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Comment: Re:MIssing Option ? (Score 1) 164

by TheRaven64 (#49710395) Attached to: I spent Mother's Day this year ...

Celebrating the person who brought you into the world,

Some of us are lucky enough to have parents who made a conscious decision to have children, worked out what it would cost them, understood that it was a responsibility and a commitment, and decided that the costs were worth it. Some people have parents who fucked and forgot the pill (or whatever) and decided that keeping the child was the path of least resistance. For those of us in the first category, one day a year per parent is nowhere near enough - we owe our parents a lot for the advantages that we had early on that let us succeed later in life. For people at the opposite extreme, even one day can seem like an insult.

wiped your ass for you and taught you right from wrong, for one day per year,

You don't need to do any of that to qualify as a mother, you just need to make it to childbirth. If you're in the first category that I described, then please do remember to appreciate your parents, but please also remember that those advantages that you're thanking your parents for giving you (teaching you right from wrong, as you say, and hopefully teaching you to value education and how to be happy) are not universal.

Remember, occasionally, just how lucky you are. If you're born in an industrialised society, in a stable family, with supportive parents, then that gives you a huge advantage in life.

Comment: Re:Couldn't care less. (Score 1) 239

by TheRaven64 (#49710319) Attached to: How Windows 10 Performs On a 12-inch MacBook

Tried that but wasn't able to get something useful from "cat /proc/cpuinfo".

I had exactly that experience! Though mine was on Linux and was one of the things that pushed me to *BSD. An unstable text-based format that varies between architectures and between kernel versions turns out to be a piss-poor way of getting information from the kernel.

Comment: Re:Affirmative Action (Score 2) 528

by TheRaven64 (#49710163) Attached to: Harvard Hit With Racial Bias Complaint
I can't speak for other universities, but we (Cambridge) publish undergraduate admissions statistics (though the 2013 figures are the latest published so far, I think 2014 is out soon). If you look on pages 13 and 14, you'll see the gender ratios for applications and acceptances. 8 subjects have more female applicants than male, 7 have more women accepted than men. 18 have more men apply than women, 19 accept more men than women. In total, 54.4% of the applicants and 53.1% of acceptances are men. I'd hardly call that underrepresentation. You are right that the figures look slightly different if you exclude STEM. For Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences, 43.8% of applicants and 42.6% of acceptances are men. White men and women make up 74.7% of our applicants and 75.6% of our intake. It's pretty hard to argue that white people are under-represented here.

If you look at other top-10 universities in the world, you will see a fairly similar picture. A big part of our admission training is getting interviewers to understand their subconscious biases (usually this means 'people like me', although the aspects of 'like me' that they think are important are quite varied). There's no affirmative action or direct equivalent (the closest thing is a set of targets for state school applicants, which we usually meet).

Comment: Re:Affirmative Action (Score 1) 528

by TheRaven64 (#49710103) Attached to: Harvard Hit With Racial Bias Complaint

Though I agree with the spirit of what you are saying, the term "reverse discrimination" is a misnomer at best and discriminatory at worst — because it implies, that discriminations are or can be different

The idea of reverse discrimination is to correct for unconscious biases. The end result is intended to be the result that you'd get if you had a really unbiased person making the judgement (which doesn't exist in the real world).

Comment: Re:Common sense prevails! (Only Partially!) (Score 1) 544

by TheRaven64 (#49696559) Attached to: California Senate Approves School Vaccine Bill

I'm also fairly certain the overall research/trial time for military vaccines is shorter than civilian ones

I wonder how improvements in logistics and remotely operated weapons systems change the need for this. The danger of having everyone on a base be incapacitated by illness while surrounded by a hostile enemy was huge 50 years ago and would easily outweigh possible dangers from side effects of a less-tested vaccine. Now, it's far easier to have drone patrols protecting a quarantined base and deliver men and equipment from reserves far away to fill the gaps in an overall strategy.

Comment: Re:wtf (Score 1) 54

It's hard to translate miles into actual value. 30K United miles + fees buys you a transatlantic flight. When I was looking a couple of weeks ago, it was the same going from LHR to EWR or SFO, with $188 for the UK leg and about $6 in the other direction (UK airport taxes are pretty huge). The round trip to SFO is about $1200 without the miles, so 60K miles works out to about $1K on that. That makes the value of 250K miles about $4000. This is a pretty low bug bounty.

On the other hand, the value depends a lot on whether they count as premiere qualifying miles and flight miles or not. If they count as PQM then the 250K is enough to give you the highest level of premiere status, which means you're at the head of the queue for upgrades and get a number of other benefits. If they count as flight miles (exceedingly unlikely!) then it's a quarter of the way to the million mile thing, which gives you star alliance gold for life (and, having flown far too much recently, I can attest to the fact that gold status makes it far less annoying. Apparently it actually become enjoyable at higher levels, but I'm hoping not to fly enough to find out).

Comment: Re:You cannot know *WHO* is voting (Score 2) 258

by TheRaven64 (#49690773) Attached to: Online Voting Should Be Verifiable -- But It's a Hard Problem
I'm not sure about the 'Left', but the Democratic party in the USA tends to have more support among people with the technical ability to rig elections if they were held online. The Republican party tends to have the support of the people who own the companies that can rig them if they're not. With this in mind, it doesn't seem surprising that neither party is in favour of paper ballots.

Comment: Re:I do have email bias (Score 1) 461

by TheRaven64 (#49688227) Attached to: Does Using an AOL Email Address Suggest You're a Tech Dinosaur?

Because one of the strengths of email is that it is a decentralised, multi-vendor platform. The fact that you use gmail doesn't prevent me from using hotmail, yahoo, or whatever, or rolling my own. And that works fine, until one or two players has a dominant position. See what Google has done with their XMPP support, for example. When they were the underdog, they were happy to federate with everyone in a vendor-neutral network. Now they're increasingly trying to lock users into using their network (I think federating is up at the moment, but you can't add new contacts on non-Google-hosted domains).

The other aspect is privacy. If a certain percentage of my social graph uses gmail, then it doesn't matter that I don't - Google can still get a fairly accurate view of the shape of that graph, which is valuable to them. The other poster claimed that it's a reaction to whatever is popular, and he's right in a sense: email is a more robust network when there are no particularly popular providers and when people are fairly evenly spread between a smaller number.

Comment: Re:So? (Score 1) 461

by TheRaven64 (#49687837) Attached to: Does Using an AOL Email Address Suggest You're a Tech Dinosaur?
Most of the time, if someone is using a free webmail email address for business, I'd consider it a warning sign, with AOL not seeming particularly worse than Hotmail or GMail. Builders are probably my main exception to this, because they're one of the few contracting jobs where technological competence is not essential. That said, the last two builders I hired were through a web site that allows you to post jobs, have tradesmen bid for them, and hire them online, so a baseline knowledge is increasingly required for getting work.

Comment: Re:What does it say about you? (Score 1) 461

by TheRaven64 (#49687819) Attached to: Does Using an AOL Email Address Suggest You're a Tech Dinosaur?
They need to contain valid WHOIS information, but there's no requirement that every email address on a domain be owned by one person. More importantly, even if they're not anonymous, you can easily create a single email address for each company that you do business with and delete it afterwards (or, better, redirect it to the spam honeypot address on your mail server).

Comment: Re:Money or Art? (Score 4, Informative) 175

by TheRaven64 (#49679891) Attached to: The Decline of Pixel Art
If that's the message you get from TFA, then I can only assume that you gave up after the first few paragraphs. I'd recommend going and reading the rest. I don't see how you can square that message with this quote from TFA, for example:

Though I never intended for Auro to be a “retro-style” game, what I intended doesn’t matter at all, and it’s 100% my fault for failing to communicate in a language people understand.

Comment: Re:$30 (Score 1) 515

Really? Last time I went to Edinburgh it was on the cheapest ticket type. The restriction was that I needed to go on the train that I booked, but that wasn't particularly arduous (and no different from a plane). The only time I don't buy those is when I'm coming from the airport and have unknown delays at immigration / baggage claim. As to the limited numbers, I think they're only sold 2 weeks in advance, but I've not normally found booking trains for a trip 2 weeks in advance to be a problem, and if it's an emergency then I would generally expect to pay a bit more.

Comment: Re:An Old Story (Score 1) 386

by TheRaven64 (#49679661) Attached to: Criticizing the Rust Language, and Why C/C++ Will Never Die

C++11 has, for me, made the language tolerable. The old problem of C++ is still there: everyone agrees that you should only use a subset of the language, but no two developers agree on what that subset should be. Now, at least, there are things in the standard library that let you write APIs that have sensible memory management. shared_ptr and weak_ptr let you manage objects that can be aliased (with a small run-time overhead), unique_ptr lets you handle objects that can't be. Refactoring existing C++ APIs to use them takes a bit of time, but they're well worth it. With the addition of move constructors / r-value references to the language they can be implemented in such a way that they can trivially be stored in arbitrary collections, making them actually useful.

It's also been nice to see C++11 and C++14 supported by compilers and standard libraries quickly. C++14 was supported by Clang and libc++ by the time the standard was ratified by ISO. I think GCC and libstdc++ were only a couple of days later. Microsoft is still the slowest, but the latest versions of their compiler support most of the useful language features.

And on the seventh day, He exited from append mode.