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Comment: Change management can cover your ass (Score 5, Insightful) 294

by Madman (#46777619) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: System Administrator Vs Change Advisory Board

There is genuine value in a well-run change management program. Organizations need to know what is going on in their infrastructure, and plan things properly. In many industries there is a growing regulatory requirement to have change management, and auditors are looking for these things more often too. Many smaller shops are bringing in change control, so rather than handing in your badge my advice would be to deal with it and learn the lessons.
One lesson is rather than fight it, use it to your advantage. Yes, there's paperwork, however if you follow the system correctly they cannot blame you if things go wrong. What you thought of as freedom was also a risk to your own position as you had sole responsibility - change control means less freedom, but you are covered. Also, you can get budget for better management systems which will make your life easier. Put together a realistic list of what you need and get involved with setting up the change control process. If you stay silent or fight it you won't get a say.

Comment: Surely it's going to work sick that's the problem! (Score 2) 351

by Madman (#46035915) Attached to: Fighting the Flu May Hurt Those Around You

If someone takes medicine to lower a fever but stays at home until he/she is better then nobody else gets the flu. Yet people who get sick feel compelled to go to work because of work ethics or pressure from employers, and they expose everyone who is on the train/bus with them, or in the line at Starbucks. Surely the message should not be "if you take asprin you're killing people", but "stay home until you're better"!

+ - Do you use Wolfram Alpha?

Submitted by Madman
Madman (84403) writes "Given that Wolfram is coming out with a programming language I suggest a poll asking how (or if) people use Wolfram Alpha:
- I've never touched it
- I've tried it but don't use it
- Once in a great while (a handful times per year)
- Occasionally (say a couple times per month)
- Regularly (at least once per week)
- Often (once per day or more)
- It's my home page
- Wolfram Alpha, isn't that a star cluster?"

Comment: Terrifying! (Score 1) 154

by Madman (#45323383) Attached to: RAF Pilots Blinded At 1000 Mph By Helmet Technical Glitch

I fly single engine propeller aircraft with a Vne (Velocity never exceed) of maybe 220mph, but cruising generally about 130mph. The idea of losing vision at that speed is pretty horrible, but at 1000mph it would be terrifying no matter how experienced or brave you are.

When Chuck Yeager was flying the X-1 one time his windows froze up and he could not see out, but at least he still had instruments and landed safely with the help of his chase plane. Not being able to actually see is a big level above that.

Nintendo

+ - Homebrew Working on the WiiU

Submitted by YokimaSun
YokimaSun (930294) writes "The Nintendo WiiU was only released yesterday in the USA and already Homebrewers can enjoy playing their games and emulators on the system. WiiU News has a video of the homebrew game Connect 4 working on the WiiU via the consoles Wii Mode and Comex's "Stack Smash" exploit. Recently released emulators that were released for the Wii and will also work using this method include emulators for systems such as Nintendo 64, Super Nintendo and Nes."
Space

+ - Ariane 5 has no chance says SpaceX CEO->

Submitted by Dupple
Dupple (1016592) writes ""I don't say that with a sense of bravado but there's really no way for that vehicle to compete with Falcon 9 and Falcon Heavy. If I were in the position of Ariane, I would really push for an Ariane 6."

Ariane's future will be a key topic this week for European Space Agency (Esa) member states.

They are meeting in Naples to determine the scope and funding of the organisation's projects in the next few years, and the status of their big rocket will be central to those discussions."

Link to Original Source
Moon

+ - Roaming robot may explore mysterious Moon caverns->

Submitted by
ananyo
ananyo writes "William 'Red' Whittaker often spends his Sundays lowering a robot into a recently blown up coal mine pit near his cattle ranch in Pennsylvania. By 2015, he hopes that his robot, or something like it, will be rappelling down a much deeper hole, on the Moon.
The hole was discovered three years ago when Japanese researchers published images from the satellite SELENE1, but spacecraft orbiting the Moon have been unable to see into its shadowy recesses. A robot might be able to “go where the Sun doesn't shine”, and send back the first-ever look beneath the Moon's skin, Whittaker told attendees at a meeting of the NASA Innovative Advanced Concepts (NIAC) programme in Hampton, Virginia, last week.
And Whittaker is worth taking seriously-his robots have descended into an Alaskan volcano and helped to clean up the Three Mile Island nuclear power plant. There's a video of the rover with the story (unfortunately not showing it spelunking)."

Link to Original Source
Government

+ - How Airport Security Is Killing Us->

Submitted by another random user
another random user (2645241) writes "This week marks the beginning of the busiest travel time of the year. For millions of Americans, the misery of holiday travel is made considerably worse by a government agency ostensibly designed to make our journeys more secure. Created in the wake of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, the Transportation Security Administration has largely outlived its usefulness, as the threat of a terrorist attack on the U.S. homeland continues to recede. These days, the TSA’s major role appears to be to make plane trips more unpleasant. And by doing so, it’s encouraging people to take the considerably more dangerous option of traveling by road.

According to one estimate of direct and indirect costs borne by the U.S. as a result of 9/11, the New York Times suggested the attacks themselves caused $55 billion in “toll and physical damage,” while the economic impact was $123 billion. But costs related to increased homeland security and counterterrorism spending, as well as the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, totaled $3,105 billion. Mueller and Stewart estimate that government spending on homeland security over the 2002-11 period accounted for around $580 billion of that total.

If Americans really care about saving lives this Thanksgiving travel season, for goodness’ sake, don’t beef up airport security any further. Slashing the TSA will ensure that more people live to spend future holidays with loved ones."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Intelligence is not age-related (Score 1) 537

by Madman (#41739911) Attached to: Are Windows XP/7 Users Smarter Than a 3-Year-Old?

Why do people relate intelligence with age? People do not get smarter the older they get, quite often the opposite as IQ tends to decrease with age. There are 3 year olds that are smarter then adults, and vice-versa. There are genius 3 year olds and stupid 3 year olds.

What is really being said is that people without preconceived notions of how computer interfaces work will get used to a completely new interface standard than people who have been using a completely different format for the past 15 years, which I would have considered completely obvious. It would be the same with people transitioning from QWERTY to Dvorak as opposed to those with no typing experience, those without experience would get used to Dvorak much faster.

Comment: It's Masters of Orion 2 all over again! (Score 5, Funny) 224

by Madman (#41078953) Attached to: Earth's Corner of the Galaxy Just Got a Little Lonelier

Now I'm seriously worried. Every time I played Masters of Orion 2 and I got situated in an area where the closest habitable planet was far away I always got my ass kicked by some civilization that was able to expand quickly. Our only hope is to start developing Deuterium fuel cells, and quickly!

Comment: Yes, and it sucked! (Score 5, Informative) 525

by Madman (#40549087) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Does Your Company Evaluate Your Performance?

At a former employer I joined a team that was under-performing. I worked hard to get things back on track and I did my absolute best. At my bonus meeting my boss told me that I had done a great job and I was the best performer on the team by far, but he had to give a certain number of people a good review, some a fair review, and one an under-performing review. He didn't do this by job performance but by length of service, and since I was a new guy he gave me the poor review so I got almost no bonus! After that I didn't work so hard....

"Irrationality is the square root of all evil" -- Douglas Hofstadter

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