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Comment Re:Fuck Israel (Score 1) 529

Oh please, give it a rest.

This isn't an Israeli-Palestinian conflict. It is an Arab-Israeli conflict. Where do you think all the money and political support is coming from?

In that context, Israel is very much the underdog.

Better question: Why is it that Palestinians living in Egypt, Lebanon, Syria, Iraq, etc are legally prohibited from becoming citizens and/or holding down a job? Coincidence? I think not.

Comment The problem with regulation (Score 1) 568

... is that Engineering institutions seem to care more about lining their pockets with money than actually improving the trade.

When is the last time you heard of an Engineer getting "dis-barred"?

I for one see no value in a formal Engineering title or certification in any capacity. Customers don't seem to care enough about it, and even if they did, so-called Engineers are just as likely to fail their projects as non-Engineers.

Ironically, I studied Software Engineering in University but am not allowed to use the Engineering title because I refuse to pay fees to my local Engineering institution. They provide no value.

Comment Re:Gun-free zone? (Score 5, Insightful) 1165

Well, in all fairness ... there are plenty of other countries that are gun-free and others that allow citizens to carry guns and in both cases there are far fewer gun-related deaths than in the US.

Methinks this has very little to do with gun laws (I'm not for or against them). Maybe the US has some sort of social/cultural problem.

Comment Re:Be honest (Score 1) 299

I believe you misunderstood what I meant.

"hours" means = 1 day and = 1 week and = 1 month (there is no upper limit to the amount of time it will take)

The difference between each level is meant to represent an order of magnitude. Breaking down the task is only useful if you plan on using the estimates to schedule delivery dates, which we do not.

The problem with Agile is that it takes credit for ideas that have existed for over 30 years (incremental software development) and by now the term has become nothing more than a loaded buzzword. Every company is practicing their own form of "agile" and in most cases it's utter crap. The proof of this is that most companies nowadays claim to practice "Agile" but project failure rates are just as abysmal today as they were 30 years ago.

Comment Be honest (Score 4, Interesting) 299

Estimates should be used to prioritize features (cost / benefit) as opposed to being used to set hard deadlines.

Estimates should be one of "hours", "days", "weeks", or "months". It is fairly easy for most people to differentiate between features that take hours to implement vs weeks. In my experience, exact durations with multiples for padding have proven to be less useful / accurate than the former method.

Comment Re:basic income? (Score 1) 755


Now prove to me that the administrative cost saved outweighs the cost of the new program.

Can't do that? Stop right there.

What we need aren't more ideas. What we need is more transparency. Government is not lacking good ideas. Government is lacking transparency that would allow us to judge (by the numbers) whether one idea is superior to another.

Comment Re:They just don't want to get sued (Score 0) 264

Call it what you want, but there is a clear statistical significance of 18-25 year old Muslims committing most of the terrorist attacks. You call it profiling, we call it common sense.

As wasteful as it would be, I am all for treating everyone equally if you have unlimited resources. Barring that, I think profiling is the best approach so long as it is done respectfully. I routinely get patted down in airports (because it look like I fit the profile) and honestly it's not a big deal at all.

Comment Re:It's the base assumption that its invalid (Score 1) 392

the default assumption is that there is NO OTHER WAY to fight crime other than by snooping through people's data. Maybe police should stop offering us false choices and instead try to do some actual police work?

That's not what I read.

What I read is that being able to snoop through people's data is an important component of an investigation. From their point of view, being able to snoop through "bad guys' data" (since the wiretap has to get approved) is quite reasonable.

So ultimately this comes back to a question of trust: do you trust the President and the courts? I'm not saying you should, but I'm pointing out you're being asking to choose whether it is more likely that "bad guys" or the government will hurt you and if you distrust the government more than the "bad guys" then I suggest the real problem you have is with your form of government (you need election reform or something) rather than debating technology because ultimately this isn't a technology or legal debate, it's a political one.

Comment Re:It's the base assumption that its invalid (Score 1) 392

In other words, I do not give one shiny shit if the evil terrorists encrypted their data and the police can not recover it - even if it means good people (even my family) die because of it. I care about their actions - not their encryption.

You assume that has is mutually exclusive from the other. One of the major achievements that turned the tide against Nazi Germany was deciphering the Enigma machine. We knew plenty about their actions, but couldn't predict their attacks ahead of time. Deciphering Enigma allowed us to predict (and prevent) attacks. Intercepting communication between terrorist groups is no different.

As I said before ... no right exists without context. If the benefit of allowing unbreakable decryption outweighs the cost in terms of lost lives to terrorist attacks, then fine... This might be true today but don't assume that it will always be true. It wasn't true in WW2 and it might not be true in WW3. Enjoy your encryption in the meantime.

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Getting the job done is no excuse for not following the rules. Corollary: Following the rules will not get the job done.