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Comment: Re:Infosys, Really? (Score 4, Informative) 88

Code.org is really a lobbying program for H1-B visas. Its stated mission of teaching poor kids in America to become well-paid IT professionals is window dressing. It is brilliant PR and little more.

It would be great if it were to accidentally succeed in its stated mission -- no one would complain -- but it's about H1-Bs now, not the future of America's children.

Comment: Re:Free Markets 101 (Score 4, Insightful) 88

A "free market" for labour would mean immigration, not temporary work visas with strict conditions. H1-Bs shift power from labour to management. Management is not asking for an immigration fast-path for highly skilled professionals -- they are asking for temporary permits. H1-B workers, while obviously benefitting from the program, are not seeing the kind of benefit they would if they could immigrate and if they could be hired permanently and progress in their careers in the US. The economy as a whole benefits much less from H1-Bs than it does from skilled immigration. H1-B holders who subsequently start new enterprises aren't doing so in America.

I realize that some H1-B workers are able subsequently to immigrate, but it's a separate route and it's not the program's intention. It's good to have a program that lets highly specialized advisors in -- it ensures knowledge and skills transfer from the broader world, but H1-B is not primarily used for that. The program would have more value if it had higher standards for quality, not larger quantity. As it stands, it's simply an attack on labour, one that cloaks itself in the language of freedom and immigration while providing neither.

Comment: Somebody else's problem (Score 3, Informative) 355

He was a sessional lecturer in his first semester at Galveston. He had made multiple attempts to deal with the bad actors in the class, and the university hadn't supported him. In addition to his love letter to the students, he wrote one to the department telling them what he thought of them and saying: The students are "your problem now." While burning that particular bridge may have seemed worthwhile to him, I doubt he's happy to have made the news. He probably would have liked to remain hireable as an instructor.

Comment: Re:Wireless service (Score 1) 536

I think we're not entirely communicating. The suggestion was to run a thin client at home. The only thing being communicated is changes to the screen. I realize this won't accommodate streaming media, but I wouldn't sell my house over lack of YouTube or Netflix. It may be against one's company's policy to run a thin client.

Comment: Wireless service (Score 1) 536

I'm still lost as to why wireless service isn't viable.

Couldn't one keep the development boxes remoted somewhere, and just access them through remote terminal over LTE? The latency is okay, and even a lot of remote access isn't going to blow through a 15GB data plan.

Comment: Compact-Flash (Score 1) 466

by Dr J. keeps the nerd (#49147061) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Old PC File Transfer Problem

CF cards are IDE, but with a smaller pin-out. If you have an adapter between the laptop IDE and the CF form factor you might be able to either plug the HD into a newer box with a CF adapter or plug a CF card directly into the laptop (assuming there's a second slot... or possibly even slaved on to a single cable if there isn't).

Personally I'd try PCMCIA ethernet because I still have a card or two in my basement, but who knows what crap you have.

Really, though, I just want to say thank you to the poster for a problem that Slashdotters really care about.

If any of you kiddies are interested in technology the NSA will have trouble getting at, I know of someone with a Contura laptop to sell you...

Comment: Re:How do you get 1Tbs in 100MHz of BW? (Score 1) 71

Shannon's theorem is true for a single channel. Eventually, cramming in more bits into one channel becomes power-prohibitive, because one must double power for each new bit added in. The benefits from adding power diminish even further when a system is widely deployed, as power from one system shows up as noise in the next, and SNR in all systems hits an interference limit.

To get around these limits, two related techniques are used
1) adding more antennas, to create more channels which are separated in space
2) coordination techniques that reduce interference from one spatial channel to another

If 2) is done well, then 1) can provide the kind of linear benefits you'd hope for - each new channel contributes its share to the sum data-rate. As you might imagine, building very parallel radio systems and coordinating what's sent over them presents its share of challenges.

Comment: FTFY (Score 1) 220

by Dr J. keeps the nerd (#49077757) Attached to: Obama Says He's 'A Strong Believer In Strong Encryption'
Obama puts it another way, more bluntly: "There's no scenario in which we don't want really strong encryption." However, the president says the public itself is driving concern for leaving criminals no way in: "The first time that an attack takes place on millions of bank accounts in which it turns out that we could have prevented it with encryption, the public's going to demand answers."

Comment: Re:Updates vs Attack Surface (Score 1) 157

by Dr J. keeps the nerd (#49003305) Attached to: Automakers Move Toward OTA Software Upgrades
Existing cars are pervasively computerized. We seem intent on hooking them, along with everything else, up to the Internet because the immediate cost of hooking things up to the Internet is low and decreasing and there are promised benefits of convenience, efficiency, or safety. Control does not make the list.

Comment: Re:Updates vs Attack Surface (Score 1) 157

by Dr J. keeps the nerd (#49001267) Attached to: Automakers Move Toward OTA Software Upgrades

My choice of "timebomb" was poor. I meant only that something complex, valuable, and easy to connect to would be in danger of getting compromised, and that being able to receive patches OTA would mitigate this threat better if it didn't make the thing even easier to connect to.

There is some risk of seeing manufacturers ship (literally) cars that are half-baked, but there are still consequences to messing up. While the prohibitive costs of a recall force some more attention to detail during design, they also can act to discourage manufacturers from acknowledging and fixing things. There's moral hazard either way -- it's difficult to design one's way out of sloth and risk. From a security perspective, cost / benefit analysis and "appropriate" security is often emphasized over defense in depth, so there's risk that resources spent on, eg, private cellular access are resources taken away from other system hardening efforts rather than something layered on top. It's often the case that the defender isn't really playing to win.

Humanity has the stars in its future, and that future is too important to be lost under the burden of juvenile folly and ignorant superstition. - Isaac Asimov

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