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Comment: Google's abuse history... (Score 1) 90

by seebs (#49665205) Attached to: How To Set Up a Pirate EBook Store In Google Play Books

Do you remember that one time when someone found a trivially obvious way to abuse Google services to do something harmful, and Google took complaints seriously and addressed the problem?

I don't either.

Last I checked, it was still really easy to make a Google Group to use to send spam to people, but block them from sending complaints through the documented interface, because why would anyone at Google care?

Comment: That's conflating two unrelated things... (Score 1) 425

by seebs (#49622515) Attached to: The Programming Talent Myth

The existence of programmers who are dramatically faster/more-skilled than others is not all that controversial, really. The question is whether they have to be assholes, or you should put up with them if they are.

My experience is, the majority of the really brilliant programmers I know are not assholes. They might be a little light on tact, but they are generally pretty good at cooperating and listening. If they weren't, they wouldn't be nearly as good.

Comment: Won't hire 'monolingual' developers (Score 1) 267

by david.emery (#49622251) Attached to: Is It Worth Learning a Little-Known Programming Language?

I explicitly will not hire any programmer who knows only one programming language (C and C++ count as 1 for that score.) Learning a different programming language introduces you to alternative ways to think about problems and solutions. Lisp or Scheme, Ada or Eiffel, COBOL or MUMPS, all provide a different perspective on software design, coding, test and integration.

Too many hiring managers play "buzzword bingos" in search of "flying purple unicorns," candidates whose buzzwords match their current search list. Sure, you can make a living chasing buzzwords that way, with a combination of (primarily) resume engineering and (secondarily) training. And some people who do this are actually pretty good developers. But many more don't know how to apply the technology, they're just able to produce toy programs learned from " for Idiots" who produce the stuff documented on But the people I want are those who can think creatively about a problem, using more tools than just one hammer, and who can learn new stuff on the job. What's the half-life of a technology these days, 3 years?

Comment: Re:She has a point. (Score 1) 628

by seebs (#49601275) Attached to: My High School CS Homework Is the Centerfold

That everything is offensive to at least one person doesn't mean that some things aren't more offensive than others. I am sort of sympathetic to the "but it's history!" view, but... honestly, it's a crappy picture to use for a number of reasons, it does create a hostile environment, and many many other images would be better.

Comment: Re:This is how Microsoft grew before (Score 1) 190

by david.emery (#49528485) Attached to: Microsoft Announces Device Guard For Windows 10

I documented the change of control, and noted Microsoft profited from enabling that change. If that's characterized as "misrepresenting" things, so be it.

When Corporate IT provides all employees with a charge number, from the CIO's budget, to use when the IT keeps the employee from being productive, then maybe I'll have more sympathy for corporate IT. How many times, for example, has your computer been forced to reboot in the middle of the day because IT decided to roll out some change? How many times have you had to go to the HelpDesk because something that worked before, suddenly stopped working? How many policies have been instituted that are a direct response to problems that are unique to Microsoft Windows? The real problem is not the transfer of control to IT, but rather the lack of accountability on IT departments for how their policies and actions negatively impact the larger community.

One advantage I've had as a Mac user in Windows-centric organizations is that IT didn't know how to mess with my computer, keeping me much more productive. Best example was Y2K remediation where I worked back in 1999. IT budgeted an hour to do each Windows machine. No one in my department was done in less than 2 hours and the worse case was the guy who was down for 3 days. For the Macs, IT budgeted 1/2 hour, most Mac users did it themselves in 10-15 minutes, and most of those changes actually were making sure -Microsoft Office- was up-to-date.

As always, Your Mileage May Vary.

Comment: This is how Microsoft grew before (Score 2) 190

by david.emery (#49527425) Attached to: Microsoft Announces Device Guard For Windows 10

If you look at Windows NT and beyond, it was all about removing capabilities from untrusted users, and placing them in the hands of IT staff/CIOs. That was a huge success for Microsoft, CIOs -control the budget- and decide what gets purchased. So they stuck with what empowered them, regardless of whether this was good for the user community, and whether the Microsoft monoculture created more problems -and more costs- than it solved. (After all, the measure of 'power' in many organizations is the size of the budget and staff, growing the CIO budget and hiring more IT workers equated to more CIO power.

So now, with the growth of non-PCs (phones, tablets, even IoT) in companies, Microsoft once again plays to (you could say 'panders to') the CIO and ability to control the device.

This could be quite a battle, with Apple/IBM (and presumably Google/Android soon) providing business services to the user community, versus Microsoft providing control (and familiarity) to the CIO community.

Comment: Re:Autism... The new cigar. (Score 1) 341

by seebs (#49526163) Attached to: Study Confirms No Link Between MMR Vaccine and Autism

This is a fascinating set of claims that have nothing to do with any autism research I've seen. I've never seen an "anti-autism drug" get any kind of approval or testing or even marketing, and I've never heard serious claims about people "growing out of" autism. I've never actually heard of "temporary" autism. There's lots you can do to mitigate the inconvenient or harmful symptoms, but the underlying neurology seems to be pretty stable.

Comment: Re:CJMTK - ESRI lock-in, mandated by Congress? (Score 1) 35

by david.emery (#49520893) Attached to: OSGeo Foundation Up In Arms Over ESRI LAS Lock-In Plans

There's a difference, though, between a preference for COTS with vendor support, and a mandate for a specific COTS product. An Open Source product without anyone providing maintenance is a risk. An Open Source product where you can -compete- for maintenance is a real benefit. A COTS product where you pay whatever the vendor charges for maintenance is at least a predictable life-cycle cost, but that vendor has you by the short-hairs. I've seen products where the sustainment contract was a lot more than the purchase/license price, and there was nothing you could do about it.

If I have not seen so far it is because I stood in giant's footsteps.