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Comment This has always been the future. (Score 1) 335

I've been out in industry for exactly a decade. I know who they are laying off. I would bet heavily that these are the guys that like doing things the way they have always done things and are content on not improving it. They're the drafters that refused to learn "that CAD thing". You see it all over Slashdot. You guys sure like things the way you used to do them. "Why kids these days don't need to learn Assembly".

I spent a recent layoff learning Python 3.4. It's near impossible to get people off of 2.7 at work or Matlab. Why? Because that's what they learned during undegrad and grad school and that's where everything is written. And they do have a small point, I'm don't have time to go back and re-write 50 years of working software. Once we as a society figured out Linear Algebra in Fortran we stopped messing with it. Numpy, Matlab, et al are just pretty BLAS wrappers.

However at impedes a lot of progress. At this point I feel like I'm in Office Space half the time:

1st Bob: What you do at Initech is you take the specifications from the software engineer and bring them down to the hardware engineers?
        Tom: Yes, yes that's right.
        2nd Bob: Well then I just have to ask why can't the software engineers use the hardware engineer's API?
        Tom: Well, I'll tell you why... because... software engineers are not good at dealing with APIs...
        1st Bob: So you physically take the flash files from the software engineer?
        Tom: Well... No. The project lead does that... or they're e-mailed....

If you're doing things the same way you did them even a year ago, then some lazier person that does your job is currently writing a script to do it that way. So in 50 years we can all look back and laugh at "Those idiots used to do it by hand". If you write a script to save you 1 minute a day, that's 4 hours a business year. If you write a script to save you and all of your co-workers 1 minute a day. That's an additional 4 hours per head per year. Start adding that up over a decade or two.

It's entertaining to watch you guys not wanting to use new tools, I just started writing new tools to use the old tools I wrote. I could reduce my manager's headcount by 3-4 and keep the same work level output with an improvement in quality. Software engineers have already done that, it's what continuous integration is for. Then they got tired of dealing with merges, so they wrote tools to automatically do merges if everything tests out.

CGP Grey's "Humans Need Not Apply" is a good video on the current state of automation. While I don't share quite his outlook his statements about what is going on right now is dead on. (Humans' will just start building warp drives instead of dicking around with what we do now). If TensorFlow can pick those images out that accurately they sure as heck can read the graphs I used to have to read much, much better. Give me the picture of a tachometer trace and I could tell you what's wrong it your car. I don't need to hear it, see it or know what's going on.

Last night on SharkTank there was a guy that had a mobile app that could take your measurements 20% better than a professional tailor, just by taking some photos and doing some math. If you were hoping to be a tailor and spend time measuring people, I have bad news.

Engineers these days use Simulink. Finding Engineers that can Code is hard. So we taught the engineers to play with block diagrams and taught the block diagrams to write C. And it writes better C than most humans. It easily meets ISO26262 (Automotive Safety) and DO 178b (Aerospace Safety) certifications. It's light years ahead of any open source project "Visual" coders available for Arduino. Some guys took the most boring parts of C and 'automated it'. Yet when "Visual coding" comes up on Slashdot you guys think 'it'll never work'. (Enjoy the unemployment line).

Jenkins is great for doing a lot of what I used to do 5 years ago. It doesn't need to replace everything but if it does 95% it's close enough and I can waste my days on Slashdot and then spend an hour a week on the other 5%. Scotty never did any work. He wrote a few AIs to handle the repetitive stuff so he could go on away missions.

The other half of what I have to do at work is 'TPS reports'. The fact that new software like Jupyter Notebooks exists means I can write my documentation, presentation and code in one place. I wrote a short script to kick out a company branded LaTeX document (for the engineers), PDF for the manager, Presentation for the Suits. It's win win for everyone. The suits can flip through it on their iPads and the Engineers can make pretty equations in LaTeX and everyone is happy and I just spent 10% of my time not copy and pasting crap into PowerPoint or Word.

I'm sure that you are all special unique snowflakes that have kept up with technology and that these guys will do exactly what you did, just for less. But I would put money on statistically, these are the Drafters that refused to learn CAD, the Engineers that refused to learn Simulink and the IT guys that refused to automate what ever they did every day.

Comment Re:The technical problems with this are immense. (Score 1) 346

What immense technical problems did autonomous vehicles have prior to the 2004 DARPA project?

What immense technical problems did nuclear have before the Manhattan project?

What immense technical problems did flight have 150 years ago?

What immense technical problems did the internal combustion engine have 200 years ago?

For a site supposedly for nerds the nerds sure are short sighted when it comes to technology. However based on the comments in multiple other threads most people here would be happier if kids had to walk uphill both ways to use their punchcards.

Comment Re: Glue it, internet it, breach it (Score 1) 158

Posted up in the thread:

We do it all in Simulink. If you have experience with C you'd probably be best making device drivers for Simulink.

Not that we don't have people that don't know what they're doing in Simulink. I've seen some terrible 'coding', but Matlab helps to catch most of the errors, even if people get lazy with datatypes.

Comment Challenge Accepted. (Score 1) 513

Millions of teenage boys just said "Ha, I'll prove you wrong". Way back in the day when we were sophomores in highschool the teacher took away all 'dirty' word magnets. So we arranged the ones she left into something dirty, then she removed those. Rinse repeat.

And that's why we couldn't have nice things.

Comment Re:Missed the Boat? (Score 1) 269

Yes and no. The 'chain' is every transaction that ever occurred ever.

Think of it as the git repo for bitcoin. You can either let someone else host it (and just tell them to do transactions) or you can get it yourself. It all comes down to who you trust and with what.

But should the internet explode and you lose all trust in everyone else you'll have your own black book of what was spent where. I just use coinbase these days. I honestly trust it more than my bank because it has better security than my bank. I tell them to do transactions on by behalf and they have the computers to do all the dirty transaction bits.

Comment Re:Visual vs wall of code (Score 1) 158

Yep. It all comes down to trust of a toolchain.

I trust Simulink makes my blocks into the appropriate C (& C++) just like some people here trust that their assembler converts their C into the appropriate byte language.

If you can't trust your tools you'll never get work done. And it's not that I don't enjoy building hammers, or drills or table saws it's that at the end of the day my job isn't to build the hammers or drills or table saws, it's to build something using them.

Comment Re:Holy Cow (Score 1) 249

Am I that old to believe long tern stability is a good thing?

I just moved to FreeBSD for everything in my house. I'm too old for dicking around with 'bleeding edge'. When I was 17 'bleeding edge' was the latest Alpha or Beta release I could find of OS X. Anymore it seems like Windows is just the latest Alpha or Beta.

With FreeBSD it may be old or 'out of date' with the latest and greatest but it works.

Comment Re:If it was easy (Score 1) 158

Just like typing? My wife works with doctors that were told "Oh, you don't need to learn to keyboard, you'll have someone to do that for you. You're going to be a doctor".

Programming is becoming the same way. IBM's Watson is going to displace a lot of doctors. It just means the next generation of doctors is going to have to know how to make and use the tools given to them.

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