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Comment If their netbook releases are any indicator... (Score 1) 281

then I don't think Canonical will provide any significant competition any time soon. I've used their preinstalled images on my decently powered Pandaboard and the performance just blows. Best of luck though, it'd be really nice to have a portable device with a touchscreen AND ssh enabled right out of the box.

Comment Re:Of course, Antivirus software is a worthless sc (Score 1) 205

So, I take it you also don't believe in vaccines or take antibiotics when you get sick, right? After all, vaccines are only good for some of what's out there and once you get sick, you're already hosed. Sarcasm aside, there was an old saying about an ounce of prevention.

Comment Fortress-style Security (Score 1) 440

Build a city surrounded with the tallest, thickest, and strongest walls you can think of (or afford). It's great security, but only from the outside world. Since its impossible to guarantee every citizen isn't a mass-murderer or kleptomaniac, we also have to have locks on individual houses.

Build a network with the nicest firewall/IPS/IDS/whatever you can thing of (or afford). It's great security, but only from the outside world. Since its impossible to guarantee every guest laptop isn't loaded with viruses or malware, we also have to have firewalls on individual workstations.

True story:,com_smf/Itemid,54/topic,5220.msg26559/topicseen,1/

Comment Zynga Helped Me Quit Facebook (Score 2, Interesting) 319

Zynga was actually the tipping point for me closing my Facebook account. The privacy issues didn't harm me since I didn't put in any information you couldn't find in a phonebook, but the endless stream of "Alice reamed Bob's mafia in AssWars!" messages killed it for me.


Game-Related Education On the Rise At Colleges 178

The LA Times has a story about the increased interest in learning how to make video games amongst college students, and the subsequent rise in game-related education as the schools respond to that demand. Some programs are gaining legitimacy, while others do perhaps more harm than good. Quoting: "The surge in interest has led schools to add games to their menu — but not always to the benefit of its students. Recruiters say they often see 'mills' that run around-the-clock sessions to quickly churn out as many students as possible. Other programs teach specific skills but not how games are pulled together. 'It's a very hot academic growth area,' said Colleen McCreary, who runs EA's university relations program. 'I'm very worried about the number of community colleges and for-profit institutions, as well as four-year programs, that are using game design as a lure for students who are not going to be prepared for the real entry-level positions that the game industry wants.'"

Getting Paid To Abandon an Open Source Project? 654

darkeye writes "I'm facing a difficult dilemma and looking for opinions. I've been contributing heavily to an open source project, making considerable changes to code organization and quality, but the work is unfinished at the moment. Now, a company is approaching me to continue my changes. They want to keep the improvements to themselves, which is possible since the project is published under the BSD license. That's fair, as they have all the rights to the work they pay for in full. However, they also want me to sign a non-competition clause, which would bar me from ever working on and publishing results for the original open source project itself, even if done separately, in my free time. How would you approach such a decision? On one side, they'd provide resources to work on an interesting project. On the other, it would make me an outcast in the project's community. Moreover, they would take ownership of not just what they paid for, but also my changes leading up to this moment, and I wouldn't be able to continue on my original codebase in an open source manner if I sign their contract."
The Courts

Jack Thompson Disbarred 522

Sockatume writes "The Florida Supreme Court has approved Judge Dava Tunis' recommendations for the permanent disbarment of John B. "Jack" Thompson, with no leave to reapply and $43,675.35 in disciplinary costs. The ruling is a step up from the enhanced disbarment that had been suggested by the prosecution, which would have forbidden him from reapplying for ten years. Thompson has 30 days to appeal the ruling before the disbarment is permanent. Thompson responds to the ruling."

Comment Less, or MOR (Score 1) 1057

Maybe, what we really need is for this to become the rule, rather than the exception. I know every single one of you knows at least 1 co-worker who you can't figure out how they got into, or continue to maintain, their position. That one individual who can barely remember to take their next breath let alone do their job adequately. That person who makes your job more difficult than it already is because you have to put up with their simpering incompetence on a daily basis.

I work at a company, located in Washington DC, where we test all incoming developers prior to the interview and again during the interview and it has saved our employees from having the simpering idiots as I've described above sharing an office with them.

The first test is open-web (it says you can look up anything you want) and establishes the applicants general knowledge of their language of choice (Python, Perl, Java, C#, VB, or PHP). On a test like that it's an easy A, right? Most applicants leave the questions they don't know the answer to blank. That says one or two things about your perspective employee-of-the-month:
1. They don't read instructions and didn't know they could use google if they get stuck.
2. They didn't care enough to attempt an answer when it wasn't easy for them.
3. 1 & 2 combined.

Company policy is to immediately eliminate any applicant who doesn't answer all the questions. It only hurts us, and our employees, when we hire people who fit the above.

The second test, done during the interview, tests a person's ability to think on their feet and work in a group environment. As a web company, you'd think people who apply would be able to write a little HTML, right? Well 90% of our applicants who make it to the interview screw up a simple table in HTML! A three-cell HTML table, one red, one green, one blue. One has a rowheight of 2. There's also a simple SQL test and a simple debugging test. AND WE GIVE HINTS! They can ask us any questions they want, up to and including "how do I do it?" We've actually hired a person who asked just that!

Bottom line is that any schmuck can print out a resume and call himself a programmer. College degrees for programming are a joke. Either you need strict guidelines for who can call themselves a programmer (think of the guild system for electricians, plumbers, et al) or you need to have testing to separate the wheat from the chaff.

And on the note of company culture, we were voted the best small business of the year for 2008 in DC, have practically 0 turnover in development, and by far the absolute best company culture I've ever seen. I may sound fanatical at this point and honestly I am because my company does everything they can to keep good people here and bad programmers elsewhere.


Submission + - KDE publishes 4.0 roll out time line

elkosmas writes: "Desktop Linux reports: On March 21, KDE e.V, the non-profit organization behind the popular KDE desktop environment, announced its schedule to complete its next version, 4.0. If all goes well, we should see a release of KDE 4.0 this Fall. As the schedule stands now, on April 1, all KDE subsystems will be frozen. Then, on May 1, KDE will release the first Alpha in source-code only format. At the same time, the kdelibs API will be "soft-frozen." By this the developers mean that changes can be made to this cross-platform library, but only with the consent of the core developers. Presuming that no show-stopper bugs appear in these close-to-final test releases, KDE 4.0 will appear on Oct. 23, 2007."

God doesn't play dice. -- Albert Einstein