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Comment: Re:New internet explorer (Score 3, Insightful) 129 129

If only enough people that mattered used Safari.

You mean other than CxOs and VPs that carry an iPhone and/or iPad?

No I mean accountants and ERP users that actually use applications in the enterprise. C-levels and VPs are a very small group of users, important, but only if you are managing stakeholder expectations.

Oh and I can see the fanbois are out modding again and taking everything personally.

Comment: Re:just let it go (Score 1) 577 577

I would rather like to know why the tax payer is on the hook for a failed project from a contractor? The US government needs to stop negotiating these one-sided contracts where we the buyer take all the liability. If the contractor fails, we don't pay, period.

There just aren't enough mod points for this comment.

Comment: Re:New internet explorer (Score 0) 129 129

If Safari is the new internet explorer then that's not bad. If Safari is the old internet explorer then that's really bad.

If only enough people that mattered used Safari. Deploying an enterprise based web application using Safari the way dependency on IE6 was created is unlikely to happen again.

Comment: Re:Drone It (Score 1) 577 577

The S/VTOL version makes sense. It's an upgrade from the Harrier, and while it's a shitty air-to-air plane, a shitty bomber, and a shitty close air support plane, it's much better at all 3 roles than having no plane at all. For a VTOL role, that's what matters. For a standard runway plane, it's just evenly shitty at all roles,without much to redeem it (though it will do just fine against low-tech opponents even so).

It's been called the Bradly Fighting Vehicle of fighters, and I think that's an apt comparison. OTOH, the BFV evolved into something quite useful, and who knows, this might too.

Comment: Re:Drone It (Score 5, Insightful) 577 577

Originally, the F22 was to fill the air superiority role (and it does that better than any fighter ever made), and the F35 was the mish-mash of other roles. Everyone following this stuff knew the F35 wouldn't be great at any one particular role, but for dogfighting it was always a joke - and really, that was OK, as the F22 had its back if needed. But we stopped buying F22s way too soon, we don't have enough, and the huge R&D costs weren't spread across enough planes.

The F35 always seemed like the result of no clear charter for it's role: "just do everything". It's not a bad plane for the requirements as presented: for a jack-iof-all-trades plane it's great at nothing, but it's really as good as you could reasonably expect given the lack of a specific role.

The Air Force also has a problem that we've spent too long dropping bombs on opponents with no real air power. We should be using actual bombers for that role: far cheaper per bomb, but fighter pilots run the place. As a result, we get fighters trying to be bombers on top of everything else, and no plans to replace the aging bomber fleet anytime soon (admittedly, a B52 is fine vs an opponent who can't shoot back, but even the B1 is getting old vs an opponent who can).

Comment: Re:Paywall (Score 1) 141 141

Modern VBA is modern Visual Basic, which is C# without the curly braces, right? With either language you have full access to the .NET runtime and libraries, including LINQ. Excel has an OLEDB connector to let you use a spreadsheet as a (slow, single-user) DB. You can put all these pieces together to do "real programming" under the covers of Excel (at least for single-user use cases).

In fact, the open source Linq to Excel project does it all for you, or at least it's recommended by Stack Overflow. Might be worth a look.

Comment: Re:Today's computer science corriculum is practica (Score 1) 141 141

Meh. When I was an undergrad, you really needed to understand netmasks if you wanted to set up a network for multiplayer games. Now, it's much easier (although Windows makes it stupidly hard to create an ad-hoc WiFi network. No idea how people think it's ready for the desktop), and you can do a lot without caring. I can't remember the last time I needed to know about them.

Comment: Re:Um.. we don't see it as advancing our career (Score 1) 112 112

Why should it be any other way?

Well, I think some people do the work do it because they want to be good at it and, they enjoy it. They pursue challenges for the skill sets and visa versa. So being genuinely productive is a way to acquire new skill sets for yourself so everything is under control.

That's why the best IT professionals rarely work big hours, they don't need to.

Time and again experience shows there's more profit in looking productive than actually being productive -and arguably, being experienced in looking productive more than being productive will help you climbing the corporate ladder once you go into management.

I've noticed. For me though, I'm not doing a role just so they can get something out of me, I have my own objectives otherwise I wouldn't even be there. Acquiring talent with technology is still a discipline with difficult and interesting challenges - why else would you put up with the crap.

Management is a different set of skill sets where softer skills are important. Any programmer who wants to become a management person should focus on developing their people skills.

Actually, programmers should do that anyway, however it is impossible to become a good manager without having good people skills. Project management, budgeting, negotiating, and more to become a good manager.

The programmers path to management lays in developing emotional intelligence, empathy and awareness of others, reading body language, especially for leadership roles. So in some respect, it's not so much the path to management but what will you do to change so that you can accommodate those soft skills.

Mirrors should reflect a little before throwing back images. -- Jean Cocteau