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Comment: Re:If this works, then Microsoft is doomed. (Score 1) 50

by PopeRatzo (#47952973) Attached to: Android Apps Now Unofficially Able To Run On Any Major Desktop OS

Now comes the mobile phone, as people tend to upload pictures of their glorious bodies

The dick pic is the killer app of mobile phones.

I've always said this. I'm trying to remember the first time I held a mobile phone with a camera in it, but I'm pretty sure the first thing I did was reach for my zipper.

Comment: Re:Here's why (Score 1) 230

by TapeCutter (#47951449) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How To Avoid Becoming a Complacent Software Developer?

there's a good chance that people problems become more interesting that software problems

I'm 55, this is true, but it hasn't diminished my interest in software, it's just something else that fascinates me and just happens to be the root cause as to why "work sucks" sometimes. My Dad is 80, a retired mechanical engineer, last we spoke about programming he had got one of his games he wrote in Delphi running on android and was playing with the python graphics library.

Comment: Nobody has solved the "work" problem. (Score 1) 230

by TapeCutter (#47951351) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How To Avoid Becoming a Complacent Software Developer?
Solving coding problems the fun part. The work part is getting the solution to the customer, ironically few engineers are willing to tackle the work problem, or accept other people's solutions to it. So what you generally end up with is an imposed solution from above that doesn't work because the people who wrote the process haven't got a clue how the engineers are currently keeping it together. Rather than tackling the problem by demonstrating a superior answer, the engineers do their best to pretend the work problem doesn't exist.

BTW: If you're solving the "same [coding?] problem over and over again", you're doing it wrong

Comment: Re:For many it's not burnout but disillusion (Score 3, Insightful) 230

by TapeCutter (#47951263) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How To Avoid Becoming a Complacent Software Developer?
I mostly agree but I would say that a good engineer provides (and meets) a deadline of his own making. Good managers have clear business plans but they can't create them if software systems randomly pop out of the basement shouting "surprise". The most overlooked and underrated skill for a "professional" engineer is business administration skills (and vica-versa with PHB's). Someone who speaks both languages is far more useful than someone who speaks only his native tongue.

Yeah it's easy to become disillusioned, if you don't have the political clout to organise your own work and "lead by example" to meet their vague goals, then get it or get out. If you do have some influence then vague, numerous, and ever changing management goals are your best weapon against the idiocracy, simply pick the brain farts that give you license to do TheRightThing(tm) and politely deflect the others.

*you - the royal version.

Comment: Re:why does the CRTC need this list? (Score 1) 293

by dskoll (#47949657) Attached to: Canadian Regulator Threatens To Impose New Netflix Regulation

How about penalizing clothing manufacturers unless they make certain amount of clothing in Canada with a Canadian theme.

You've been listening to the CBC again. Link is to an excellent Canadian comedy show, by the way, that I'm sure would survive even without CanCon protection.

Comment: Re:CRTC needs to be reined in (Score 1) 293

by dskoll (#47949619) Attached to: Canadian Regulator Threatens To Impose New Netflix Regulation

Killing a non-competitive industry causes short-term pain. But in the long-term, a more competitive and stronger industry will emerge.

Just as the US and Canada should never have rescued the auto-makers when they imploded, there's no way a government should use taxes or protectionist laws to protect non-competitive industries.

Comment: Re:Everyone loses (Score 1) 418

by Solandri (#47949167) Attached to: Scotland Votes No To Independence

As I said, I've been here for a decade now, and I work for a big company with great perks. It's been good for me, but now that I have a kid, the school-shootings thing is getting more and more worrisome. There's literally nothing I can do to prevent some moron raiding his mother's arsenal and killing my kid if that's how he wants to end his life.

Why this obsession with school shootings? You do realize your kid is far more likely to be murdered outside of school than in school? "Homicide is the second leading cause of death among youth aged 5-18. Data from this study indicate that between 1% and 2% of these deaths happen on school grounds or on the way to or from school." So 98%-99% of homicides of school-aged children happen outside of school. i.e. The place where your kids are safest by far from being shot or killed is in school.

If you look at the chart in the above link, on average fewer than 20 students are murdered each year in school shootings. If you look at causes of death, among 5-14 year olds (page 2), the #15 cause of death kills 18 per year, indicating school shootings doesn't even rank in the top 15. For age 15-24 (high school-college), the #15 cause kills 99 per year, so school shootings probably doesn't even make the top 20 or 30. By far the #1 killer of student-aged children is accidents - outnumbering homicides by nearly an order of magnitude, and school shootings by two orders of magnitude.

It's the media which has a morbid obsession with school shootings, causing them to devote wildly disproportionate amounts of coverage to it relative to other dangers and risks faced by school-aged children. Don't buy into it. Parents' fear of school shootings is completely irrational, just like fear of flying (which is also fed by the media's disproportionate coverage of plane crashes), or child abduction by a stranger (which is the rarest form of kidnapping, and also fed by the media's... well you get the picture).

Comment: Re:Coincidence? (Score 1) 227

by PopeRatzo (#47949123) Attached to: Apple's "Warrant Canary" Has Died

Can you substantiate this? Every time somebody has said this to me and they've gone into specifics, it's been bullshit.

You know, it's good that you come to me instead of the morons you've been talking to you, because I can definitely substantiate this:

See, the reason "Silicon Valley" (meaning the tech industry) is allowed to play this game is because they're willing to let the NSA upskirt your private information and communications. And since they've already got their hand up your dress, they're going to cop a little feel for themselves, you know? So the US Government is happy, the corporations get to make a shitload of money from your private information and communications, and they get to keep playing their little tax game.

If you had a government worth a damn (like during the trust-busting era), they wouldn't allow companies like Apple to perpetrate their little willful fraud.

Now, the next time somebody tells you about Apple and the government playing footsie to protect Apple's tax advantage, I hope you won't continue to say it's bullshit.

Same here. Which anti-trust laws? Be specific.

Same here. Now when somebody asks you "Which anti-trust laws is Apple violating?" you'll be able to tell them:

See, the problem is "vertical integration". You can't control both the product, the store that sells the product, the insurance that covers the product, the consumables (media) that plays on the product and on and on down the distribution chain. Even making both the hardware and the software is arguably a violation of anti-trust. But when you start to also own the only store that sells software for the product and have a vested interest in every bit of software that runs on the product you've crossed so many lines that Apple should have been broken up into several companies long ago. Same with Microsoft and many others. They're not just over the line, they're WAY over the line. The technical term is an oligopoly. They are anti-competitive and they destroy entire markets. Oligopolies are what happen in fascist countries.

I hope you appreciate the time and energy I spend disabusing you of your notion that "it's bullshit". And I hope you enjoyed edification as much as I enjoyed providing it.

Comment: Re:why does the CRTC need this list? (Score 1) 293

by dskoll (#47949111) Attached to: Canadian Regulator Threatens To Impose New Netflix Regulation

If everyone starts watching all their TV on Netflex and similar services, Canadian TV could all but disappear.

Speaking as a proud Canadian, I say: Good. That's called the power of the free market.

I have no doubt that 90% of Canadian content producers would shrivel up and die without CRTC protection. I also have no doubt that the survivors would adapt, improve, and make shows that people actually want to watch, possibly even opening up an export market for Canadian content.

Any time the government protects cultural content, the quality of that content plummets because there's no free market competition to keep producers sharp.

Government can help content producers with strategic investments. TV Ontario produces far superior shows to the CBC with a fraction of the amount of government investment and in a commercial-free environment. The CBC needs to go commercial-free and concentrate on making decent shows, not copycat shows of American crap.

Comment: Re:Uh (Score 1) 293

by dskoll (#47949045) Attached to: Canadian Regulator Threatens To Impose New Netflix Regulation

Actually, this federal government is more likely than the Liberals and way more likely than the NDP to restrain the CRTC. So if you are not happy with the CRTC, giving Harper the boot is not going to help. (Not that I'm a Harper fan, particularly, but on this issue his party is probably closer to the consumers' position than the other parties.)

Comment: Re:Fuck Canadian content welfare system (Score 2) 293

by dskoll (#47949009) Attached to: Canadian Regulator Threatens To Impose New Netflix Regulation

If you want Canadians to watch Canadian content, then... make content that Canadians want to watch. It's that simple.

I watch a few excellent Canadian shows (for example, TV Ontario's The Agenda). But most TV shows produced in Canada are crap. They're no better than the cheap American shlock.

Comment: CRTC needs to be reined in (Score 1) 293

by dskoll (#47948969) Attached to: Canadian Regulator Threatens To Impose New Netflix Regulation

The CRTC is nuts. The only things the CRTC should regulate are telecommunication tariffs, bandwidth allocation, telemarketing abuse and wireless interference. Trying to "protect" Canadian content is ridiculous in 2014. Either our Canadian content is good and will find a Canadian and international audience, or it's crap and the content producers will deservedly go out of business.

There's no place any more for cultural protectionism.

Comment: Not survivor (Score 1) 52

by DrYak (#47946597) Attached to: Inside Shenzen's Grey-Market iPhone Mall

Take TVs, for example. I have a Sears TV in storage from the '80s. The manual has circuit schematics, where to get replacements for the channel buttons, how to replace switches, what pots are used where. It was made so someone with basic soldering skills could at least maintain it. A new LED TV just gets chucked and you buy a new one, even though the problem could be a membrane contact that costs a penny.

First off, your Sears TV is suffering from "Survivor Bias" - it lasted that long for you Who knows how many thousands are sitting in landfills because they're broken? So no, you can't say "things were made better in the past because my XXX works today".

Read again, he's not saying that his Sears TV is better *because it still works*. It's not survivor bias.
He's saying:
- back then, a TV was expected to be repaired and came with all the necessary information to do a repair.
- nowadays, things are made much more difficult for any one wanting to repair: good luck finding the schematics of any modern LED TV.

I don't want to achieve immortality through my work. I want to achieve immortality through not dying. -- Woody Allen