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Comment: I Created an Easter Egg (Score 1) 290

by BlueMonk (#49409393) Attached to: Is This the Death of the Easter Egg?
I created an easter egg in a product called Fourth Shift Edition for SAP Business One (http://findaccountingsoftware.com/directory/softbrands/fourth-shift-edition-for-sap-business-one/) maybe 5 years ago that rendered an interesting sequence of John Conway's game of Life (starting from the acorn state) while displaying names of developers in a marquee. Trying to remember how to access it... I think it was just typing "LIFE!" while looking at the about dialog. I work pretty efficiently so it was hard to keep me busy at times. The easter egg was a (self-inspired) way to do something interesting related to the software I was working on for a couple hours while waiting to see what came next... and I thought it might someday briefly amuse someone too accustomed to nothing but business all day long. (The software is for ERP.) I showed it to my boss and a few coworkers who, if I recall, all had positive reactions... or at least no negative reactions I'm aware of. I'm not sure if anyone would have expressed a negative reaction to me if they had one because I feel pretty well respected there. I'm not sure anyone who knew about it is still with the company. Maybe I should tell a couple support people about it in case they feel like using it as a diversion while researching a solution to someone's inquiry, especially since it's Easter time. :)

Comment: Re:It's like (Score 1) 57

by BlueMonk (#49387867) Attached to: Invaders Demand Flu Shots
No, it's more appropriately celebrated than any typical holy holiday. It's a day of humor and jest whose purpose has not been lost. And celebrating it has more real and lasting effect than a typical holiday. What better way to lighten a spirit for a holiday than laughter? Nothing compares.

Comment: Re:"Complexity" is very subjective. (Score 1) 188

by BlueMonk (#49217095) Attached to: The Origin of Life and the Hidden Role of Quantum Criticality
The mere fact that you appear to be putting people who use certain technologies on a scale from "less-smart" to "smart" directly counteracts your assertion that complexity is subjective. If complexity were subjective, you would have simply referred to C++ users as "familiar with C++" and Ruby users as "familiar with Ruby" not put them on a scale from Ruby==less-smart to C++==smart. But since you use the terms "smart" and "less-smart", you imply that there is an absolute scale of complexity which can be measured in the smartness required to understand it.

Comment: Re:why? (Score 1) 677

by BlueMonk (#49041611) Attached to: Empirical Study On How C Devs Use Goto In Practice Says "Not Harmful"
All fine and good when there's no clean-up to be done. However, if you're in an error handler after opening a database connection, creating a temp file, and allocating a block of shared memory, now you've just leaked resources all over the place by skipping all the clean-up. Or you have to duplicate all that clean-up in this and every subsequent error handler within the function.

Comment: Re:Analogy (Score 1) 556

Sorry for using layman-speak in a geek forum, but I tire of picking all my nits before posting :). The point is that any particular value or set of values might be considered infinitesimally likely in an unknown and possibly infinite domain. We only have one universe so we can't very well figure out how many other possible values could have existed for all the conditions that support life in this universe. And we can't very well say for certain that none of these other possibilities would have ever resulted in conscious life. It's the anthropic principle.

Comment: Analogy (Score 1) 556

The reply (with which I agree) is that it's silly to calculate the probability of life out of context when you don't know what context(s) allow life. Take a simpler example. Assume I tell you to pick a random number between 1 and a quadrillion. You pick 709,108,554,989,243. Taken out of context someone can ask, "What are the chances that this exact number would turn up, one in a quadrillion!? They're so slim, this can't be random!" In fact you could have picked any of a much larger set of numbers and the same could be said about all of those. Calculating probabilities on an unknown domain doesn't work.

Comment: Policy has always deterred against VPNs (Score 1) 67

by BlueMonk (#48736813) Attached to: Netflix Denies There Was a Policy Change With VPNs
Even if the statement is that their policy hasn't changed, that doesn't say that their policy allows VPN access, according to a CNET article:

"We say very specifically that VPNs violate the terms of our service, and we believe very much so that anybody who licenses content should get paid for their content," he said. "We hear a lot in every market about this, and what we tend to find too is that, after launch, these issues drop significantly."

-- CNET

The reason it might still be working for many is that they are not using updated software that might be checking IP addresses internally, either innocently for other reasons, or to specifically start enforcing this policy in a limited scope.

Comment: Re:its their own fault (Score 1) 280

by BlueMonk (#48050177) Attached to: Facebook Apologizes To Drag Queens Over "Real Name" Rule
Changing your legal name for anything except marriage is much harder in some states than changing it for marriage. The process seems streamlined for marriage because it's so common, but is sometimes prohibitively difficult and/or expensive in other cases. I see this decision as Facebook wanting to be like one of the "easier" states and be available that way to people in all states regardless of how hard it is to change your legal name there. Kudos if they can accomplish that goal without significantly compromising the integrity of peoples' identities in other ways.

Comment: Re:its their own fault (Score 1) 280

by BlueMonk (#48050083) Attached to: Facebook Apologizes To Drag Queens Over "Real Name" Rule
I think the point is to limit you in virtual space to the same number of identities you have in reality. You only have one body, and so Facebook wants you to have one identity with them. Even a schizophrenic has to accept the fact that their many personalities have to share the same body, and, just like their body, Facebook can't automatically adjust to their new identity as it comes forward. So they have to pick a single identity through which to present themselves to others, even if they are separate internally. Cross dressers similarly have to make a choice. You only get one identity, so make it the one you want to share with everyone. You can either be transgender or not, not both... pick one identity to share with others, and make it the one you're sharing in reality.

Comment: Re:its their own fault (Score 1) 280

by BlueMonk (#48049865) Attached to: Facebook Apologizes To Drag Queens Over "Real Name" Rule
I've heard from people in the transgender community that often times it's much harder to change your name outside the context of marriage than inside. I think this is because the process is streamlined for marriages because they are so common. The process is not at all streamlined for transgender name changes (at least in some states).

Comment: Re:catering to the mentally ill (Score 1) 280

by BlueMonk (#48049743) Attached to: Facebook Apologizes To Drag Queens Over "Real Name" Rule

No on can know what it's like to be someone else.

Exactly. They were born only knowing how to fit into society as a gender that conflicts with their anatomy. And they can't pretend that they are the gender that they were assigned at birth because they don't know how to be someone else. I know 3 transgender women, and from what I understand of their tales, their choices were basically suicide or gender transition because they simply could not live with the gender they were assigned based on their anatomy.

All programmers are playwrights and all computers are lousy actors.

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