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Comment: Re:Ok seriously though ... (Score 2) 367

by Eric Damron (#46544093) Attached to: Linux May Succeed Windows XP As OS of Choice For ATMs

I have worked in an IT department where we were getting slammed every few years with huge upgrade crunches. These were on desktop PCs not ATMs so I don't know how closely our problems mirrored those of banks but for us it was all of in-house software that had to be tested and upgraded to work with Microsoft changes.

We had a hardware maintenance contracted so every few years,like it or not, we would get new PCs that had Microsoft's newest OS. It's not as easy as just dropping new PCs on everyone's desks. Every piece of software that our employees used needed to be tested with the new version of Windows. A lot of them broke. Microsoft products like MS Office mostly worked in vanilla form but we had to test all of our macros and any third party add-ons like Dragon Dictate which often broke.

Basically any third party or in house applications were a crap shoot. The PCs would come in and we had little time to adapted. It was a total pain. If we were running Linux we could have tested at our own pace and then deployed instead of rushing to meet someone else's schedule.

Comment: Re:Superdeterminism (Score 1) 108

by Eric Damron (#46306667) Attached to: Making Sure Our Lab Equipment Isn't Tricking Us

"Note that superdeterminism doesn't necessarily rule out 'free will'."

I guess I don't understand how the example that you gave following that statement supports the idea of "free will." For me the more interesting question is: "What does awareness mean in a deterministic world?"

Are we just observers riding the deterministic "roller coaster?"

Comment: Free Will is an Illusion (Score 1) 108

by Eric Damron (#46306537) Attached to: Making Sure Our Lab Equipment Isn't Tricking Us

"a scenario that, however far-fetched, implies that a physicist running the experiment does not have complete free will in choosing each detectorâ(TM)s setting."

Of course the physicist doesn't have free will. No one has free will. If the universe is controlled by natural laws everything that has happened or ever will happen must be preordained. Every synapse that has ever fired in our brains is just an electrochemical event caused by a long chain of other events that can be traced back to the big bang.

Comment: Re:Problems due to inflexibility (Score 4, Insightful) 89

by Eric Damron (#46306165) Attached to: Microsoft Circles the Wagons To Defeat ODF In the UK

I'm old enough to have lived through the entire Microsoft history of dirty tricks, disingenuous press releases and out right illegal anti-trust violations. It seems that some things never do really change.

Part of the compatibility issues are due to the time lag caused by the need to reverse engineer Microsoft's âoeStandard.â If the past is any indication of how this company works they haven't been forthcoming on providing complete documentation to their document format. There may be a bit of the âoeWindows isn't done until Lotus won't run...â attitude left in a company that has a history of wanting not just to compete but do completely crush anything that remotely smells like competition. And if that takes lies, dirty tricks or anti-trust violations requiring decades to litigate then so be it.

For the younger folks here: Watch this company with a skeptical eye because they don't have YOUR best interest at heart and they will do practically anything to win.


Comment: Re:New MS business plan (Score 1) 513

Very true but Microsoft is known for using their operating system to extend power in other areas.

They did this in the non-OS software areas by using undisclosed API calls giving them an advantage and now they want the tablet market.

They probably figure that most people would end up using Windows 8 because most new PCs are sold with a Microsoft OS. Once people get use to Windows 8 they probably figured that they would gain an advantage in the tablet market due to OS familiarity.

They never learn.

Comment: Re:Which company bought this 'new' rule? (Score 1) 1143

by Cutriss (#45382767) Attached to: EPA Makes Most Wood Stoves Illegal

So, two things.

And up here in the northern midwest of the United States, we're at the same latitude as Moscow. It gets cold.

If you're in the northern midwest of the US, you're not at the same latitude as Moscow. Moscow is 55 deg north, the continental 48 stop at the 49th parallel. So, unless you're talking about Ketchikan, which is decidedly not "midwest", then you need to adjust your memories a bit.

Second, as you should well be aware, latitude alone does not define how cold a place gets. In fact, southern Alaska and the Cascades region in general is generally more temperate than New England. Jet stream, currents, regional topography, all that stuff makes a difference. Going to guess based on your commentary that you're in the Montana/ND area, so comparing Helena with Moscow puts them on about par, with a full nine degrees difference in latitude.

Comment: Re:Hint (Score 3, Interesting) 1160

No, "barbaric" is the way we treat people with mental illness and ailments that point to it. Rather than fix the problem, it's easier to take a puritanical view and pretend it's that individual's personal failings that caused the problem instead of society's failing to treat it. When this inevitably results in recidivism, it's just easier for society to hit the guy with a brick and make the problem go away.

We make the monsters and then claim that the monsters have to be killed because they can't be unmade.

Comment: Re:WAAAAT (Score 0) 282

by mark_lybarger (#44962749) Attached to: Will New Red-Text Warnings Kill Casual Use of Java?

yep. we have an internal applet application that uses a self signed certificate. it's deployed to the local file system and launched from a remote page, thus we're stuck using java less than 1.6.24 due to a security change^^^bug oracle made.

Comment: ecigs not really a good thing... (Score 3, Insightful) 314

I understand that e-cigarettes may be able to be used to kick an addictive habit that has horrific health risks. However, it is another addictive pastime that probably has health risks of its own.

It has the potential of becoming a fad which would hook millions who believe it to be safe into a dangerous and expensive habit. Something the corporate powers would relish being that they consider this a real cash cow and anyone hooked a mere crop to be cultivated.

If I didnâ(TM)t have morals and I controlled an evil tobacco company I would endeavor to gain control of the e-cigarette market so that I could manipulate the price of both products. That way if tobacco sales started to fall off I could raise the price of e-cigarettes enough to drive customers to the more affordable tobacco products. Back and forth I would cultivate my crops.

Comment: Re:If your froyo is a "sugary treat" (Score 1) 247

by mark_lybarger (#44750259) Attached to: Android 4.4 Named 'KitKat'

True, same as getting a salad at McDonald's -- it's got more fat and sugar than the Big Mac.

i doubt the veracity of those statements.

the big mac has: 28g fat, 46g carbs, and 9 g sugars.
the "worst" salad has 22g fat, 24g carbs, and 7g sugars.

Comment: more slashdot stores (Score 1) 597

by mark_lybarger (#43913877) Attached to: Why Your Users Hate Agile

this is one of the largest buzzwords in the industry lately in concert with virtualization. i'm surprised i don't see many "articles" on ./ about agile.

i'm not sure i quite understand how or why a software development methodology has become the defacto standard for the project management community as a whole. literally, overnight, project managers have become scrum masters and every project from developing a new predictive pricing solution for sales to an os upgrade project becomes managed as an "agile" project. did manifesto group envision (design/declare) a new project management methodology or good practices for developing (building) software?

What ever you want is going to cost a little more than it is worth. -- The Second Law Of Thermodynamics