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Comment: Begin by communicating. (Score 1) 361

by cfsops (#45415329) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Communication Skills For Programmers?

As a new developer at a young-ish software company, I've been told my communication skills need some work.

Is your manager telling you that your communication skills need work, or is it your co-workers?

If it's your manager, then part of his/her job is to help you improve; he/she needs to suggest how you can improve your communications skills.

If it's not your manager, then talk to (communicate with) your manager, tell them you're concerned that your communication skills may need some work and ask them for suggestions. It's part of their job to help you improve, so they should have no problem offering advice.

If your manager isn't willing to offer any help, then think about looking for a new job and moving on.

Comment: Re:fourth amendment vs. first amendment (Score 3, Informative) 333

by cfsops (#44304921) Attached to: EFF Sues NSA, Justice Department, FBI

Unless you really believe the nutball theory that evil UN men in black will use those databases to swoop in and start confiscating guns indiscriminately then it's pretty implausible that holding gun sellers and owners accountable would violate anyone's rights.

It was exactly that "nutball" confiscation of guns, perpetrated by James against Protestants, that led to the assertion of the right in the British Bill of Rights and which in turn led to its inclusion in our Second Amendment.

I'm sure I don't know what you mean by holding gun sellers and owners accountable. Hold them accountable for what? Are you suggesting that gun sellers and owners are, by definition, guilty of some crime for which they must be held responsible? If they've done something "wrong" and have been judged guilty, as you seem to suggest, what's the point of a list? Why not just punish them?

+ - Microsoft assisting FBI and NSA in decrypting encrypted messages->

Submitted by Taco Cowboy
Taco Cowboy (5327) writes "The latest scoop from Edward Snowden's release is how Microsoft has handed NSA and FBI access to email messages, files stored on SkyDrive, audios (telephone calls on Skype) and videos (also from Skype).

Nothing is sacred anymore, it seems.

Microsoft has collaborated closely with US intelligence services to allow users' communications to be intercepted, including helping the National Security Agency to circumvent the company's own encryption, according to top-secret documents obtained by the Guardian.

The files provided by Edward Snowden illustrate the scale of co-operation between Silicon Valley and the intelligence agencies over the last three years. They also shed new light on the workings of the top-secret Prism program, which was disclosed by the Guardian and the Washington Post last month.

Microsoft helped the NSA to circumvent its encryption to address concerns that the agency would be unable to intercept web chats on the new portal;

The agency already had pre-encryption stage access to email on, including Hotmail;

The company worked with the FBI this year to allow the NSA easier access via Prism to its cloud storage service SkyDrive, which now has more than 250 million users worldwide;

In July last year, nine months after Microsoft bought Skype, the NSA boasted that a new capability had tripled the amount of Skype video calls being collected through Prism;"
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Judicial control is what was missing (Score 1) 146

by cfsops (#44228177) Attached to: Federal Judge Rejects State Secrets Claims: EFF Case To Proceed

It's little to do with soldiers. Everyone's a fucking hero any more here. If a cop or a fireman or heaven-forbid a mail person just does their job, they're now a "hero". If someone walks down the street and doesn't fall into a quivering mass at the corner, pissing itself over the cars and shit driving by, then that someone is a fucking hero.

Comment: Re:Judicial control is what was missing (Score 1) 146

by cfsops (#44227953) Attached to: Federal Judge Rejects State Secrets Claims: EFF Case To Proceed

The Pentagon just argued that Seal Team 6 was on loan to the CIA when they went after Bin Laden,

It was my understanding from the beginning that it was a CIA operation with JSOC people temporarily assigned. IOW, I don't think this was ever a "secret". I think this is not unusual and sometimes works in reverse, (CIA/SOG temporarily assigned to JSOC units), as well.

Comment: Re:but, back to root cause (Score 1) 423

by cfsops (#44227327) Attached to: Malcolm Gladwell On Culture and Airplane Crashes

especially for a person landing for the first time at a given airport.

This was not the flying pilot's first time landing at KSFO. It was his first time landing a B777 at KSFO. Though the training pilot had only 40-something hours flying the B777, he's been an airline pilot for nearly 20 years and, therefore, has many thousands of hours flying jets, including the B747.

I'm not trying to apologize for the guy; he (and the others in the pointy-end) fucked up huge and two people died and others are probably permanently injured because of it. Let's try to get it right for their sakes, if nothing else.

It could be that the pilot flying lined up on the edge of what they saw, which was the seawall, instead of lining up on the runway edge, fifty feet further up.

Which is why you don't "target" the edge of the runway, but rather the excessively clearly marked TDZ. This airplane was not coming down "a few feet" short, it was coming down many hundreds of feet short.

Comment: Re:but, back to root cause (Score 1) 423

by cfsops (#44226983) Attached to: Malcolm Gladwell On Culture and Airplane Crashes

Yes it can be landed in that manner. However, to do so requires a working Instrument Landing System for the runway on which the plane intends to land. In this case, it appears that at least part of the ILS system for runway 28L, the glide slope part, was not working, (due to maintenance). This part of the landing system tells the pilot how high the plane should be at a given distance from the runway. It creates a sort-of invisible slide (usually 3 degrees) that the plane flies down, with the bottom of the slide being near the end of the runway, (specifically in/near the touch-down zone or TDZ). In this case, the pilots apparently were flying the approach manually, so they had to judge for themselves how to descend to the runway. All pilots are trained to do this, so it's not some mysterious procedure that only a few know how to do. The problem in this case is that the plane was descending to a point well short of the runway, a point in the water, and the question is why did the pilot(s) flying the approach not realize and act on the error until about 7 seconds before impact, which was too late to do anything about it. In terms of the appropriateness of manually flying the approach, the weather conditions at San Francisco on Saturday are probably the most suitable.

Comment: What could go wrong... (Score 1) 10

by cfsops (#44221379) Attached to: UCSD Lecturer Releases Gun Owner Geotagging Application

I expect those who advocate this despicable app will soon discover it's far more beneficial to the criminals in pointing out where the people who can defend themselves live and consequently where the sheep live. Why would the BadGuy fuck with me when he can mount the sheeply, mewling quim, (to borrow a phrase from another post), that bleats next door. Great Idea!

+ - NYT Looks at FISA: Everybody is a potential "Target"->

Submitted by some old guy
some old guy (674482) writes "This NYT analysis looks into the recent attention given to the FISA court, particularly at its broad interpretations of Congress' intent and what constitutes "foreign intelligence". Particularly disturbing is how only the government is allowed to present it's side of the story in filings. We're all being subjected to a court where we have no standing to defend or assert our side of any case."
Link to Original Source

+ - The Black Underbelly Of Windows 8.1 'Blue' 3

Submitted by snydeq
snydeq (1272828) writes "Changes in Microsoft's forthcoming upgrade to Windows 8 reveal the dark underbelly of Microsoft's evolving agenda, one that finds pieces of Windows 8 inexplicably disappearing and a new feature that allows Microsoft to track your local searches cropping up, InfoWorld's Woody Leonhard reports. 'As Windows 8.1 Milestone Preview testers push and prod their way into the dark corners of Windows 8.1 "Blue," they're finding a bunch of things that go bump in the night. From new and likely unwelcome features, to nudges into the Microsoft data tracking sphere, to entire lopped-off pieces of Windows 8, it looks like Microsoft is changing Windows to further its own agenda.'"

+ - World of Tanks: The 20-year war for online success->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "The CEO of, Victor Kislyi, the man behind World of Tanks was at the Bovington Tank Museum to open up a sponsored Education Centre, where Red Bull Gaming managed to sit down with him and talk Tanks, Warplanes, Warships, next-gen consoles and the 20-year plan behind the company's next games."
Link to Original Source

Assembly language experience is [important] for the maturity and understanding of how computers work that it provides. -- D. Gries