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Comment Re:They also believe (Score 2) 113 113

I do not expect this to happen quickly, it'll be on a hundreds-of-years timescale.

Which rather underscores the point that idiots investing dollars today in pie-in-the-sky schemes like asteroid mining are most assuredly throwing their money away.

I think the better way of saying this is that it underscores the point that obstructionist idiots have held back progress substantially because they are incredibly short sighted, and we should have been to that point decades ago.

We went from cars to landing on the moon in less than 60 years.

It's now been almost another 60 years. What significant progress has been made, while you idiots are all wasting time oppressing and shooting at each other?


Comment Zero-days are not "back doors". (Score 3, Insightful) 81 81

Zero-days are not "back doors".

Unless the zero day flaw was put there intentionally, as back doors are put there intentionally, a zero day flaw is not a back door, it's just some incompetent who should be employed asking me "Do you want fries with that?", rather than employed writing security sensitive software. In other words: your average bad programmer.

Comment Re:Percentages? (Score 1) 368 368

That isn't relevant. The named numbers are usefull in his cause, so they are presented as fact. That happens everywhere - remember the "indisputable" proof of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq?

To be entirely fair there, the U.S. and Britain knew he had them because we sold them to him in the first place.

Comment Re:Obligatory "why" post (Score 1) 75 75

Corection, kerberos & nfs difference between client and server generally should not be more than 5 seconds, so above should be +/-2.5 second.

That's a protocol design bug.

Specifically, there's actually no reason that protocol traffic wouldn't include a "this is my idea of the current time" in the requests and responses so that delta times could be locally calculated from the packet contents on the receiving end. This would work, no problem, for a protocol like NFS.

Kerberos is more of an issue, but since all parties have to trust the ticket granting system as the trusted third party -- so you might a well trust their timestamp as well, since you've already established a trust chain dependency on the third party. You mode the protocol to send the timestamp within the security association, and you are golden (regardless of whether you are running an adjusted or monotonic clock).

This is how DCE RPC handles byte order: receiver translates to local byte order -- if the byte order is different. If it's not, then there's no need for translation, and it saves CPU on both ends of the connection. Receiver translates to a delta time from which the timestamps are derived, and timesync is no longer a problem.

Comment Re:Great - except for one thing (Score 1) 132 132

The business side is why the company exists. When they add feature creep etc, it's generally because they don't really know what the customer wants and are trying to see what lands.

In my experience, this tends to happen when marketing gets involved in the design process, and starts asking for previous_product++. One of the reasons Steve Jobs was so effective is that he understood the technical side of things well enough to help make design decisions.

They tend to not even really understand how to tell if a time estimate is BS or not.

The best way to get good at estimating is doing a couple of fixed price contracts that end up working out to you making less than minimum wage. Then you either get good at estimating, or you go out of business.

All managers who've worked with people who are bad at estimating automatically apply a scaling factor, which usually depends on the person making the estimate, and then you scale it for the real estimate, because people are frequently bad at estimating. In general, there are two types of people (substitute gender, if you wish to): Mr. Right, and Mr. Right Now. Both of these can be valuable to a company, but generally, if you want to scale to a large number of customers without huge built-in costs, your prototype is done by Mr. Right Now to get to funding, and then your released product is done by Mr. Right.

Comment Re:Cycle of life (Score 2) 132 132

All things are born, grow up, grow old and die, corporate citizens are not excluded from entropy.

The oldest continuously running company is Kongo Gumi; it was founded in the year 578. Not dead yet.

FWIW, there are 5,586 companies older than 200 years. Like the Stiftskeller St. Peter restaurant in Austria, which was founded in the year 803, or Sean's Bar, an Irish Pub, founded in the year 900. Even the U.S. has gotten into the act; Shirley Plantation is a farm founded in Virginia in 1613. A surprising percentage of them are alcohol related, although there are also a lot of hotels, confectioners, and other businesses.

Comment Re:My experience dressing down at a business meeti (Score 2) 471 471

There is a difference, and I do sincerely hope you know it, between dirty, stained rags and informal attire. Believe it or not, it's possible to wash jeans and t-shirts so they not only look but also smell nice.

As for your picture, you might notice that this is from a very different time. That's like complaining about the fashion of the 70s and questioning the sexual preference of the guys.

I have to agree.

One of the "You Have Arrived" indicators for success for a technical person in Silicon Valley is not having to wash your T-Shirts unless you want to keep them, because you are getting, on average, a new T-Shirt every day or so. It's a lot less that way these days, but you could, if you are sought after technically, go an entire month without doing laundry, and wear one to two T-shirts a day, with little effort to solicit shirts.

I had an intern in a button-down collar, at Google, engage me in the following conversation:

Intern: "Who's the old guy in the T-shirt"
Me: "Vint Cerf"
Intern: "Is he the token really old guy? Why do they keep him around?"
Me: "He invents things. He's a Distinguished Engineer."
Intern: (not hearing the Caps) "Like what?"
Me: "The Internet."
Intern: "Yeah, but what on the internet?"
Me: "That's it. He invented the Internet."
Intern: "You're shitting me!"
Me: "Someone had to. Do you really need me to explain who Vint Cerf is? Because if that's true, I'm willing to do the job, but you should probably 'us' it."
Intern: "What's 'us it' mean?"
Me "Google it."

Frankly I expected defibrillators would be involved at that point, but he recovered.

He moved to machine learning after that, but I think the lesson improved him.

Comment Re:My big question now... (Score 2) 65 65

It will also reveal some bugs that were nicely hidden before, when the particular fixed allocation didn't cause any immediately visible issues.

Fuzzing is useless, if you can't reproduce the bug.

It's the same as saying "There's a bug in there *somewhere*, but I will be damned if I can tell you where!".

Eng: "You mean 'It's broke'?"

Test: "Yeah."

Eng: "Thank you very F'ing much!"

Test: "What are you typing?"

Eng: "I'm closing your bug as 'Can not reproduce'; there: done!"

Comment I say we rename it. (Score 1) 132 132

I say we rename it.

I vote for "The Ralph Wiggum Is Really A Genius He Just Has Not Been Educated Forcefully Enough Act".

Because, as we all know, everyone is educable; you're just not trying hard enough if they fail,because all failure is the fault of society, and no blame rests with the child.

Comment My experience dressing down at a business meeting: (Score 1) 471 471

My experience dressing down at a business meeting:

I was one of three technical persons presenting to the customer. I didn't go first, so there was no initialization bias. Everyone was in business casual, but me; I was wearing khaki pants, but I was also wearing my "turtle" Hawaiian shirt I had picked up in St. Croix on recent vacation. Anytime the customers had a technical question, even when someone else was presenting, they asked it, and then looked at me to answer the question.

Dressing down at a business meeting means one of two things:

(1) They are the customer in the room; if you are there for a customer meeting, and it's not technical, then the person dressed down is the actual customer. Forget the guys in the suits, they are not the customer. They will ask questions, but the answers will ultimately be judged by the decision maker. The person who looks like they just stepped off the golf course or off the windsurfer? She or he is the decision maker. This is emphasized if the meeting doesn't start until they arrive.

(2) They are the technical talent; they don't dress up, because they don't have to. If you want a technical question answered, they are the person who will give you the answer that's going to stick. If they follow up someones else's answer with a "Well...", you'd better listen.

We all have our uniforms.

P.S.: Highly technical fields require that you forget everything but the intellectual problem in front of you; you can't do that to the same depth, if your collar is constrictive, or you can't otherwise ignore your physicality. It's the clothing equivalent of working in an Open Plan Office: the distractions detract from the work product.

Comment You're asking like you will be implementing it... (Score 4, Interesting) 217 217

You're asking like you will be implementing it... don't.

Gather all their requirements, gather your requirements on top of it (I'm pretty confident that some of those requirements were your additions for "you'd be an idiot to have that, but not also have this...", possibly including the backup).

Then put out an Preliminary RFP to the major storage vendors, including asking them what they'd say you'd missed in the preliminary.

Then take the recommendations they make on top of the preliminary with a grain of salt, since most of them will be intended to insure vendor lock-in to their solution set, revise the preliminary, and put out a final RFP.

Then accept the bid that you like which management is willing to approve.

Problem solved.

P.S.: You don't have to grow everything yourself from seed you genetically modify yourself, you know...

Comment Brilliant riposte. Not. (Score 3, Interesting) 117 117

"...only that the PS3 class action idiots failed to put one forth."

if they only had someone as brilliant as you on the team.

(sarcasm, you fuckwit. You're actually a complete fuckwit, fuckwit).

Brilliant riposte. Not.

The judge went out of his way to state what type of argument he would accept.

Three times.

He gave as broad a hint as he could possibly have given, by dismissing all but the path to the argument for which he would rule in favor.

He put a big red sign in front of it, and then he tied a bow around it for the plaintiff.

He came dangerously close to judicial misconduct in so doing.

Then he left the door open from February, 2011, when he did all the pointing in his ruling, until December 2011, at which point it was clear that the hint was not being taken, and only then did he dismiss the last count of the class.

And *STILL* the PS3 plaintiffs failed to make the case the judge all but asked them to make.


A lawyer would have to either be incompetent, guilty of malpractice, or outright corrupt to not make the argument the judge wanted them to make, after the number of times the judge tried to hit them over the head with a two by four, and tell them how to make their case, and then gave them TEN MONTHS to avoid getting a new judge, rather than a judge who had, effectively, promised to take the argument, if made, and rule in favor of the plaintiff!

Who is the "f*ckwit" here, again?

panic: kernel trap (ignored)