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Comment: Calling BS is a precious skill (Score 1) 202

by bobetov (#41251777) Attached to: Do Tech Entrepreneurs Need To Know How To Code?

If you run a software startup and don't know software, you will forever be making errors of judgement due to your lack of that understanding.

You can't hire people effectively. You can't manage projects effectively. You can't call BS when your engineers tell you it will be done impossibly soon, or isn't possible. You can't *judge*.

I do tech startup consulting, and a fair bit of my work is helping non-tech founders hire, manage, and analyze. It's crucial to have this ability on your founding team if you're a software startup. That MBA is not enough.

Comment: No professional developer uses WYSIWYG (Score 5, Insightful) 342

by bobetov (#40749267) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Value of Website Design Tools vs. Hand Coding?

Hand coding is the only way to go. Modern web pages integrate HTML, CSS, and several different javascript libraries. They contain div's with dynamic content updated via AJAX. They are often built with templating libraries such as Rails' ERB, meaning you have code (conditional statements, for example) mixed into your page's HTML.

DOM structure matters - with a WYSIWYG tool like Dreamweaver, you have no control over the actual content of the page unless you go into HTML mode and basically use it like Notepad.

Your son is doing it the right way. If you want to save time, build a personal library of javascript libs and CSS snippets that you rely on. But skip the dedicated editors. You lose much much more than you gain.

Comment: Missing the point (Score 4, Informative) 250

by bobetov (#40642417) Attached to: jQuery 2.0 Will Drop Support For IE 6, 7, 8

All, one of the big reasons for this move is to provide a cleaner, smaller, faster version of jQuery to apps dedicated to a given platform, such as iOS apps running as HTML5 shells. These applications know their "browser" environment, and thus can benefit from lack of IE support with no cost in terms of audience size.

No one who has a general-public website should use 2.0 for years to come, but if you're developing a quickie Android app, or one of the dozen or so javascript-based desktop shells, etc, then this move is for you.

Comment: 3 Words (Score 1) 239

by bobetov (#40498475) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Defines Good Developer Culture?

"Fire the assholes"

I've worked in a dozen or so small-to-mid software shops as employee, contractor or founder. The number one (preventable) reason for companies to go under, in my experience, is one or two jerks poisoning the well.

No matter how awesome someone looks on paper, if he or she is making people around him or her resentful, fearful or angry, pink slip immediately. Don't mess around. Don't worry about loss of capability - ask your team to step up and fill in until a new hire can be brought in, and they will.

Nothing kills team spirit more than that one guy who thinks primate politics trumps respect and results.

Comment: Forget the bannination, how about uptime? (Score 5, Interesting) 540

by bobetov (#40301213) Attached to: <em>Diablo 3</em> Banhammer Dropped Just Before RMAH Goes Live

I bought Diablo 3, but have had 3 separate occasions where my "single player" game was unavailable for multiple hour long "maintenance" windows. Not being able to blow off steam in a dungeon crawler so Blizzard can get more value out of its players is leaving a SERIOUSLY bad taste in my mouth.

Who the hell is going to pay real money for gear in a single player game?

Comment: Re:CMS and done. (Score 0) 409

by bobetov (#40198215) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Tips For Designing a Modern Web Application?

I'm sorry - "keep to your Java roots" and "jQuery"?

They have nothing to do with each other. Syntax, programming paradigms, typing... how the heck did this comment get upvoted?

And using a CMS... god. I'm a contractor. About half my work is taking fugly sites hacked together using "plugins" for WordPress and making them actually work (using Rails, in my case). You'll learn almost nothing from putting up a WordPress site, except how frustrating it is to try to pick a set of plugins that mostly get you what you want done without making a mess of the site.

WordPress is a blogging platform with delusions of general purpose usage. Can't speak to Joomla etc., but I'd be amazed if you didn't regret trying a one-and-done CMS solution to a custom web app problem.

WordPress is the DreamWeaver of our age.

Comment: Re:Some hints: (Score 2) 290

by bobetov (#39645769) Attached to: Sony Projects Record Losses of $6.4 Billion

Just want to say as a (very regretful) MacBook Pro owner:

I went to upgrade my 4GB RAM to 8GB because my top-end laptop couldn't function without it, and was quoted FOUR HUNDRED DOLLARS for the upgrade.

$400. Just gonna lay that out there. The price of a top-of-the-line Transformer Prime tablet, soup-to-nuts.

I declined(!) and bought some RAM at Best Buy, plus a jeweler's screwdriver, and had the thing upgraded for $70. And got a nice screwdriver in the bargain.

Everything you posted may be true, but it doesn't make Apple a good company.

Comment: Focus on mobile (Score 1) 435

by bobetov (#38559254) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Re-Entering the Job Market As a Software Engineer?

If you have non-trivial Android experience, you will be hire-able, full stop. I can't count the number of recruiter calls I get due to having a single Android line-item in my resume. There aren't enough developers to do the work that the market demands - polish up your work in this area, and target it as your application focus, and you should have no trouble.

YMMV and all that, but it's the reality on the ground here in North Carolina at least...


MS Buying Yahoo? Bad Idea, Even At a Discount 141

Posted by timothy
from the bing-bing-bing-we-have-a-winner dept.
jfruhlinger writes "Nearly four years ago, Microsoft tried to buy Yahoo, but eventually withdrew the offer in the face of resistance from Yahoo's leadership. This week rumors resurfaced that Microsoft was once again bidding on the struggling Internet pioneer, this time for significantly less money. But even at a discount, it might be a pretty bad idea for Microsoft to get involved in the unfocused, money-losing Yahoo."

The Politics of ICANN 124

Posted by samzenpus
from the who's-in-charge dept.
dstates writes "The good news is that the Internet has become a central enough part of global life that politicians are starting to pay attention to the details of Internet management. The bad news is that the politicians are paying attention to the Internet. has an interesting note on the politics surrounding the annual meeting of the The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers which is opening its annual meeting in San Francisco today. While some people find it frightening that a US corporation controls name usage on the Internet, the prospect of a UN body assuming control raises its own concerns."

Nobody's gonna believe that computers are intelligent until they start coming in late and lying about it.