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Comment: Re:Lots of highly paid folks (Score 1) 109

Of course there's a lot of people who are highly paid. Chances are that those people are highly skilled, or at least have highly specialized skills as well.

FWIW, at least at Google it isn't about specialization. Google SWEs are expected to be generalists, able to specialize as needed.

In fact, it's generally recommended that SWEs change teams within the company every few years, and that they intentionally look for a change that requires them to learn new skills. The belief in the company is that this approach serves both engineers and teams, providing fresh perspectives and insights to both, and spreading knowledge across teams (by moving it) and within teams (by reallocating responsibilities).

There are exceptions, of course. Some skills are rare enough that people stay within that field, even as they move between teams. On the other hand, even those exceptions have exceptions. I won't mention his name, but Google employs a famous cryptographer who recently decided that after many years of breaking the world's encryption systems he wanted to work on image compression. So he is. Another engineer I know has a PhD in computational mathematics, with a specialty in image processing. After a few years extracting building details (exterior shape, mostly) from merged aerial and street view photography, he now works on UI frameworks.

The choice of when or if to move to another team, and which, is the engineer's. The destination team also has a say, but most teams are perpetually short-staffed. Unless the team in need of some deep skill (e.g. a PhD in computational mathematics with specialization in image processing), or unless the engineer hasn't been performing well in the previous role, they're unlikely to refuse. This is why apparently-odd moves aren't uncommon; people decide they'd like to do something different, so they do.

+ - Sourceforge staff takes over a user's account and wraps their software installer-> 9

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes: Sourceforge staff took over the account of the GIMP-for-Windows maintainer claiming it was abandoned and used this opportunity to wrap the installer in crapware. Quoting Ars:

SourceForge, the code repository site owned by Slashdot Media, has apparently seized control of the account hosting GIMP for Windows on the service, according to e-mails and discussions amongst members of the GIMP community—locking out GIMP's lead Windows developer. And now anyone downloading the Windows version of the open source image editing tool from SourceForge gets the software wrapped in an installer replete with advertisements.

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:This works 100% (Score 1) 228

by swv3752 (#49792085) Attached to: How a Scientist Fooled Millions With Bizarre Chocolate Diet Claims

At +- 100-200 Calories( really kilocalories)and less than 2000, preferably less than 1800 (at normal activity levels), Insulin levels play a bigger role than total calories. Insulin is a hormone and in addition to promoting cells to burn glucose, at high level it promotes cells to convert glucose to fat.

There is a decided link to promoting eating more sugar and starch and the US population turning fat.

Comment: Re:Thanks, Obama (Score 1) 376

by swillden (#49787651) Attached to: Obama Asks Congress To Renew 'Patriot Act' Snooping

The courts found the bulk collection as "justified" under section 215 as unconstitutional and wholly illegal.

Utter nonsense. Please don't spread such misinformation.

Bulk collection may indeed be unconstitutional, but the court said nothing about that. What they said was that section 215 did not authorize bulk collection, so if Congress wants to authorize bulk collection they have to pass a law to say so. If Congress does that, then the court will eventually have to rule on constitutionality.

Comment: Re:For C++, there is no standard answer (Score 1) 323

by swillden (#49786699) Attached to: How Much C++ Should You Know For an Entry-Level C++ Job?

Without any programming experience it's not likely you'd get hired. While specific language doesn't matter, you have to have sufficient knowledge and ability to be able to have a detailed discussion about solving problems in software design and implementation, and prove that you can write clean, accurate code, and do it quickly.

My recommendation is that you first spend some time working through many of the problems provided by Project Euler, or the Top Coder challenges, or similar. Or maybe one of the coding interview books, like this one.

When you're comfortable that you can take on a not-completely-trivial software problem, design an algorithm to solve it, accurately characterize the big O time and space complexity of your solution (not prove it... though you should be able to prove it, given more time), explain why there aren't any more efficient solutions, code it up on a whiteboard, and explain how you'd go about testing it, all in the course of a 45-minute interview, then you're probably ready.

Comment: Re:Required understanding (Score 1) 323

by Yosho (#49786287) Attached to: How Much C++ Should You Know For an Entry-Level C++ Job?

Is all of that for an entry-level job, though? Most college CompSci degrees that I've seen don't even touch things like smart pointers, newer language standards, or boost. I've seen several fresh college graduates who have never used exceptions because one of their professors told them that exceptions are evil and you should never use them, and I've even seen a few who thought that Notepad was an acceptable IDE because their lab computers still had Visual Studio 6 installed on them, and they were at least smart enough to realize that VS6 was terrible, but didn't know there were other options available.

To be fair, pure CS isn't really about programming, but "entry-level" is still a very low bar.

Comment: Re:Not surprising (Score 1) 376

by dcw3 (#49785035) Attached to: Obama Asks Congress To Renew 'Patriot Act' Snooping

Not exactly the Pentagon, and it wasn't today...the article is dated 8 May.

The decision to increase security at U.S. bases was made by Admiral Bill Gortney, commander of the U.S. Northern Command, responsible for troops in North America, Warren said. The decision did not affect bases outside his region.

Comment: For C++, there is no standard answer (Score 5, Insightful) 323

by swillden (#49784235) Attached to: How Much C++ Should You Know For an Entry-Level C++ Job?

For C++ there is no standard answer, because every C++ shop uses a different subset of the language. There are probably a few things that all of them have in common, but it's unreasonable to expect that any entry level C++ programmer can be productive without support from senior programmers while they learn the local ropes. Even experienced C++ programmers will need a little time to get up to speed on the local style guidelines.

C++ doesn't have an extensive set of standard libraries, either, which means that every shop has its own set. So senior programmers have to expect that new people are going to spend a lot of time getting up to speed on those.

Finally, I think the question is fundamentally bad, because it implies a misguided expectation of immediate productivity. That's a common expectation (hope?) throughout much of the industry, but unless you're hiring contractors for six-month jobs, its stupid. What matters in the longer run isn't what your new hires know coming in the door, it's how well they learn, and think. Because whatever they know coming in is invariably inadequate in both short and long term. One of the things I found very refreshing when I joined Google is that they don't much care what you know in terms of languages, libraries and tool sets. It's assumed that capable people will learn what they need to when they need to learn it, and that any new project involves some ramp-up time before people are productive. On the other hand, given a little time to get up to speed capable people will become very productive. Much more so than the less capable person who happened to know the right set of things when hired.

"If a computer can't directly address all the RAM you can use, it's just a toy." -- anonymous comp.sys.amiga posting, non-sequitir