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Comment: Re:All that packaging (Score 1) 508

by NormalVisual (#47744741) Attached to: If Java Wasn't Cool 10 Years Ago, What About Now?
Except nobody actually does that. The whole JVM thing was done to make browser "applets" work. Nobody uses those any more. Most Java is server-side, running on farms of x86 machines.

Those farms of x86 boxes aren't necessarily running the same OS on each, necessitating different JVMs. I've personally worked in server environments where the same code had to run on x86 machines under Windows, Linux, HP-UX, and Solaris simultaneously.

Comment: Re:Dobsonian (Score 1) 187

by NormalVisual (#47740253) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: Cheap But Reasonable Telescopes for Kids?
An alt-az mount almost has to be motorized to be useful, and it drives up cost.

Something like a Meade ETX-80 isn't terribly expensive, the alignment procedure is easier, plus you get the benefit of go-to functionality with automatic tracking which really helps those that don't know the sky yet. German equatorials really are only necessary for photography, IMO, and are a royal pain in the butt to deal with when the optical tube is of any appreciable size.

My 10" Dob works just fine with an equatorial platform, and the platform costs a LOT less than a decent German mount that can deal with a 30 pound tube.

Comment: Re:Mandatory panic! (Score 1) 421

by NormalVisual (#47739215) Attached to: South Carolina Student Arrested For "Killing Pet Dinosaur"
"maybe we don't need to be militarily great, and can learn to live humbly, and trade freely with people without having a huge *@#(ing military"

It's a nice thing to aspire to, but without said military, what happens when one of your trading partners decides to just take what you have by force?

Comment: Re:Should have kept the domain name (Score 1) 186

by NormalVisual (#47737919) Attached to: BBC and FACT Shut Down Doctor Who Fansite
Want to know why? Because the victims know they don't have the resources to fight it out and big corporations love debt collection companies.

In the U.S., I would argue it's more because victims aren't familiar with the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, and the (rather effective) remedies available to them at no cost. Debt collection companies do hinky shit all the time, but a lot of it is trivial to shut down if you're aware of what your options are instead of just taking the collector at their word.

Comment: Re:"Culture in tech is a very meritocratic culture (Score 1) 441

You can ask a technical person to achieve a very specific, tightly scoped technical task during an interview and if you know the question well quickly get a feel for how good they really are.

Along with that, with techies it's a lot easier to weed out the bullshit and outright lies on their resumes. I wish I had a dime for every candidate that listed something obscure on their resume to puff it up, and then couldn't answer basic questions that anyone familiar with it should know.

"I see here you've got some extensive VMS system administration experience and show it as an area of expertise."
"That was a really cool OS - I liked how DEC implemented file versioning. Can you tell me how one would distinguish different versions of the same file?"
" was a long time ago, I don't really remember...."
"Okay, can you give me one of the hardware platforms supported by VMS?"
"I'm pretty sure the system I worked on was a 486."

After 30 seconds you can tell the guy doesn't have a clue, and the entire resume is now suspect.

Comment: Re:Bullshit (Score 1) 441

You're comparing your salary to one at a fucking bank, companies so famous for absurd compensation packages that it triggered street protests ....

None of the compensation packages I've read about involved IT staff - it was all executives and brokers. My experience with banks is that they'll screw their own non-executive employees just like they will anyone else, but if you have cites otherwise I'll read them with great interest. The only IT folks in the financial sector that I've ever seen willingly get offered noticeably above-average money are HFT architects and coders.

Comment: Re:If you can be replaced for $10/hour... (Score 1) 441

Furthermore the per-capita US income is in the top 5 in the world. How sustainable do you think that is? I suggest you learn about regression toward the mean.

Or, as it's better known, "the race to the bottom". Domestic workers demand more because it's substantially more expensive to live here than it is in India and other countries popular with outsourcers. A well-paid programmer in India will do work sent to him for $15K/year and live quite well - here, that's approximately the federally mandated minimum wage, which isn't enough to do much more than meet one's essential needs, and often isn't even enough to do that. Are you seriously arguing that skilled workers with years of experience should be working for minimum wage?

Manufacturing in the US is alive and well and anyone who says otherwise has no idea what they are talking about.

Really? Tell me where I can buy an American-made DIMM or LCD panel. Just because we still do make things in the U.S. doesn't mean that it hasn't completely destroyed other manufacturing centers here.

Comment: Re:There are 6 of them now? (Score 1) 463

by NormalVisual (#47730211) Attached to: 33 Months In Prison For Recording a Movie In a Theater
That number is just what the film distributor's marketing department *claims* they lost.

Never trust what anyone involved with the movie industry says about profits and losses. I don't necessarily disagree with this individual facing some kind of punishment, as I feel limited and reasonable copyright legislation helps more than it hurts, but I do agree that one needs to take the losses stated with a very large grain of salt.

Computers are not intelligent. They only think they are.