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Comment: Re:Terrible summary (Score 1) 188 188

You don't even need to RTFS, you just need to read the title. It doesn't say the experiment failed; it said it ended in disappointment -- as in, they were disappointed that they can't reduce pesticide use by producing the pheromone. Yes, the experiment successfully answered their question, but as you yourself said, it was not the answer they had hoped for.

Terrible criticism of the summary. I would have expected better from AC than to say the summary was terrible.

Comment: Re:I had no choice (Score 1) 116 116

What do you mean, no choice? Whenever I get one of those popups that says they want my cell phone number "for better security", I click the "no thanks, maybe later" option.

Of course, all that's for nothing if they can dig up phone numbers by any means necessary.

Comment: Re:Stability (Score 3, Interesting) 429 429

In addition to your good point about experience, stability is also a key factor. I have been with my company nearly 25 years. In the past five years, I've seen some amazing kids come along who could do 2-4 times the work I do (and probably at half the price)... but as soon as they've buffed up their experience points and leveled up, they're gone.

My skillset may be largely obsolete, but I know the product inside and out from a user/business perspective, and although it takes me a bit longer to learn all this newfangled dot-net-this and agile-that, I'm willing to do whatever it takes to stay relevant and stay for the long haul.

Now if you'll excuse me I need to get back to studying up on this new language called HTML. <flash>Hello, world!</flash>

Comment: Re:Won't work (Score 1) 700 700

What's more, it shouldn't work. When people submit WtP petitions demanding that the federal government research this or spend more/less on that or provide some additional service or whatever, it's fairly harmless. Even if the petition somehow miraculously causes real action, it's just government spinning its wheels and spending money.

When you start using petitions to bypass due process in the judicial system, you open the door to mob rule. Don't like someone? Start a petition to have them prosecuted. With a population the size of the US, it won't take any effort at all to round up enough participants who share your dislike of that person, or just follow the crowd, or do it for the lulz.

I detest CoS and agree that they have abused their "religious" exemption in horrific ways. But I can't get behind any crowdsourced efforts to take them down.

First, they came for the Scientologists...

Comment: Re:Advanced is good enough (Score 1) 220 220

I went 15+ years without learning SQL because Clipper was my bread and butter from 1986 to 2010. The first time I saw SQL, I wondered why on earth anyone thought it was any use... dBase and its derivatives seemed so much more robust. I still like the way Clipper et al operate on a single record at a time and manipulating the current-record pointer is so easy, but I've come to grudgingly accept that SQL's recordset results of a query are useful too. It's all part of my extremely belated growth from procedural to object-oriented mindset.

And have I said "get off my lawn" lately? Get off my lawn.

Comment: Re:Advanced is good enough (Score 5, Informative) 220 220

I was *the* expert at my company for our original products -- standalone database applications developed in the days of MSDOS. Although I was second-generation (apart from a smaller application I wrote myself), the original developers had long since moved on and for 15 years I held court. I knew every source file and every bug by name; I could crank out modifications at a moment's notice; I was sole technical support for the final 5 years of the products' existence.

Suddenly management realized that we didn't have enough customers on the legacy products to need me doing a combination code maintenance / support any more, and there was a scramble to find a new spot for me.

My big mistake was not staying current in the technology. Suddenly it was 2010 and I still knew only the most rudimentary basics of HTML, CSS, VB, and SQL. The only thing that saved me was the goodwill I had built up over the previous 18 years; various managers were patient with me while I scrambled to learn JavaScript, ASP.NET, and jQuery.

After four years with those platforms (and buffing up my SQL skills) I'm back to the point that can at least consider myself "intermediate"... and the playing field is changing again. We're moving away from JavaScript/jQuery and into JavaScript/Angular on the front end and C# on the back. Not to mention a side helping of vCloud, Attunity for SQL Server, and TFS 2013. Once again I'm a complete novice, struggling to learn stuff that the newcomers already knew before they were hired.

Look upon me with horror and beware, kids: Don't wait for your job description to change before you start learning new technology. Dive into it NOW, so you'll be ready when your current skill set is obsolete.

Comment: Email lets you organize your thoughts (Score 5, Insightful) 115 115

Face-to-face meetings may be more efficient for people who are aural learners, but not everyone can send, receive, and retain information that way. Personal discussions also tend to drift off-topic, so they waste as much time as they save, and of course they're not an option if the participants aren't all physically in the same office.

So... it's email for me. I have time to organize my thoughts, catch and edit mistakes, and keep an electronic trail to refer back to later when I can't recall exactly what was said.

In these matters the only certainty is that there is nothing certain. -- Pliny the Elder

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