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Comment: Re:more pseudo science (Score 4, Informative) 856

Which track record is that?

  • Spontaneous generation
  • Lamarckian inheritance
  • Miasma
  • Bloodletting
  • Aether
  • Java Man

Be careful putting too much faith in almighty science. They've been wrong before, you know. A lot. And people died because of it.

You show a bunch of ideas that, when exposed to science, got shot down as objectively wrong pretty quickly. Sounds like the process works.

Want to list 6 current sciency ideas that are wrong but the scientific community considers reasonable? I'll give you a few to start you off:

1. Humans are not changing the climate. Current verdict: wrong. Supporters: a few loons. Evidence: about nil.
2. Evolution is wrong. Current verdict: wrong. Supporters: a few loons. Evidence: nil.
3. Vaccines cause autism. Current verdict: wrong. Supporters: a few loons. Evidence: nil.

I'm sure Slashdot2114 will be debating the bad science ideas that existed in 2014. Some will claim history shows science is death. Smarter people will note that imbeciles, public relations people, lobbyists, and trolls have always added noise and generally slowed the dissemination of knowledge.

Where do you stand, PR Man?

Comment: Re:Crap (Score 1) 85

This is an impressive step forward in image processing - while reconstructing an image from diffuse light seemed plausible in theory, figuring out how to do it in practice is a hard problem. These guys deserve some respect.

Well, some respect, but it's hardly cutting edge or even very new. Maybe for physicists, but CS was ahead.

Kohonen described the basics of correlated reconstruction back in the 1980s.

There were videos of reading the backs of cards from diffuse lighting by the early 2000s. Admitted using some cheats like controlling the light source, but not awful compared to this paper that restricts the color.

By the late 2000s, the ideas were pretty common and computationally feasible. I even wrote a few POCs myself while working on somewhat related optical stuff.

Comment: Re:I like the open plan (Score 1) 314

by Gorobei (#46052957) Attached to: Office Space: TV Documentary Looks At the Dreadful Open Office

>And for what it's worth, in the last few places I've worked, the multimillionaire bosses have always sat right in the middle of the open plan with everybody else

I bet they didn't write much code.

You'd lose that bet at my workplace. The MMBs are in the middle of the open plan and are the top 1% coders: that is why they are there.

Comment: Re: I like the open plan (Score 2) 314

by Gorobei (#46052895) Attached to: Office Space: TV Documentary Looks At the Dreadful Open Office

That's a really good analysis. I'd add one idea: you can have more than one work location! I have my open plan desk (a massive 24 sq ft) of space where I try to spend most of my day: my direct reports are all within 20 feet, and 64 people are within "stand up and talk" distance. I also have an office for the confidential/chat stuff: we walk to it if needed. Almost all business gets done in the open: it's more transparent, we talk tech in the open, we talk strategy in the open, every direct and second level report can at least listen to what is going on and figure out if they can help.

Comment: Re:Fixed-point arithmetic (Score 1) 226

by Gorobei (#45491689) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Reproducible Is Arithmetic In the Cloud?

Exact and reproducible are very different things though., even if the former implies the latter. Also, when do you need 53 bits of precision for a standard deviation? At worst, simple scaling can keep things within the precision of a double precision floating point number.

"Exact and reproducible" are somewhat sad proxies for "accurate and precise." I once had a mathematician working for me who produced very precise standard deviations, the only problem was that the numbers were sometimes negative.

Comment: Re:Contact TeamViewer (Score 4, Insightful) 116

by Gorobei (#45312533) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Easy, Open Source Desktop-Sharing Software?

+1. This is the obvious answer.

The optics are great (veterans, help, non-profit.)

First, fix your website so that it is obvious what you are offering and how you deliver it ("we are off-line now" does not cut it.)

Second, send a mail to TeamViewer's CEO or PR explaining what you do, what you need, and how you can help them in the PR space (you put thanks on your site, they can point to you as a good deed, you are available for journalists.)

Better than a shot, it should be a slam-dunk if you do it right.

Comment: Re:Antarctica (Score 1) 201

by Gorobei (#45196259) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Legal Advice Or Loopholes Needed For Manned Space Program

You don't need a passport to enter.
There is no "appropriate State Party" controlling the continent.
Just be sure to take your garbage with you when you leave, not to spill anything, and not to disturb any animals.

It's not that easy. "appropriate State Party to the Treaty" refers to the non-governmental entity doing the launch, not the location of the launch. So you don't get lob stuff into space on a whim because you are outside of territorial waters on a ship, on a private island, etc.

This was hashed out at length on the various rocketry boards when the CATS prize and XPrize were announced.

Comment: Re:Autistic huh? (Score 1) 311

by Gorobei (#44977025) Attached to: Arrest Made In Webcam Highjacking Extortion Case

Even if as a result of that illness he really and truly had no idea of what was actually happening?

What's the point of punishing someone for something they had no control over?

"I have a nude pic of you; show me more or I'll release it" That's blackmail: he understood the mental state of his victim. There is no "no idea what was happening" defense.

Comment: Re:Professional Associations (Score 1) 478

by Gorobei (#44930627) Attached to: Utility Sets IT Department On Path To Self-destruction

This is what has always frustrated me about IT people, developers in particular. They are CLUELESS as to the need for professional associations, similar to what doctors and lawyers have.

Doctors and lawyers are unique in that they have a pass/fail exam for you to become a member of the club. Usually with required schooling to boot. And they effectively set the total count of people allowed to work.

You really propose that for IT? A legally required license to work for senior people (and a host of nurse/para-legal type vocational roles for most developers, sysadmins, and web masters?)

Its about time our industry matured a bit and formed some well-supported professional associations that can advocate for our best interests.


Comment: Re:So basically... (Score 1) 459

by Gorobei (#44740759) Attached to: How Gen Y Should Talk To Old People At Work

They don't just say "LOL WTF ;-P" in emails. They say it out loud.

No, seriously, instead of laughing out loud (hence the abbreviation LOL) they will say "ell oh ell". As in, they speak the letters. They'll also say "smiley face" or "winky face" instead of smiling or winking. I wish I was joking but I am not.

Oh noes! To think my boomer generation said "mumbles" instead of actually mumbling.

And my born-in-1935 engineer father said stuff like "there were N people already in line."

The Internet

The Greatest Keyboard Shortcut Ever 506

Posted by timothy
from the wish-I'd-known-this-15-years-ago dept.
Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "Ryan Vogt writes in the Mercury News that Shakespeare described death as 'the undiscovere'd country, from whose bourn no traveller returns.' Did you know there is a the miraculous way to resuscitate tabs sent to the 'undiscovere'd country,' a sort of Ctrl-Z for the entire Internet, that means 'no more called-out cusswords, no more wishing the back button had you covered when, aiming to click on a tab, you accidentally hit the little X on the tab's starboard.' For Macs: Command [plus] shift [plus] t reopens the last tab. For PCs: Ctrl [plus] Shift [plus] T. 'Try it right now. Close this tab and bring it back. I dare ya.' Melia Robinson's trick [described for Chrome] works in Firefox and Internet Explorer, too, so clumsy mousing won't send the the E*Trade tab you mistakenly closed all cued up to sell those 10,000 shares of stock or your long political post on your uncle's Facebook page on a one-way trip to the undiscovere'd country in those browsers, either." No guarantees on the stock trading.

Comment: Re:Huh? (Score 5, Insightful) 277

by Gorobei (#44442775) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Is Tech Talent More Important Than Skill?

I don't understand the difference. Who cares? If someone can get the job done, that's what counts.

Ah, grasshopper, as you gain respect and seniority, you will find the success of your project becomes more and more dependent on other people.

If you want to continue to succeed, you need to understand these peoples' strengths.

1. No skill, no talent: avoid these people, have them write doc or something.
2. Skill, no talent: give them designs or procedures. They will execute well if they understand what you want.
3. No skill, talent. Mentor them and watch them closely. You will get a Scala engine running 20 lines of code in the middle of your Java app if you don't pay attention.
4. Skill & Talent. Just chat will them about what you need. You'll get what you need in no time.

Money is the root of all evil, and man needs roots.