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Comment: Re:As it is designed to do (Score 1) 147

by mfh (#48151737) Attached to: Data From Windows 10 Feedback Tool Exposes Problem Areas

MSFT is really under the gun to show they can produce quality. This is why competition is great for us and why we should pat ourselves on the back for pushing MSFT towards anti-monopoly standards. Google's Android releases keep looking better and better. Apple has their own embarrassments. MSFT has to do the software process to get it right and they know they can't afford another Win8 / Vista / WinME. We can always use Linux which is getting better and better every day. They are giving away Win8 now for $65 WITH A TABLET. (that's how bad it is.)

Comment: Beyond the law? Unjust law is no law at all (Score 5, Insightful) 354

by Indy1 (#47998629) Attached to: FBI Chief: Apple, Google Phone Encryption Perilous

Considering the FBI's long and rich history of fascism and acting against the US Bill of Rights (starting with Hoover, and going downhill from there), not to mention the NSA's rampant (and blatantly illegal) domestic spying....

I'll damn well act against their silly rules and regulations any well damn time I feel like it.

Every American should be encrypting the hell out of anything they own, and demanding that companies do likewise with their products and services. The sooner we render the Gestapo and Stasi impotent, the better.

Google

Google Expands Safe Browsing To Block Unwanted Downloads 106

Posted by timothy
from the now-you-can-turn-off-adblock dept.
An anonymous reader writes "Google today announced it is expanding its Safe Browsing service to protect users against malware that makes unexpected changes to your computer. Google says it will show a warning in Chrome whenever an attempt is made to trick you into downloading and installing such software. In the case of malware, PUA stands for Potentially Unwanted Application, which is also sometimes called Potentially Unwanted Program or PUP. In short, the broad terms encompass any downloads that the user does not want, typically because they display popups, show ads, install toolbars in the default browser, change the homepage or the search engine, run several processes in the background that slow down the PC, and so on."

Comment: Computing is bigger than any one language! (Score 1) 637

by Frater 219 (#47616805) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: "Real" Computer Scientists vs. Modern Curriculum?

I'm no fan of Java-based curricula, for the same reason I'd be no fan of Fortran-based curricula. Computing isn't about one language. Each language and system shows you one hyperplane of a vast multidimensional space. The best programmers know lots of languages, and choose wisely among them — or even create new ones when appropriate.

In the production world, there are times where some C++ or Java code is appropriate ... and there are times when what you want is a couple of lines of shellscript and some pipes ... and there are times when the most sensible algorithm for something can't be neatly expressed in a language like C++ or Java, and really requires something like Common Lisp or Haskell. If you need to exploit multiple processors without getting bogged down in locking bullshit and race conditions, you're much better off using Go than Java.

(Just last night, at a meetup, I was talking with two bright young physicists who reported that their universities don't do a good enough job of teaching Fortran, which is the language they actually need to do their job. Scientific computing still relies heavily on Fortran, Matlab, and other languages well removed from what's trendy in the CS department — no matter if that CS department is in the Java, Haskell, or Python camp. But if you want to learn to write good Fortran, you basically need a mentor in the physics department with time to teach you.)

And there are times when the right thing to do is to create a new language, whether a domain-specific language or a new approach on general-purpose computing. There's a good reason Rob Pike came up with Sawzall, a logs-analysis DSL that compiles to arbitrarily parallel mapreduces; and then Go, a C-like systems language with a rocket engine of concurrency built in.

(And there's a good reason a lot of people adopting Go have been coming not from the C++/Java camps that the Go developers expected, but from Python and Ruby: because Go gives you the raw speed of a concurrent and native-compiled language, plus libraries designed by actual engineers, without a lot of the verbose bullshit of C++ or Java. Would I recommend Go as a first language? I'm not so sure about that ....)

What would an optimal computing curriculum look like? I have no freakin' clue. It would have to cover particular basics — variable binding, iteration, recursion, sequencing, data structures, libraries and APIs, concurrency — no matter what the language. But it can't leave its students thinking that one language is Intuitive and the other ones are Just Gratuitously Weird ... and that's too much of what I see from young programmers in industry today.

Social Networks

Hotel Charges Guests $500 For Bad Online Reviews 183

Posted by timothy
from the may-require-substantial-deposit dept.
njnnja (2833511) writes In an incredibly misguided attempt to reduce the quantity of bad reviews (such as these), the Union Street Guest House, a hotel about 2 hours outside of New York City, had instituted a policy to charge groups such as wedding parties $500 for each bad review posted online. The policy has been removed from their webpage but the wayback machine has archived the policy. "If you have booked the Inn for a wedding or other type of event anywhere in the region and given us a deposit of any kind for guests to stay at USGH there will be a $500 fine that will be deducted from your deposit for every negative review of USGH placed on any internet site by anyone in your party and/or attending your wedding or event If you stay here to attend a wedding anywhere in the area and leave us a negative review on any internet site you agree to a $500. fine for each negative review."

Comment: Re:Manager (Score 1, Interesting) 204

by mfh (#47437421) Attached to: New Microsoft CEO Vows To Shake Up Corporate Culture

Weasels that know corporate double speak are ruining everything though. You know we don't mourn the T-rex. We talk about the dinosaurs as being really big and dumb.

They were all psychopaths!! Lizard brains.

When the cockroaches are mulling over what our existences might have been like, they will all say that the weasels died out because of our stupidity and overconfidence. They'll say we were monsters, too. Big and dumb. Lizard brains.

It's funny.  Laugh.

Homestar Runner To Return Soon 57

Posted by samzenpus
from the back-soon dept.
An anonymous reader writes with good news for everyone who loves Strong Bad.Back in April, Homestar Runner got its first content update in over four years. It was the tiniest of updates and the site went quiet again shortly thereafter, but the Internet's collective 90s kid heart still jumped for joy...The site's co-creator, Matt Chapman, popped into an episode of The Jeff Rubin Jeff Rubin Show to chat about the history of Homestar — but in the last 15 minutes or so, they get to talking about its future. The too-long-didn't-listen version: both of the brothers behind the show really really want to bring it back. The traffic they saw from their itty-bitty April update suggests people want it — but they know that may very well be a fluke. So they're taking it slow.

Comment: Better still (Score 1, Redundant) 87

by mfh (#47417139) Attached to: A Brain Implant For Synthetic Memory

Let's apply this towards eventually getting Matrix-styled learning models. Eventually we could implant memories of how to perform any skill. We could enable permanent muscle-memory learning instantaneously. Not only learning karate but being able to apply the lessons with strength and precision. Never having to work out to be in shape. Understanding advanced physics without ever taking a course at a university or even having any partial interest in the subject. That's a step towards singularity.

Comment: Human Safety Computing (Score 1) 30

by mfh (#47416879) Attached to: Interviews: Ask Juan Gilbert About Human-Centered Computing

To what extent are we able to compute safety related human dynamics issues and what is slowing us down in this particular programming area?

Can we ever come up with a safety system for a workplace that would be able to overcome employee buy-in issues early on, especially if the typical large corporation is in a constant tug of war with profit and employee needs?

You see whenever we introduce changes in policy in the workplace, employees assume they are going to be required to do MORE but they are not getting more money for the work so this tends at times to cause resistance from employees to safety policies. Management doesn't often understand the issues at hand so they tend to make contradictory safety policies as well, saying that things need to be addressed in a timely fashion.

But in the aftermath of this complexity, companies are often just faking safety in order to appear to be safe when in fact they are running at a significant moral hazard to everyone (their staff, the general public and anyone else for that matter).

This particular problem is of great interest to me and I find that whenever there is an imbalance between management and employee needs there is a systemic problem that is solvable but yet only once all the variables are on the table. The problem with human safety is that most of the variables are unknown.

The general equation for solving safety related issues is:

For every task an employee is required to do or will reasonably be presented with, the employee must be trained to perform the task safely within prescribed safety policy. This idea is fundamentally at odds with bravado in the workplace, hero complexes, profit margins and it goes directly against human psychopathy that is prevalent in modern corporate culture.

What's the best approach to stabilizing a safety model?

Comment: Re:Signals (Score 1, Interesting) 144

by mfh (#47415195) Attached to: Physicists Spot Potential Source of 'Oh-My-God' Particles

Unless the particles aren't the message but the means of communication. Maybe they form some kind of field mechanic communications bridge to enable instantaneous communications?

We should consider something like this instead of probes like Voyager. Eventually we'll find a way to use fields or lasers as a communications field conduit that enables immediate lagless communications. Someone is probably working on this right now. To some extent the teleportation technology we've seen for communications could use such beams as guidance and accelerators that cut down lag. So maybe instead of thousands of years the lag is like a day or an hour or a few minutes.

A darker side of this could mean that the existence these focused particles could prove someone is communicating with their homeworld from Earth.

The film Kpax used this kind of idea as his transportation method, which was a pretty awesome film.

Makes for some awesome sci-fi even if it's far fetched!

Mausoleum: The final and funniest folly of the rich. -- Ambrose Bierce

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