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Comment: Re:where's the money?! (Score 1) 193

by TheRaven64 (#47576183) Attached to: Vint Cerf on Why Programmers Don't Join the ACM
Communications of the ACM has changed a lot over the last few years. They're trying to make it a lot more relevant and also raise the impact. This means that the Practitioners section is now managed by the team behind ACM Queue and contains stuff that people doing exciting things in industry are doing and the rest has a higher standard of peer review. The Research Highlights section often points to papers that I want to read. Most of the top-tier conferences and journals for computer science are ACM-sponsored.

Comment: Re:They don't even know what they're offering (Score 2) 193

by TheRaven64 (#47574583) Attached to: Vint Cerf on Why Programmers Don't Join the ACM
The ACM is pretty good about open access. Every author can use their 'author-izer' service to create links that check the referrer but give free access to the papers, so if you can't get free access to an ACM-published paper from the author's web site, then complain to them, not to the ACM.

Comment: Re:It's not a marketplace.. (Score 1) 235

by TheRaven64 (#47574525) Attached to: Is the App Store Broken?

Yeah, lets compare a 40 year old monopoly company (making money w large contracts) to a bunch of small upstart developers (making money $0.99 at a time) and laugh.

Let's not. Let's compare the mobile app market to one company. The mobile app market has a number of small upstart developers making $0.99 at a time, but it also includes companies like IBM, Microsoft, Apple, Adobe, and a large number of software houses that are 20-40 years old, several of which have been on the receiving end of antitrust lawsuits.

Comment: Re:where's the money?! (Score 2) 193

by TheRaven64 (#47573147) Attached to: Vint Cerf on Why Programmers Don't Join the ACM
This is, unfortunately, the case with a number of funding bodies in academia. For example, DARPA won't pay for my membership, but will pay for the conference. My institution decided to pay for membership out of a different pot of money that doesn't have these restrictions, which ends up with a saving of a few hundred dollars on one account and a cost of a hundred dollars on another.

Comment: Re:Thankfully those will be patched right in a jif (Score 1) 127

by TheRaven64 (#47572989) Attached to: Old Apache Code At Root of Android FakeID Mess
Ah, you're in the USA? Here, most people have pre-pay plans (being locked into a contract is generally seen as negative, unless it comes with some really good deals) and so get the phone that they bought along with their SIM and then hang onto it until it breaks or someone gives them a new one. I don't think I know anyone who pays close to $40/month on a phone bill (a fifth to a tenth of that is common and it's hard for a contract that comes with a new phone to be that cheap). At that price, I'd probably do without a mobile.

Comment: Re:uh, get rid of the "top X" ranking? (Score 2) 235

by TheRaven64 (#47572889) Attached to: Is the App Store Broken?
Amazon's app store is a bit better, because they're good at correlating things you've bought with things you might want to buy, so have recommendations that don't totally suck. The only reason I actually have it installed though is their free app of the day (which isn't necessarily a good thing - there are a couple of games that it's given me that have wasted a lot of my time...)

Comment: Re:It's not a marketplace.. (Score 3, Informative) 235

by TheRaven64 (#47572879) Attached to: Is the App Store Broken?
$13b is a big-sounding number. But it's not that big in comparison to some other numbers. For example, there were 75b downloads from the Apple App Store last month, so even if that $13b were just for the last month, not for the lifetime of the App Store, it would amount to less than 20 for each download. There are 1.2m apps available, so $13b means just over $10K per app. That's quite a lot for a week's work, but it's a pittance compared to the cost of developing a typical program, especially when you consider the earnings per year.

Oh, and for reference, Microsoft's revenue for the last quarter was about $20b. Which makes $13b spread between 1.2m apps seem very, very small. (I'm assuming that your $13b number is just for developers selling through the Apple App Store. If it also includes Android then it's an even more laughable number).

Comment: Re:Complexity (Score 2) 193

by TheRaven64 (#47572793) Attached to: Vint Cerf on Why Programmers Don't Join the ACM

Finally, I never see ACM articles linked from Google. You'd imagine searches for things like "reduction of inter block artifacts in discrete wavelet transforms" should nail 5 ACM articles on the first page. Instead, I see mailing lists.

They'll show up if you use Google Scholar. If you're using the main search engine to find papers, then you're probably doing it wrong...

Comment: Re:where's the money?! (Score 5, Informative) 193

by TheRaven64 (#47572787) Attached to: Vint Cerf on Why Programmers Don't Join the ACM

There is as an academic. Apparently being a member of the ACM has a negative value, because in exchange for the $99/year membership fee I typically get a $100-150 discount on attending ACM conferences. If you go to a couple of conferences a year then that's a good deal. For people outside academia, there's less relevance. ACM Queue, which provides material for 'practitioners' section of Communications of the ACM, generally has some good material, but it's all free whether your an ACM member or not.

I like the ACM as an organisation, but they're hard pressed to justify the cost of membership.

Comment: Re:Not deploying driverless cars kills people (Score 4, Informative) 185

by TheRaven64 (#47567809) Attached to: UK To Allow Driverless Cars By January

Wikipedia has a nice table of the relevant data. Per capita statistics are a bit misleading as they don't count for different levels of car ownership. Per vehicle statistics are a bit better. The UK has 6.2 fatalities per 100,000 motor vehicles (per year), whereas the USA has 13.6. Generalising this to 'Europe in general' doesn't really work though: Greece, for example, has 13.8 and Portugal has 18.

Even that doesn't tell the whole story though, because people in the UK laugh hysterically when we hear how long people in the USA think a reasonable daily commute is and so cars in the USA are likely to be driven further, which might account for the difference. Taking that into account and using the numbers for fatalities per billion km driven, the UK has 4.3 and the USA 7.6 , so under twice as many. As the grandparent said: not too far behind.

Comment: Re:Thankfully those will be patched right in a jif (Score 1) 127

by TheRaven64 (#47564673) Attached to: Old Apache Code At Root of Android FakeID Mess
I can only assume that you rarely talk to non-geeks. I upgrade my phone roughly every 3 years and most of my non-geek friends have significantly older phones than me. Many of them get new phones only when a geeky relative upgrades and hands down their old device, so the least technical users end up with the least secure devices...

Comment: Re:Past due not reported by companies (Score 1) 559

by TheRaven64 (#47564645) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
Because you can make more money if you invest more capital. If you have a project that has a 10% annual ROI and have $1m in the bank, then you can double your money if you use that as collateral and borrow $10m to invest. This is a big part of the reason why money tends to concentrate in the hands of people who already have money.

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