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Comment: Perl ACT (Score 1) 97

by oneiros27 (#48197667) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Event Sign-Up Software Options For a Non-Profit?

You might not even have to start from scratch. I'd wager that ACT (A Conference Toolkit) could be customized to fit their specific needs. ... but they still haven't explained why it is that Event Brite or Brown Paper Tickets wouldn't work for them, other than expense. I guess they just assume that volunteer programmers are 'free' vs. the opportunity cost.

If nothing else, you then don't expose yourself to some security mistake because you rushed to put something together. Or some other simple mistake, like the conference I attended where everything was managed by e-mail ... only it seems their hosting service got flagged as a spam relay, and over 50% of the e-mail never went through. (so the organizers never got many people's talk proposals, and they had to scale back the meeting from 3 days to 2).

Comment: Federal govt + cloud computing (Score 1) 118

by oneiros27 (#48195937) Attached to: Overwhelmed By Recall For Deadly Airbags

Unless things have changed dramatically*, there are rules that make it harder to use commercial cloud computing, as not all can guarantee that the services will only be hosted in the U.S.

Most agency cloud computing efforts are for internal number crunching (eg, scientific computing), not public facing websites. When they *have* gone and done it, they couldn't come up with a viable cost model for different groups to be willing to convert to the service. (Oh ... you can't tell me the price, because you need to break-even, and you don't know how many people will agree to use it? Okay, that's a decent price; it's not that much more than what we pay now ... oh wait, I have to pay for 3 VMs for prod / test / dev?)

The problem w/ building up a cluster to scale is that it means that you have inefficiencies of having idle machines; the way to get around this is to have lots of unrelated services running on the same system so that they shouldn't all need to max out at once.

In practice, it's often easier to switch to a 'low resource' version of the site when you start getting hit heavy -- drop all of the pretty images cluttering up pages, and just serve the basic content. Webserver tuning also helps dramatically ... as simple as splitting your static content off to a seperate server (so that you can repoint it at a CDN if necessary), while your local servers take the brunt of the dynamic requests. (and possibly make the site less 'interactive' in times of high load.)

* which wouldn't surprise me, as I work for a federal contractor and we seem to be the last ones to know about policy changes ... I once spent more than a year dealing with waiver paperwork only to find that by the time it had been granted that it had been allowed for 6+ months.

Comment: Re:There are limits to freedom of speach (Score 1) 482

by oneiros27 (#48189983) Attached to: In UK, Internet Trolls Could Face Two Years In Jail

My apologies ... I was going with the general U.S. definition of assault (which varies by state), as this is a U.S. based website and the "Freedom of speech is a fundamental right" argument is a typical American attitude due to the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

I didn't think that the UK had such attitudes, the 2013 Defamation Act came about in part from people suing for journals libel because they published facts about that person and "libel tourism" in general.

Comment: or little people. (Score 1) 385

by oneiros27 (#48189803) Attached to: NASA's HI-SEAS Project Results Suggests a Women-Only Mars Crew

Their next alternative was people with dwarfism, but many of them suffer from problems that shorten their lifespan considerably. Actually, I kid ... the article *actually* said:

As reasonable as an all-female Mars mission is from an economic perspective, some might find the idea offensive. After all, it'd be an expedition that fails to represent half the world's population; an all-female Mars crew would strike many as exceptionally biased.

Comment: There are limits to freedom of speach (Score 4, Insightful) 482

by oneiros27 (#48182983) Attached to: In UK, Internet Trolls Could Face Two Years In Jail

Threatening to hit someone when you're in person is assault. Yet, if done over the internet, you can threaten to kill them, rape them, burn their house down, etc... and that should be legal?

Calling in a bomb threat isn't free speach, no matter if you were 'joking' or not. Screwing with people's lives, even if it's only one person and not a 'terroristic threat' shouldn't be, either.

And the strange thing is ... I'd normally agree with you about the freedom of speach and people need to grow a thicker skin... but once you get threats of violence, that's drawing the line.

I've had a stalker, and even though she was just crazy, not violent, I can say that you will *never* understand what this can do to a person. I knew who my stalker was (she worked with me, and management wouldn't do crap about it; luckily, we worked different shifts) ... but you start panicking every time you see someone in a crowd that might be her. You shut down when someone that you've chatted with on mailing lists meets you in person for the first time and expresses enthusiasm for meeting you.

So, in summary : fuck you and I hope you die in a fire. (yay freedom of speach!)

Comment: Re:MacOS X == not sysadmin friendly (Score 1) 368

by oneiros27 (#48181451) Attached to: Apple Doesn't Design For Yesterday

If you're gonna switch to FreeBSD anyway why not just a generic 19" x86 server ?

Price, and reliability. Dell rackmount servers hold up fine, but they're way overpriced. As for the generic 'built for linux' type servers, we've tried a few, and had way too many problems with them. (We got some machines from Penguin per the recommendation of another site involved on a project ... of the 4, two were RMA'd ... one had to be sent back a second time).

As I'm a federal facility, RMAs can add a week to however long it normally takes ... gotta blank the drives, fill out the paperwork to get the item untagged, fill out the shipping paperwork (even when freight's paid for, gotta declare what's going out), take it to the shipping warehouse ... wait ... wait for shipping and receiving to x-ray the returned item & tag it ... wait for shipping to deliver to our building (and they only deliver on Tuesdays & Thursdays for our building, due to staffing cutbacks) ... blank drives again (can't trust what came in as we didn't install it), install a fresh OS, reload from backup. (I left out the unrack / pack / unpack / re-rack, as you'd normally have to do that ... but that doesn't take much time, unless they send you back something diferent and the rails don't match).

The machine that had 2 RMAs I kept as a spare, rather than put it into service for anything that mattered ... it just wasn't worth dealing with the headaches from it ... not only was there the 2 months from RMAs, but procurement takes between 1-4 months, depending on if anyone bothers bidding when the SEWP request goes out.

Say what you will about Apple's OS ... the hardware's very reliable, and the minis are cheap enough that it can be put on a government purchase card when you need one without waiting 2 months. My only issue w/ running Mac Minis as servers is the single-tap power. Well, that and thunderbolt, but there's two thunderbolt taps on 'em now, so one for the storage, one for the KVM. (but I won't need the KVM if I'm not running MacOS).

Comment: MacOS X == not sysadmin friendly (Score 1) 368

by oneiros27 (#48180835) Attached to: Apple Doesn't Design For Yesterday

ipfw's been gone for a while ... but they've made a lot of other stupid choices that might be good for general users, but make things a pain when you're administering lots of machines.

For instance, pushing all updates via the iTunes store; we have a centralized account that we put everything under ... so an iWorks update comes along, and sysadmins have to go and enter the password on each machine.

The 'server' package under the App store to get the server OS ... WTF? For apache, the config files are absolute crap now as there's a ton of if/then logic to alter the config if it's server or client.

And dear god, their replacing some languages (eg, perl), with wrappers that decide which version to call based on what system & user level config is present.

I've lost track of how many things have annoyed me ; I've been sitting on 10.6.8 for a long time now, but after this whole 'shellshock' issue, I was forced to upgrade to something that's still being supported ... and absolutely hate it.

The only good news is that they *finally* updated the mini ... which means we'll finally be getting new hardware to replace our xserves. (the cancelation of which should've been the clue that they didn't care about 'enterprise' type stuff anymore). I'm thinking of putting FreeBSD or similar on 'em though, rather than MacOSX.

Comment: Re:Divergence (Score 1) 154

by Empiric (#48175083) Attached to: Scientists Find Rats Aren't Smarter Than Mice, and That's Important
Some of us have a problem when you post to Slashdot about it. If you could provide actual evidence, which you can't, or even say how it's falsifiable, I think it would go over better.

Of course, I don't care in the least what you or the entirety of Slashdot have "a problem with", as is appropriate, because it simply could not in any way factually matter.

That said, though, again, this is an issue of interpretation. Insofar as a given IC structure does not currently have, within the scope of science, a definitive explanation, it is -evidence-. No amount of equivocation around "of course we will determine the particular route to the transition" or "we've thoroughly politically smeared IC and ID, so don't bother bringing it up" or handwaving reasoning-by-analogy to other biological structures will alter this. If you want to make up you own notion of what "evidence" is, that's fine, but if we go by what evidence actually is, apparently improbable biological transitions are -each-, -individually-, evidence. They are evidence until they -all- are refuted.

I have been accused of setting unreasonable criteria for this, in that it is claimed that the current state of science does not allow for these to be exhaustively analyzed. Well... too bad. Difficulty of analysis does not enable redefinition of words.

And, likewise, that is the route to falsifiability. Explain all the transitions. Specifically.

Even then, you have a major issue in that at some point we have to address the unstated causal factors contained in the placeholder-word for the not actually present causal explanation that is the term "random".

You'd need to show the "random" mutations are "unknown quantum effect random" rather than "designer-directed random"--neither of these, likely, is falsifiable.

However, we can address that when the baseline criteria for falsification is reached. All the proposed IC structures explained. Yes, all of them. Specifically. At a resolution of the specific mutations and specific biochemistry transitions resulting therefrom. At that point, if you can meet the previous criteria, and show that the former is more plausible, in that as the effect of the Big Bang, that is, on the first and only "try" (insofar as we have evidence, feel free to forward a conjectural model and we'll do some epistemological comparisons), we end up with intelligent life rather than a mass of "spacetime goo", thus removing the strong flavor of teleology from empirical existence, I'll be personally satisfied.

In the interim, I'll assume forebearance enough (though, as noted, I don't care if it's not given, and given typical responses, it probably hypocritically won't be) to support my position on this question -indirectly- as, say, is considered perfectly acceptable for most pro-atheism writers today (Dawkins, Harris) etc., to combine broader inferential and worldview arguments into their exegesis along with the narrow, specific biological questions around evolution.

So, in that regard, here is peer-reviewed evidence of firsthand quantified eyewitness (e.g. empirical, the unusual circumstances being something I'm quite willing to argue) of the predictive accuracy of mainstream conceptualizations of a particular notion of that designer.

When and if you respond with an alternate possible interpretation of this evidence (as is the standard response), will it then cease to be evidence for my model, rather than at best (from your perspective) evidence for -both-?


Comment: Re:Divergence (Score 1) 154

by Empiric (#48175021) Attached to: Scientists Find Rats Aren't Smarter Than Mice, and That's Important

This has nothing to do with what Occam's Razor says.

It continues to astonish me how consistently erroneous the understanding of this is on Slashdot, and how suddenly this mass-misperception of this statement of my fellow theist Occam has propagated.

I can only conjecture this is due to the mass-misdirection efforts of Dawkins et al.

Occam's Razor says nothing about probability. Occam's Razor says nothing about the validity of inferences from given observable phenomena. Occam's Razor says, and -only- says, that -all else being equal-, the simplest model for a given phenomena should be used -for its conceptual economy-. This is on the basis of methodological efficiency, not truth-value. Note: In no way whatsoever can "not true" or "less probably true" or "inferior" be derived from this. It is not the case that Occam's Razor says "simpler = truer".


Comment: Re:Divergence (Score 1) 154

by Empiric (#48166567) Attached to: Scientists Find Rats Aren't Smarter Than Mice, and That's Important
And plausible is entirely subjective on things for which there is no proof one way or the other. At that point, you can be agnostic about your beliefs, and that'd be reasonable. But going any further and you're just fantasizing.

Wow, what an amazing limitation on your thought processes. Applying that must keep you at approximately the intellectual range of someone severely mentally handicapped. Fortunately, it's complete nonsense, according to science and... well, everything. A chain of inference from a plausible basis is also plausible. Plausible things can have extensive content and elaboration, well... always. Say, the various Interpretations of QM. Copenhagen, Everett (Many Worlds), Consistent Histories, etc., etc. All are entirely plausible. All are backed by the scientific observations. All have significant individual content. None are provable. And, well, this is the case with almost everything you think about every day. I'd encourage you to be willing to think more than one step ahead, because not doing so isn't enlightened, it's idiocy, and you won't survive long actually applying what you say should be done here to anything else.

No, that's precisely it. The ecosystem killed off all the non-mice, non-rats, non-humans, etc who couldn't survive in it. Hence, the ecosystem fulfills their needs. But that leaves lots of totally non-human things that exist...just because? More or less because while there are plenty of niches across the globe that repeat themselves, they're not all filled nor when they're filled are they filled with synonymous creatures (although it happens a lot that similar creatures do evolve). Look no further than all the Old World (aka Europe/Asia) creatures which came to the New World (aka North/South America).

I suppose you'll have to specify which ones exist "just because". We have good reason to think that, say, the elimination of bees would have a cascading effect on plant life and ultimately animal and human life. Which ones are you saying are irrelevant?

Easy. Neither I nor any of my close relatives have kids. :) But more generally, particular organisms do not, except under specific circumstances, make a particularly strong influence to the long-term evolution of species. Why? Because there's billions of other organisms with remarkably similar genetics all competing in the same environment, so it's very difficult to stand out in a competition. Now, ship me and a few women to an isolated island and we can talk... Species, after all, are more than just one individual and the fate of one rarely has but a negligible impact over the future.

I'm not sure what you're trying to say here. The long-term direction of evolution won't be affected by your elimination. I never suggested it would be. I simply pointed out your elimination. Which, is part of the process of evolution. You are deselected and your DNA doesn't propagate. You become irrelevant, according to you. You're putting this one in the "win" column for yourself?

You think it bizarre and funny. I think it sad and misguided. When a little man with a little voice wants to be noticed, he may start big fights with big people. That one would merely have the fights in their head and argue about their own greatness or pepper the universe with "I am great" signs says more about how pathetic that person is than anything else. To need greatness to have self-worth or view humbleness as a vice....

You aren't big, you have not the ability to ever engage in any discussion even notable, much less "big". Be that as it may, though, any notions of my "greatness" is coming from you, not from me. I have made no claim resembling this.

Kleeneness is next to Godelness.