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Comment Re:Time to let it die (Score 1) 344

After all that is what you are doing with ublock.

You seem to think that the more something is repeated, the truer it gets. Nope. This was bullshit the first time someone argued it, it's bullshit now.

I am stealing nothing. This content is freely available to anyone with a browser. I am under no obligation to view anything that I do not want to; therefore I block as many ads as possible. My eyeballs, my rules. I can instruct my browser to not download anything I don't want to see, therefore I do. That is not stealing. That is choosing what content I want to see. You may as well say that by not clicking through an ad and buying something from the advertiser, I'm stealing from the site the ad is on. I am under no obligation to buy anything from the advertiser. Why am I therefore obligated to view the ad? I'm not going to buy anything from an obnoxious ad, so showing me an ad wastes my bandwidth and time, as well as the ad network's resources. Wouldn't it be better to not view the ad in the first place, if it's going to be completely ineffective? Essentially, I'm costing the advertising network money. Wouldn't it be better if that money weren't wasted?

If Slashdot wants to be ethical but raise money. Then they will get money from me on adblock.

If you keep feeding the stray dog, it will never leave you alone. Similarly, if you keep supporting the current advertising model (which is a complete sewer) there will be no incentive to change.

What is fair? Hosting Slashdot is certainly not free. Want to pay a subscription instead? I think adblock is perfect and ads a financial motivation for ad networks to be ethical and stop insane tracking and not infecting people with malware for ask toolbars and compromising the security of their systems.

Adblock would be great if they didn't sell you out all the time with their "acceptable ads" bullshit. No advertising is acceptable to me. I don't care how innocuous. At one time I put up with it for the reasons you suggest; no longer. The advertising industry, instead of recognizing the problem (their ads suck and are obnoxious), has decided to double down on the 'suck' instead of, I don't know, improving their product. But, what do you expect from people who drank their way through college and got a 2.01 GPA?

Come on. You can't have it both ways as all you are doing is encouraging HTML 5 ads that can't be blocked or worse HTML 6 mandated DRM ads that can't be turned off where websites on non win32 platforms won't load or something else website owners and ISP's will enforce next to maximize on money. Here is a hint. They do not care about you. Sorry.

And that's the problem. They consider it their birthright to shove marketing into my eyeballs like I'm Alex in A Clockwork Orange. If my choices are to have their shit shoved into my eyeballs or not visiting a page, I won't visit a page. Simple. By turning people off they're strangling themselves; if there are no sites for them to put ads on, they have no business. I'm just helping the process. It's the free market in action.

Think of it this way. The way we "pay" for sites right now is by viewing ads; you could consider the time and effort you waste seeing advertising as a "cost". What a lot of people don't realize is that companies do not price their products based on their costs to produce them; they charge as much as they can until they reach people's "balk" price. For example, if I will pay $5 for a widget, then they price that widget at $4.99. If they price that widget at, say, $6.99, I won't buy it. I balk at the price. The price of viewing content with obnoxious ads has become too high; it has passed people's "balk" price. The nice thing here is that the user can affect the price that they pay by not viewing advertising by using an ad blocker. It's a flaw in the system that people are taking advantage of. Fix the system (by making ads less fucking obnoxious) and people will stop balking.

Comment Re:Natural effects of a maturing field? (Score 1) 350

Back in the infancy of unions, what you're describing is exactly what happened. Not only would individuals be fired for attempting to organize their co-workers, companies would share a blacklist of such troublemakers preventing them from getting work anywhere.

Have you been following the efforts of Walmart workers to organize? Walmart closed a bunch of stores with identical "plumbing issues" explanations a while back.. and totally coincidentally those were the stores where organization efforts were strongest... They will literally cut their noses off to spite their faces rather than see their workers organize.

What's to prevent the company from ignoring the union and firing everyone? Reprisals by the workers.

Who will be immediately terminated and replaced inside of 2 days.. unless, of course, they immediately cease the behavior and agree to not repeat it in the future.

Sit-in strikes, blocking replacement workers and customers from accessing the business, organizing boycotts of the products and basically anything else that can be done to make the company's life miserable.

"Officer, these folks were terminated from this business and are now trespassing. Remove them from the property, please". End of protest. Boycotts work when there are alternatives; Walmart's business model includes running any competition out of business.. there are large swaths of the country that cannot buy things anywhere else than Walmart.

It's necessary to make the pain of paying union wages and benefits much less than the pain of firing everyone.

Walmart feels no pain firing anyone. They can replace them within hours. (Hell, I've seen them camp out outside unemployment offices and loudly, publicly offer people coming out of there jobs. If you turn down a job, any job, while you're collecting unemployment, you lose your benefits. Those folks have no choice but to take the job.) They would rather fire everyone and incur those costs than allow unions a foothold in their stores. They would rather close stores than allow that to happen, no matter how much it costs, because they know that if their stores were unionized (and thus protected by the NLRA) they'd be forced to negotiate with their workers over wages and benefits. Right now that negotiation looks like this:

"Hey, I don't think you're paying us enough"
"Easily fixed, you're fired."

Even sabotage and property destruction might be on the table for pissed-off unemployed people.

That sounds like a good way to get yourself killed.

Also, do you notice how unions are typically for the skilled trades and are organized at an industry level vs. a company level? By doing this, you make it hard for a company to find a large pool of willing replacement labor with the same skills.

Yeah, ask the air traffic controllers about that, from their experience back in the 80s when they all got fired. Granted, those were government workers, but I don't think it's that different for private employers (probably even easier). I'd argue that it's the low-skill employees that need union protection the most, they're the most easily replaced.

Comment Re:Natural effects of a maturing field? (Score 1) 350

The trouble with that is that you would never be able to organize a national strike in this environment. Trying to get a whole country full of, say, bus drivers to cooperate is easier when you're England or France or Italy. With the USA, you can't get 3 of 4 people to agree that water is wet, so trying to get that many people to act collectively in the face of so much big-business-owned media-outlet FUD is a fools' errand.

The idea of a teachers' strike is laughable. Teachers already get blamed for a host of society's ills, and a national organization would get the same criticisms that local ones, only ten times as bad. A national strike would probably meet armed resistance, for crying out loud.

Comment Re:Natural effects of a maturing field? (Score 1) 350

Without government support in the form of guaranteeing collective bargaining and the right to organize, unions would cease to exist. Think about it: How does a union form at a new workplace? Someone broaches the topic with their fellow employees.. and they would immediately be fired were there not laws in place to protect that attempt to organize. Sometimes they're immediately fired anyway, since the employer figures that any lawyer the ex-employee hires wouldn't stand a chance against the legal counsel the employer could hire.

Then, once the union forms, what's to keep the employer from ignoring the union or firing everyone in it? Nothing, unless there's a law preventing them from doing that.

Comment Re:Age discrimination is obvious (Score 1) 350

Good luck finding a lawyer. Most of them won't take cases they have no reasonable chance to win.

The circumstances around hiring are obscure enough that any marginally talented corporate shyster can talk rings around any argument your lawyer might make. And no recruiter will admit to that sort of thing out loud.

Comment Re:This is what happens.. (Score 1) 494

I wasn't making any moral judgements. What I expect engineers to see is 1) There are rules about emissions, with clear specifications, 2) Their product is currently not meeting those specifications, and 3) They must modify the product so it produces emissions that meet or exceed the requirements.

Now the way to get to 3) is to fix your shit. I expect engineers to know that as well. I also expect them to know that cheating the test like this is against specifications, which state (if not explicitly, then implicitly) that the design must work within the regulations described. Cheating like this is outside the regulations, so I expect an engineer to see the problem and try to fix it. Where this went off the rails is that some idiot in a suit told the engineer to not change it, and if they made a fuss, they can expect to be out of a job.

Comment Re:This one thing is unlike the other (Score 2) 67

I agree that there needs to be someone who is technical, but the truth on the ground is that most C-level execs regard IT as little more than overpaid janitors who break things all the time and make them change their passwords once in a while. The C-levels that I've worked with (multiple Fortune 500 companies) don't even know that there's anything to know about IT, past 1) IT costs money, 2) IT doesn't do anything that they understand, therefore it's not important, and 3) whenever anything in the building that runs on electricity breaks, you can take out your frustration on the IT guy that comes up to fix it and not have to worry about any consequences.

Comment Re:This is what happens.. (Score 1) 494

Then that engineer is what is technically known as "a shitty engineer". Engineers take specs and data and turn them into things. Efficient engineers build precisely to spec, no more, no less. Smart engineers have made the likely mistakes they'll make along the way already and will incorporate what they learned from them into the new design.

If this cheat wasn't in some spec somewhere, and the engineer added it on his/her own initiative, that engineer needs to lose his/her job and/or their freedom.

Comment Re:This is what happens.. (Score 1) 494

Engineering *had* to know this was going to get discovered at some point. That's what really amazes me here. Why on earth would you be so stupid as to proceed down a path you knew full well was going to exploded in your face? Someone ignored that warning.

There's a fine line between "not being stupid" and "losing your job". You can be correct, provably, technically correct, but it doesn't matter if the people who are in charge (and who sign your paycheck) find your correctness annoying. Someone in Engineering had to have had a conscience about this, and I find it highly likely that that someone no longer works for VW, and is bound by an NDA from disclosing what he knew.

Comment Re:This one thing is unlike the other (Score 5, Insightful) 67

That, and there's a virulent belief that IT can simply be outsourced.

That's not so much a belief as a truth. You can outsource your IT, firms exist to do that. You will probably save money doing that, and that's all that matters to the suits. Nevermind that now it takes three weeks to get a problem fixed instead of same-day, and your workers get so fed up with the lousy service the outsourced IT provides that they just let problems continue without asking for them to be fixed. This hurts your business in lost productivity.

But, productivity is hard to measure. Dollars are not, and the outsourcing saves dollars. This makes it a perfect solution for the folks that can't turn on their computers without a cheat sheet.

Comment Re:wrong quest (Score 2) 67

Two things:

1) You're comparing a group composed of humans to your CNC machine, as if they're both something to be bought and sold. Dehumanizing people rarely improves a situation.

2) Can you do your job without that CNC machine? No? There isn't a company in an industrialized nation in the world that can do its job without IT workers. They might try to, they might even last for a while, but eventually other less-stupid companies will eat their lunch while they're trying to figure out the fax machine.

Top Ten Things Overheard At The ANSI C Draft Committee Meetings: (7) Well, it's an excellent idea, but it would make the compilers too hard to write.