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Comment: eight hours isn't very long (Score 3, Interesting) 184

by SimonInOz (#46744819) Attached to: First Glow-In-the-Dark Road Debuts In Netherlands

I used to live in the Netherlands, and I can confirm winters are cold and dark. Days are not very bright either. So an eight hour life (yes, I RTFA) for these very cool glowing roads is not going to cut it - nights comprise 16 hours of darkness in midwinter.
It should work well in the summer, when days are brighter and nights shorter.

But I think a backup is required, destroying the whole point.

But it does look very cool, doesn't it?

Comment: Re:risk aversion (Score 1) 112

by SimonInOz (#46559615) Attached to: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Controls Learning Speed

>> refactor the law, its bloated, confusing and unmaintainable ... what? ...

Or did you mean

refactor the law, it's bloated, confusing and unmaintainable.

Or possible

Refactor the law, it's bloated, confusing and unmaintainable.

Dammit, you're supposed to be a geek. Learn the grammar.

And you are right, I haven't had my coffee yet.

Comment: Re:I've been learning new things for 30 years (Score 1) 306

by SimonInOz (#46514579) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Can an Old Programmer Learn New Tricks?

I wrote my first bit of code in 1970, in FORTRAN, and now, at 59, I still like coding. It's not where the money is, so I mainly do architecture, but coding is much more fun.

Is it hard to learn the new stuff? Yeah, it is. Definitely harder. The new frameworks tend to be pretty huge, and rely on lots of fairly random assumptions - "convention over configuration". You need to pick up a big heap of conventions, which is painful.

On the other hand, the basic structures still shine out. Async here, sync there, message there, update there, abstract everywhere ... It's easy to miss the fact that years of programming have nailed the basics - probably when you write code in a language you are familiar with, it tends to work. Usually fist time.

But yes, learning by doing is the best way. Try it, you'll like it.

Bat damn, there are a lot of frameworks these days.

Comment: Re:I like the open plan (Score 1) 314

by SimonInOz (#46051901) Attached to: Office Space: TV Documentary Looks At the Dreadful Open Office

Ha - our multimillionaire bosses definitely do not sit amongst the cube farms in the bank where I work.
No, and they have made it far worse - try "Activity Based Working". You are supposed to change locations depending on your activity. Sounds ok, but this is what actually happens:
You come in and get your laptop from your tiny locker. Then you search for a desk. There aren't enough desks, so if you are late, you will search for a long, long time.
Ok, you've found a desk. You plug in your laptop - with luck it'll connect to the screen , network and keyboard. You try and do some work amidst the clamour.
And now it's time to talk to Jack ... but where IS Jack. You don't know. So you spend half the day wandering about trying to find people, and advising other wandering lost souls where someone might be. (No, we don't have a mapping system. I proposed and developed one 2 years ago, but they won't install it ... I don't understand).
If you have to leave your desk for a while you are encouraged to vacate it, but you don't because then you won't find a desk at all.

I don't know who dreams up this stuff - obviously extroverts, but apart from that - are they sadists? What is the point? Could anybody in their right mind believe this would be an improvement on the miserable previous cube farm.

Comment: Re:Wrong side (Score 1) 726

You know it's funny the way the USA considers itself a) great, b) rich, and c) free.

Some people are rich. Most are not. Many countries are richer, especially at median wealth.
Most people struggle from day to day, desperately trying to stay employed - and keep their health benefits. Too scared to move jobs and actually give that flexibility so much desired by the right wing ... er, what?
And free? Really? A country that imprisons more of its citizens than anywhere else, starts more wars than anyone else, and bullies other countries in a most unpleasant fashion (FATCA, anyone?). Not mention the institutionalised bribery that seems the only reason for the existence of Washington.

So, so far away from the high ideals in that brilliant document, the US Constitution. ... The "Patriot" Act .. OMG. Washington must be spinning in his grave.
It seems to be a country controlled by fear, with an ever more oppressive set of laws, and a growing (but small) group of mega rich who have little concern for the average Joe.

So sad. I'm glad I don't live there.

So come on Americans - stop living in fear. Stop pushing the world about, start educating your people, start keeping them healthy and educated.
And deliver on those great ideals you started with.

Comment: Re:Here's to Kernels (Score 2, Interesting) 213

by SimonInOz (#44397575) Attached to: Windows NT Turns 20

Legal drinking age is 18 in Finland (and much of the civilised world, actually. USA is kinda weird. Mind you, allowing driving and drinking at the same time, does that sound like a good idea? Maybe they are right. No, surely not).

No, wait, Linux first release was 1991, that makes it, um, 22. What the heck is wrong with your arithmetic? What do they teach at school these days? Bah. Get off my lawn. (And yes, I did program PDP 11s back in the day. Why do you ask?)

Never put off till run-time what you can do at compile-time. -- D. Gries