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Comment: Re:Is it a legitimate collection? (Score 1) 564

by NormalVisual (#47570393) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
People are so afraid of a credit rating problem these days that they will often pay off a "bad debt" that is fraudulent to get their score "fixed".

And this is sad, because they're not aware that there are some relatively strong laws that protect them in regards to debt collectors.

Comment: Re:Because collections agencies do not accept faul (Score 1) 564

by NormalVisual (#47570361) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
but nothing can convince a collection agency that they were sold bad debt.

Having to explain to the judge why they're collecting when you can prove you paid it often works, and can put *their* money in your pocket to boot. Small claims court is great for this, especially when they don't bother showing up and you get a default judgment.

Comment: Re:I'm probably one of them (Score 1) 564

by NormalVisual (#47570321) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
I said no problems, just give me a copy of the invoice and we'll pay up. They said. Can't do that.

The proper response: "If you can't validate the debt, you can't legally attempt to collect it, and if you continue to do so I'll sue you for violating the applicable sections of the federal Fair Debt Collection Practices Act, in addition to whatever state laws apply. You'll be receiving a letter via certified mail saying essentially the same thing once you give me your agency's name and address."

To cut a long story short, the phone company sells anything past due date to a collection agency BUT doesn't bother to give them the supporting documentation.
How retarded is that!


It's stupid of any collection agency to fail to get the necessary documentation to prove a debt is valid, but it works very much in favor of the supposed debtor.

Comment: Re:Alternative explanation (Score 1) 394

No, the traceroute wouldn't show the hops between your PC and the VPN server, so that part of path could not be compared.

This is true as long as the VPN link is up. If it's down, then it's trivial to do a traceroute between yourself and the VPN server to fill in the missing hops.

Comment: Re:So release your own video on demand... (Score 1) 200

I don't care how big they get because they can't form the same kind of monopoly.

And this is why content providers and ISPs should be separate. This is only an issue for cable companies because they provide both bandwidth and content, and Netflix threatens their content offerings because it provides a service that people actually *want* at a reasonable price.

Comment: IPv6 routers (Score 1) 146

by NormalVisual (#47526045) Attached to: Comcast Carrying 1Tbit/s of IPv6 Internet Traffic
Can anyone recommend a SOHO-level router that properly supports IPv6? Right now I've got my desktop on a Teredo (okay, stop laughing) tunnel set up to a server I have colo'd which in turn has a real /64. It works pretty well, but it was a pain to set up and counts against my colo bandwidth, and of course adds a bit of latency. Router support for IPv6 may be moot since I don't even know for sure that AT&T has IPv6 rolled out here anyway.

Comment: Re:Welcome to engineering (Score 1) 369

by NormalVisual (#47519377) Attached to: 'Just Let Me Code!'
Your argument boils down to "Engineering is hard".

Not at all. The main point of my argument is that the idea that requirements are free to be changed, regardless of scope, is resulting in implementation being far more expensive than it needs to be, and IMO this isn't a good engineering practice. How many development shops take the customer aside after a project is finished, show him the dollar amounts for all the change orders, and point out that having had the requirements more in order beforehand might have ended up only costing him only half of what it actually did? "But you saw new stuff working every two weeks, even if it wasn't what you really needed!"

Requirements analysis is (or should be) just as much part of any engineering discipline as construction. Some degree of change is inevitable, but we shouldn't be in the situation where we build an airplane with four wings before determining two would have been sufficient.

Comment: Re:The price you pay (Score 3, Insightful) 369

by NormalVisual (#47519073) Attached to: 'Just Let Me Code!'
OK, maybe that last one''s a stretch. Nobody bothers to document "simple" programs, since we all know the code IS the documentation and any good programmer can work out what is going on (are they still teaching that garbage?)

Not just teaching it, *practicing* it. My boss is a hardcore Agile fan, and his official stance is "out of date documentation is worse than no documentation, so don't spend any time documenting anything, and if you can't figure out why this 12-year-old code is doing something, find someone in the group that does". Nice, except none of the guys that actually wrote that cruft are still there, and reading code doesn't necessarily provide any insights as to the higher-level theory of operation when multiple modules work together. Then on top of that, he says "I don't want to see any research tasks in this sprint". So what, I'm supposed to know how this works by osmosis?

Comment: Re:Documentation (Score 1) 369

by NormalVisual (#47519011) Attached to: 'Just Let Me Code!'
For example, I am really excited about node.js, but on the page proper, their docs just dump some bits of info on standard functions. That ends up making learning something new, really fast, more difficult than it used to be because you have to go to 3rd party sources, they may be full of crap, way out of date or both.

It's especially discouraging if you've been around for a while and remember what documentation used to be like. I still have the 30 pounds or so of manuals that the old Borland C++ compiler came with. Microsoft's current electronic documentation is pretty good, but it can sometimes still be a bit tough to find exactly what you need.

Comment: Re:Thats why I stock MILLIONS of retro-components. (Score 1) 369

by NormalVisual (#47518981) Attached to: 'Just Let Me Code!'
Everything is specialized and we literally have no jack-of-all-trades coders anymore, pity...that's what we need IMHO.

I would consider myself one of those. I don't pretend to be the ultimate expert in anything I work with, but I've had enough exposure to enough different environments and situations to at least be competent in just about any problem domain, or say, "y'know, over on this other system, this is how we often do this and it might be a more appropriate solution to the problem at hand". It cracks me up anytime Mr. "I'm the best thing since buttered bread" can't figure out why his VM isn't working because he's got a network submask set wrong or something similar, or is completely lost when presented with a Linux command line because all he's ever worked with is Windows and the filesystem organization is totally foreign to him.

However, my experience has been that coders that specialize in one particular thing but can't do anything outside that domain are far more marketable than those with a wide breadth of general knowledge and honest about not being the do-all and end-all of any one skill.

Aren't you glad you're not getting all the government you pay for now?

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