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Comment: Re:Already lost (Score 4, Interesting) 110 110

What state doesn't store a digitized copy of the faces of everyone with a driver's license? The minute they put photos on IDs this one was lost. I can't believe the FBI doesn't have access to every single drivers license photo on file...

Whereas now they don't give grocery receipt coupons to unprofitable bargain hunters that come in just for the sales ( they know who you are! ) you'll start seeing these people recognized by face and shown loud obnoxious ads for herpes medication and depends to keep em out of the store.

Comment: Re:obvious questions (Score 2) 180 180

Also, UIs for popular email clients may be to blame. Sometimes it's easier to hit the big friendly Mark as Spam button to get the functionality of unsubscribing. If enough people do this, then all your mail is going to be blocked as spam, even if it was legitimately subscribed to.

Comment: Re:Useless (Score 1) 138 138

I even avoided having my mug in paper yearbooks. I'm not about to put my face on the internet next to my name so someone I flipped the bird to for snapping my picture can search for my face to find me to exact revenge.

I guess facebook is doing this because it doesn't do email. ( haven't seen too many @facebook.com email addresses around.)

I don't think I mind because maybe this will get enough people using encryption that it becomes worth using. But damn, I don't want to touch Facebook - icky sticky...even to look other people up and get their pubkeys, I mean if it is important enough to you to keep something secret that you encrypt it, why are you sending it in an email where you will lose control over what security precautions are applied to it when the recipient gets it? The main use case would be sending people secret data about themselves, like a statement of account or something like that. But who but casual acquaintances are going to find your facebook page to get your public key? If your electric company does encrypt eg: billing statements sent via email for you it will be because you sent them your pubkey yourself when you logged in with username/password.

I guess this means google gets to read all my email. But then they provide me with a free email address. I use two factor authentication, so I won't get my account hacked. I do trust that they are probably keeping my data safe. I have not heard of a case where someone's personal data leaked out of a gmail account whose password was not hacked. And if gmail decided to really support pgp in a convenient and easy to use way, they'd probably have a copy of my private key to make it work nicely. I'd want to be able to read my email on any device without a special client more than I would care about google having my private key. In fact if they scrupulously required the key to be stored on the device, ( though they'd have their own client that I'd have to trust with my key if I used it ), I'd probably upload my private key to google drive for safe keeping. ( wouldn't want to lose it ).

If I had a real secret I'd put it in a file and encrypt that file, and never tell anyone the passphrase ever. This is simply because I would never trust anyone else not to accidentally or purposely spill the beans. I wouldn't be sending it in emails. I trust google not to spill my beans more than I trust anyone I would send the email to. If that's not sufficient, I don't send the data by any means - pgp would not be an improvement once the data is in someone else's hands.

Comment: Re:Alternative theory: Alternative Reality (Score 1) 246 246

Haven't seen the movie, but from the trailers it looked to me to be a reboot of The Road Warrior, which is the obvious favorite of 90% of casual Mad Max fans and the one modern special effects has the most to offer. It was my favorite too but eventually I grew to like the first movie the best. Thunderdome reeks of the late 1980s. Like Malls.

So The Road Warrior never happened, and this movie is the new canon?

Comment: Re:business models (Score 1) 124 124

However making programmers cheap increases the tendency for those who pay for coding to want linear increase in human resources to result in linear output. Well designed software does far better than linear output for input effort.

The only kind of coding that conforms to this is spaghetti coding. That is the crappiest code possible. The crappier the code base the smaller the bit of code each developer can work on. The cheaper the coders the crapper the code base will become. This is 'ok' because the deficiency can be mitigated by hiring more coders.

Imagine running a factory full of broken machinery and as many workers as it would have without the automation each babysitting their own rusted bolt because people are cheaper than new bolts.

Comment: Re:So far so good. (Score 1) 211 211

Meh, promote from within, promote from without, same diff.. People switch jobs because either they were good at their job and earned a promotion, or because their skills and talents did not align with their current position so they pounded the pavement to get another job. ( or perhaps they saw the writing on the wall and were merely dodging the axe ). There is no guarantee these people from without would make better managers than whatever they were doing before - that thing they've lied a bit on their resume about so that it looks like more serious 'management' than it really was. Or if they really were managers, were they any good? How do you know - and here's the kicker - even if you knew they were 'good' how do you know you're defining 'good' correctly? Can you see into the workings of that other company they last worked for though the lens of the resume they presented to you written to make things look the way they want it to look - AT ALL?

At best you can interview them and see if it seems like they can speak fluently and don't drool much. Beyond that its random chance.

If you promote from within, you either select someone you think would make a good manager, ( and you might not know as much as you think ) and promote them, or you select the 'best' worker by whatever measure and promote them. If you select the 'best' worker, you are out your best worker. If you select someone else you may be wrong, and also, everyone sees that being the 'best' isn't actually best. But either way, at least the manager wasn't randomly picked from a resume pool.

Comment: Re:Three (Score 1) 301 301


1) USB Hub, and as much stuff as I want
2) Backup in case stuff connected to 1 gets knocked around and unsolders 1 from the motherboard. In this case I still have a place to plug in the hub.

Note: using a hub with a flexible wire decreases the odds that 1 will be bumped hard enough to damage something.

Comment: They were just late (Score 1) 359 359

Everyone who wanted social networking is already on Facebook, and is already invested of time and energy there. Maintaining another network with less of their friends on it is a total lose for them.

Linked-in is for work and not really social. It exists so you don't have to maintain even a semblance of a social connection with the people you work with so they can be used for references in case you want to switch jobs. The evidence that you are who you say you are is there in your LInked-in associations.

The rest of us don't want to be on a social network. We don't want to leak information unwittingly and we use google for other things, so if Google+ gets leaky/grabby with our private info we'll stop using Google for anything at all.

That said youtube comments are easy to follow with Google+ so I have my throwaway google account tied into Google+ and my real name google account also tied in with only my family and close respectable friends in my real name circles. I don't communicate with nut-cases with my real name account.

I live in fear that I could accidentally click a button on my android phone that knows about both accounts which would create a link between the two accounts somewhere public. I may have to think about switching away from google for either real name stuff or fun stuff if it gets too scary. They'll end up like linked-in and be used exclusively for business if they get leaky. Good luck getting people to use anything new then..

This fear might have something to do with why people are leary of using Google+ as well.

The people who don't care are already on Facebook.

Comment: Re:artificial sweeteners spike insulin (Score 1) 630 630

artificial sweeteners being associated with insulin resistance regardless of BMI has been well-established

You didn't do anything invalid with that factoid, but it's worth noting that it stands to reason that people feeling the need to watch their weight for whatever reason would be more likely to consume artificial sweeteners, and that feeling the need to take measures such as drinking diet soft drinks is likely due to the perception that without those measures BMI ( and liklihood of Diabetes ) would be worse.

Comment: Re:better education (Score 3, Insightful) 352 352

The biggest problem with education is trying to make a horse drink water - the horses that don't feel like drinking at the moment monopolize the resources of everyone and dictate the techniques used. Everyone is led by the teacher in a ritualistic dance at the end of which, if the dance steps are followed, mastery is supposedly achieved. Those who can be engaged by this kind of thing and dance along with the class do well. Those who don't care to dance are unteachable - labeled dumb.

When first introduced, compulsory education was compulsory because the compulsion was necessary to force parents to give up the labor of their children so they could be educated. Education was an opportunity, and there were few who would not compel their children to take part if they could afford it.

Today child labor laws and the general way society is configured make children worthless as labor. Time in school is if anything is the financial equivalent of 'free babysitting'.

After a certain age it's impossible to keep someone in school and learning if they don't want to be there and the level of compulsory education should therefore be low anyway. K-6 makes more sense to be compulsory than beyond.

The idea that there should be a diploma at the end of it all and that that diploma should 'mean something' undermines the value of that diploma. By insisting that it certify a minimum standard, we guarantee that the standard is very low. If graduation rate is a priority than that priority is at odds with not only the level of the standard, but the possible level anyone can achieve. Catering to students who don't want to learn deprives everyone else. Dragging people kicking and bucking into education sets people against anything to do with it. The process of having education shoved down one's throat even turns people who would otherwise be receptive to education off to it.

What would be better would be for a certain number of years of education be paid for, and students can go as far as they want. They don't get a diploma, they get a transcript. They learn basic skills, not because they must, but because they are prerequisites to a class they are interested in taking. They want to pass for lots of reasons, such as peer pressure not to be the oldest kid taking the class, but also because they want to take some other class. If someone is behind in some area they can concentrate their efforts there.

Grades aren't important. Make classes pass/fail but keep the standard for passing high enough that students who pass have demonstrated enough understanding to succeed at the next level. Students who excel would have a broader transcript, or complete the courses offered early. But there is no need to penalize someone who struggles in a certain area if they have demonstrated mastery eventually. If they have truly mastered whatever it is, then they should be as able as anyone else who has mastered it to apply it in the future.

Can older, engaged kids benefit from well produced virtual classes? Sure. Will fourth graders watch the screen intently enough to learn Long Division? Will a 'tech' necessarily be able to answer a frustrated student's questions in a helpful way? If they can, then they aren't too bad at teaching... Couldn't they conceivably do as well as the video teacher? Yep, better probably. And does the video get paused every time one of the kidnergarteners has a question? Does it then become impossible to engage with?

That's one of the problems with the ritual dance method of teaching. Everyone brings certain things to the table before the class. It's hard not to fall asleep and miss the stuff you need to hear, or waste your energy doing useless ( for you ) dance steps and be too tired from that to learn anything difficult. It's better to be engaged in learning and spend your time on the stuff you don't know. When people do this they apply the sharpest edge to their problems and tend to cut through difficulty like a laser.

School should make that possible.

There is no opinion so absurd that some philosopher will not express it. -- Marcus Tullius Cicero, "Ad familiares"