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Comment: Re:Girls, girls, girls... (Score 1) 333

Consider, for a moment, why it would be beneficial for the participants to have this program be for girls alone.

Take your time.

I don't see a benefit. What I see is suggesting that they're inferior to men, and need to be separated into their own groups. I can understand if you want to put more girls in a class, to make it less awkward, but then you should be encouraging girls vs excluding boys. Now, I have a question for you: what do you think of making beauty pageants exclusive to boys?

Comment: Re:Girls, girls, girls... (Score 2) 333

Sexist much?

I agree, first thing on my mind too. I understand people want more women in programming, but this? THIS? This is literally the definition of sexism. You're telling me that just because someone is a boy, he can't operate the White House's Christmas Lights? Unbelievable.

Comment: Re:German cars (Score 2) 525

by EmeraldBot (#48496665) Attached to: Montana Lawmakers Propose 85 Mph Speed Limit On Interstates

Have you compared the average car in Germany with the ones in the USA? Furthermore, in Germany there are mandatory periodic technical inspections, and these are no joke. Half the cars I see in the USA would never pass these inspections. Also, getting a driver license in Germany is HARD, and the average Autobahn driver is very well disciplined compared to his USA counterpart (exceptions exist, I know I know...)

That came across me as well - this senator is making a comparison, but has no idea of how things actually work over here. Having visited the United States frequently, I cannot begin to describe how horrible driving over there is. You have people cutting you off, people who turn without signals, people who will drive so incredibly close behind you that a rear end accident is inevitable. This kind of driving is highly frowned upon over here, and just violating one of these would come with a heavy price. And not only this, but the vehicles themselves are a part of the problem as well - you have rusty old trucks from the 80's that would never pass a safety inspection, you have these large SUVs that think they are invincible, you have these pseudo drag racers which will drive as fast as they can safety be damned.

In short, I think a lot of people over here don't realize they are driving what is essentially a one ton bomb on wheels, and raising the speed limit is really not a good idea.

Comment: Re:Go back in time 5 years (Score 1) 581

by EmeraldBot (#48421171) Attached to: Debian Votes Against Mandating Non-systemd Compatibility

How practical is this for the desktop?

This is actually a serious question. I'm not overly familiar with BSD but have been thinking about giving it a shot on the desktop. I've been a Gentoo user for many years and am reasonably comfortable diving into stuff, so I don't anticipate user friendliness being a show stopper, more likely something I can currently do on Linux won't be available or will have poor support in BSD.

The main things I'm concerned with are Minecraft/FTB, mplayer, flash, VirtualBox, OpenRA, and jack/rakarrack. I'm open to alternatives as long as they actually work.

Flash I could probably live without, but much as I hate it, browsing the web sans-flash does still pose the occasional problem. jack/rakarrack I could also probably live without. I currently use my desktop as a quick-n-dirty guitar amp/effects stack. OpenRA is the thing I anticipate having the most problems with, but I play it somewhat obsessively so very much desired.

At some point I'll probably just try it and see, but I'm curious if any other slashdotter has gone this route and has anything interesting to say about it.

FTB may be a bit of a problem: I use FreeBSD, and I couldn't get it to work correctly. Granted, I expended very little effort into it, so there may be a way and I'm just too lazy. I don't know how well jack or VirtualBox would work, as I don't use either. However, Flash works fine (it'll be an old version, but it's the same old version that's on Linux), mplayer works fine, and OpenRA also works fine. I can't believe I've finally met another player of this game :P

Comment: Re:Obvious guy says (Score 1) 223

by EmeraldBot (#48389765) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Programming Education Resources For a Year Offline?

Do you necessarily have to work on your coding skills? What about enjoying the ride and soaking up the scene?

I was going to say the same thing. Concentrate on being a better person, rather than a better programmer. Travel broadens the mind. Let it do so.

I'm the third man in this conga line, but yes, focus on improving yourself and enjoying your trip. You can always learn programming; a trip to the Himalayas is a rare opportunity indeed.

Comment: Re:Good luck with that (Score 1) 308

by EmeraldBot (#48236623) Attached to: US Army May Relax Physical Requirements To Recruit Cyber Warriors

What do you mean by "risk aversion"? I'm genuinely curious.

I can't speak for the grandparent but generally in de facto non-profit monopolies - there's nobody else competing to be the US army for example - there's very little risk in not pushing boundaries. Projects might run over time and over budget but at the end of the day the politicians have to fund the army next year too and you don't get the fat bonuses like when your software makes money for the company. Obvious flops on the other hand might require scapegoats and if you make your superiors look bad, well they're likely to be a step or two up in seniority for the rest of your career in the same "company". That will permeate the entire environment making any kind of change hard, nobody wants to be the one signing off on anything without a drawn out change process.

Here in Norway the craziest example at the moment is the police. In 2005 our politicians made fairly big changes to the penal code, which would go into effect when the police systems were able to handle it. Well, now it's 2014 and it's still not in effect. But what can you do, not fund the police? No matter how much the schedules slip and it goes over budget we have to keep throwing money at them. If they were a commercial company they'd be out of business long ago. Sometimes I wonder if it would be cheaper if we awarded two companies the contract to write the same module with a bonus to the winner, just to get the competition.

That's an interesting idea! I do think that here in the United States, our government's a little bit too business friendly, but using two companies would be a good way to pit competition to (hopefully) produce a better result. Or maybe not, what do I know :P I certainly think it's an idea worth trying, though.

Comment: Re:Good luck with that (Score 1) 308

by EmeraldBot (#48236149) Attached to: US Army May Relax Physical Requirements To Recruit Cyber Warriors

I left the DoD as a software developer largely because they couldn't get their heads out of their asses. The paperwork, mandatory training, and total risk aversion meant I developed code at maybe 25% of the speed that I did before, and after, in the private sector. And the stock options in the DoD were nothing to write home about.

I really don't see how the DoD can win any cyber fight. It would take losing a ground war on U.S. soil for them to give up their worship of bureaucracy.

What do you mean by "risk aversion"? I'm genuinely curious.

Comment: Re:The FSF overreached with GPL v3 ... (Score 2) 183

by EmeraldBot (#47920643) Attached to: Why Apple Should Open-Source Swift -- But Won't

> Apple, and others, stopped using the "truly free" gcc because GPL v3 became quite restrictive.

There's nothing in there that should scare off anyone. If someone is bothered by the GPL3 in a project like C++ compiler, then you should be very suspicious of their motives. They clearly aren't interested in playing nice or being a good citizen.

They clearly want to be free to f*ck you over later.

Go tell that to the BSD guys. No, they don't want to screw you over, their definition of freedom differs. To them, freedom is defined as having as absolutely few restrictions as possible. GCC vs Clang is a perfect example. GCC is intentionally made as opaque as possible to prevent you from working around it, and it's far worse in this respect then many of the proprietary compilers. Clang is more interested in being as useful to the user as it can. If you really want it summed up in one sentence, here it is: GNU projects put the license first, functionality second. THAT's what drove Apple (and pretty much everything other then Linux) away from GCC, not "They clearly want to be free to f*ck you over later".

Comment: Re:Dreadnoughtus schrani now the largest known din (Score 1) 91

by EmeraldBot (#47838229) Attached to: California Blue Whales Rebound From Whaling

The author of the summary is not up to date on the recent release of info on Dreadnoughtus schrani, now believed to be the largest creature to ever have walked on land. See the following:




Damn Whales, walking on land everywhere. Oh what's that, they swim? And they way three times as much as the Dreadnoughtus? The author of this comment is not up to date...

Comment: Re:Why the fuck is this on Slashdot? (Score 1) 789

There are comparatively fewer web sites focusing on technology, mathematics, science, and computing. Slashdot was such a site. We'd be able to come here to find articles and dicussion that wouldn't be readily available from other sources or venues.

Next article up: "Ask Slashdot: Will nuclear winter usher in the year of Linux on the desktop?"

"Linux is a cancer that attaches itself in an intellectual sense to everythi- oh wait, never mind, that's the nuclear radiation."

"Probably the best operating system in the world is the [operating system] made for the PDP-11 by Bell Laboratories." - Ted Nelson, October 1977