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Comment: Re:Perl still works, and PHP is fine (Score 2) 536

I know it's in vogue to hate on PHP,

I don't hate PHP. I just don't use it unless I have to.

but PHP is relatively modern, robust, and fully capable of handling enterprise tasks.

I'm not sure what you mean by "relatively modern". If you mean it is younger then Perl, that is true. 20 years old vs Perl's 26 years.

Both languages have evolved, adopting new ideas and adapting to new needs. They both borrow from other languages and from each other. Indeed PHP started out as a set of Perl scripts. A side effect of this was that PHP 1.0 (released in 1995) "syntax resembled that of Perl" (

Both are "fully capable of handling enterprise tasks".

The original posting claimed Perl "just seems to be ossifying". I think this is a perception problem unwittingly caused by the Perl 6 project. I think what we call Perl 5.20 might have been Perl 7.x (or even 8.x or higher) if the developers were free to increment the 5. As a similar example, look at FireFox and Chrome. Google's use of a single version number created a perception that FireFox 3.x was ancient. After Mozilla switched to using single number version for FireFox, the perception of FireFox began to improve. Another example: When Intel added "MMX extensions" to Pentium, people asked when will PowerPC get MMX extensions. The fact that the PowerPC already had equivalent features was ignored and the PowerPC was painted as falling behind the Pentium.

Perl, PHP and many other "old" languages are still used. If anything, their continued use is better evidence to expect they will be actively supported 5 (or more) years from now then whatever the current "rising star" happens to be..

Comment: Re:Trains? (Score 1) 437

I also see the possibility for handicapped kids to get some mobility. Other kids can get around with bicycles or walk, but if you have a handicap you can get severely limited and depending on parents and friends.

I strongly suspect that Child Protective Services would be more willing to allow parents to let their children use "private" autonomous cars than public transportation. (I recall a story a few years ago about some parents getting in deep trouble because thay allowed their son to use public transportation on his own.)

Comment: Re:Stop messing around (Score 1) 483

The focus should be on either eliminate the treat to society, or compensate the victim.

Allegedly, the threat is being eliminated. Though as a by-producted of punishment. But this goal would imply that a painless method would be the most appropriate.

(As pointed out by several /.ers, including myself, on many occasions, using a nitrogen purge to induce asphixia would be painless, effective and not have supply issues.)

As for compensating victims, (1) very few criminals are actually capable of being sources of said compensation. (2) It would create an incentive to be a victim.

Comment: Re:For a given definition of learn (Score 1) 310

Asking questions and understanding basic concepts is great for science or engineering when you have time for it. But if I walk in with a medical condition, you need to fix me using the best practice that researchers have proved. So please have it memorized, or look it up if you aren't in the ER or surgery room and have time for it.

Medical doctors still need problem solving skills. Not all treatments/procedures work the same for all patients. Just because we both have condition A and treatment X works great for me, maybe even for 90% of patients, doesn't mean it will work for you. You might need treatment Y, instead. If your doctor can't figure that out, find a new one.

(Unfortunately, many insurance companies insist doctors do X first every time (unless the patient is allergic to X or otherwise X just isn't possible).)

Comment: Re:Kids don't bother learning (Score 1) 310

This leads to them effectively having 0 memorized facts or baseline knowledge.

Understanding is the key. I didn't have to memorize, for example, multiplication tables. I learned to understand multiplication. And later I learned to understand geometry, trig and calculus. I can still figure out how to solve a problem with out needing to look up, let alone regurgitate, a formula. (Takes me longer than when I was in my 20s, but only because I don't have a need for that much math. I still use the underlying problem solving and derivation skills, so for things I do need to solve, I am very good.)

Comment: Re:let's feed the troll! (Score 1) 310

Some things are inherently boring.

For example, a good part of A-level maths is learning to apply trignometric identities and calculus. Please, try to make an exciting game about the cosine rule.

Would launching model rockets and tracking their performance be exciting enough? I did that. I learned basic trig long before school got around to teaching it. Damn glad I was lucky enough to earn a scholarship to a private school. The private school actually encouraged its students to learn on their own, even "advanced" subjects.

Comment: Re:you don't need to be a teacher... (Score 1) 310

to see this, just look in any cafe. Several people around a table all checking their phones. Social interaction has definitely changed, in some ways for the worse. As for learning, other posters have mentioned engagement. The top students will not need to see "exciting" stuff to learn because they love learning and being challenged. The middle to low students will need to be entertained because that is what they are used to - TV, facebook, youtube, etc etc. Unfortunately this is the way of the new world. At the school where I work, the Phys Ed teachers tell me about children who have never climbed trees or chased/kicked a ball, and have terrible gross and fine motor skills - another symptom of technology not doing them a favour I suspect.

Today's parents are afraid to let their children do much beyond sit in front of entertainment device when they aren't in school. Even if that "device" is a book, it's still not good to just sit around.

(I did read a lot as a kid. Much more than other kids. I also got outside and did things, most often with friends.)

Comment: Re:you don't need to be a teacher... (Score 1) 310

But climbing a tree is outright silly. The lowest branches of most trees are often out of reach and you can scatch yourself pretty badly on the way up. The small branches keep poking into your eyes or knocking on your glasses. And the foliage obscures the view so bad that the whole experience is pretty much a pain in the ass even if you finally do manage to get up. Also, how come everyone is so quick to point out that climbing trees is sooo much fun but no one mentions the fun involved in getting back down again? Exactly. Because it isn't.

I enjoyed climbing tress as a kid. Even the getting back down part. Yes, I did fall a few times, but I just got up and continued on. And I learned from both the falls and the successes. And by the time I was 10, I was big enough, strong enough and had learned enough, to be able to actually build my own treehouse - by myself. No help from my parents.

Comment: Re:Article is about computers OUTSIDE the classroo (Score 1) 310

But it doesn't change the fact that this is simply bad parenting, and not a problem with technology per se.

Not simply. It is more complex than many experts seem to think.

My childhood was full of risks. My friends and I not only survived, we thrived. Today, our social environment demands parents protect children from nearly all risk. Example: A few years ago, a friend of our daughter was taken from her parents after she stumbled and bruised her arm while practicing cheerleading routines on her home's back lawn. Her parents were out there with her, so she was supervised. Child Protective Services declared that her parents were allowing her to practice in an unsafe area with out expert supervision. (Seems to me that a flat, grassy lawn would be safer than a crowded (and grassy) football field. And even at official practice under the cheer-coach's supervision, the cheerleaders still stumbled and still got bruised.)

Also, today's parents have less time to supervise their children than when I was a child. Besides cooking, keeping the home clean and other necessities, both parents have to work full time and frequently, one or both will have a second job.

How many parents are actually able to constantly supervise even 1 child? Some parents are able to enroll their kids in professionally supervised activities like Little League. Others can't afford it or are afraid to allow their children to participate in such activities. And even when the kids do participate, they are still not getting unstructured socialization time with their friends like my friends and I (and many of you /.ers) did as children.

While there are some lazy/bad parents, the main problem is that, as a society, we have become afraid to let our children be children. Instead we protect our children from nearly everything, then blame the schools - and teachers, technology, etc - when they aren't ready to be adults at age 18.

Comment: Re:Article is about computers OUTSIDE the classroo (Score 1) 310

But it doesn't change the fact that this is simply bad parenting, and not a problem with technology per se.

It is true that technology is not intrinsically bad. Even if the "device" is a book, only being allowed to sit in the relative safety of a chair (or on the floor) isn't good, either.

And while there is poor parenting, the situation is not as simple as many experts seem to think.

There are several things going on. Our current social environment demands that parents not allow children to be exposed to risk. My childhood was full of risks. My friends and I survived. Indeed, we thrived.

These days, children can get taken away from parents who allow their kids to do any of what my friends and I were allowed. Example, a few years ago, a friend of my daughter was taken from her parents because she stumbled, bruising her arm, while practicing cheerleading routines in the back yard of her home. Her parents were out there with her, so she was being supervised. Child Protective Services declared her parents were allowing her to practice in an unsafe location with out expert supervision. (It was a flat, grassy lawn, similar to the grassy football field at school. No idea what they (CPS) would have considered safer.)

At the same time, parents, today, have less time to supervise their children than my - and my friends' - parents did.

So, what are parents to do? We were lucky enough to be able to stagger our work schedules so that when our daughter wasn't in school, at least one of us was with her. Very few parents have (or had) that option. And there is still cooking, cleaning, etc, at home. So, the safest things for today's parents to do is to put their children in front of entertainment devices while they do everything they have to do to keep the family fed and housed.

Some people might say that those people shouldn't be parents. If that's the case, then who can be parents?

I think that most parents are afraid to let their children do anything besides school, professionally organized activities (like Little League) and sit in front of an entertainment device. And often, parents either can't afford, or are afraid of, the professionally organized activities.

Comment: Re:Am I understanding this correctly? (Score 1) 83

by UnderCoverPenguin (#46710711) Attached to: Yahoo DMARC Implementation Breaks Most Mailing Lists


Are digest messages considered forgery?

Nor am I suggesting a back door for spammers. I do think it is likely that list servers will not be trusted to do proper Sender Authentication. Both the list message and the original message would have to pass sender authentication.

If the list server acted exactly as a proper MTA would, then the message would only be subject to a single level of sender authentication. My idea would subject the forwarded message to double authentication: Once for the original sender and the second for the list server.

Comment: Re:SPF.. (Score 1) 83

by UnderCoverPenguin (#46710371) Attached to: Yahoo DMARC Implementation Breaks Most Mailing Lists

such action would be a direct violation of the section of the RFC I quoted. The "robot" is not the author; its mailbox does not appear in the header field intended for the mailbox of the author. The "robot" is also not the agent that introduced the message for transmission, it is retransmitting a message already in the system.

If I had a secretary and I instructed him to forward messages related to certain topics to designated recipients, he would be the author of the new messages that contain the original messages. The section I quoted allows this. How is this different from having a list server perform the same task?

A multi-post digest is reasonably consided a new message. One that is "authored" by the list server. With the list owner as the responsible agent. As best I can decern, the people at IETF do not think this is a violation. So, why not a digest with just one post?

I think you and I are viewing this from two different perspectives. You seem to view the list server as part of the mail transport and delivery infrastructure. I view the list server as an "electronic secretary" interacting with, but outside of the mail infrastructure.

Granted, proper use of Resent-From and Resent-Sender would be the best solution. How likely do you think it would be for all the Sender Authentication systems to be updated to use these fields? I think very unlikely. So, that leaves it to the list server admins (and, possibly, developers) to implement a work around.

Comment: Re:Am I understanding this correctly? (Score 1) 83

by UnderCoverPenguin (#46709325) Attached to: Yahoo DMARC Implementation Breaks Most Mailing Lists

Forwarded email breaks all these kinds of "sender authentication" systems, and that's unlikely to change in the near future. Mailing lists are one type of forwarded email, but not the only type.

Properly used, the Resent-From and Resent-Sender fields could help with this. Of course, this would require the Sender Authentication systems to properly handle these fields.

Another option occurred to me since I made my previous post. The original message could be made an attachment to the message sent by the list server. This way, both the list message and the original message would be available for DMARC/SPF/whatever sender authentication.

Neutrinos are into physicists.