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Comment: Re:been there, done that (Score 4, Insightful) 255

by doug (#48612285) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Should a Liberal Arts Major Get Into STEM?
Most degrees have a year or more of generic coursework. And some microbiology might mean a few math and science classes. That could be as much as a third of the required courses have already been completed. So a two year sprint with summers might be enough. It would be brutal as there are no soft subject classes to dilute the STEM. My personal advice is always to get the degree. Most of it is of little use, but dipping your toes in a bunch of different areas is invaluable. And many managers/HR only want to hire folks with fancy pieces of paper. If you only want some STEM, then why not a hybrid approach? Technical writers often have a minor in a STEM field, but not the whole degree. That might be something you can pick up in just a year.

Comment: Have you thought about publicly shaming them? (Score 2) 204

by doug (#48093787) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Dealing With an Unresponsive Manufacturer Who Doesn't Fix Bugs?
Why not just bad mouth them. If they get a reputation for poor service, then so be it. This shouldn't be anyone's first approach, but if you've tried for over a year and they're not living up to your expectations, then they squandered more than one chance to do better.

+ - Will Windows 10 address the operating system's biggest weakness?->

Submitted by colinneagle
colinneagle (2544914) writes "The real question on my mind is whether Windows 10 will finally address a problem that has plagued pretty much every Windows OS since at least 95: the decay of the system over time. As you add and remove apps, as Windows writes more and more temporary and junk files, over time, a system just slows down.

I'm sure many of you have had the experience of taking a five-year-old PC, wiping it clean, putting the exact same OS on as it had before, and the PC is reborn, running several times faster than it did before the wipe. It's the same hardware, same OS, but yet it's so fast. This slow degeneration is caused by daily use, apps, device drive congestion (one of the tell-tale signs of a device driver problem is a PC that takes forever to shut down) and also hardware failure. If a disk develops bad sectors, it has to work around them. Even if you try aggressively to maintain your system, eventually it will slow, and very few people aggressively maintain their system.

So I wonder if Microsoft has found a solution to this. Windows 8 was supposed to have some good features for maintaining the OS and preventing slowdown. I wouldn't know; like most people, I avoided Windows 8 like the plague. It would be the most welcomed feature of Windows 10 if I never had to do another backup, disk wipe, and reinstall."

Link to Original Source

+ - The 'Man in the Moon' was Created by Mega Volcano->

Submitted by astroengine
astroengine (1577233) writes "Whenever you look up at the near side of the moon, you see a face looking back at you. This is the “Man in the Moon” and it has inspired many questions about how it could have formed. There has been some debate as to how this vast feature — called Oceanus Procellarum, which measures around 1,800 miles wide — was created. But after using gravity data from NASA’s twin GRAIL spacecraft, researchers have found compelling evidence that it was formed in the wake of a mega volcanic eruption and not the location of a massive asteroid strike."
Link to Original Source
Government

Social Security Administration Joins Other Agencies With $300M "IT Boondoggle" 144

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the should-have-gone-into-government-IT dept.
alphadogg (971356) writes with news that the SSA has joined the long list of federal agencies with giant failed IT projects. From the article: "Six years ago the Social Security Administration embarked on an aggressive plan to replace outdated computer systems overwhelmed by a growing flood of disability claims. Nearly $300 million later, the new system is nowhere near ready and agency officials are struggling to salvage a project racked by delays and mismanagement, according to an internal report commissioned by the agency. In 2008, Social Security said the project was about two to three years from completion. Five years later, it was still two to three years from being done, according to the report by McKinsey and Co., a management consulting firm. Today, with the project still in the testing phase, the agency can't say when it will be completed or how much it will cost.

Comment: Re:Answer needed (Score 5, Insightful) 390

by doug (#47482217) Attached to: Verizon's Accidental Mea Culpa
Sure. The content streaming from Netflix has been requested by Verizion customers. They've paid for access to the internet, which includes Netflix. They are the ones being throttled. Basically Verizon is trying to double dip here - get money from regular customers plus shaking down more from content providers. If Verizon really cannot handle the flood of Netflix content, shouldn't they raise the cost to the consumers to build out the Verizon network?
AI

Turing Test Passed 432

Posted by samzenpus
from the almost-human dept.
schwit1 (797399) writes "Eugene Goostman, a computer program pretending to be a young Ukrainian boy, successfully duped enough humans to pass the iconic test. The Turing Test which requires that computers are indistinguishable from humans — is considered a landmark in the development of artificial intelligence, but academics have warned that the technology could be used for cybercrime. Computing pioneer Alan Turing said that a computer could be understood to be thinking if it passed the test, which requires that a computer dupes 30 per cent of human interrogators in five-minute text conversations."

Comment: Re:So.... (Score 5, Insightful) 304

by doug (#42458801) Attached to: HP Cuts Workforce By 5%, Looks To Probe GM Hires
Bah. I have no sympathy for HP. I've never worked at HP, but I've been at plenty of places where most/all of the corporate history was lost. It is unpleasant, but you get over it. If this is an especially critical position, then HP should have used golden handcuffs to keep a few key people in place. If your employer treats you well, you usually stay put. If you are worried that you're going to get the axe, you jump ship. This is a basic truth, and if HP's management spent more time focused on its employees and less on the shareholders they would know this. Management should keep employees from having a conflict of interest. Yes, it might cost more in the short run, but it avoids situations like this. Too many people in management focus exclusively on the business side of things, and forget that people are involved. Unfortunately this is not unikque to HP.

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