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Comment: Re:News? (Score 1) 290

by Richard Dick Head (#49620897) Attached to: The Programming Talent Myth

I always thought it was a slope - a lot of bad ones, a fair amount of decent ones, and some really good ones

EXACTLY this. Those "10x more productive than anyone else" programmers people rave about are simply abusing methamphetamine. Not altogether uncommon in startups. Without the drug you'd probably observe an average to below average productivity level in the same individual.

Comment: Re:Rock solid so far - really like it (Score 1) 278

by Richard Dick Head (#49615807) Attached to: Ubuntu 15.04 Received Well By Linux Community
Nothing new, Kubuntu has always been a broken mess. Which is due in part to KDE being a perpetually broken mess. The last time I used a properly-integrated KDE-based distro with no annoying bugs was Mandrake Linux 10.1.

Its a bummer. KDE was my favorite desktop since I've always had a reasonably powerful machine.

Comment: Re: Google Streams (Score 1) 359

by Richard Dick Head (#49559981) Attached to: Google Insiders Talk About Why Google+ Failed
Google loves their bloated JS libraries for sure. I remember when G+ first came out though...it loaded fast because there was literally nothing on the page but some stock clipart. Added some friends, who posted nothing. Joined some groups with no activity. Zero entertainment value in general.

Now there is plenty to look at but much of it is broken. I just went back on my Google+ page just to check it out because of this article, and I was pleasantly surprised by the amount of content. But I tried to view a group from the "Follow the things you love" side box and nothing happened. Click click click...nada. Mind you, this is in Google's own Chrome browser.

I dunno, who wants to waste time working with something that is perpetually broken? Google could recover by making the thing actually work, then run an advertising campaign. People still pass around memes about Google+ being a social media holocaust. :D

Comment: Re:Google: Select jurors who understand stats. (Score 1) 349

The main problem of receiving compensation commensurate to the "value" your profession is that you're at the mercy of the other people who share your profession.

People who become lawyers tend to be good negotiators. People who become accountants tend to be risk-averse. You could argue that the baseline value of these two should be similar, but it isn't because there are far more unemployed and underemployed lawyers in the market than accountants. Yet the average salary of lawyers is far higher than accountants. Why? Because accountants as a whole aren't as opportunistic, don't tolerate as much risk, and nobody is sticking their neck out to raise the bar.

If fast food work could attract the same kind of people that lawyering does, fast food workers would be some of the highest paid workers in the country. But it doesn't, that work attracts disengaged or otherwise engaged people who just need some job for the moment. People like that tend to negotiate towards a minimum of commitment and responsibility so they can focus on other things rather than towards a higher paycheck.

Comment: Re:Progressive Fix 101 (Score 1) 622

by Richard Dick Head (#49530049) Attached to: Cheap Gas Fuels Switch From Electric Cars To SUVs
Well, think if the distribution. The majority of F-150s are the el cheapo regular cab work and farm trucks with minimal added options and are going to clock in weight below the Tesla.

Not that that matters, since his point stands...everyone will be driving EVs eventually, if it is 10 or 50 years from now. Since EV drivers don't contribute to transportation via gas tax something will have to change.

Comment: Re:bah (Score 1) 261

Yeah, gotta love lunch meetings...basically work that doesn't count which you're paying for!

Which is a great example of what not to do. As a manager your job is to keep things stable, and acquire, retain, and get work out of your talent.

Which for most software folks simply means minimize the bullshit. Absorb the heat from customers, protect them from support people and owners, be nice and express concern/use guilt rather then use unjustified absolutes or anger, mediate personality conflicts immediately so they don't fester, keep meetings short and only have them if email doesn't make sense, allow flexible hours to minimize commute time, etc. And always take time to recognize and thank them accomplishments.

Basically, create an environment where it is hard for your people to leave because they like being there and getting work done.

Comment: Re:It's OK, every civilization collapses (Score 1) 110

by Richard Dick Head (#49313773) Attached to: A Sucker Is Optimized Every Minute
No, unfortunately it's a fitness and evolution thing. The minute you bring grain bags to a starving remote village, the hunger goes away and then they immediately start having sex and cranking out more needy humans. You can see this in dependent villages, you'll notice frequency banding in the ages of the children, all conceived at roughly the same time coinciding with aid drops.

Feeding the hungry sounds great, the hungry will multiply until you can't feed them all.

Comment: Re:Actually - This Perfect Day (Score 1) 532

by Richard Dick Head (#49096891) Attached to: Stephen Hawking: Biggest Human Failing Is Aggression
The other side of this that allows police states to form is the "few assholes ruin it for the rest of us" effect that helps us come to the conclusion that it is much easier to simply implement harsh sentencing laws, throwing aggressive humans in prison their entire lives. Not only does the problem go away for good, but the sweet perk of them not having any shithead offspring, starting the process all over again. If you overdo it and throw too many innocent humans in prison, who cares, it only takes 100 individuals to maintain a stable genome.

Comment: Re:Time for men's liberation (Score 1) 369

by Richard Dick Head (#49070893) Attached to: Two New Male Birth Control Chemicals In Advanced Stages

I'd have an easier time finding a unicorn in this culture than a woman who will truly commit to creating a family

Go overseas! The problem is lately people aren't going for foreign women, creating this artificial scarcity of women. A well-to-do 1st-world man can pretty much eat the lunch of the men in any smaller pond in the world. In many cases you can go take one home with you. With the add in benefit that you have good connections in case you need a cheap place to retire.

Comment: Re:Bollocks. (Score 4, Insightful) 138

by Richard Dick Head (#49067099) Attached to: NVidia Puts the Kibosh On Overclocking of GTX 900M Series
Yep. Which is why, every time, you should take apart the laptop, take off the cooler and apply a high-quality aftermarket thermal grease, and then test your temps after you OC to be sure!

Chalk this decision from nVidia as a few assholes ruining it for the rest of us.

Comment: Re:What happened? (Score 1) 422

by Richard Dick Head (#49003571) Attached to: What Happened To the Photography Industry In 2014?

The frame lag apologists argue that even something like 100ms delay won't make a difference because the difference it tiny and human eye can't detect time resolution that small. This is incorrect because
A. You're measuring the frame only, not the sequence
B. The sequence is competing against the opponent IN PARALLEL

Let us say two skilled players playing against each other and both a hand-eye reaction time of exactly 250ms, and their displays have a frame lag of 60 ms. They see each other at the same exact time.
Player1: Render--60ms---stimulus---250ms---Mouse1
Player2: Render--60ms---stimulus---250ms---Mouse1

So they are equally matched, and basically the randomizer that simulates bullet spread will decide the player who dies. 50/50.

Now lets put Player2 on a display with a propagation delay of 59ms.
Player1: Render--60ms---stimulus---250ms---Mouse1
Player2: Render--59ms--stimulus---250ms---Mouse1

Boom. Player2 is the first to fire, meaning his shots are always counted first. If this is a sniper battle that means Player2 wins EVERY time in this scenario. Add bullet spread, and still Player2 wins most of the time.

You might say this is only meaningful in the case of two very closely matched opponents, but this is actually pretty common because the more skilled you get, the closer you are to the human maximum hand-eye response time, therefore the more similar players get as skill increases.

Comment: Re:BASICally my reply is... (Score 2) 259

by Richard Dick Head (#48991147) Attached to: Washington May Count CS As Foreign Language For College Admission
Plus merging computer and soft languages will turn programming from a nerd thing into a gay nerd thing. I don't care how much a nerdy 16 year old would tolerate relearning the basics of today's instructional/non-production-ready grade-school programming tool (e.g. BASIC, Java, etc) for an easy A, he's not going to skip French 101 with 75% girls when comp sci 101 is packed with dudes. I know what choice I made back then (French!)

Comment: Re:Except inflation (Score 1) 226

by Richard Dick Head (#48944917) Attached to: There Is No "You" In a Parallel Universe
Yes it does. Consider the following [preferrably after green refreshments]:

Our universe was birthed as an explosion, and particles expand outward. Yet even if they approach an infinite amount of space between each there will remain an gravitational attraction between all particles that will bring them back together given enough time, and will return to the original configuration before the explosion.

At that point the explosion will recur.

You could plot the progress of those universes superimposed on one another and call it parallel. Which goes well with a mathematical model since the expansion and contraction is inherently and pervasively sinusoidal.

However that isn't a great approach as far as trying to navigate between them. You can't exactly "go back" like you would expect two independent functions, so the idea of what we could accomplish is more nuanced.

You could however consider that such a configuration doesn't result in "infinite" possibilities per se. The particles emerging from the big bang have certain properties, they combine in a certain way, and the major elements of the process are measurable and repeatable to some extent.

So instead if we were to plot it out each successive universe there would be a certain "wobble". Each iteration of the universe would be slightly different. If you know enough about the characteristic frequency of the wobble you could even move "back" and forth, although instead of going "back" you'd simply enter another iteration of the universe that is identical to a historical target.

Really this is the only way time travel is possible. You would have to position yourself to arrive at November 5, 1955 in a future universe identical to the current iteration.

Not exactly what you think of as time travel, but the only possible way it could work. And no, time paradoxes are silly and don't exist in this. If you "go back in time" and kill your grandfather you're only adding an additional harmonic to the characteristic frequency of the wobble of the universal life cycle. Instead of a progression of:

[exist in this universe], [exist in this universe]

You have:

[exist], [don't exist because you came here and killed your grandpa], [exist], [don't exist because you ...],...

And each interaction (or communication) adds an order of magnitude of complication of this harmonic. So the more interuniversal communication happens the harder it gets each time to calculate that "identical universe". In fact we could probably mathematically prove that it impossible to obtain such an identical universe after a certain amount of communication occurs for some meaningless constant which has likely already been surpassed by an infinite amount.

The reason that the communication is important is because if it didn't occur then we would be basically be trapped in a Star Trek-like where time simply loops, and we repeat the same actions over and over again for infinity. The communication/cross-contamination/what have you gives us the ability to pass on progress forward and have a evolving paradigm.

The clothes have no emperor. -- C.A.R. Hoare, commenting on ADA.