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Comment: Re:Not a Bolo? (Score 1) 79

by RobertinXinyang (#46439303) Attached to: The Brief Rise and Long Fall of Russia's Robot Tank

The reference was to the Bolo was this on (from Wiipedia) "A Bolo is a fictional type of artificially intelligent superheavy tank. They were first imagined by Keith Laumer, and have since been featured in science fiction novels and short story anthologies by him and others."

I doubt that the person I was responding to was thinking of the Douglas B-18 "Bolo" medium bomber.

Comment: Dont bother (Score 1) 49

by RobertinXinyang (#46425791) Attached to: A Tech Entrepreneur's Guide To Visiting Shenzhen

I live in China and I have compared prices in China with the US. For almost any consumer electronic good, the prices are higher in China. There is a reason that the Chinese go on shopping sprees when they go to the US. The only way you can get prices that beat US prices of to get something several generations old or accept significantly lower quality. It does not matter if the product is made in China, it is more expensive in China.

It is often cheaper to purchase made in China goods online and have them shipped to China.

Comment: Re:Better question, before or after algebra (Score 1) 313

by RobertinXinyang (#46372991) Attached to: Should programming be a required curriculum in public schools?

I disagree. Many people understand the concept of variables long before their introduction to Algebra.

I remember Algebra being a course about factoring and moving variables within the equation. I am not going to deny that the skills gained in these exercises are useful; but, they should not be a barrier.

I remember being in High School and not being permitted to take a computer class because I was not in Calculus. This didn't motivate me to study Calculus; further, computer classes should not be used as a carrot for some other part of the curriculum. They should be used through the educational process where appropriate (I really cannot believe we are going back to this discussion after thirty years).

Comment: Re:Good (Score 1) 304

by RobertinXinyang (#46339929) Attached to: Oklahoma Schools Required To Teach Students Personal Finance

No, there was working at various jobs along the way. First, after my BA I returned to the industry I had been in, of course I had a BA a that point instead of just a Community College technical certificate, so I was paid less than I had been making before.

Then I did some "professional" jobs that paid slightly more; but are much less secure. After getting laid off twice I returned to the original plan and finished my MBA. Total process, about ten years.

I did have a clear plan when I started the process. I would still love to do it. However, I now realize the jobs are just not there. I wanted to be a teacher (which is why I am in China, I teach at, and direct, a small high-school). I chose the MBA because after talking to community college instructors and hiring personnel I saw the MBA as being the most versatile. I wanted to teach at the community college level and an MBA can teach in several departments.

Every summer I do come back to the states to apply for jobs; but the only jobs available pay too low (and yes, it kills my years savings each time). In the last two years the only offers I have gotten were as a telemarketer ($10/hr), an entry level security guard and a dishwasher (both about 9/hr). Yes, I spend my spare time filling out applications, one is open on my computer in another tab right now. One problem with applying in America is that American employers will not skype interview. As such an applicant must have the money, and time, to travel to the interview and often to several other pre-offer meetings or activities. That puts a lot of jobs out of my price-range.

Comment: Re:Mismanagement, you say... (Score 1) 92

And those State Owned Enterprises create yet another powerful faction in the government that make it even harder to direct the country. The SOEs have their own agendas that often differ from that of the central party leadership.

Some online sources to make a habit of reading, that will improve your understanding of the real issues in China are, of course, The Economist and China daily; but I would add http://english.caixin.com/ I will add that I have years of China experience that I suspect you lack. I see many efforts to grasp power, such as the current anti-corruption campaign. It looks monolithic form the outside; but, unlike Americans and western Europeans, the Chinese have no culture of being law abiding. They place great value on appearing to be proper. But, appearances and reality are very different, it is a subtle difference that I really did not internalize until several years of China watching..

Comment: Re:Mismanagement, you say... (Score -1, Flamebait) 92

What you forget is that no one wanted it.

Unlike in the US, n China the central government has very little control. As such it had no real way to "push" an OS.

Second, red-flag had very little going for it. It was no cheaper, in fact, when you consider training costs, the cost is higher then XP, which is free in China. Keep in mind, you are in a culture with no meaningful understanding of free other than free beer. Linux is harder to use and there is less (user) software. Linux needs to be configured to individual machines instead of simply 'ghosting' a copy onto a drive and pluging it in as is done with XP (no, it doesn't work well; but it does work).

The only real argument for Linux, to users, is that it is free; but, in China all software is free (just search on baidu). In worst case I can spend real money at a legitimate market and get a copy of XP or office for about $2 USD. The super configuration ability of Linux really isn't true; and where it is all it means is "easy to break and near impossible to ever get working in the first place." We have one guy here in the office using Linux (Ubuntu) but he is using it because his hobby is tinkering with his OS. I gave it a solid two week try; but, i was loosing too much productivity and had to stop once the work load picked back up.

Oh, and the most popular IM program in China QQ does not work on Linux (yes, I know Tencent says it works; but it doesn't and no one can make it work. The instructions on the web are for old versions and no longer work).

Comment: Re:What a Joke (Score 2) 92

Yes, I have heard of QQ, in fact, it is running on my computer right now. I use it for daily chat with, and to pass files to, co-workers. However, I only ever saw red flag linux once. I was in a shop in Xian and I happened to see ti. i was looking at it because I was so surprised to actually see red flag.

A salesman came over and the first thing he said was "If you buy it we will put windows on it for you." In over eight years in China, that was the only time I ever saw red flag. Everyone uses pirated copies of XP other then the people with Apple. Apple is well liked because of the reality that the Apple has a, near assured, minimum level of quality; whereas the XP boxes are often several generations behind and any part that could be swapped out for something cheaper has been. However, i am not going to pretend that Apple is even near common; but it is seen, unlike red flag.

Comment: Re:Apple doesn't take gaming on computers seriousl (Score 1) 281

by RobertinXinyang (#46107239) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Is Linux Set To Be PC Gaming's Number Two Platform?

I am a bit of an apple fan, all the way back to using Apple IIs' in High School, and I have to say it, Macs are no good for gaming. Yes, I know there are a few games; but, nothing near the PC quantity.

I do not see that as a big problem, I probably should be reading a book rather than playing a game anyways; and, there are enough games, just not as many. It is just that, contrary to the popular misconception, the apple is much more of a business computer than the PC. No, I am not one of the "rich elite" I am embarrassed to say what I earn, other than I know I would make more if I went back to truck driving. I am also not an overly artsy type; I hold an MBA, not an MFA.

I have to agree with others, the Mac is a well built business machine, if you want to play games, get a pc or a console.

Comment: This used to be done in H.S Shops in the evenings (Score 2) 90

by RobertinXinyang (#46088055) Attached to: Public Libraries Tinker With Offering Makerspaces

In the past High Schools made shop space available in the evenings for evening adult "classes." Classes meant you got access to the shop and whatever advice the shop teachers could give for your project.

In the 70s' my father turned a Fiat 500 into an electric car at Arroyo HS at the after school shop sessions. It involved ganging several motors and buildings a mount, and at the time a relay-relay logic controller. I knew people who spent the evenings at the HS wood shop making furniture.

The idea of a public tinkering space is not new. Further, it creates an innovative atmosphere as groups of tinkering minded people gather together.

[Crash programs] fail because they are based on the theory that, with nine women pregnant, you can get a baby a month. -- Wernher von Braun

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