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Comment: I've done this very thing... (Score 1) 353

by djbckr (#49658251) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How To Own the Rights To Software Developed At Work?
I built a generic piece of a larger system that I thought would be a good thing as open source. I convinced my boss that since we were using open source software as part of our big system, we should give back to the community, and he agreed. I organized the source with proper licensing into a package and my boss handed it off to the lawyers - explaining the above - for review. A few days later, they came back and said "no problem, post it". And I did. That was the end.

I suppose some of this depends on how prick-ish your company/boss is, but mine, thankfully, is pretty laid back about this sort of thing.

Comment: Re:Wow total distopia (Score 1) 352

by djbckr (#49561447) Attached to: The Future Deconstruction of the K-12 Teacher
<rant>Here in Seattle they keep raising taxes and adding tolls in high traffic areas. Yet, the money just disappears into the void. I haven't studied where it goes but I *know* they make more than enough money to fund schools and teachers. And still, my kid who goes to Redmond high school has class sizes that are too big, has a couple of classes in temporary structures that have been there for a few years, and a science teacher that can't answer questions to the stuff she teaches because she's not even remotely a scientist. This same science teacher also has a workload far higher than normal teachers; She has no planning period and therefore is never prepared for class. As a result, my kid hates science when I think she would otherwise enjoy it. I do my best to re-teach what she should have been taught in the first place. It doesn't help that her science book is an incomprehensible piece of shit. </rant>

Comment: Re:Honestly ... (Score 1) 342

by djbckr (#49471379) Attached to: Allegation: Lottery Official Hacked RNG To Score Winning Ticket
Legitimate question: Does https://www.random.org/ seem to be a good place to get *really* random numbers? I'm curious if it's suitable for reliable random number generation. Based on the site it seems so, but I was wondering if somebody smarter than me could answer that with some degree of confidence.

Comment: I post useful stuff for _me_ (Score 1) 190

by djbckr (#49440673) Attached to: How do you contribute to open source projects?

I find it difficult to enter into an existing project for various reasons - sometimes I can't get a build environment working, or the code is such a mess I just don't feel like trying to figure it out. There are other reasons too - like elitism of the existing contributors. But, I've written code that I use frequently that I don't see anybody else has really done - or at least, done well. My code might be too specialized for most people (Oracle PL/SQL mostly), and it's certainly not perfect by any stretch, but I use it regularly and usually winds up in the code-base of places I work. The comments I get from those places are: I wonder why nobody else has done this?

One question I have though, is I would like to make my code more well-known to those that might be interested. I have no idea how to promote it. How does one go about advertising without looking like a narcissist?

Comment: Re:Check their work or check the summary? (Score 1) 486

by djbckr (#49337037) Attached to: No, It's Not Always Quicker To Do Things In Memory
This was written by some guys that really don't know how computers work. Seriously. They have not studied algorithms nor understand how Java/Python works under the hood, nor how the operating system I/O subsystem works (specifically caching). How this wound up on /. I just don't get it. If you are doing string concatenation, at least try to do it the right way.

Comment: Mac/Retina (Score 1) 385

by djbckr (#49286123) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Choosing a Laptop To Support Physics Research?
The Macs with Retina displays are second-to-none. Visually spectacular that nothing comes close to. Get a model that has the memory/processor you want and put VirtualBox on it for Linux and run it full-screen. I don't do physics, but I spend most of my time in the Linux VM. It's wonderful. I'm not a fan-boy, but the Apple hardware is worth it.

Comment: Re:Funny thing... (Score 0, Flamebait) 229

by djbckr (#49216481) Attached to: Listen To a Microsoft Support Scam As It Happened
I know you're saying that to be funny, but...
As this story points out, Windows is a horrible, horrible magnet for scams like this, and it's all too easy for scammers to take control over your machine. Plus, I generally find that Windows is more-or-less unusable. My wife and kid both have Macs, and my kid has a Windows laptop that our school district gives all the students. The students are trained on how to use Windows, and my daughter can't understand why "Windows makes it so hard to do stuff". So, Macs at home - I'm not scammed - they are superior machines in every way, and really not much more expensive than comparable computers. I also run Linux on a Mac Book Pro, because it's a better computer than 99% of the stuff out there.

Comment: Re:From an Audio Engineer (Score 1) 99

by djbckr (#49070341) Attached to: New Map Shows USA's Quietest Places
Fully agree - properly built studios are crazy quiet, but most I have been in are what I call "average quiet". Good enough for the task at hand, as most musical instruments are pretty loud. But for 99 percent of the stuff recorded these days, your bedroom is good enough unless you are near a noisy road or something. I've been in an anechoic chamber a couple of times and they practically suck the life out of you. I also agree that nature most certainly does have an ambient noise, but on a clear summer day with no wind and no water, it's nearly like an anechoic chamber.

Comment: From an Audio Engineer (Score 4, Interesting) 99

by djbckr (#49069855) Attached to: New Map Shows USA's Quietest Places
I'm a part-time musician and audio engineer. Because of this, I have a more sensitive perception of noise than probably most people. I have lived in urban/suburban areas most of my adult life and I can hardly stand it. Even quiet recording studios don't really get it as quiet as I'd like. I try to get out to the wilderness whenever I can which is every couple of months - I mean way out there where you will find very few people nearby. It is difficult to find words to describe how nice and peaceful it is when it's so quiet - not to hear noise of any kind, except from nature. We are surrounded by air-conditioning and cars, and people and civilization - and it frankly takes a toll on my sanity (the sound is all I'm talking about). Much to my wife's chagrin, I regularly wear earplugs to restaurants, and always carry them with me. It's really amazing how loud things are.

Comment: Two Camps (Score 3, Interesting) 648

by djbckr (#48856471) Attached to: Justified: Visual Basic Over Python For an Intro To Programming
I see two camps:
  • The people that want to know what goes on in the computer - systems level stuff
  • The people that want to get something done - application developers

The first people would do good to learn straight-up C, and graduate to C++. The latter group should learn Python/Java/C#/Javascript/HTML/CSS/SQL. Though I don't use Python regularly, I think it's a good starter language.

Comment: I have a great gig... (Score 1) 294

I was lucky enough to be hired by a company that lets me work remotely. I get paid what I expect/deserve, and I didn't have to move to San Francisco. I go there about 3~4 times a year just to get face-time with the people I work with. They like it because they don't have to find a space for me, and I like it because I didn't want to move to California.

Things are not as simple as they seems at first. - Edward Thorp