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Comment Here's how (Score 1) 234 234

I've gone through this. Here's how you do it.

Start gathering a few popular science books on subjects directly on and also near to your goal. Some people reject popular science books as too light weight, but it does have value. This exposes you to the variety of subjects in and around your interest. You might not have been aware of some aspects of your topic and you are introduced to them here without too much effort. You also learn to associate detailed technical topics to the wider areas where they are used.

Read the whole book. Books are better than random google searches and videos because they will guide you into areas you might not have considered relevant. Broadening your base knowledge will allow you to make a more informed decision about your favorite topics. Once you have a broader and more informed understanding of the topics and areas involved, you are better able to identify your interests, or even switch interests.

That is when you start going into a more detailed dive into your target topic. Follow through and read the whole thing. Again, pick one or more text books or deeper science books. The purpose again is to guide you into areas you might not have considered before.

This time, you will hit lots of technical subjects that you might not know. That is when you go searching for online information, wikipedia, online course videos, Youtube content or other textbooks. For these, you will only need to cover enough to support your primary interest, and you will have a fairly good idea how much that is.

You are not going to go professional with this, but it will be more than enough to keep your interest up and curiosity satisfied.

Comment My password tool is completely unhackable... (Score 4, Interesting) 198 198

It's called pencil and paper. I have a notebook, and all pwds are encoded there. I have 4 simple rules for modifying what I write into what I type in. An example rule you could use is "Real pwds use only even digits; Passwords are written with all ten digits, odd digits are ignored". 2-4 simple rules will make it unhackable even for someone with physical control of passbook. (Never write down the rules - keep them in yer head).
To keep the rules fresh, use different passwords and uids for every single app or website possible. You'll always be rehearsing the rules in yer head, you won't forget them.
Here's an example from my current set: pwd= "RhinoPott=amus" Rule 1,3
I'll bet you can't guess the real password in 10,000 tries. You don't know rules 1 or 3, which modify what's written. Go ahead, give me 10000 tries in a text file - I'll let you know if you get it.
This really really works - I've been doing this way since the 1980's, and haven't misplaced a properly coded pwd yet.

Comment What are you talking about? (Score 1) 1 1

No really, what is this post about? I use noscript, and a (mostly) empty page comes up from your link. I obviously won't enable it if it is 'bugged' or might compromise my privacy or security. So explain what the bug actually is. This is a website about information, not reddit-style "oooh look what I found, go see it now!". Sorry - that was harsher than I mean it to be, but it communicates the idea.

Comment Even in a perfect world... (Score 1) 227 227

The cop's job is to get people in trouble. In a perfect world, it's the people that deserve trouble that get it, but even then, the very best you can hope to get from the police is to be left alone. There's no need to characterize cops as bullies or incompentent - even the good cops have to look at citizens as potential targets. The course of action when the cops want to talk to you is immediately get legal counsel, then follow that counsel in dealing with the police.
As for us v them - police are no longer part of the communities they patrol. They only see the worst in the community, and that biases their perspective. Also, they are trained and equipped more as an invading army than as "public servants", so seeing them as the enemy is an obvious and natural result.

Comment The assumption in all this... (Score 1) 407 407

is that a person's opinion is somehow relevant to how they perform professionally. Just disagreeing with your employer is never just cause for firing the employee - the alternative is a cadre of 'yesmen' who cause stagnation through lack of new perspective and ideas. An employer who refuses to accept any kind of dissent is one who dooms his organization to mediocrity.

Comment NASA/NACA was planning a moon trip first... (Score 1) 756 756

The plan was to move more slowly, using airplane-like vehicles to get into orbit. Ultimatley, the moon was the goal. JFK's challenge derailed the early shuttle program in the late 1950s-early 1960s. Use of 'disintegrating totem poles' replaced the development of reusable spacecraft parts. The shuttle program that we got after Apollo was another quick-easy-expensive program, rather than the result of 20+ years of development. sorry no cites, but I have little time right now for this....mebbe later. (google should find bunches - look up project dynasoar, X-15, etc)

Comment Learn to be a pro.... (Score 1) 688 688

.....air conditioner repairman in a few interactive web sessions per week for a year? chef at a 5 star greasy spoon? TV sitcom writer ? What professionals (esp unions) would be insulted by such a trivializing of their careers? Computers are the most complex machines every devised. How good could such a 'professional' be? (claimer: I am pro developer)

Comment Re:op said it was misattributed (Score 1) 5 5

orig post said the seller is claiming it as their own code, which is a violation of pretty much any license I'm aware of. If the seller is honest, they'd correctly credit the author. Lying about the author upfront suggests they probably removed previous copyright notices and intentionally are violating the license.

Comment Happened to me at NASA... (Score 4, Informative) 312 312

I worked 30 years in astronaut training facility (full-fidelity simulators), and wrote many many documents on software that I wrote. I always kept my own digital copies, of course. Over the years, the contracts changed hands many times, and different document systems were implemented, and "all" documents were "always" converted from old to new. I was never able to later re-locate *any* document I had submitted to *any* of the document systems. So my copies of my documents were the only ones that actually existed that I knew of. This included meeting minutes, peer review notes, design and 'as-delivered' documents. So I think institutional amnesia is more the norm, and actual memory beyond 3-5 years is rare.
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Journal Journal: in which i am a noob all over again 17 17

I haven't posted a journal here in almost three years, because I couldn't find the button to start a new entry. ...yeah, it turns out that it's at the bottom of the page.

So... hi, Slashdot. I used to be really active here, but now I mostly lurk and read. I've missed you.

FORTUNE'S FUN FACTS TO KNOW AND TELL: A giant panda bear is really a member of the racoon family.