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Comment: Re:yes, programming, like poetry, is not words, un (Score 1) 207

by Xest (#48912369) Attached to: Why Coding Is Not the New Literacy

If I can take one thing away from what's being said without managing to actually get to the point it's that apparently what we really need is to do a better job of teaching mathematics.

I mean, that's really what it all comes down to.

Programming is ultimately just an application of that. The reasons for needing to teach it universally ultimately seem to fall back to the simple fact that current methods of, and the areas of mathematics teaching are currently failing kids.

So rather than recognising that giving students a book with 40 math problems to shut up and solve in silence which is far too prevalent still it seems what we really need is to give them real world problems to solve and explain how to use mathematical underpinnings of modelling, logic, and philosophy to achieve that.

Unfortunately the people coming up with these ideas of coding for all themselves never managed to self-educate in mathematics to see past the flawed system of teaching it upto the age of about 18 and don't realise that's what they're basically asking for.

Teach kids a broader understanding of mathematics than just how to repeat algorithms blindly without truly understanding the what's, why's, or how's and everything from making a logical argument in politics through to doing programming will come easily.

Keep teaching maths in the shoddy way it's often currently taught though and it wont matter how much half-arsed coding you've taught, you still wont have gotten anywhere.

Frankly even history as a subject could be made far more useful if kids had to do a module on the history of mathematics and the evolution of mathematical achievements - you don't even need to cover the math itself, just explaining who came up with what, and why is an eye opener in itself and ties in with some important advances in human philosophy, physics and other key milestones of humanity too.

Comment: Re:Support the EFF (Score 5, Informative) 279

by Xest (#48912115) Attached to: EFF Unveils Plan For Ending Mass Surveillance

Agreed, but it's worth noting that they're very US-centric (and that's not a criticism, just a statement of fact) so if you're not from the US you may find your money better spent elsewhere.

For example, in the UK, the Open Rights Group is far more relevant and helpful towards dealing with these issues in the UK than the EFF is. Presumably the options in countries like Sweden and Germany would be the much better organised respect Pirate parties there.

Comment: Re:Pathetic failure mode (Score 1) 361

by Xest (#48904861) Attached to: Linus On Diversity and Niceness In Open Source


So now it's onto the victim card is it? Oh you're so hard done by, it must be awful failing to follow a conversation, jumping in with insults and acting like an ass, having it pointed out to you that you failed to follow the conversation, and then having to play the victim because it's everyone elses fault but yours.

I mean, you were such a victim in your initial reply, you were so pleasant and so hard done by! -

"Wow. You really are confused if you think linux is still a small teaching tool and minux is no longer a small teaching tool. If you really are that confused and it's a serious suggestion why are you bothering to comment on this thread at all if it's so far beyond the realms of what you know? What motivates you to make noise with no substance in this situation?"

If you can't take the heat then don't act like an ass, especially when you were wrong in the first place.

Comment: Re:Yes, but not the flu (Score 1) 661

by Xest (#48904847) Attached to: Should Disney Require Its Employees To Be Vaccinated?

You've not really clarified why they're a problem though, you're suggesting they are without justifying it. Are you afraid of needles or something? Getting a jab once a year is way easier than trying to install anti-bacterial handwash installations at every door in the world.

Even this does little though, as it's not just being spread based on touch, you could make everyone wear masks to prevent sneezes or coughs or just general breathing from spreading the disease, but all that does in absence of vaccination is means that we'll suffer even harder when we inevitably face a strain of flu that does work it's way around the things you put in place.

Long story short, vaccinations are the only real answer, and they have other benefits of generally improving your immune response to boot. They're win-win and the only reason to be against them is if you're one of those crackpot anti-vaccination types that thankfully only really seem to infest America.

Comment: Re:Yes, but not the flu (Score 1) 661

by Xest (#48884165) Attached to: Should Disney Require Its Employees To Be Vaccinated?

The odds of getting the flu can be as low as 5%, so you can go 20 years without catching it on average.

Just because you've apparently never had it judging by your incorrect comments, doesn't mean you can't get it or wont get it.

Besides, why do you fear getting it? It's really not going to hurt you, but it will protect you and if you are really fortunate enough to be apparently immune to developing flu symptoms from the flu as you imply then it will still prevent you passing it on to others meaning it's still a good thing.

Increasing the range of illnesses your immune system has been trained to cope with is never a bad thing - learn about the history of the smallpox vaccine - someone noticed that milk maids were the only ones not dropping dead left and right to smallpox, this is because they'd mostly all already contracted cowpox at some point which was similar but relatively harmless compared to smallpox. Nevertheless, their bodies gaining immunity to cowpox with little illness also made them immune to smallpox which could've otherwise killed them.

So what possible benefit do you perceive from not getting the flu jab? Whether you feel you need it or not it's still beneficial to you and others either way.

Comment: Re:Yes. (Score 1) 661

by Xest (#48883987) Attached to: Should Disney Require Its Employees To Be Vaccinated?

You're not being forced. You're perfectly able to choose not to take the job or to quit instead of taking the test if you so choose.

Some jobs require further vetting of candidates, people working in the financial sector typically have to go through credit reference checks to ensure they're unlikely to commit fraud, people in the defence sector often have to go through national security vetting to ensure they're not a security threat, people working with children have to go through criminal records checks to ensure they've got no convictions, people driving company vehicles have to show that their driving record is clean and they're not a reckless driver.

If you don't want to go through these things, then don't go for those jobs.

As much as I hate to defend Disney, it should be well within it's right to ensure the kids are safe from employees who might fuck up and put them in danger because they have a drug problem and brought it to work. It's going to cost them dearly if such an incident does occur so why shouldn't they be able to protect themselves from someone elses problem?

Comment: Re:Doesn't really fit does it (Score 1) 361

by Xest (#48882713) Attached to: Linus On Diversity and Niceness In Open Source

So I guess you fail even basic literacy then given that you don't know what the word "had" means in the context I quoted?

Are you sure you're not a child? I thought adult illiteracy was largely solved now in the developed world, but you seem to be trying very hard to prove otherwise.

Quite how you continue to interpret "had" as anything else than what it actually means I've no idea. I you're so desperate to refuse to admit you made a stupid comment that you're now willing to completely try and redefine basic English words. I know people on Slashdot often can't admit when they're wrong, but you've taken it to a new level of absurdity. You're so desperate to avoid admitting you went completely off track, got confused and flew off the handle as a result that you're willing to instead make yourself entirely illiterate instead.

You either need psychiatric help, or basic literacy classes. Whichever it is doesn't bode well for you as a supposed grown up adult.

Comment: Re:Doesn't really fit does it (Score 1) 361

by Xest (#48855861) Attached to: Linus On Diversity and Niceness In Open Source

I don't know whether to laugh or cry at you now trying to reframe the discussion as one about the current state of things and then trying to accuse me of not following the discussion. Here's the core discussion on Minix in the post you replied to originally:

"But had we all moved to Minix, we would probably not be hearing that much swearing by Andrew Tanenbaum or other Minix kernel maintainers compared to Linus Torvalds and other Linux kernel maintainers, as with so few core lines, there is not much to maintain in the Minix kernel, and so it is easier to test and debug."

What do you think that second word means? What do you think the word "had" actually means? He's talking about precisely that alternative reality you dismiss my comment for and instead try to reframe the discussion as being about the current state of Linux.

Please, try and keep up in future before going off the rails and making a fool of yourself.

Comment: Re:Link to full code (Score 1) 36

by Xest (#48855803) Attached to: UK ISPs EE, Virgin and Vodafone Back Net Neutrality

I guess the code is a complete whitewash to avoid legislation on the issue then?

The reason I say this is that I have a line with PlusNet and they most definitely do not support net neutrality. Service throttling is a stated part of what they do:


Whatever this code is, it clearly doesn't do what it claims to. If an ISP is intentionally slowing down certain traffic (and charging you more to have lower priority traffic increased on your line as PlusNet does - £5 for their "pro addon" which increases priority of deprioritised traffic) then this is most definitely not net neutrality whatever they say.

Comment: Re:I hope it was supposed to be a joke (Score 1) 361

by Xest (#48854607) Attached to: Linus On Diversity and Niceness In Open Source

"so that little weasel trick merely shows your own retained childishness."

Actually no, it makes things even more embarrassing for you. Typically to retain a trait well into adulthood that could be forgiven as inexperience amongst someone young is not a good thing. Most people wouldn't be proud to still be wearing diapers at 50.

"What exactly is the point of your attempt to compare what is now two very different things as if they are equivalent?"

The point is that something being a teaching tool vs. a production worthy tool is really only dependent on the amount of effort expended on it. Linux has lots of effort expended on it because rightly or wrongly it won the battle for uptake early on. Minix can therefore be just as capable with equivalent effort poured into it, the fact it's merely used as a teaching tool has little bearing on that.

The point being that something being a teaching tool isn't a barrier to it becoming a production tool, as Linux very well proved.

Comment: Re:I have grown skeptical of these experiments. (Score 1) 219

by Xest (#48849887) Attached to: Why Some Teams Are Smarter Than Others

"The moment you introduce variation in skill sets among the team members, agile for software breaks down."

Out of interest, why? and what particular part of agile given that it's a broad topic with lots of methodologies?

I don't see how speciality requirements causes an issue, agile doesn't remove the necessity to ensure a team is competent in having the required skillset for the task at hand.

Agile isn't magic, many things from the past are still relevant, if you don't have enough French translators to do the work your translation project is going to fail whatever the methodology being used.

Comment: Re:I hope it was supposed to be a joke (Score 1) 361

by Xest (#48849823) Attached to: Linus On Diversity and Niceness In Open Source

Are you stupid?

I didn't say anything about Linux still being a small teaching tool and Minix not. I merely pointed out that just because something starts out as something, doesn't mean it has to always be that way with a bit of support to help it grow up.

Speaking of needing support to help grow up, shall I call your mother now or are you at least old enough to make your own way home to her?

"Free markets select for winning solutions." -- Eric S. Raymond