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Comment: Gitmo(tm) brought to you by the GOP (Score 1) 336

by Tenebrousedge (#49522245) Attached to: Update: No Personhood for Chimps Yet

Why bother lying about Gitmo? I mean, yes, it's useful as an extraterritorial prison, but attributing its continued existence to Obama is bizarrely counterfactual.

Obama issued orders to close Gitmo in 2009. Congress fought back with appropriations bills. The GOP has been and continues to be hugely critical and combative with Obama's attempts to close the detention camp. Romney was openly supportive of it, and a Republican Senator has said the Gitmo detainees can "rot in hell". Are you just completely ignorant of everything that has happened until this point, or are you arguing the President should just ignore the law, Congress, Republicans, and 53% of the country and close it anyway?

Comment: Re:DIR 868L (Score 1) 107

by Tenebrousedge (#49514909) Attached to: D-Link Apologizes For Router Security

Ironically, the 868L is listed as having the second-highest throughput on the page you linked. It's very strange that mine isn't working correctly. Maybe alternate firmware will help things. The desktop and the ISP-supplied Actiontec get 890 Mbps on, and it's not like PPPoE is computationally expensive. Thanks for the link, it was informative, depressing, and hope-inspiring all at the same time.

Comment: DIR 868L (Score 1) 107

by Tenebrousedge (#49511391) Attached to: D-Link Apologizes For Router Security

I have a DIR-868L, it was cheap(-ish) and reviews suggested it had good (unobstructed) wireless speeds. That may well be the case, but unfortunately it has a more serious flaw, only being able to handle about 350 Mbps of my gigabit connection. I'm pretty sure the hardware is capable, but the firmware is crippled. I've already RMA'd one and got another back with the same symptoms. Apparently D-link engineers are trying to reproduce this issue, but I don't really expect them to do anything about it.

So, I'm looking for a little advice here on one or more of the following topics:

  • * Choice of Alternate Firmware
  • * Firmware Installation Tips
  • * Better Gigabit Routers

Additionally, although too long for a bullet point, I'm interested in the viability of simply getting a wireless adapter for my desktop and just using that as the router. The internet is supplied as a simple PPPoE / CAT6 connection, so it's not exactly hard to set up (how D-Link could screw this up would be mystifying but for things like TFA). There are a handful of other devices on the WLAN but wireless throughput is not really a huge concern; I don't yet have any 802.11ac devices so I'm not going to get full speeds to them in any circumstances.

Your sage advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance.

Comment: Git Internals (Score 2) 203

by Tenebrousedge (#49419077) Attached to: 10 Years of Git: An Interview With Linus Torvalds

Why should I have to understand internal data structures in order to use a piece of software?

Because you're not used to thinking about source code the way Git thinks about source code. Git is very much like a database from a usability standpoint, and you will probably get into bad trouble trying to use either without understanding both the problem that they are trying to solve and the implementation. If you do read about these things, you will understand that git's internals make sense, the decisions it makes are logical, and the user interface is (mostly) transparent and simple. Revisions are harder to manipulate than a Word document, though there are plenty of ways to manage them that are conceptually simpler. Git however was made to manage them efficiently. More specifically, it was designed to be efficient for Linus Torvald's workflow. That happens to be very effective for a large number of other software projects, and no worse than any other solution for many others. There are other workflows for which other RCS systems are better (particularly when working with binary files). If you don't need git's features, by all means use something else. However, your decision to use it or not should probably be informed by knowledge of what exactly it does and why: again, this is no different than choosing a database.

Comment: Re:Open Plumbing? (Score 1) 303

by Tenebrousedge (#49407467) Attached to: Microsoft Engineer: Open Source Windows Is 'Definitely Possible'

It's not theoretically impossible, it's actually impossible. Kernel features equivalent to cgroups do not exist on other kernels. BSD jails are not remotely the same thing. If you can demonstrate otherwise, you'll begin to have a valid point, but you'll still have the question of whether it is practical (your example is too trivial to demonstrate this) and whether anyone actually wants systemd on other platforms.

If you're just going to spout uselessly vague aphorisms though, save yourself the effort of typing a response.

Comment: Re:Open Plumbing? (Score 1) 303

Polemic, I will grant you. I feel you are being extremely vocal and equally dishonest in your criticism of systemd.

Non-portable stuff happens all the time and doesn't hurt anything, and in the long run all software is obsolete—even BSD. Systemd is a service management framework that depends on Linux-specific kernel features. I will grant you that in an ideal world as much of the OS as possible should be system-agnostic, however this is not an ideal world. For one thing, functional equivalents do not exist in other kernels, so portability is a moot point. Also, it would probably be a bigger change for other OSes than just process management; I'm not sure BSD is interested.

SysV init was portable because it was trivial. It was also deeply (but subtly) flawed. You could be very nearly sure that a process started or stopped when it should, but pidfiles have always been a bad hack around missing kernel functionality. Which do you want, working process management or BSD compatibility?

Comment: Open Plumbing? (Score 1) 303

You're mischaracterizing his remarks. He's not going to try to find functional equivalents for cgroups on other kernels. Please explain the problem with that, and note that while "I would like all kernels to have the same (or equivalent) feature sets" is a problem, it is mostly your own mental problem. Also, a justification of why an OS plumbing layer should be OS-independent would be nice.

Comment: Browsers and Web Developers (Score 2) 122

by Tenebrousedge (#49380493) Attached to: Microsoft Rolls Out Project Spartan With New Windows 10 Build

Users may or may not want stable software. Developers want to be able to use new CSS features. As for the Firefox developers, I'm not sure what their UI goals are, but presumably they have them. That's two strikes against stability.

I suspect you have no idea how difficult it is to support older browsers, as a web developer. The development workflow usually goes like this: first, you code to the spec, and test in a browser that reproduces the specification well. Then you start trying to find out why it doesn't render correctly in Internet Explorer. For each incompatibility, you have to add a workaround. Then continue this process for as many old browser versions as your client has money for.

It is not free to continue supporting old browsers. It's usually shockingly expensive, frustrating, and very limiting for the developer. If you don't like something about your browser, please become involved in its development — file a bug report if nothing else. Please do not use old, incompatible, insecure browsers.

However, if you ever want to induce a mental meltdown in a web developer, tell them their new job is making sure all the sites are IE6 compatible. Even just saying "IE6" a few times can cause convulsions in susceptible developers. I'm not brave enough to try the same trick with earlier IE versions though: Cthulhu alone knows what kind of eldritch horror might be summoned.

Comment: Re:Paranoia Strikes Deep (Score 1) 112

Do regale me with your interpretation of what "appeal to emotion" means. I didn't address most of what you wrote, you're right. You don't really have a clue what you're writing about and I would rather have you shut up (or at least tone down the paranoia) instead of taking the time to educate you. It's not your field, you don't understand what is happening or why, it's better if you just stick to your expertise.

If there is one point of confusion that I do want to clear up, it would be that systemd is not a simple replacement for init, and was never intended to be. Or, if you rather, the job of init was not simple and it failed spectacularly to accomplish it. With SysV init, there was no effective service management. You could start and restart services, but imperfectly, and I don't know a nice way to talk about double-forking and writing to a pidfile. That it works most of the time does not mean that it's not deeply flawed.

The fundamental conflict here is between old-school UNIX admins who think that the OS just exists to launch user-defined scripts, and the requirements of a modern OS. No one is trying to say that having scripting access to the OS is not useful, although you Windows users seem to do without it, but the interpreter is not the OS, and Bash makes a shitty replacement for C. Even OpenRC recognizes this. It's kinda mystifying that you've jumped on the opposite bandwagon; Bash scripting is about as useful to you and your customers as tits on a boar. Can you imagine if the solution to some Windows issue was to fire up a command-line text editor and edit an init script?

Linux needs to grow up, and so do systemd detractors. Doing things in Bash is the UNIX way, but so is cleaning those scripts up and rewriting them in C. Try some Bash scripting on for size if you think you disagree, and don't forget to double fork and write that pidfile!

The NSA comments are baseless ad hominem. You're better than that.

P.S. By the way, I think I've asked before, but where is your store located? Our disagreements aside, it'd be nice to know if I were ever in the area to be able to pay my respects.

Comment: Paranoia Strikes Deep (Score 1) 112

You don't know anything about what you're talking about, per the usual. It looks like you've been listening to gweihir too much. There were at least two other projects looking to replace init, and half a dozen more providing some form of process tracking. Lumping two things that you hate and fear together must feel good, but systemd's development and adoptation has been a public process, and both systemd and pulseaudio offer important technical improvements (that apparently you don't understand). I realize all you do here is go off on ill-informed rants, but this one is only tangentially connected to reality; you might want to dial back the frothing a bit. I mean, you don't even use Linux — what's it to you?

P.S. That bit about "by the time he's done the kernel will be just a VM running on top of systemd!" was hyperbole, right? Because otherwise it's so far beyond crazy that it makes me wonder if you know what those words mean.

Comment: CS is only practical by accident, but that's okay (Score 1) 298

by Tenebrousedge (#49357453) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Makes Some Code Particularly Good?

Computer Science is [a] a misnomer, and [b] more properly a subset of mathematics. I might characterize it more as giving you tools to reason about code rather than teaching coding practices. It is not generally meant to be a practical education. There is always time to learn the practical stuff, and the practical stuff changes often enough that it's not necessarily worth teaching.

I'm in the opposite camp: I'm self taught, and know a bunch about deployment and the intricacies of source control, and refactoring, but very little about, oh, algorithmic complexity or parser/compiler design. The theoretical stuff isn't quite as useful on the day-to-day as the practical knowledge, but it's much more useful when trying to learn new things. Similar to how you don't necessarily need music theory to play guitar but if you want to transpose a piece of music or pick up a new instrument, it would be pretty useful. Composing a piece of music might be more like writing a compiler. In both cases you'd be relying heavily on theory.

If you thought you were signing up to learn how to be a programmer, you've made a mistake, but it's not so bad as you think. The stuff you're learning is useful, even if it doesn't seem like it. I feel like I could stand to know quite a bit more about it myself. And the lesson is, that you need both parts, and you'll miss whatever you don't have, but you miss the practical stuff all the time, and the theoretical stuff only when it's really, really important.

Comment: Linux and Windows (Score 1) 178

by Tenebrousedge (#49322395) Attached to: Gaming On Linux With Newest AMD Catalyst Driver Remains Slow

It's actually okay if 99% of consumers don't care. They are okay with the most basic computing devices. It's cool if you don't think that Linux's features are worthwhile too, but the thing is, if you're already a programmer then having complete control, scripting access, and the source code to your OS is quite useful. Clearly Windows does some things that Linux does not, but that does not mean that each is not useful in its own sphere.

Microsoft pretty much does suck though. Windows as an OS is maybe not quite as good as its software ecosystem, although it does have certain advantages. Microsoft managed to completely overhaul its sound and color rendering systems for Vista without any problems, whereas the contemporaneous roll-out of Pulseaudio is shall we say not remembered fondly. Now if they'd stop fucking up their UI they might end up with a half-decent system.

I think proponents of both systems should be fairer to the other camp. Criticism should not involve denigrating the other party. And especially in this particular rivalry, I feel like the days of hostility should be behind us. I don't think the systems are converging per se, but I think we've passed the point where either party is out to destroy the other, and developers of both systems are learning from each other.

Comment: Costa Rica (Score 0) 317

(I think my previous comment was eaten by /.'s tubes. If this ends up being a re-post, I apologize, feel free to mod it to oblivion)

I lived in Costa Rica for a couple years, most recently about eight months ago. They have a phrase, "pura vida" which could maybe be translated as "the good life", but it's used as a greeting and farewell phrase as well. It's also used as an answer to, "How are you doing?" On the one hand, it seems remarkable that they would be happier than anyone else; broadly speaking I expect people to have the same general experiences anywhere. On the other hand, I spent a few months in Panama and then returned to CR for a holiday, and when I picked up a pizza that I had ordered, the guy said "Have a nice day," that is, "pura vida". And he meant it sincerely. At that moment, the difference in attitude was shocking; I had been used to Panamanians (although I prefer the sobriquet Panamaniacs :P) basically looking at me as a business opportunity at best.

The average Costa Rican does not have a computer, although cell phones are relatively common. Computers are quite expensive, enough to make an import business profitable, but very few people can afford one. There is a 100% import duty on cars, so those are expensive too. They also do a license plate restriction on driving, at least in San Jose. Most have electricity and relatively clean water, although they do have an issue with dumping raw sewage into almost all of the rivers. I wish I could more effectively describe the impoverished living conditions; if you have any specific questions please feel free to ask.

On the other hand, people sure don't care about working hard there. My friends in San Jose tell me that the weekend starts on Thursday, and everyone including the boss is late on Fridays and Mondays. There were as I recall a couple clubs where you paid a $10 cover and drinks were free. If there was paperwork that needed to be processed by the government, let's just say the Vogons would be proud of the Tico bureaucracy. If you needed to have your car repaired by a certain date, the Ticos will of course be delighted to tell you that it will be ready then, but no amount of inducement or cajoling will actually make it ready by a given date. Things happen when they happen, and no one is in a hurry to get anything done or to go anywhere â" they call it operating on "Tico time".

However, all that said, I'm a little skeptical of the article. Most of Costa Rica is really rural, and I would be surprised if the national power grid actually extended to all corners of the country. I don't think that the average Tico really cares about environmentalism; to some degree it's a first world problem. The Costa Rican government on the other hand knows that the country basically has no industries; the farming isn't great and I believe tourism is the biggest part of the economy. Costa Rica doesn't have all that much to tour, either: there are no mayan or aztec ruins, and almost nothing in the way of indigenous culture. I heard something about painted oxcarts being a thing, but never saw one. Contrast with Panama's amazing diablo rojos (the buses or the costumes []). So some while back they hit upon the idea to market themselves as a destination for "eco-tourism", which involves convincing the rest of the world that they have some sort of unique level of biodiversity. It may even be true. However, they really need to promote the image of being green and eco-friendly regardless of the truth.

If I could make a decent living there it'd be hard not to go back, even though the world is full of things I have never seen before. Whether or not the Ticos are the happiest people, I think that I can safely say that happiness for me is two-for-one mango daiquiris at the Lazy Mon. Pura Vida!

As the trials of life continue to take their toll, remember that there is always a future in Computer Maintenance. -- National Lampoon, "Deteriorata"