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Comment Extreme A La Carte (Score 1) 319

I'd rather pay for just the shows I watch, rather than picking an entire channel. For channels like SyFi (which is about 25% science fiction), I'd be buying 10 shows per week. For channels like The Documentary Channel, it would be more like 2.

The Learning Channel? hahahahahahahaha what learning? Honey Boo Boo taught me nothing.

Comment Sugar, Fat to become Schedule 1 restricted drugs (Score 2, Insightful) 244

Recent studies have researchers concerned that pot use in the under-18 crowd causes cognitive decline. Since pot is a Schedule 1 (most restrictive) substance in the US, I argue sugar and fat must also be put on Schedule 1 since our Oregon friends at OSU have discovered similar effects in youngsters.

Comment Let go and let them (Score 3) 146

Until last month, I managed the 12 devs I had hired (I have 30+ years of dev experience). On my way out the door, 3 of them gave me a 'best manager I've ever had'. No one gave me a thumbs down, at least to my knowledge. My 'secret'? Honesty, kindness, and this one very important thing: I never imposed a decision unless they couldn't come to one themselves, or were going off the rails. Despite my sizable ego, I've found 'letting go' of control, and focusing on guiding the team, rather than telling them what to do, produces one very happy, productive team. And they' introduced ideas and solutions that never would have crossed my mind!

I left after a painful year of my naive boss and certain of his colleagues on the leadership team knocking us off course with their sophomoric meddling. Note to senior leaders: When you have a competent person running your dev team, let him/her do it. Just because you can spell Agile doesn't mean you know what it looks like.

Comment Hire the right people? (Score 3, Informative) 269

Lots of other companies manage to produce a great UI without telemetry. It's pretty sad that a company of Microsoft's depth needs telemetry data to break the management deadlocks that are contributing to the 'designed by committee' feeling of Windows 8. Talent and balls seem to be absent in these decisions.

Comment Punch Cards in College - and Poor Peggy! (Score 1) 230

My college, in 1980, was running a Honeywell Level 2 GCOS mainframe. It had 208k of memory, and could run up to four concurrent tasks. The workstation I'm writing this post on has about 82,000 times the memory as that old beast, which physically approximated a large fridge laying on its side. The removable disk drives were sized like washing machines, had five 14-inch platters, and held 80k.

I took some Cobol courses, using keypunch machines and Hollerith punch cards. When assignments were due, you'd often see students lined up at the card reader, waiting to read in their programs. The first six columns of a punch card for Cobol programs was reserved for an optional sequence number, equivalent to a Line Number today. Nobody filled those in - not even our instructors. If you had to re-order your program, you really wanted to avoid having to re-type cards with new sequence numbers.

However, at the end of the last semester, minutes before the final assignment was due, my fellow student Peggy came running in to the data center with her purse and coat in one hand, and a six-inch deck of Cobol cards in the other, tripped in her haste to the card reader queue, and scattered 2000+ cards across the data center floor. And on the final day of the final semester, we learned why its sometimes good to put sequence numbers on your punch cards.

And btw, nearing the end of each semester, it ALWAYS took 24 hours to get a compile back.

The confusion of a staff member is measured by the length of his memos. -- New York Times, Jan. 20, 1981

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