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Comment: Re:We don''t do tax returns in the UK,you insensit (Score 1) 361

by Maxo-Texas (#46759561) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: How Do You Pay Your Taxes?

I don't buy lottery tickets* but I view them as an opportunity to dream of what it would like to be wealthy.

* I have three times in my life as party favors for others and about 20 times as part of an office lottery pool which was really about not being the odd duck refusing to be part of the group. The "winnings" from all of these amounted to under 10% of the cost of the tickets.

Comment: Re:Had to do paper for a few years (Score 1) 361

by Maxo-Texas (#46759499) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: How Do You Pay Your Taxes?


I would efile but they wanted 10 bucks. For sending a frickin email attachment???

So I spent 49 cents and mailed it.

I think I would have paid 5 bucks and definitely would have paid 3 bucks if they supported paypal.

I did my taxes manually until two years ago. Too many stock transactions now. Which is a bit of a problem because taxact won't import the txf format output by my broker so I have to run an awk script to reformat the txf file into taxact format.

Comment: Re:It is a Hobby (Score 1) 214

by Maxo-Texas (#46752555) Attached to: FAA Shuts Down Search-and-Rescue Drones

True for individual churches and smaller independent churches.

Not so true for the larger denominations which can have budgets running in the hundreds of millions to billions.

For example, the mormon's recently purchased and will operate several tens of thousands of farmland as a tax advantaged church business. And they have a really plush HQ. It's similar for the catholics and other large orders.

Comment: Re:Fill your head with crap (Score 1) 162

by Maxo-Texas (#46751601) Attached to: The Best Parking Apps You've Never Heard Of and Why You Haven't

Seriously? I think a million is conservative. The number of people who will read the header article is more likely to be closer to 4 million.

From the wiki:

In 2012, Slashdot had around 3.7 million unique visitors per month and received over 5300 comments per day.[2] The site has won more than 20 awards, including People's Voice Awards in 2000 for Best Community Site and Best News Site. Occasionally, a story will link to a server causing a large surge of traffic, which can overwhelm some smaller or independent sites. This phenomenon is known as the "Slashdot effect".

(to the other commenter-- this didn't feel like an advertisement to me. But- you could be right. Even if you are wrong- as I said- doing this regularly would result in it being corrupted by business interests- so even if this ISN'T an advertisement- if we do this enough, they would start to be dominated by advertisements).

Comment: Re:Modded down? (Score 1) 280

by Maxo-Texas (#46751563) Attached to: Bachelor's Degree: An Unnecessary Path To a Tech Job

It's leveling out faster than that. India and China have been experiencing 20% inflation for high skill jobs and 100% inflation for low skill jobs (still making under $5000 a year but... at 100% a year...).

The quality of workers available thru offshoring has been dropping since 2005 BUT-- offshoring companies have a unique advantage in that they can turn on and off large numbers of workers at a given client rapidly. I.e. you have a project that needs 20 developers, 3 analysts, 1 architect-- and on two months notice- you've got it at an agreed upon rate. Turns out you only need 15 developers or you need 25 developers-- and you've got it.

Meanwhile- the private company has interviewed 17 candidates- offered to 5, and gotten 2 to accept. And 1 of those may not work out. And the private company has a shitty reputation for being a sweat shop PLUS no training PLUS layoffs while the offshoring company values programmer candidates (because they are revenue sources unlike at the private company where they were a cost).

But.. don't trust that the offshore people *really* have the skill sets-- probably 15 of the 20 they send you will have no skill set to a 2 month training course and they'll be training them on your dime. And the offshore people tend to say YES to everything-- which management loves-- but which results in expensive failures. I.e. Can you do the impossible and delivery it in 90 days, "YES! We'll do our best!"

Five million dollars later.. a piece of crap is delivered in 90 days. It finally works (maybe) well enough to use after 180 days and isn't really fully functional for a year... or more.

A fundamental problem is the technology in IT is still changing TOO DAMN FAST. When I started- you could learn a skillset (Cobol, JCL, RPG, Vax Assembly) and use it for 10 to 15 years. Now- outside of maybe SQL- there is a new technology every... single... year... If you miss the boat- you quickly become unhireable.

But you can't really master it and you are always working tons of hours on your own time mastering the new languages and tools compared to the management and sales team who is doing maybe 12 hours of fluffly training combined with drinks in vegas and who are making more money and who don't have to work nights, weekends, and holidays (especially holidays since the systems can be quiesced then).

And then- even if you manage to keep up- massive age discrimination at age 50 (some as early as 45. my god- i pity the poor kids) without legal recourse. Infosys for example requires your high school graduation date on the job application. Not that you graduated. I.E. The EXACT date when you were 18. It should be illegal.. but it's not.

I'm glad I was able to make it, retire, and now I only program for fun again like I did back when I was young. But I did that by living on half of what I made (which was a lot thankfully).

The last year has been one of the best of my life. I'm playing ultimate frisbee again, time to frolic with the girlfriend and time to spend with the grandkids. Life is Good.

Oh.. and way too much minecraft.

Comment: Re:Fill your head with crap (Score 1) 162

by Maxo-Texas (#46749105) Attached to: The Best Parking Apps You've Never Heard Of and Why You Haven't

He's actually providing an editorial service for millions of other people. Conservatively, he freed up a million people to spend 5 minutes thinking about important issues.

That's just under 10 years of total time they can think about important issues.

And that's ignoring the time/money savings resulting from those who select the app.

He's justified a significant portion of his existence with just the one post.

+ - Linux 3.15 Will Suspend & Resume Multiple Times Faster->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The Linux 3.15 kernel that is now in its early life will be able to suspend and resume much faster than previous versions of the Linux kernel. Days ago were ACPI and Power Management updates that enable asynchronous threads for more suspend and resume callbacks. Carrying out more async operations leads to reduced time for the system suspend and then resuming. According to one developer it was about an 80% time savings within one of the phases. Merged on Friday was then work so that the kernel is no longer blocked by waiting for ATA devices to resume. Multiple ATA devices can be waked up simultaneously and any ATA commands for the device(s) will be queued until they have powered up. According to an blog post on the ATA/SCSI resume optimization patches, when tested on three Intel Linux systems the resume time was between seven and 12x faster (not including the latest ACPI/PM S&R optimizations)."
Link to Original Source

+ - IRS misses XP deadline, pays Microsoft millions for patches-> 2

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "When Microsoft terminated official support for Windows XP on April 8th, most organizations had taken the six years of warnings to heart and migrated to another solution. But not the U.S. Internal Revenue Service. Only 52,000 of their 110,000 Windows-powered computers have been upgraded to Windows 7. They'll now be forced to pay Microsoft for Custom Support. How much? Using Microsoft's standard rate of $200 per PC, it'll be $11.6 million for one year. That leaves $18.4 million of their $30 million budget to finish the upgrades themselves, which works out to $317 per computer."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:It is a Hobby (Score 2, Insightful) 214

by Maxo-Texas (#46734757) Attached to: FAA Shuts Down Search-and-Rescue Drones

Lots of non-profits pay their executives salaries between 150,000 and 650,000 dollars. Plus lots of benny's like free gala's every month, travel, etc.

And, just thought of this: Churches are non-profit and make millions or even billions of dollars, their executives travel and drive really nice cars and have plush offices (not to mention owning tons of land).

+ - Open Source Screen Capture tool CamStudio Infected with Malware-> 5

Submitted by ShowBlender
ShowBlender (3614119) writes "I have been using CamStudio for years to capture my screen to video for tutorials, or product demonstrations. I was surprised recently, when I downloaded the most recent build from The installer bundled a ton of Malware(AV tools detect the Artemis!935C478B6850 trojan) with it. I've tried VLC for screen capture, but I've never had good results. Has anyone had success with other open-source Screen Capture solutions?"
Link to Original Source

+ - Racing To Contain Ebola->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Ebola, one of the most deadly diseases known to humans, started killing people in Guinea a few months ago. There have been Ebola outbreaks in the past, but they were contained. The latest outbreak has now killed over 100 people across three countries. One of the biggest difficulties in containing an outbreak is knowing where the virus originated and how it spread. That problem is being addressed right now by experts and a host of volunteers using Open Street Map. 'Zoom in and you can see road networks and important linkages between towns and countries, where there were none before. Overlay this with victim data, and it can help explain the rapid spread. Click on the coloured blobs and you will see sites of confirmed deaths, suspected cases that have been overturned, sites where Ebola testing labs have been setup or where the emergency relief teams are currently located.'"
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Patternicity (Score 1) 322

by Maxo-Texas (#46731963) Attached to: Can You Buy a License To Speed In California?

Still, we do gain herd immunity from social media speed programs like Waze and Trapster (which no longer works on my ancient 2 year old phone- boo!).

First, you get reports of where speed traps are repeatedly.
Second, you get live reports of where the police are.
Third, if you don't have it running and 60% of the drivers around you suddenly slow from 85 to 65, you slow down with them, pass the cops 3 miles later, and then speed up 1 mile past the cops.

Kill Ugly Processor Architectures - Karl Lehenbauer