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Comment: Re:Simple (Score 1) 509

by Cereal Box (#47460437) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Future-Proof Jobs?

> Never own a credit card. They are all scams and are far more likely to ruin your credit than help it.

That's terrible advice. The best way to improve your credit is to actually have credit in the first place. A good credit score is a balancing act involving increasing the length of time you've had credit, minimizing 30/60/90 day lates (or more accurately, not having any), and having a good amount of available revolving credit (but not too much). The point is to demonstrate that you can be responsible with a decent amount of credit for a significant amount of time.

Not having a credit card whatsoever does not help you, it only hurts you. Think about it, if a friend asked you for money, you'd feel more at ease if the two of you had a history wherein he demonstrated that he could promptly repay you, and over a longer period of time paying back small amounts of money, you'd feel more comfortable lending him larger amounts of money.

The best thing to do is to get a credit card and pay it off in full every month. Pretend that the card is an extension of your checking account and never spend more money than you can put your hands on in any given month.

Comment: Other options in technology (Score 1) 333

by Cereal Box (#46352569) Attached to: Will Peggy the Programmer Be the New Rosie the Riveter?

Personally I'm of the opinion that in order to be a really GOOD programmer you have to live, eat, and breathe it. Part of that is spending your formative years locked away coding on a computer, eschewing things like friends, social gatherings, etc. I know I did. How many girls and young women are willing to do that? I dunno, maybe that factors into it.

But I don't see why the only option for women in technology is programming. Where I work, it seems like just about every Project Manager is a woman. And that's probably because a good PM has to do things like interact with many people, pay attention to details, schedule, organize, etc. which traditionally are things that women are good at. Why not, you know, stress those kinds of options to young women interested in tech jobs instead of trying to force women into something they really don't seem that interested in? Just because men dominate a certain industry doesn't mean there's a "problem", you know.

Comment: Re:CNN argues it's worth the money (Score 2) 257

by Cereal Box (#46299013) Attached to: WhatsApp: 2nd Biggest Tech Acquisition of All Time

While I agree this is actually a service that makes money, it doesn't make quite as much as you assume. First, there's probably a good amount of dead accounts. And I believe there are longtime users that are grandfathered in for free. Second, the first year is free, so the revenue from an additional 1M users per day isn't realized for a whole year, and again that's assuming that all users decide they want to pay after a year is up.

Comment: Re:abusing the 401k (Score 1) 123

by Cereal Box (#46202319) Attached to: AOL Reverses Course On 401K Match; CEO Apologizes

I don't understand how that being a dead point in hiring would be a big deal. If you are separating from IBM and still want to have a job, you secure the job first, then quit. If you have a better job lined up even in late November, surely a one time 401k match of a couple of thousand dollars isn't enough to keep someone at IBM.

Correct, you should have a job lined up first, but it's very, very difficult to time something perfectly so as to minimize the matching hit (i.e., as soon after 12/15 as possible). And the amount of money you forfeit is not a trivial amount. IBM matches 6%, so for your average 100K+ salary, that's 6K+ of investment money flushed right down the toilet if you leave towards the end of the year. You can't just look at it as "oh well, I lost out on 6K." Look at it as "I lost out on 6K that could've been invested for the next 20 to 30 years."

And I do have to give credit to AOL for one thing. They have a sense of shame, which is more than I can say for IBM.

Comment: Re:I desperately want to give HBO my money (Score 1) 193

These are the arguments I hate the most from the pro-piracy camp. You obviously aren't desperate enough to give HBO your money since you have multiple options:

1. Upgrade your cable package to get HBO. Pricey, but if you're truly desperate, there you go.
2. Purchase through iTunes. You won't get it immediately as it airs, but you'll get it.
3. Buy the Blu-Rays when they come out. Same drawback as point 2, but it's an option.

I think what you mean is that you're desperate to watch the show first run for a price that you consider reasonable (I'm guessing something in the neighborhood of $10 or less). Doesn't work that way.

Comment: Re:Bullshit (Score 2) 193

You have to cancel HBO with your cable company. Yes, you have to call up to cancel it, but it is by no means "nearly impossible". People do it all the time. Subscribe for the show, cancel when it's over. You may even be offered a couple extra months to not cancel.

And couldn't you buy the Blu-Rays when they come out? Sounds like you have options, you just don't want to pursue them.

Comment: Re:Clearly losing money? (Score 0) 193

Personally, I pirate movies/TV shows because there's no "just works" legal way to obtain them.

OK, so you download movies for free, gotcha...

The legal ways require an internet connection

Wait, what? Doesn't pirating a movie require an internet connection? And posting on Slashdot, for that matter?

Comment: Re:The 5C isn't even cheap (Score 1) 773

by Cereal Box (#44818259) Attached to: Apple Unveils iPhone 5C, iPhone 5S

Only T-Mobile gives you discounts. And they have the worst coverage of the big four providers. So that's why it's not really productive to compare unsubsidized prices. Pretty much everyone gets their phone with a subsidy and two year commitment.

And yes, you have to lock yourself in for two years to get that price. But so what? There really isn't much ability to jump around from provider to provider anyway. Only T-Mobile and AT&T use GSM, so from a technological standpoint you're effectively locked in to one provider or another. So again, that's why talking about two year contracts isn't that important either...

Comment: Subsidies (Score 5, Interesting) 827

by Cereal Box (#44586615) Attached to: The College-Loan Scandal

Part of this has to do with the subsidies they add to tuition. I remember when I was in school, tuition was about $2000 per semester. One semester, they decided to jack up tuition by $400. Most of that $400 was earmarked for subsidies for lower-income students. I found out during a meeting where the chancellor announced the change that 40% of our overall tuition went to subsidies. 40%! At which point I asked:

"So you're increasing tuition to help students who can't afford tuition, because we keep raising tuition to help students who can't afford tuition?"

They just kind of shrugged that question off.

You know you've landed gear-up when it takes full power to taxi.