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Comment: Time to do what they ask (Score 5, Insightful) 364

by Serif (#44297469) Attached to: HBO Asks Google To Take Down "Infringing" VLC Media Player

I seen from TFA that HBO at one point requested their own website to be removed. If I was Google I'd be paying extra special attention to requests for Mega Corp A to take down Mega Corp B's website (or even better their own), and react quickly. Of course I might be a little slower in dealing with the subsequent undo requests whilst watching the ensuing entertainment.

Comment: Time to call people to account (Score 1) 239

by Serif (#44223465) Attached to: Sent To Jail Because of a Software Bug

Now the problem is shown to exist and has lead to serious consequences, it's time to call to account the experts that testified in court that such a problem was impossible, and similarly to call to account the managers that flatly denied there was a problem. At the very least any future announcement on a similar subject that they care to make should trigger the question if they are as certain now as they were when they pronounced on this case.

Comment: Re:Consider a pencil (Score 1) 712

by Serif (#41840195) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: The Search For the Ultimate Engineer's Pen

Another vote for the Graph Gear here. I managed to stupidly break one a couple of years back so am on my second with a third spare one in my desk if I need it. Coming from a maths background I've always favoured pencils, only using ink if required. I think it might be the P in the INTP personality type coming through. ;)

Comment: Re:sexism (Score 1) 687

by Serif (#40244593) Attached to: A Day In the Life of a "Booth Babe"

This is why I don't like the whole booth babe thing. If you regularly attend conferences that use them, then it's easy to fall into the mindset of thinking that all attractive, young women present are there purely for decoration and, on the rare instance where a tech company has a woman engineer on board, barging past them to speak to one of their male colleagues.

Comment: An interesting approach (Score 3, Interesting) 687

by Serif (#40243215) Attached to: A Day In the Life of a "Booth Babe"

I remember reading this article by a guy who wants to discourage the use of booth babes. Here's one of the suggestions that appealed to me:

The Tactics: Actually, this part is pretty simple. When the first person at a booth approaches you, treat him or her exactly the same way you would a sales or implementation engineer. Ask questions regarding the technology. Ask about planned life cycles of the software, on use counts, and other things. Treat them exactly as you would an equal.

If this person is a booth babe (or a clueless marketing droid), they will inevitably hand you off to the lead technical (or sales) person at the booth. Here comes the important part: Demand to know why they wasted your time with manning the booth with clueless people. Don't discuss sales or tech with this person (which is what they will desperately want to do at this point). Ask why their company wastes everyone's time and their investors' money using people who provide no value. Tell them that you will not be doing business with them, regardless of their technology, because you believe that any company that needs to hide behind tricks, gimmicks, and sex appeal, can not offer you any value. Point out that a great number of their competitors don't need to use flimflam to sell their wares. Then walk away.

Comment: Re:We are being left behind (Score 1) 580

by Serif (#39968251) Attached to: Only 22% of California 8th Graders Pass National Science Test

Not just a US problem; I've been seeing the same trends in the UK for the last twenty years. Still, on the bright side it means I'll probably have a job for as long as I want one, so....

Remember kiddies, math is hard! Go off and do something more fun and easier instead with plenty of time for parties and shopping. Everyone knows the world needs more people with media studies and art appreciation diplomas. That's the ticket.

Center meeting at 4pm in 2C-543.

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