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Comment: On the plus side (Score 1) 190

by VTEngineer (#46811961) Attached to: Eyes Over Compton: How Police Spied On a Whole City
It prevents all manner of kidnappings, bank robberies, ordinary crime where the get-away vehicle is a car or truck. Rewind to the time and place of the crime, watch where they go. On the negative side is the power this would give a bad agent. If only govt were staffed in good angels, we wouldn't have anything to worry about. Alas they are normal humans. I think this will be the future in most metropolitan areas within a few short years. The benefits simply outweigh the risks of mistreatment. Interdicting crimes against innocents makes a great deal of sense to me. Allowing rogue govt agents to make nefarious use also alarms me. Perhaps access needs to be guarded, justified? I don't have a good answer, but the amount of good that can result from this type of tech is difficult to deny. Kidnap a child and you are visited by law enforcement immediately. Would render a broad spectrum of criminal activity moot. Also could liberate falsely accused. The good uses of this type of tech are fairly profound.

Comment: Not difficult to fix, eliminate politics (Score 1) 307

by VTEngineer (#45184545) Attached to: How To FIx Healthcare.gov: Go Open-Source!
Stop trying to validate everyone prior to purchase. Let’s call it roughly 1 million simultaneous visitors. Your bottle necks are in the multiple back-end databases that must be accessed to validate identity and eligibility. Why put the bottleneck first? Show visitors prices for various classifications. Ask them to self select their category, show them their prices. Validate their identity and eligibility after they have committed to purchase, if they selected incorrectly, tell them at that point and return to home page. Simple. This really isn't that difficult unless your agenda is to gather information for political purposes. As a professional programmer, postpone the long running operation until the smaller number of buyers elects. Every visitor will not buy on first visit. It takes a few trips. Allow those visits to not require a real back-end round trip. Give them a wizard to self select and validate on purchase. Takes load off of back-end databases. Speeds response times. Sacrifices nothing other then knowing your visitors prior to purchase. Why is that important? Yeah, good question.

Comment: Re:What amazes me about SAIC (Score 1) 51

by VTEngineer (#39376201) Attached to: SAIC Settles CityTime Case For $500.4 Million
I don't think they are any worse then any other federal contractor. The entire defense industry is quite adroit at extracting funds from the govt. SAIC doesn't hold a candle to some other large entities in this regard. This incident was lack of oversight, but the fault lies with 2 corrupt employees. Individual criminal acts, not corporate malfeasance. That said, the entire parasitic industry needs to be severely limited for the benefit of the country. Value versus spending is way out of whack and the taxpayers are taking it in the shorts.

Comment: Curses (Score 1) 467

by VTEngineer (#39322531) Attached to: A Better Way To Program
luckily I am old enough to still benefit from ignorance. I am able to visualize such things while coding without aide. It has always been a competitive advantage. If you generalize it via a video component to all coders, it levels the playing field. The gifted super coders, who I suspect can all do this visualization in their head, will simply be rendered normal. Unfortunate, but predictable in the long line of jarring advancements. Bravo! The really interesting part of this to me is I bet that is how most great coders think implicitly. I bet that is why a great coder is 10 or more times more productive with fewer errors than average. Let's call it visual coding and whether it is computer aided or God given, it is very productive.

Comment: Governments have lost their power over information (Score 1) 181

by VTEngineer (#38862167) Attached to: How Will You React To Twitter's Regional Censorship Plan?
Most of it was illegitimately obtained anyway. The rise of the individual on the world stage is upon us. Free speech is now a threat to government? Wait, aren't they supposed to represent us? Is it until we become uppity? When do democracies become despots? When media companies bankroll campaigns? Bought and paid for. So much for individuals.

Comment: My wife handles the banking (Score 1) 80

and my daughters use her computer. I have little doubt it has been hacked as I've had to re-image it several times. I can not convince my wife to use a live CD for online banking. I guess it will take us getting wiped out to drive home this point. There is an inflection point between prudence and convenience. Woman are especially non prudent (I want to access my bank when I need it, I am not going to reboot) This is a larger problem of identity that needs solving. It is big bucks now. We need a secure solution. As as a professional coder, I do not see one. Anything on the net can be hacked. Voting machines? On the net, consider the election stolen. Heck, just electronic voting, consider the election stolen. Nothing electronic is immune and all of it is vulnerable. Stinks, but that is reality.

Comment: How long until the P2P aspects get a red flag? (Score 1) 254

by VTEngineer (#38197112) Attached to: Free Software Activists Take On Google Search
I imagine some corporate interest, perhaps do no evil Google, will come up with a copyright take down notice on the system. Add to that, but user derived content makes it vulnerable to special interests, like say, child porn advocates. This just sounds like a bad idea all the way round. Some kind of crowd sourced scoring would be needed to filter bad content. Not easy when the crowd grows to a million plus. Accurate, but unwieldy. I think I might wait for 2.0.

Comment: Attend a conference to broaden your horizons (Score 2) 516

by VTEngineer (#38008346) Attached to: How Do I Get Back a Passion For Programming?
Something like No Fluff Just Stuff or the ilk. It recharges my batteries and opens my mind to new ideas and techniques. I went to Strata last year and big data is very appealing. Find out what gets you excited about coding and go after it. Find your passion and you will find your place. Sounds like a change of scenery is certainly in order, but first, find what gets you interested and you will find your next niche.
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Corporations Hiring Hooky Hunters 610

Posted by samzenpus
from the taking-a-personal-detective-day dept.
No longer satisfied with your crinkled doctor's note, a growing number of corporations are hiring "Hooky Detectives." Private investigator Rick Raymond says he's staked out bowling alleys, pro football games, weddings and even funerals looking for people using sick days. From the article: "Such techniques have become permissible at a time when workers are more likely to play hooky. Kronos, a workforce productivity firm in Chelmsford, Mass., recently found that 57 percent of salaried employees take sick days when they're not sick — almost a 20 percent increase from statistics gathered between 2006 and 2008."

Comment: Fight government hegemony (Score 1) 1155

by VTEngineer (#33801712) Attached to: British Teen Jailed Over Encryption Password
get everyone to carry around virgin laptops, thus the feds will be consumed pursuing dead ends. The whole, we have rights to your data just flies so in the face of the 1st amendment, it is worth the citizens to carry unbreakable encryption just cause. Nothing illegal, just a nuisance. I am a libertarian. The counter veiling policy is everyone is some kind of terrorist. Just absurd. We need to fight this total power grab under the guise of terror preparation. The number of people meaning harm is tiny. The number of citizens is great and all under the gun. That is bas ackwards. Let's restore individual liberty in this environment of wacko violence.

Comment: pitifully easy to create a false persona online (Score 1) 554

by VTEngineer (#33741482) Attached to: "Pre-Crime" Comes To the HR Dept.
so create one and use it exclusively. Maintain your real name persona as dull and lifeless. Corporate goodness ensues. Honestly, I fail to see the validity in this. Just too easy to be a different age, profession or even gender online. This test will trap the morons, but not much else. No excuse for due diligence in the hiring process. There just is no substitute for doing the hard research on an applicant.

Comment: Re:Boondoggle (Score 1) 1139

by VTEngineer (#33297500) Attached to: Is a US High-Speed Railway Economically Feasible?
I sat in hour long traffic getting into DC to take the key bridge because the American Legion bridge on the outer loop was jammed with an accident seven miles further down that closed 2 left lanes of 4. I could sit and wait for an hour and hope to clear the accident or detour. I detoured, but still took an hour because traveling by car down River Road to Wisconsin Av and onto the Key Bridge pretty much sucks with pedestrians, other cars parallel parking and delivery trucks. Smooth it was not. Did it save me time? Debatable. Did it make me wish I took the Marc train today? Yep. The big issue I have is trains run into a city center. Not the other way. Because I live on the opposite side of the city from my job, the train becomes a burden over driving. Generally, 2 hours each way riding (bus to train to metro to bus, bus to metro to train to bus) Sorry, mass trans that I favor loses. The DC area really needs a purple line that runs around the beltway and serves the major commercial sectors. Not everyone works inside DC and not everyone lives outside the city center. Not a destination for most. Serve the people and mass transit makes uber sense. Not serve them and it fails. Simple really.
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Indian Police Using Facebook to Catch Scofflaw Drivers 130

Posted by samzenpus
from the check-your-status dept.
New Delhi police have a new weapon in the battle against bad drivers, Facebook. Two months ago the police created a Facebook page that allowed people to inform on others breaking traffic laws, and upload pictures of the violations. The page has more than 17,000 fans, and 3,000 pictures currently. From the article: "The online rap sheet was impressive. There are photos of people on motorcycles without helmets, cars stopped in crosswalks, drivers on cellphones, drivers in the middle of illegal turns and improperly parked vehicles. Using the pictures, the Delhi Traffic Police have issued 665 tickets, using the license plate numbers shown in the photos to track vehicle owners, said the city’s joint commissioner of traffic, Satyendra Garg."

Comment: Governments are the problem, not the solution (Score 5, Insightful) 281

by VTEngineer (#32781038) Attached to: Indian Government Threatens RIM, Skype With Ban
they have no right whatsoever to read email traffic. Terrorists have officially won as government is leveraging attacks to increase their power over all. Wake up people, government is the problem. Terrorists, even when very successful, effect a tiny percentage of a population. Yet, the government grows more powerful over all in order to supposedly protect the population. This is about control, not protection. Such a shame that so may are willing to throw away their rights in the face of terror. The terrorists have won. Now they are fighting over who will control the levers of power. The citizens have already lost all liberty.

Comment: Oh Katrina why won't you set us free? (Score 1) 260

by VTEngineer (#32768572) Attached to: RIAA Calls YouTube-Viacom Decision Bad Public Policy
set us free now? This calls into question the entire creative commons. What is fair artist use and what is corporate greed? Where is the line? The RIAA? They are the zombies, already fully subsumed. What is the next step? What comes after the nightmare of the RIAA? What's next because these guys are seriously what was. Where does the next fair use doctrine arise and who does it protect, the artists? the record companies? The consumer? How about all three?

If a 6600 used paper tape instead of core memory, it would use up tape at about 30 miles/second. -- Grishman, Assembly Language Programming

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