Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Deal of the Day - 6 month subscription of Pandora One at 46% off. ×

Comment A union would be a rotting bandage (Score 1) 430

You don't fix this kind of problem (perverse market incentives) by adding another layer to 'correct' for the results. You fix this kind of problem by addressing the underlying incentives in some fashion.

The underlying incentive here is that there's a benefit to keeping salary information private. (Whether that benefit is merely perceived or real is irrelevant.) One obvious solution to this is to have the SEC require that all salaries and compensation data at publicly listed companies be made public, similar to how all government salary data is public. Public companies already have to run open books anyway. This just extends that a bit.

Comment Re:None. Go meta. (Score 1) 336

The big problem with C++ is that you literally can't master it quickly. You can learn the basics quickly; you can become decently good at it in a couple of years if you have prior programming experience. But I know a lot of professional programmers, and I can point to precisely zero of them (myself included) that have 'mastered' the language. We each know pieces of the language, and some of us cover rather wide areas, but all of us have to occasionally research how exactly various constructs work.

Comment I would be tight lipped too (Score 1) 408

People are stupid, and news sites like to print the most horrible, twisted and eye grabbing thing they possibly can. In that kind of environment, it only takes a single crash due to a software glitch to get the project outlawed statewide. I'd keep the information private too, and probably pay off the guilty party anyway just to keep them quiet.

Comment Societal influence, not availability (Score 1) 634

When I was growing up, my sisters would spend fully 1-3 hours a day doing makeup, hair, clothing, and other prep work to look presentable in public. Society expected this of them, or rather they felt society expected it. I spent 15-30 minutes a day on the same task.

When I was growing up, my sisters spent virtually no time at the computer, or building things, or learning about engineering. Society expected this of them, and my parents largely supported it. I spent 1-3 hours a day on these tasks.

The gender gap isn't due to lack of raw talent, or lack of ability. It's not due to the jobs not being "interesting" or "world changing". The gender gap is because women don't spend the same amount of time doing engineering that men do in their formative years, when it matters the most. We aren't going to fix the problem by trying to bring women into the picture after the damage has been done - the best we can do at that point is mitigate the issue. To really fix it, society is going to have to value engineering more highly than spending two hours on makeup and appearance.

Good luck with that.

Comment Why D isn't more popular (Score 4, Insightful) 386

I've looked at D before. It looks promising, and I've considered using it. The reason I don't is a bad reason, but it's the most common bad reason: legacy code.

I have two hundred and sixty four thousand lines of code in my personal project/library archive (my own code, not counting custom versions of external packages like openssl and portaudio), all in C/C++, all with a unified build system, that's been ported and debugged on serveral platforms. Every new project I start uses those core libraries and header files. When I think about switching to a new language, my biggest concerns are how new code will integrate with my existing, how the new language will make use of my existing libraries, and how to remain productive in a dual language environment. The long term gain might eventually make it worthwhile - but it might also just cost me time should the new language die out or not support a platform I need it to.

I simply can't justify the gamble.

Comment Noob burner making obvious suggestions (Score 1) 342

Bennett, please just shut the fuck up about your improvements to burning man. For your traffic flow 'improvement', you notably didn't provide simulations, suggested a broken alternative, and didn't even bother to fully understand the situation before jumping in with both feet. For this one, you've done something similar.

In particular, the problem when the ice line is backed up is -not- because the ice wasn't prefetched. It's because half the time they can't get it out of the trucks any faster, and half the time they can't get the customers out of the way faster. Adding prefetch to a throughput bound system does not improve performance. If you had the experience of going through the lines more than a few times, you'd have maybe picked up on that before offering your advice.

I'm not going to say that traffic isn't a problem, or that ice queues aren't stupidly long at times. But these are hard problems, and they have been thought about extensively by smarter people than you, smarter people who have more information and experience than you. You insult all of them by discounting that so blatantly.

Comment Re:C++ is an over bloated monster (Score 1) 427

Personally, I do a lot of the following:

- learn the minimum aspects of the language needed to navigate your specific codebase, and learn them very well
- copy/paste of terrible syntax to avoid compiler failures
- avoid using templates if at all possible
- create strongly typed specific-use classes that export only the minimum functionality of the underlying libstdc++ classes without using templates
- keep all pointer casting to well defined, central locations
- all production code runs with asserts on all the time
- thou shalt never use multiple inheritance. Ever.

Regarding managing inheritance and figuring out inheritance trees and which classes own what functions where, I'm still basically at a loss and I've been fighting that problem for years. The best advice I can give is try to keep your inheritance trees as shallow as possible; but for real world systems, it often doesn't make sense. I have a set of socket libraries which pretty much has to be 4-5 levels deep in spots to do what it needs to do properly, and it's disconcerting to have to look back to for example layers 1 and 3 to try to figure out what's going on.

Every little picofarad has a nanohenry all its own. -- Don Vonada