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We've improved Slashdot's video section; now you can view our video interviews, product close-ups and site visits with all the usual Slashdot options to comment, share, etc. No more walled garden! It's a work in progress -- we hope you'll check it out (Learn more about the recent updates).


Comment: Numerous Factual Errors (Score 4, Insightful) 204

by Izaak (#46983557) Attached to: Thorium: The Wonder Fuel That Wasn't

That article comes of as an attack piece from someone who feels threatened (maybe someone with serious investment in traditional reactor tech?). He makes ridiculous claims about the US spending decades trying to get thorium reactors working (we did not), and about many companies trying to create thorium reactors in past decades (they did not), and makes scary claims about a small amount of thorium 233 and its potential to make bombs (far more refined plutonium and uranium exists and is more easily weaponized). The truth is, the US made only one test thorium reactor decades ago, and it proved the potential for a sustained thorium cycle. The current research challenge is only around extracting waste products from the molten salt fuel mixture, and that is well within our technical capabilities. The only thing stopping the development of working LFTR reactors is the will and funding to do it.

I would pick apart the article in more detail, but I suspect other people have already beat me to it.

Comment: A Degree Will Open Doors (Score 1) 309

by Izaak (#46979445) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Computer Science Freshman, Too Soon To Job Hunt?

You can certainly find IT work without a degree, but an actual CS degree will open up far more opportunities, and the coursework will expose you to a broader range of concepts and skills. When I started college, I was already hacking assembly language on simple personal computers... but college exposed me to low level operating system concepts and taught me how to write a compiler from scratch. I probably could have taught myself those things if I made he effort... but I am not sure I would have thought to without the going to college. My CS degree set me on the path to become an embedded Linux and Android developer.

Comment: I published The Bolachek Journals just recently (Score 2) 74

by Izaak (#45297771) Attached to: Self-Published Zombie Titles Have Doubled Since 2012

I've been getting great feedback. Rather than the usual shotgun toting road warrior style hero, I decided to explore how a tech geek might approach the zombie apocalypse. Its been described as McGuyver meets the Walking Dead. Part 1 is available on Nook, Kindle, Smashwords, or download it for free directly from my blog. So far I've been getting 5 star reviews and very positive comments, but I would love to hear some feedback from the more technology savvy Slashdot demographic.


+ - Can A Video Game Teache Computer Programming?->

Submitted by Izaak
Izaak (31329) writes "My partner and I are dipping our toe into the indie game developer pool with a game intended to teach programming skills while providing the fun of a first-person puzzle solver (our inspiration is games like Myst or Portal). We even plan to make it available for free to schools, teachers, and parents homeschooling their children. We would welcome input of the Slashdot community as the project moves ahead."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Embedded Linux Kernel Hacker Here.... (Score 1) 212

by Izaak (#39597507) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Recommendations For Linux Telecommuting Tools?

I've been doing the telecommuting thing for nearly a decade now, focusing mainly on emebedded linux kernel and driver developent as well as Android work more recently. I not only get my job done from home, I sometimes work on the road in an RV. I mostly use an Ubuntu laptop, Verizon MyFi, and a cell phone. I also have a Tektronix oscilloscope and a BDI3000 hardware debugger... but that is more specific to my kind of work than most people will need I suppose. On the software end, I mostly use gmail for email (though I have used Thunderbird in the past). LibreOffice does everything I need in document department. I trade Word and Excell docs with Microsoft users all the time with no complaints. Gmail also seems to handle the calender thing pretty well, including interoperting with Microsoft calendar messages. I've occasionaly had to work with clients with a very Microsoft centric infratructure, and that has meant using the web interface to their Outlook server and other such hastle... but I've always manage to get by.

Comment: Been doing this for years (Score 1) 480

by Izaak (#39408967) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Are Your Tips For Working From Home?

I've been an independent computer consultant for more than 15 years now, and spent many of those years working from home on my own schedule. I find it helps to set aside a specific work area and specific hours of work (assuming those aren't set for you). It helps if you have a spare bedroom you can turn into an office. Keep non-work visual clutter to a minimum to avoid distractions, but don't be afraid to schedule breaks for yourself. I do most of my work in Linux, so on the computer end I keep all my work related stuff in a different account or at least a different virtual desktop.

Comment: Re:Awful "journalism", the story is almost certain (Score 1) 128

by Izaak (#39040459) Attached to: Amazon Blocks Video Streaming On BlackBerry Tablet, Blames Apple

Since their latest Amazon Instant Video upgrade, I've been unable to watch any Amazon videos either on my 32 or 64 bit system. I've made sure I have the latest Adobe flash plug-in and have HAL installed. Their tech support was useless. I've cancelled my Amazon Prime membership over it.

And they wonder why some people resort to bit-torrent.

Comment: Re:This is Why (Score 4, Informative) 509

by Izaak (#34971780) Attached to: IRS Nails CPA For Copying Steve Jobs, Google Execs

You can have an S-Corp with only one shareholder (at least here in WI and most other states I know of). That's how I do my consulting. It involves more paperwork that being a sole proprietor, but their are liability and tax advantages to having a real corp over going sole proprietor. An LLC is also a good option; it lacks some of the advantages of an S-Corp but involves less paperwork.

Comment: Re:The Joys of employeehood.... (Score 4, Interesting) 509

by Izaak (#34971760) Attached to: IRS Nails CPA For Copying Steve Jobs, Google Execs

As I read it, he had an S-Corp, not an LLC, but paid himself a salary just as you suggest. The problem is that the IRS claims he paid himself too little (which he could have also done with an LLC). The reason he did this was to reduce his payroll tax contributions. This can also reduce your eventual social security benefits, but as a CPA he probably figured he could do better investing the money. As an independent consultant this is the same situation I am in. I take a fixed, modest salary and take any additional income as just profits from the corporation. In year where I book a lot of hours, my income from profit can be more than my salary... which it looks like according to this article could put me in the cross-hairs of the IRS. I guess its time to give myself a raise. :-/

Comment: Re:Send the wah-mbulance. (Score 5, Informative) 481

by Izaak (#34569740) Attached to: Netflix Touts Open Source, Ignores Linux

Dude, if they had actually released the source code to their client, someone would have already ported it to Linux (heck, I would do it nobody else stepped up). Netflix uses open source tools in the course of doing business. That is very different than actually releasing their product as open source.

"Be *excellent* to each other." -- Bill, or Ted, in Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure