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Comment Re:Board Game design (Score 4, Interesting) 155 155

The problem with not eliminating players in a free-for-all type of games (like Settlers of Catan) is that often worst players become kingmakers. It's been more than on a single occasion in Catan that if A and B are way ahead but of more or less equal strength, C who has no realistic chance to win the game can essentially decide if A or B does. And that is is arguably even worse than blind luck.


LinkedIn Study: US Attracting Fewer Educated, Highly Skilled Migrants 338 338

vinces99 writes The U.S. economy has long been powered in part by the nation's ability to attract the world's most educated and skilled people to its shores. But a new study of the worldwide migration of professionals to the U.S. shows a sharp drop-off in its proportional share of those workers – raising the question of whether the nation will remain competitive in attracting top talent in an increasingly globalized economy. The study, which used a novel method of tracking people through data from the social media site LinkedIn, is believed to be the first to monitor global migrations of professionals to the U.S., said co-author Emilio Zagheni, a University of Washington assistant professor of sociology and fellow of the UW eScience Institute. Among other things, the study, presented recently in Barcelona, Spain, found that just 13 percent of migrating professionals in the sample group chose the U.S. as a destination in 2012, down from 27 percent in 2000.

Comment Re:Welp, sold (Score 1) 319 319

Depends on how the sites are structured. It's not uncommon for some sites to make users click around a lot to artificially inflate # of ad impressions. If your "favorite" website isn't doing this, and the other ones you are using do, sadly, this encourages the wrong behavior [even further].

Comment Re:10x Productivity (Score 1) 215 215

And you seriously expect agents to be able to thoroughly understand all this enough to be able to use it?

>They don't just know the library, they recognize the functions they are traversing from the debugger output

do you think there is even a way to evaluate programmers on this level? I agree this matters, but there is no way to know until you have actually worked with that person, which takes us back to square one. And even if you do obtain this evaluation somehow, not only it's going to be hard to comprehend for someone who is not a professional themselves (doesn't look like there are a lot of programmer professionals among agents) - it also requires a non-trivial amount of knowledge about the position that needs to be filled.

Comment FaceTV? (Score 1) 206 206

This is not how we use Facebook today, and not how we use social networks in general. The difference between "most video" and "text-based news feed with pics" is very roughly the same as the difference between television and books - there're just different mediums (media?), and they do not replace but complement each other. And he says "we'll replace your book with a TV programme".

Which means that:
- either he expects Facebook users (really, most of us) to change our "information consumption" habits with time so that people will actually prefer video to text
- or he wants to change more text-oriented Facebook to a more video-oriented FaceTV, in effect creating a different kind of resource

Either seems like a significant change from what we have today. Yet Facebook succeeded as a text-with-pics-based platform, and while everyone understands we have to move on as times change and markets evolve, a change from a news-feed-from-friends-and-ads to some sort of an entertainment provider looks really risky from a business PoV.

Personally I don't come to Facebook to watch videos, and I in general watch videos rarely, because I like to focus on the message and not the carrier, and I like the music in my more anyways. If one day I come to Facebook and it's most videos, I, for one, would likely relegate Facebook to a feature-poor LinkedIn clone. I don't know how many people there are like myself, but who knows how much money people like myself add to their bottom line %-wise.

Comment Re:The last statement sums it up (Score 1) 441 441

I am saying the same thing that the Erica Joy says - that merely being a black female means she is at a disadvantage when trying to fit in a company of white males compared to a white male. (She may or may not possess other traits that also make it more difficult for her, but that's beside my point.)

Comment Re:The last statement sums it up (Score 1) 441 441

I'm not defending her attitude; I made the same observations you did, and I agree with what you're saying. What I perceive as a systemic flaw is that the white-male-centric culture self-perpetuates simply by virtue of being already dominant, so that non-white-males start at a disadvantage.

Comment Re:The last statement sums it up (Score 1) 441 441

Being a snob is a choice; being a black female, not so much. Having to be outstanding to make up for failing to "gel with the rest of the team" by virtue of being black or female does not fit many people's understanding of "equal opportunity". That some manage to hit that threshold (and I do know some of these personally) kind of exacerbates the unfairness.

Comment Re:The last statement sums it up (Score 1) 441 441

I agree with you on most of your points - the author's unreasonable expectations are clearly the root of her dissatisfaction, even though there are some real problems sometimes. However there is one thing which in my observation works out differently, and that is how our "work" selves are separated form our "life" selves.

"I do not have to like you. I do not have to be your friend. I do not have to embrace your values, or way of life, or anything about you in a non professional manner. I am in my full rights to keep a strictly professional relationship with you, regardless of your race and gender."

You don't have to. But what happens if someone is being kept a "strictly professional relationship with" by everyone - they are severely impeded in their career. HR evaluates everyone's ability to get along with the rest of the team, and that universally includes your capability to find informal ties with the team. If you're the odd guy/gal on the project, that means you WILL be passed over for worse performers because of their perceived "soft skills". Put it simply, people that easily make friends with everyone on the job will get much further (well, duh). So, if you are different from the rest, you WILL have problems getting along, and you are at a disadvantage. And race/gender obviously is a huge factor factor here.

There is a self-perpetuating problem: there is a white (and to a degree asian) male majority in the field, and others have a hard time blending in, so the latter will be passed over. I don't have any good ideas how to change this, as long as "soft skills" is a larger factor with HR than actual merit.

Comment Re:By yourself you know others (Score 1) 583 583

Rather than the first law of robotics thing I think he's talking about things like below.

Scenario 1: there are self-driving cars, and someone manages to take over hardware update, and inserts a malicious piece of code which, once activated, starts to drive cars off cliffs, or into pedestrians, or something. There is no easy way to turn it off, or even figure out which cars are susceptible, and chaos ensues.

Scenario 2: someone figures out how to mislead self-driving cars into thinking they are not where they actually are, or about their whereabouts, using software bugs, hacks, sensory input manipulation, doesn't matter. See above.

Scenario 3, more benign: there are automatic traffic controls that form a system which can be gamed by auto manufacturers. Which they start doing, which creates the need for supervision, regulation, etc. that could have been avoided if the system in question had been designed with these considerations in mind rather than "what just happened to be there at the time".

Submission + - How to fix Slashdot Beta? 17 17

Forbo writes: Since the migration to Slashdot Beta was announced, it seems all meaningful discussion has been completely disrupted with calls to boycott and protest. Rather than pull an Occupy, what can be done to focus and organize the action? What is the end goal: To revert entirely to the previous site, or to address the problems with the new site?

Submission + - Unofficial front page discussion of why /. BETA is bad-> 2 2

Bob the Super Hamste writes: As many of us have had a chance to experience the new and unimproved /. BETA here is an unofficial hopefully front page worthy discussion thread. If you have been lucky to not have experienced it you can always see it at
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Why is Slashdot ignoring the advice of so many developer articles. 2 2

An anonymous reader writes: Over the years, Slashdot has recycled plenty of articles about lousy UX, lousy design, lousy graceful degradation, lousy development practices, lousy community management, even lousy JavaScript implementations creating security problems. Did Slashdot read any of those articles?

"It's what you learn after you know it all that counts." -- John Wooden