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Comment: Re:Missing data point. (Score 1) 315

by TheRaven64 (#49543949) Attached to: Median Age At Google Is 29, Says Age Discrimination Lawsuit
If you think architecture doesn't change much over time, then you haven't been paying attention to architecture. Lots of data structures from 10-15 years ago suck on modern hardware because of changes in the relative costs of cache and branch predictor misses, and that's just on a single machine. When you get into distributed systems then the relative speeds of networks and local storage have changed dramatically.

Comment: Re:That shouldn't surprise anyone (Score 1) 315

by TheRaven64 (#49543913) Attached to: Median Age At Google Is 29, Says Age Discrimination Lawsuit

There's one more reason, which is that there are sometimes good reasons for writing your own sort routine. Specifically, if you have data that has a known distribution that lets you beat a comparison sort. One of the questions I was asked in a Google interview was along these lines. The point was not to see how well I could write code on a whiteboard or reproduce an algorithm from a textbook, it was to see if I could understand that the problem wasn't the same as 'sort arbitrary data', see if I could extract what properties of the problem made it amenable to optimisation, and see what tools I had for approaching that kind of optimisation.

And sometimes it's not about knowing if you can reproduce an algorithm, but about knowing whether you understand the limitations of a particular approach. Do you understand when that off-the-shelf quicksort library would do a terrible job on certain input data? In one interview, I discovered that my interviewer didn't know about hopscotch hash tables, but did know about cuckoo hashing, so we ended up with a discussion about what the overheads of the two approaches are and when either would be better.

Comment: Re: Google: Select jurors who understand stats. (Score 1) 315

by TheRaven64 (#49543799) Attached to: Median Age At Google Is 29, Says Age Discrimination Lawsuit

People should be hired based on who is best for the job. Period.

If you have a mechanism for identifying, up front, who is best for a job requiring creativity and technical skill and is not subject to subconscious biases by interviewers then please let the rest of us know. I know a lot of companies that would be able to save huge amounts of money by replacing their hiring mechanisms with such a technique.

Comment: Re: What difference (Score 1) 186

by TheRaven64 (#49534951) Attached to: House Bill Slashes Research Critical To Cybersecurity
Banning running my own mail server for personal use? No. Banning a company running their own mail server? No. A company banning using my private email for company business? Sure, I'd be happy with that. The government banning government employees from using their personal email (or any third-party email provider) for government business? Absolutely!

Comment: Re:No cuts are ever possible (Score 1) 186

by TheRaven64 (#49534945) Attached to: House Bill Slashes Research Critical To Cybersecurity

a) it goes Mach 1.6, and b) it's virtually impossible to detect via RADR. If both a) and b) are true it's impossible to take out with missiles (which require a target of some sort before you can fire them)

Two things. First, Mach 1.6 is not that fast relative to the speed of air-to-air missiles. Sidewinders (from 1956) travel at Mach 2.5, modern AAMs exceed Mach 4. Second, RADAR is not the only way of targeting missiles. Modern anti-aircraft weapons use a combination of RADAR, IR, and acoustic targeting. The kinds of jet engines that can get you to Mach 1.6 basically paint an enormous IR arrow in the sky with the tip at your aircraft. This was old tech a decade ago.

This will, in theory, make every other combat aircraft anyone has ever designed obsolete.

No, they're going to be made obsolete by cheap semi-autonomous drones that can be launched en mass from aircraft carriers and can handle 20G turns for evasion, which gives them a massive advantage against missiles, which have very limited turning abilities.

Comment: Re:It's hard to credit the behavioural science cla (Score 1) 186

by TheRaven64 (#49534917) Attached to: House Bill Slashes Research Critical To Cybersecurity

It's hard to credit the behavioural science claim.

Especially as studies of deception, phishing, online fraud, and so on are often conducted by social scientists in computer science departments with funding that is nominally directed towards computer science. Anyone who is actually working on these areas is likely to be either in a computer science department or in an interdisciplinary team working with computer scientists, so will not have a problem getting funding.

Comment: Re:We can learn from this (Score 1) 163

The US political funding rules allow any organisation to buy 'issue' adverts that aren't specifically pushing a single candidate, with no limits. Why not use this in the next election to run prime-time ads listing exactly which corporate interests each candidate has taken bribes from and their amounts, and the legislation that it bought. If taking money from certain organisations starts costing more votes than it buys, then politicians will be a bit less eager to take it...

Comment: Re:The UK Government Are Massively Out Of Touch (Score 3, Insightful) 189

by TheRaven64 (#49509991) Attached to: Assange Talk Spurs UK Judges To Boycott Legal Conference
He is wanted in the UK for violating bail. Judges should only interact with criminals in the court where everything said is a matter of public record (and subject to strict accounting). Allowing judges to talk to criminals in other settings sounds like a good recipe for legalised bribery.

Comment: Re:Really (Score 1) 189

by TheRaven64 (#49509451) Attached to: Assange Talk Spurs UK Judges To Boycott Legal Conference

the US is a different matter entirely that would need a court's approval, and that court would be the one in Sweden, not the UK

Are you sure about that? Doesn't the extradition treaty between Sweden and the UK explicitly prevent extraditing people who have already been extradited? Sweden would have to deport him before he could be subject to further extradition requests.

Comment: Re:What about "I'm happy to pay income tax?" (Score 1) 109

by TheRaven64 (#49508987) Attached to: For the most recent tax year ...
Happy seems a bit of an overstatement. I'd love to pay less tax. I'd also love to have free beer from my local, but in both cases I think I'm getting pretty good value for money and I'd rather taxes went up a little than have a reduction in public services. We've got an election coming up in the next few weeks, so we'll see what happens...

Comment: Re:Precalculated (Score 1) 109

by TheRaven64 (#49508857) Attached to: For the most recent tax year ...
Seems a bit stupid. If I were running Intuit, I'd lobby in favour of such systems... and point out that my company could provide them for a very good price to any jurisdiction whose representatives want to be taken out for a nice game of golf / dinner / whatever. It's much easier to sell a very expensive system to few governments than to sell a cheap system to a few million individuals.

The price one pays for pursuing any profession, or calling, is an intimate knowledge of its ugly side. -- James Baldwin

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