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Comment: Here's what's wrong (again... still) (Score 3, Insightful) 66

These laws are toothless. "Must answer within 20 days"... or what? With no one held immediately culpable, the law is precisely meaningless.

Heard of anyone going to jail for this?

Heard of anyone paying a fine for this?

Even heard of anyone losing their job for this?

Compare: If you don't do something the government desires you to do, there will be consequences.

This is just like the constitution: "Highest law in the land" -- violate it -- as SCOTUS and congress have done over and over -- and the consequences? Nothing.

Just so you taxpayers know your place. The laws aren't for the government. Those are just laws "for show." The real laws are just for you. Because, you know, they care about you.

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Journal: Nobots Chapter Thirty Three 2

Journal by mcgrew

An alarm woke me up at quarter after six. What the hell? Fire in P117? I put on a robe, and as I trudged down there Tammy was running into the commons. I wondered what was going on.
I got to Passenger quarters 117 and it was a damned drill, the light wasn't flashing and I didn't smell any smoke. I really didn't expect to, because except for Tammy's quarters none of the rest of the passenger section was occupied and

Comment: Re:Finally! (Score 2) 464

by mcgrew (#47489035) Attached to: World Health Organization Calls For Decriminalization of Drug Use

It might cause a few deaths but it also sustains the multi billion dollar prison industry and employs well over 1 million people in the US alone

None of those jobs help the economy. Why should people be employed in occupations that have no benefit to society whatever and are in fact detrimental to society?

The government profits from illegal drugs even more than drug cartels do.

Colorado's pot legalization and the multi-billion dollar alcohol industry shows that governments profit a lot more from legal, regulated drugs than outlawing them.

I've known drug addicts, and the WHO is also right about compulsory addiction treatment; compulsory treatment flat out doesn't work. The addict has to want to stop, and it's very hard even when they want to. Alcoholics and other drug addicts relapse more often than not after treatment.

However, should they ever invent the fictional drug in the novel I'm writing (see my journal, the first crude draft is being posted there) I sure hope it's not legal!

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Journal: July 20, 1969 4

Journal by mcgrew

In 1969 I was a seventeen year old nerd in high school, using my slide rule to cheat in math class. I was probably the only one in the school who even had a clue how a slide rule worked, let alone owned one.

Comment: The octopus problem (Score 1) 77

by fyngyrz (#47488043) Attached to: Wearable Robot Adds Two Fingers To Your Hand

How many of us have tried to do something and wished we had (at least) a third hand?

I would pay a *lot* for a third hand, as I do a lot of my own construction work (building an interior into an old church we now live in.)

I can't even guess at the number of times I've had to wait until I had someone at my side to hold, turn, twist, drill, cut, brace, etc.

This stuff is great to hear. Love the idea of extra fingers.

Although it does put me strangely in mind of that scene in Heavy Metal where a robot, after having "done" a very sexy human female, spins his fingers around with a "whiiizzz", while commenting something on the order of "human woman love sex with mechanical assistance" lol

Comment: Re: Equating language to math is insulting (Score 1) 236

by fyngyrz (#47488015) Attached to: Math, Programming, and Language Learning

For most programmers, recursion seems to be a tool to completely -- but unpredictably -- blow out the stack. Cynical, I know, but that's been my experience.

Although I gotta tell ya, one of my favorite recursive things is a particular area fill routine for rectangular pixels. Simple and beautiful. Just elegant as all get out. Once I understood how it does what it does, it was like someone washed my mental windshield with Windex. That was a great day. :)

Comment: Re:I disagree (Score 1) 236

by fyngyrz (#47487987) Attached to: Math, Programming, and Language Learning

Yep. One of the things you discovered is that your school was one of the (many, many) schools that are horrible at teaching things, and in particular, math. Welcome to the real world. :)

So... how's your luck been in convincing employers (if you go that way) that your Coursera work is worthy of qualifying you for jobs?

Comment: That's not a toad, it's a frog. Or a butterfly? (Score 1) 236

by fyngyrz (#47487979) Attached to: Math, Programming, and Language Learning

I'm going to go with this:

The vast majority of programming is fairly simple manipulation of states and symbols, which are themselves a small subset of numbers. yes and no are 1 and 0, etc.

The way those manipulations work together quickly becomes very complex.

You can do a boatload of things with just that knowledge. Entire video games. Many types of process control and dedicated controllers. Most reasonable scripting jobs, most "webby" stuff, database stuff, etc.

But then adding some knowledge of math, in the purely technical sense, gives us more symbols to manipulate, and more ways to manipulate them, and this, like any major skills enhancement, definitely makes you a better programmer. Some mid-level math concepts -- very simple in nature, actually -- amplify what you can do so much it's just amazing.

I suspect -- I can't actually tell you because my math is only mediocre to fairly good, nor have I ever knowingly come in contact such a person -- that *really* advanced math skills combined with *really* advanced programming skills (which I can lay claim to) would combine to create a true monster programmer.


I think there's something about the essentially concrete nature of programming, and the incredibly abstract nature of higher math, that makes these dual-facet powerhouses the rarest of the rare. In my experience -- admittedly, just one person's career -- serious math heads tend to be pretty lousy programmers. Lots of bugs, poor structure, little to no sensitivity to shortcuts and loading. Then really great programmers seem to be only sorta capable with math (although what they can do with what they have tends to be quite surprising.) Just an IMHO based on my experience. Something I've found interesting enough to contemplate many times. Having said that, I sure would like to meet Mr. or Ms. combination-o-both. :)

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Journal: Mars, Ho! Chapter Thirty Two

Journal by mcgrew

The CEO's fone buzzed; it was time to look over the papers from engineering staff, then meet them in the engineering department. He pulled them up on his tablet.
Most of the answers to his queries were interesting and original. He noted that every single one of his engineers rated Robertson as the worst engineer in the shop, regardless of their own engineering specialty, and the one they least wanted to be chief.

Comment: Re:Intel (Score 1) 233

by hairyfeet (#47479851) Attached to: Nearly 25 Years Ago, IBM Helped Save Macintosh

Oh I have been singing the praises of the AM1, its a fucking AWESOME chip! I mean a replaceable ULV that does 1080p easily AND is the same chip used in the PS4 AND only uses 25w WHILE having boards that offer options like having multiple PCIe and even a PCI slot and the whole setup can be had for less than $100? Well hell what's not to like!

And I put an E350 Bobcat against a Pentium D805 and even having over 1GHz speed difference it was a joke, that little $60 board just curbstomped that 805. it was then when I really realized how truly shit the P4 design was, because when the weakest Bobcat can beat one of their best duals you know its a garbage design.

Comment: Re:Intel (Score 1) 233

by hairyfeet (#47474987) Attached to: Nearly 25 Years Ago, IBM Helped Save Macintosh

Actually the P4 would have been fine if they could have reached the clocks they predicted (10GHz+) but the pipes ended up so damned long every cache miss was like slamming on the brakes, not to mention the truly insane amounts of heat the last P4s belched out.

This is why I tell folks to toss if they have a P4 as while an Athlon of the same age is still useful the amount of heat belched out by Prescott and Cedar Mill P4s is just nuts. At the shop I've been replacing P4s with E350s and recently socket AM1s and even those bottom of the line netbook chips still feel faster than the P4 while putting out practically zero heat out the back. You don't realize how badly the cache misses slow the chip until you put an Athlon 64 or first gen Core Solo against the high clocked Pentium Ds, even at double the clocks they just feel dog slow.

Comment: Re:This is not how you inspire confidence (Score 1) 151

by hairyfeet (#47474553) Attached to: LibreSSL PRNG Vulnerability Patched

Nice to see that I'm not the only one who thought the response was completely unprofessional.

What is it lately with all these OSS guys in key positions turning into Ulrich Drepper clones? Have they gotten so used to being told how great they are that when anybody dares point out a mistake they HAVE to go nuclear? You got Torvalds flipping off companies and throwing fits like a 14 year old Halo player, you got de Raadt acting like a giant ass, now you got this Has everybody forgotten what it means to act like a professional?

Comment: Re:Fanbois (Score 4, Insightful) 91

by hairyfeet (#47474255) Attached to: Apple Agrees To $450 Million Ebook Antitrust Settlement

Uhhh..spin it how you want but the emails showed beyond a doubt that Apple was price fixing and sorry, that is illegal. Also if you think Apple was price fixing "for good of the people"....BWA HA HA HA HA, that is damned funny, it was to increase their share and make sure no competitor could undercut them, again going against free market competition.

Of course they could always do like Amazon and take less profit per sale...ha ha ha, who am I kidding, Apple take less? never!

I've never been canoeing before, but I imagine there must be just a few simple heuristics you have to remember... Yes, don't fall out, and don't hit rocks.