one, year 25 - 75 is two, year 50 - 100 is three). 2.5MM / 100 = 25,000 * 3 generations = 75,000 generations. [and they overlap, since at year 100, the next generation would have started already] And would be just one "family", which would have obviously grown and spread over time, so if I thought about it longer and harder I am thinking the number would be bigger. So you're saying "most of these generations lived in an environment of food scarcity and they frequently starved". What is this based on? On the fact there were no McDonalds? From what we can tell, we as a people only started agriculture 10,000 years ago. That is a tiny, miniscule part of 2.5 million years! How did we as humans not only survive, but THRIVE and evolve during this time? It wasn't because we could get fat. It was because we weren't relying on grains, starches, processed fats (like vegetable/bean oils) and sugars for fuel. Our bodies haven't adapted to these things well enough yet, which is why we have so much sickness today. (heart disease, obesity, diabetes, cancer, ....) The bad science, pseudo-science, and pure lies behind our dietary guidelines are making us sicker and sicker.

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