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Comment: Re:HP48g (Score 1) 702

by Kaldaien (#46793083) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Tech Products Were Built To Last?

I made the mistake of buying a Ti-89 in the 90s... I liked its higher resolution screen but because it had a symbolic algebra solver it was not allowed on the SATs so I had to do the SATs without a calculator.

Later, when I took the GREs and they didn't allow a calculator of any sort I felt vindicated :P

The SATs are a total joke. They have been trying to make them more GRE-like, but I don't think they'll ever be able to get to the point where they expect High School students to do simple arithmetic without a calculator. That is a skill I picked up in college, as funny as that sounds. It's something you're supposed to learn in elementary school, but because of the prevalence of calculators it doesn't take long before students (myself included) simply forget from lack of actual practice.

As for not being different from a modern Ti calculator, I beg to differ on that one. Have you seen the Ti NSpire? They're color now and finally TI solved the issue of symbolic algebra by selling two versions - one with the feature and one without.

Comment: Blizzard was making a new game? (Score 1) 193

Just goes to show how irrelevant this company is. They have supposedly been developing this project since 2007, and this is the first I have ever heard of it. Hopefully they restarted the project to increase the difficulty and implement a system to prevent children (mentally) from speaking their racist garbage.

EQ Next has started over 2 or 3 times already, it is refreshing to see that Blizzard is having the same trouble even if their project has flown well under the radar.

Comment: Re:$130k a year?! (Score 2) 144

by Kaldaien (#43846149) Attached to: A Commencement Speech For 2013 CS Majors

Wow, for a thread about higher education, this has devolved into grade school antics.

Seriously though, it would be wise to wait until you have (if ever) a well-paying job before starting such a large family. If you have no interest in high-paying work, then the obvious solution would be not to start a family you cannot afford to support. I know it sounds cold, but the harsh reality is people overestimate their earnings potential and it leads to bad things in the future. Look at the housing crisis, there is blame to spread among all parties involved, but part of the problem was people buying into houses they honestly could not afford and banks knowingly allowing this.

I have no plans to ever pursue a high paying job, I like research and I am happy living a lower quality of life than my more money conscious peers.

Comment: Re:$130k a year?! (Score 2) 144

by Kaldaien (#43845599) Attached to: A Commencement Speech For 2013 CS Majors

I have most certainly. Nobody really needs luxuries like cable, cell phones, etc... If you live within your means, it is very easy. In fact, I do not own a cell phone to this day. Once upon a time, people realized what was a luxury, and what was really necessary to support oneself. Those days are over, it seems :-\

Comment: Re:and the same people think CS = IT work (Score 2) 144

by Kaldaien (#43845493) Attached to: A Commencement Speech For 2013 CS Majors

and the same people think CS = IT work

now CS is more on the programming side.

This is precisely what I have been saying for years. Computer Science is mistaken for software engineering or worse still, IT. It is a general study that should focus on theory, and form the foundation for either continued theoretical work or later specialization. It used to be that software engineering was an advanced degree program for CS graduates, but now you can even major in it at the undergraduate level. With this change, you would *think* that the industry would finally realize the two are not the same.

Comment: Re: research and theory = a poor setting to learn (Score 3, Insightful) 144

by Kaldaien (#43845447) Attached to: A Commencement Speech For 2013 CS Majors

research and theory = a poor setting to learn job skills and people in that setting may just do the min to pass and you can really see that in the filler and fluff classes.

I don't know how many times I can stress this. Computer Science is not supposed to teach trade skills, there are specialized programs such as software engineering for that purpose. At my school, many of the students who could not hack theory quickly dropped out of computer science and enrolled in either information systems or software engineering; the way it should be.

Comment: Re:true... true (Score 1) 144

by Kaldaien (#43845405) Attached to: A Commencement Speech For 2013 CS Majors

I've been an IT professional since '95. Unix admin / DBA / network admin / SAN admin / Release Engineer / etc. etc. This advice really speaks to my career.

I have to wonder why, or even how, this was tailored specifically to computer science, though. Many of these statements are true of software engineering, and IT in general, but computer science is a theoretical field. So many of the things mentioned in this commencement really do not apply to someone who studied computer science to do research. We get the lowest salaries by far, which is made especially sad by the additional time spent in academia pursuant to an advanced degree, and definitely are not at risk of being replaced by slackers or under-paid Indians or Chinese 5 years down the road.

Comment: Re:$130k a year?! (Score 2) 144

by Kaldaien (#43845261) Attached to: A Commencement Speech For 2013 CS Majors

Also, you may find that unchallenging implies uninteresting. So, unless you want to be bored, you probably can't avoid challenge.

Which is why so many academics wind up staying in academia. It's not just those who "can't do" that teach, but those who find what the job market wants them to do uninteresting. Fortunately, I have a career in Computer Grahpics, which is challenging but ultimately does not pay as well as many generic software engineering jobs. I will never strike it rich, but at least I am doing something that I love.

Comment: Re:and schools need to be more trades / tech schoo (Score 3, Interesting) 144

by Kaldaien (#43845207) Attached to: A Commencement Speech For 2013 CS Majors

I don't know that I'd say that. Honestly, software engineering broke off from computer science for precisely that reason. I would like to see CS curriculum stay theoretical, and leave the implementation to software engineering degree programs.

So many schools these days are dropping CS altogether and replacing it with software engineering, I would have to say that what you're asking for is effectively already happening.

Comment: Re:Goes along with my poll: (Score 2) 144

by Kaldaien (#43845143) Attached to: A Commencement Speech For 2013 CS Majors

I definitely saw that in my undergraduate experience. I'd say a good 90% of my peers never went the extra mile on anything; if it wasn't going to be on an exam, you can bet they wouldn't bother studying it. When it came time to collaborate with them on projects, all they did was drag the serious students down. It was so frustrating by the time I graduated, but fortunately I had a really nice professor who worked with me to publish two papers on my independent study.

I really hope the slackers don't wind up with these mythical $130k a year jobs. I know I'll never be in a position to earn that much, because I'm more interested in research and theory. Which, to be honest, is what CS should really be about - these generic programming jobs are more or less software engineering, which has its own curriculum.

Comment: $130k a year?! (Score 1) 144

by Kaldaien (#43845077) Attached to: A Commencement Speech For 2013 CS Majors

That's ridiculous. None of the jobs that interest me offer anything near that much, even for senior management. I guess he is silently implying that you find a job that will bore the hell out of you but pay well.

I'm not buying that, as a summa cum laude graduate, I want a job that challenges me. I could have settled for software engineering or even some mickey mouse IT degree if I cared about salary. Honestly, I think computer science is too lumped in with software engineering these days.

Comment: Re:Not buying it. (Score 1) 238

by Kaldaien (#43830017) Attached to: ARM In Supercomputers — 'Get Ready For the Change'

Yeah, it's definitely not the norm at the moment. However, GPGPU is gaining traction very fast.

It really comes down to the application, algorithms still have to be re-tooled to function optimally on stream processor architectures, and the languages that have cropped up around the new hardware (e.g. CUDA / OpenCL) introduce challenges to legacy software as well. Some applications will never benefit from billions of simple simultaneous threads, as much as they would fewer, more capable hardware threads.

We'll probably see a mix of all three architectures in the coming years. You have the pick the right tool for the job, and the jobs are just as diverse as the hardware we're discussing.

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