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Comment: Is it the Apps? (Score 2) 136

The real question, of course, is whether the apps are the problem or the device itself?

After all, Apple no longer has perfectionist management at the top. It seems to me that they are more likely to release a product before it's fully baked. When the iPad was release, Apple had gone through hundreds of prototypes. I wonder if they put the same amount of design effort into the Apple Watch.

Comment: Re:You aren't the audience (Score 1) 75

by David_Hart (#49495195) Attached to: StarTalk TV Show With Neil DeGrasse Tyson Starts Monday

I have a big interest in physics and cosmology, etc, and generally fall asleep listening to some lecture or talk of some sort, be it Feynman or Susskind or what have you.


Quit mixing pop culture and science, it dumbs it down and makes people I respected once look like

These kinds of shows aren't for people who fall asleep every night listening to lectures. These kinds of shows are for the people who think Taylor Swift is the greatest singer/songwriter of all time, or can name everyone in the newest season of Dancing with the Stars but can't name the top people in government. The idea is to get people who aren't normally interested in science to at least think about it, to develop a rudimentary understanding of how science works (scientific theory, how scientists think, etc) and why the world around them is the way it is. Even a simplistic understadning is better than no understanding at all.

Exactly. This is for those people who can name the members of the band One Direction and who are upset over one of the band members leaving (I only know this much because it preempted real news for a solid week). My thought is that it will end up falling into the same category as CSI: Cyber. Something for the general audience and not for the technically minded.

Comment: Re:Wow. Just wow. (Score 1) 324

by David_Hart (#49487647) Attached to: LA Schools Seeking Refund Over Botched iPad Plan

The iPads weren't standalone education devices â" they were supposed to work in conjunction with another device carrying curriculum from a company named Pearson. But the district now says the combined tech didn't meet their needs, and they want their money back.

So... They didn't test the iPad / content combo to establish usability / feasibility / usefulness prior to dropping all this cash?

Anyone with half a brain could see that this whole thing had FIASCO written all over it in bright red letters. The whole thing reeks of one giant scam.

-- The school district signed an initial $30 million deal with Apple in a program that was supposed to eventually cost up to $1.3 billion. As part of the program, the LA School District would buy iPads from Apple at $768 each

You can go into any store an buy the most expensive iPad for $699. The school system is spending a billion dollars and didn't negotiate a discount on the price? They're actually paying $79 over retail !!?? What the fucking fuck.

-- and then Pearson, a subcontractor with Apple, would provide math and science curriculum for the tablets at an additional $200 per unit.

$200 per unit for some shitty software? You've now jacked up the price to nearly a thousand dollars per iPad. Again, they're spending a billion dollars and don't negotiate a discount?

-- Less than 2 months after the program started, the school district reported that one-third of the 2,100 iPads distributed during the initial rollout of the program, had gone missing.

Seriously? You didn't see this coming from a mile away?

-- And best of all, the schools district's Assistant Superintendent, essentially the number 2 person in charge of the entire school system, is a former executive with Pearson, the company providing the software, and he was heavily involved in helping Pearson land the contract..

Yeah... the least that they could have done is subscribed each iPad to the "Find My iPad" app.... obviously, not being able to find the missing iPads was the last straw... (grin)

Comment: Re:a mailman from Ruskin, Florida (Score 1) 322

by David_Hart (#49481983) Attached to: Gyro-Copter Lands On West Lawn of US Capitol, Pilot Arrested

> "An anonymous reader writes that Doug Hughes, 61, a mailman from Ruskin, Florida"...

I'm tired, and managed to somehow read that as "a mailman from Russia". I was pretty impressed with the guy's dedication, flying a gyro-copter all the way to DC!

Well... He'd have to, wouldn't he. After all, with global warming the ice bridge to Alaska is gone.... (grin)

Comment: Not a problem with scope creep... (Score 1) 131

by David_Hart (#49476285) Attached to: How Mission Creep Killed a Gaming Studio

The company didn't fold due to scope creep, the company folded because the people in charge were not willing to say "No".

You can argue that it's one and the same.

The difference, at least in my mind, is that scope creep simply causes never ending projects. Requirements are allowed to expand because there is no good reason and, thus, no political will to deny the request.

On the other hand, accepting new requirements when you don't have the budget for it, and where you are betting the farm, is a completely different animal. It sounds like management wasn't mature enough to say No at the point when Microsoft wouldn't change the Budget. They even had the loopy idea that if they completed a chunk of the game that Microsoft might relent. Pure wishful thinking....

It's up to the company to manage both its own budget and its image. Falling down on not being involved in the marketing effort and not having a marketing veto again shows just how poor management was. The Execs didn't know what they were getting into and didn't know how to manage the contract.

Comment: Tea... (Score 1) 108

Meanwhile, the tea drinkers have been sitting back all of these years laughing at the coffee complaints... Plus, the tea guys get to drink theirs with chopsticks...

I'm willing to bet that the coffee guys finally got fed up which is why the espresso machine... (grin)

Comment: Re:Wow, this *IS* old... (Score 2) 171

Yeah, but . . .

Are there any Windows Administrators out there with I.Q.'s > 90 that knowingly and intentionally leave ports 137, 138, 139 and/or 445 open to the Intartubes?

If your Windows Admins are managing your firewalls, then you are in trouble... Usually it's either the network engineers or firewall Admins.

This has been a non-issue for the simple fact that no one opens these ports to the Internet...

Comment: Re:Keeping spoilers close to the chest??? (Score 1) 148

by David_Hart (#49462967) Attached to: Nearly Half of <em>Game of Thrones</em> Season 5 Leaks Online

Yeah, a friend of mine read the entire series and uses it to drop spoilers as punishment when someone insults him. Having read the series myself I am naturally immune.

He hasn't read the entire series as the last two books aren't out yet. In fact, the show is supposed to move beyond the published books this season. So you won't have to worry about him throwing out spoilers any more. Feel free to insult him... (evil grin)

Comment: Dig a hole in the back yard... (Score 4, Insightful) 443

Just dig a hole in the back yard and place the USB key or whatever in a water tight container and fill it in. Encrypting it would be a good idea too, just in case the neighbors dog digs it up. For something simple, you could try an otterbox drybox. These are used for kayaking and diving and are waterproof. The only problem might be cracking during the winter. You might want to dig below the frost line or put insulation around it.

Another option would be to get an external shed and store stuff in there in a fire safe.

Comment: Re:Or, not use Android (Score 1) 44

by David_Hart (#49457845) Attached to: Google Battles For Better Batteries

I entended my phone's battery life, and its speed and responsiveness, by uninstalling or disabling all (almost) the apps that have background processes always in execution. See under Settings -> Applications -> Running. You should really invest some time for finding alternative apps that don't rely on background processes for ads and the like, or recognize you don't need them installed all the time.

By trial and errors, you may find that it's only one or two apps that occupy the most resources. I suspect some programmers don't really know what "background" means. For me it totally was a weather app, shipping with the phone.

Most people who have large battery drainage on their cell phones have processes running the background. A lot of people do not know how to close browser pages and apps (i.e. swiping them off the screen).

Comment: Re:Easy explanation (Score 2) 96

by David_Hart (#49454533) Attached to: Being Overweight Reduces Dementia Risk

Too much blind guessing. Here's the correct answer.

The error everyone makes in assuming that because it's bad for heart disease, it's bad for everything.

Obesity is a problem primarily because of cardiovascular reasons, like heart attack and stroke. Otherwise it's loaded with nutrition and calories. This probably explains why "overweight" (though not obese) are the longest-lived segment of society. Thinner people are running more on empty, leading to under-performing immune systems and healing.

That's where I'd start to look anyway.

And on top of all this, high fat content is known to help neurons function in cases with epilepsy, so again it's not a surprise here.

There was also a study of elderly done a while back, I think that it was on 60 minutes, that found that elderly people who were a bit overweight tended to live longer. One of the possible reasons was that when they got sick, injured, etc. they had body reserves that would help them heal and get better.

Comment: Re:I'm gonna go out on a limb. (Score 1) 291

What is interesting is how alcohol is often seen as part of "college life" but that's exactly the period of your life when you shouldn't be drinking much at all to be able to think clearly.

You, like many others mistakenly believe that the point of college is to get an education. In my estimation (as someone who has been involved with hiring for many different positions) A College degree (even from prestigious schools) is a poor indicator of intelligence, or ability. People who are capable, will learn from whatever source is available (And google is a much better source than all but a handful of professors). People who are not capable of learning on their own *must* go to a university to get an education, but these people make lousy employees, as they can never handle anything outside of the ordinary, and consequently are no better than ditch-diggers. Even the best schools in the world cant teach independent thinking. By the time a person gets to college, they either have it or they never will.

You show me someone who graduated school while attending less than half their classes, and I'll show you someone who will be successful at whatever you give them to do. (This goes double for B.S. degrees).

College is 100% about networking and creating relationships (both personal and professional). To that end, college social activities (including drinking) are an invaluable part of the experience. After all, its not about what you know, its about who you know.

Social interaction is important as is the education aspect, but not even close to 100%, more like 25% (learning people skills), unless you are going to a really good college. One could argue that it's more important in Ivy league schools simply because the vast majority of people who get into Harvard, Yale, etc. are already smart enough and/or rich enough to get a job. The rest is just getting to know people who can help them with their ambitions. However, social interaction itself in other universities is not enough to get your career started.

Yes, if you happen to know Joe or, more likely, his Dad, who works at ABC company and he puts a good word in for you, they are more likely to interview you. However, if you don't have the skills that they are looking for or if you barely passed compared to another graduate that is being interviewed, they are going to dump your ass just as quickly as if you were a nobody.

Over time, once you have job experience, the people that you know becomes more important as they can help advance your career and keep you informed of openings.

Comment: Re:Sign of the times (Score 2) 114

So much for reading the actual article....

He has REQUESTED the exams using a Freedom of Information request. They haven't actually given them to him and are very likely going to find a reason not to.

The article says that he is still studying (revising) for the tests because even he doesn't think that his request will succeed.

Comment: Re:Guardian scum (Score 1) 114

Who the fuck writes "but keeps revising in likelihood request is denied". That isn't even English.

I hate to burst your bubble, but that is English, and British English at that. Revise is being used in the sense of to study:

reread work done previously to improve one's knowledge of a subject, typically to prepare for an examination.
"students frantically revising for exams"

Perhaps your knowledge of English, is shall we say .. in need of revision?

It's interesting that the majority of examples of the word "revise" in the Oxford dictionary is to change things. The only exception is when referring to studying for exams, etc. "Revising" is definitely a word that is not used this way in the US or in Canada, where I grew up.

Comment: Re:First, manhole covers are not always round (Score 2) 183

by David_Hart (#49435637) Attached to: The Key To Interviewing At Google

The vast majority are round and have a lip on them. This makes the manhole cover circumference larger than the actual hole and prevents the cover from falling down the hole. A square manhole cover can fall down the hole in the right orientation. In other words, round manhole covers were designed to reduce accidents.

Sewer and drainage grates tend to be square or rectangular. Then again these holes are much shallower and usually do not have ladders.

The intelligence of any discussion diminishes with the square of the number of participants. -- Adam Walinsky