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Comment Re:Great experience (Score 1) 180

Google knows my location due to my use of Google Maps

Google receives the map tile requests, etc., but if location history is turned off nothing about it is stored. I have no idea what your cell provider may store, though.

Again, I actually like the location history. I find it convenient to be able to look back and see where I was at a particular date and time. But it's under your control.

Comment Re:Great experience (Score 1) 180

I really have no concern about sharing it with Google, because no one is ever going to see it.

Well, an individual person doesn't need to see it. If they're willing to use searches to send people job offers and ads, what else can they automate?

They can also remind you when it's time to leave for an appointment, and that you have a coupon you can use at the store you just entered, and that your wife's birthday is coming up, and much, much more... but only with your permission. If you don't want it, turn it off and delete the data. Google provides the tools.

And what happens when Google has a breech or a bad setting. Remember when Google signed people up for G+,. and a lot of private data got exposed.

I think you're thinking about Buzz, not Google+. That was bad; Buzz auto-friended contacts, exposing relationships. The fact that that's the worst thing that's happened, and that happened before all of the internal privacy review policies were put in place is pretty indicative, IMO.

As for a breach... nothing is impossible, but I spent 15 years as a security consultant to US corporations, mostly banks, and Google has dramatically better security systems than anyone I ever saw. I'm not worried about my data at Google.

However, if you are I highly recommend going to your Google account dashboard and deleting whatever information there you're concerned about.

Comment Re:Time Management (Score 1) 180

but bored in their current job?

I'd expect a self motivated worker to already be looking for a new one.

Bah. There are different kinds of people. Some will search out a better job, but many of the more introverted sorts won't. It doesn't mean they're not motivated, just that they're not comfortable with interviewing. A lot of top-performing software engineers are very introverted.

easier to teach brilliant problem solvers some time management skills

That's an optinion that not many employers share. Companys that take it upon themselves to teach basic skills tend to hire people without them. And then everyone suffers, because everyone is expected to help out the special snowflakes.

There are no "special snowflakes" at Google. Google gives people time and resources to address their shortcomings, and it's expected that everyone be helpful, but if you can't pull your weight for whatever reason, it'll come out. Your peers will tell you that you need to manage your time better, and your manager will expect you to make use of the internal resources available to improve. It's even fine if you take time away from your job to do what's needed to improve... but if you don't, you'll eventually be gone. It's not like learning to manage your time is hard. If you're capable of solving hard computer science problems, you can learn that, too.

In practice, it's really not a problem. If you find smart people and keep them challenged (or enable them to keep themselves challenged), and give them feedback on how they can do better, it works.

Comment Re:Great experience (Score 1) 180

I buy the "potential" issue. I have enough confidence in the leadership and the culture that I don't worry about it being abused in the near term, but eventually that could change. I actually do have a greater degree of trust in Google than I do other corporations or government agencies, though. I expect that's mostly because of the visibility I have as an employee.

The less they know about me, the better.

In the abstract I see that. But Google Now is useful... and I expect it to become vastly more useful. It's going to be interesting to see how this evolves over the next decade or so, whether most everyone decides that having an excellent personal digital assistant is worth allowing someone to know so much about them. At least it's shaping up that there will be competition... Now, Siri, Cortana, Echo...

And obviously Google is already using information it knows about users to make recruiting decisions so clearly they are using the data for more than just advertising.

Recruiting is advertising.

Suppose that I use an Android phone and I have all my web browsers signed in to a Google account. Google now has access to all my phone data, my contact data, calendar data, search history, and even info about websites that I go to directly w/o the help of google (thanks to Google ads)

Chrome can also tell Google everywhere you go even without the help of ads. It only does that if you turn on web history, though. Same with location. If you turn on location history, Google stores it. If not, Google doesn't get it. As for phone, contacts, calendar, photos, etc., that's true if you turn on backup for everything. If you turn off backup, the data doesn't go to Google. Of course, then you don't get the cross-platform always-updated calendar and contacts list, and if your phone gets run over by a bus it's all gone. Whether or not to use backup isn't a one-time decision, though; if you use it and then later decide not to you can use the privacy dashboard to delete stuff.

And Google does forget the data you ask it to delete. It's a good idea to check the dashboard periodically and wipe out anything you don't want to be there. You should probably do that if you haven't.

Comment Re:Psychology more scientific than cancer studies? (Score 1) 251

Dude, the fall-out around climate science is constant.

I've had someone pull the 97% number out, and I pointed out their abstract says they started with 14,000 papers whose primary topic was climate change or global warming, and then discarded all papers which took no final position; the dude came back and said that the discarded papers weren't about climate change at all (which contradicts what the actual study says). The 97% figure also counts papers, not authors; yet it's referenced as a consensus among number of scientists--without even counting *all* climate scientists. The whole thing also ignores the valid scientific standpoint that we don't know about something--you know, like the tons of scientific papers that claim WE DON'T KNOW IF VACCINES CAUSE AUTISM, because we've seen no such evidence supporting that claim, versus the single paper that claims it does.

In the realm of actual science, we have studies for and against which tend to follow the lines of who buys the study; in reality, someone will commission 100 studies, and 99 of them will fall one way, and vanish under NDA. The last study, obviously, gets published. You don't buy results; you buy experiments which may, occasionally, produce faulty results (statistics demands this happen occasionally), and just hide all the ones that don't go your way.

We also have poorly-designed analysis, goal-driven analysis, and all kinds of other shit. Bad experiments in climate scientists aren't because climate science is hard (it is) or because climate scientists are terrible scientists (they're not), but because there's political pressure to do certain things in a certain way, limiting scope, data, etc.

On top of all of it, we have stupid shit like the IPCC coming out and saying they've faked all the data and reports for the past decades because they think if they gave us real numbers we'd think it was ridiculous. They've essentially come out to say they've claimed 0.1C jumps over 50 years when it's really more like a 10C jump over 30 years coming, just they didn't think anyone would believe the earth would catch fire spontaneously.

I haven't analyzed the numbers or taken a full assessment because it's not worth my time doing. I assert it's probably way wonkier because I know the pressures on the field and I know what those pressures do to the rightly pursuit of knowledge. I also know that, regardless of the hard truth, people will take a position based on such political (which, really, is just social) pressures that drive them into their feeling of safety and superiority; it doesn't particularly matter if they're right or wrong, in the same way that murdering someone you meet in an alleyway so you can rob them doesn't immediately become righteous because that person was just on his way from raping and drowning a small child in a nearby lake. Motives are of the mind, not of the physical world.

Comment Re:Psychology more scientific than cancer studies? (Score 1) 251

Some you can analyze, yes. Kai Wynn is uh. The crazy engineer girl she manipulated, too. Lots we could say about these nutjobs. It's amazing how the brain shuts off the prefrontal cortex and brings up the amygdala when the facts inserted into the PFC conflict with the collective, most basic memories everything else is held against. That's what religion does: it bases everything on a set of assumptions, such that violating those assumptions violates everything in all your experiences; such violation can garner rather violent reactions.

I've programmed a reflex to suppress that. Obvious advantages there may be, this has clearly become a very bad idea.

Comment Re:Does flipping one electron now flip the other? (Score 1) 205

As I understand it, when you flip the state of one of an entangled pair, you break the entanglement. So site B can do what they like with the second pair, but site A won't know what they did. But IANAP and it's been over two decades since I took physics. Oh, and although my old textbook is on the shelf behind me, I'm too lazy to turn around and look at it :)

Comment Re:Time Management (Score 2) 180

Person is researching python lambda function list comprehension for a programming project. Gets sidetracked for a couple of hours by popup puzzles.

Yep. This is the employee we want.

You mean the sort of person who is an avid problem solver but bored in their current job? Yes, that's exactly who you want to hire if you're going to put them in an environment rich in productive puzzles to solve. Yes, you do also need them to be able to maintain focus when it really matters, but it's far easier to teach brilliant problem solvers some time management skills than it is to teach plodding, methodical thinkers to be brilliant problem solvers.

Comment Re:Not if you're searching for Maaaaaaatlock... ;- (Score 1) 180

FWIW, I'm a Google engineer. I'm 46. Many members of my previous team were in their 50s and 60s, and the median age there was probably around my age. That team was working on complex internal enterprise systems, where decades of experience with complex business logic was at a premium. My current team is younger... but I'm not the oldest.

Comment Re:Great experience (Score 1) 180

Rumor has it the selection process happens through your Google search history over a long period of time, so you're not going to be able to just spam Python jargon at the search engine and get in tomorrow.

Do you keep yourself logged in with a google account when you search? I specifically try to avoid Google tracking my searches to the extent that I can control. This whole thing is kind of creepy to me, and I never ever log into a google account unless I'm in a VM, though I am sure there are still ways to track me.

Out of curiosity, what are you concerned that Google is going to do with your search history?

FWIW, my approach is that I stay logged in all the time, with web history enabled (so Chrome sends a log of every page I visit to Google for storage, not just my searches) and open an incognito window when I'm doing something I don't want recorded. I try not to do that much, though, because I get a lot of value from being able to search my own web history (web history allows you to search in all the stuff you've looked at, so when you find yourself thinking, "I know I read that on some site..." you can typically find it pretty easily).

While there probably is stuff that I'd rather not share with the world, I really have no concern about sharing it with Google, because no one is ever going to see it. Unless there's a warrant or a subpoena for my information, but that seems pretty unlikely, and even more unlikely that any warrant or subpoena wouldn't get more from my e-mail, bank records, etc.

In the interest of full disclosure I should mention that I'm a Google employee, but this post really isn't about trying to convince you that you're wrong. I'm just curious.

Comment Re:Psychology more scientific than cancer studies? (Score 1) 251

Explain what you are referring to about this stuff on TV. I can't recall one instance of psychology being invoked in RWBY, Inuyasha, or Deep Space 9.

What I said was generated on-the-fly from an understanding of psychology (along with politics and a few other things).

Comment Re:Psychology more scientific than cancer studies? (Score 2) 251

Psychology is an offensive science: people don't believe psychology is anything more than voodoo. This lets them stay quite comfortable in their control over their mind, instead of admitting it may have some uncontrollable science behind it.

10% of cancer studies are reproducible? Well that's just science. 50% of psychology studies are reproducible? Psychology is no more real than chance; every study is a coin toss, and nothing is real.

Climate science papers are probably way wonkier than psychology, but people cling to those because of politics. Don't think it's because they're enlightened or concerned or whatever; it's because they want a club to attack a social group outside their identity so the can stand up in their loin cloths and shout "OGG BIG STRONG MAN!"

Comment Re:There are good reasons for gvt bureaucracy, rem (Score 1) 275

You're not getting this. They already have a non-exclusive contract. They have a choice between multiple vendors. They can go CDW, or off the HP contract, or from Dell, for the same part. They have an account with each of these, so you just requisition and go.

They don't have an account with Amazon or Newegg, so there's 18 layers of bureaucracy to go through to buy a $40 hard drive.

Although that theoretically could be made part of a IT hardware support contract, you can bet that will affect the cost of a support contract

This does not apply because nothing in the existing contract--in the contract that was actually negotiated in the real, non-hypothetical world--says you can't go to Newegg for parts. It's just a pain in the ass because you have to file a bunch of forms with your boss and purchasing.

Maybe Computer Science should be in the College of Theology. -- R. S. Barton