Slashdot stories can be listened to in audio form via an RSS feed, as read by our own robotic overlord.


Forgot your password?

Slashdot videos: Now with more Slashdot!

  • View

  • Discuss

  • Share

We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Re:Once more (Score 1) 100

by Crudely_Indecent (#48889287) Attached to: U.S. Gas Stations Vulnerable To Internet Attacks

I can't completely disagree with that, but there will always be someone to maintain the equipment at regular intervals. They're not unmanned 24/7, someone is there occasionally to maintain and service the equipment. These sites would definitely need fuel level monitoring automation. I was thinking more of gas stations and truck stops where the high volume of fuel sold would require constant monitoring of the fuel levels, a mundane task better left to automation.

Comment: Re:Once more (Score 2) 100

by Crudely_Indecent (#48887745) Attached to: U.S. Gas Stations Vulnerable To Internet Attacks

I don't think it's to get rid of people, but taking away a responsibility from unreliable people. There will always be need for someone on site, but can they be trusted to catch a problem (like a low fuel tank) and notify the right people in time to actually do something about it?

The station can't sell gas they don't have, so it's in their best interest to never run out. By connecting them to the internet, an automated system can be used to monitor level and usage to make predictions about when the tank will need to be refilled. A properly configured system would place an order for more fuel with enough lead time that when the fuel truck arrives the station has both not run out, and is in need of refill.

People are unreliable, especially when it comes to repetitive and mundane processes. Machines don't care how often they have to perform an action, neither do they get bored doing them.

Comment: If you're a trailblazer, yes (Score 2) 302

by Crudely_Indecent (#48871957) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Has the Time Passed For Coding Website from Scratch?

There are guys like Matthew James Taylor and David Walsh who code new and innovative interfaces and widgets - but even their sites are database driven (even maybe homegrown) CMS that they use to display their code inventions.

I write extensions for a popular CMS which make it more useful for myself and others, but an HTML/CSS only designer will have a tough learning curve to jump into that type of development as there are many languages working in concert (PHP/ASP/Java, JS, JSON, XML, SQL, INI, HTML, CSS, ???) with HTML/CSS being perhaps the least used.

Not that I couldn't, but I wouldn't hand code an entire site these days. Efficiency and productivity is the key now and you just can't compete with a modern CMS in those regards.

Comment: Re: Umm, no. (Score 1) 187

I'm a racist (as usual) says the anonymous coward (Marc, is that you?) who can't accept that I'm not the only one to experience this phenomenon. I've worked with a few very intelligent Indian IT workers, and I love Indian culture (especially the food, mmm-mmm - makhani chicken). I think it's sad that some institutions pushing students out the door without the skills they need are giving a bad reputation to an entire race of people.

Comment: Re: Umm, no. (Score 4, Interesting) 187

That's the problem I've seen with Indian workers as well, and several people I've worked with have seen it too. It seems to be a real problem, because they will not say no to their bosses - about anything. If they're given a task beyond their skillset, they say yes anyway because saying no would be disrespectful (or so I understand).

On one occasion, I was hired to spend a day working with the IT manager of a company in Dallas - to find what was happening with their network performance. I found (poorly configured) routers everywhere. Triple, quadruple, quintuple NAT, cross linked networks - dueling DHCP servers. It was a mess. It turned out that their IT manager managed to graduate his Indian university with a computer science degree and yet knew virtually nothing about anything. When his boss said add another router - he said yes.

I left after turning those routers into switches and restoring the performance they were missing, but not the performance they could have had if they'd put it together with the right parts to begin with.

I was paid in cash, by the IT manager - so I suspect that I was paid out of his pocket to save his job.

Comment: Re:Flash memory sucks (Score 1) 52

by Crudely_Indecent (#48774895) Attached to: NASA Update Will Deal With Opportunity Flash Memory "Amnesia"

I said the same thing until I saw firsthand the performance benefits.

Since then, I've taken a hybrid approach. My laptop ultrabay has a normal magnetic drive, and the primary drive is a 256gb ssd. My system is installed on the SSD, all frequently written directories are mounted on the ultrabay platter drive.

It's not as fast as it could be running entirely from SSD, but I get a big speed boost with the security of magnetic media for my files.

I've had one failure on the SSD, which the manufacturer resolved quickly under warranty. Recovery was simple because even though the SSD failed, all of my user files were safe on the still working platter drive.

Comment: Re:Summary of Trailer (Score 2) 390

by Crudely_Indecent (#48480655) Attached to: First Star War Episode 7 Trailer Released

So what's Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker's excuse? Anakin was supposedly this technical wizard, why doesn't he have a freaking 12 bladed light saber sphere? Did Vader opt for a plain light saber because he has the cool suit? Did Anakin lose the fine motor control required to construct light saber bad-assery when he was put into the life support suit? Did he just say "fuck it" because - who's he gonna fight?

No amount of genius can overcome a preoccupation with detail.