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Comment: Re:One thing to keep in mind... (Score 4, Informative) 244

by ezakimak (#49689957) Attached to: RTFM? How To Write a Manual Worth Reading

I totally agree.
I've seen countless man pages that don't even bother to say what the command *does*, let alone *why* you would want to do that. They assume it is all self evident (I'm guessing the author's logic was: "or else why would you be reading about the flags if you didn't already know you needed it and for what?").
Also, sometimes explanations are vague--being precise about the behavior (especially if it is altering data) is important.

Comment: Go outside and play! (Score 1) 147

by ezakimak (#49648545) Attached to: Technology and Ever-Falling Attention Spans

Haven't we all heard our mom's yell this at us?
How many people actually have any appreciable time away from technology in any given day anymore?
Our cars have radios, touch screens, navigation, and are interactive and immediately present when we sit down.
Our homes are filled with tablets, desktops, phones, and TVs with DVRs--so no more waiting through commercials even--we get *exactly* the stimulus we want *now* when we want it.
Seems we just inundate ourselves with stimulus.

Challenge: walk outside and sit on a park bench for 20 minutes a day with no batteries in sight. I bet it would help reset our internal patience reserves. Can you do it without squirming?

Comment: old stalwarts (Score 1) 267

by ezakimak (#49622147) Attached to: Is It Worth Learning a Little-Known Programming Language?

Cobol -- there's old apps that keep on running that are valuable enough to companies to keep maintaining, yet they aren't willing to rewrite
RPG4 -- same boat as Cobol--although arguably one of the least pleasant language environments
CL -- many existing apps, plus there are companies writing brand new stuff with it, it's just as powerful as ever, and quite nice to work with
I'm sure there are others

Comment: Re:Decent (Score 1) 482

by ezakimak (#49488543) Attached to: Seattle CEO Cuts $1 Million Salary To $70K, Raises Employee Salaries

Anyone can *easily* afford to live off of $70k a year, very comfortably, if their home and car are bought and paid for. All that remains is utilities, property tax, food and gas--which shouldn't amount to a great deal.
Most people spend upwards or even above 50% of their take home pay on just their mortgage, and another 10-30% on their car payment(s). So without those $70k/year is likely equivalent to $150k/year or more.
Where he's been taking $1million/year previously, he's got no excuse for not having his home and cars all paid for, and likely no other debts either. Now that his basic needs are met (and probably quite nicely), spreading the wealth seems like a very commendable thing to do.

Comment: Re:Not a linguist, but... (Score 1) 626

Dunno what's wrong with the link.
The relevant part is:

...I often use the apparently plural pronouns "they," "them," and "their" after singular antecedents--such as, "You must approach someone for a job and tell them what you can do." This sounds strange and even wrong to those who know English well. To be sure, we all know there is another pronoun--"you"--that may be either singular or plural, but few of us realize that the pronouns "they," "them," and "their" were also once treated as both plural and singular in the English language. This changed, at a time in English history when agreement in number became more important than agreement as to sexual gender. Today, however, our priorities have shifted once again. Now, the distinguishing of sexual gender is considered by many to be more important than agreement in number.
        The common artifices used for this new priority, such as "s/he," or "he and she," are--to my mind--tortured and inelegant. Casey Miller and Kate Swift, in their classic, "The Handbook of Nonsexist Writing," agree, and argue that it is time to bring back the earlier usage of "they," "them," and "their" as both singular and plural--just as "you" is/are. They further argue that this return to the earlier historical usage has already become quite common out on the street--witness a typical sign by the ocean that reads, "Anyone using this beach after 5 p.m. does so at their own risk....

Comment: Re:Not a linguist, but... (Score 1) 626

In the preface to the book "What Color is Your Parachute" (2003,2009 editions) the author addresses this, cites some other grammar analysis authors, which also agree. He points out that this is again common usage in the current vernacular (just as it has been in previous periods in history).
View the page here:

Comment: Re:Oh this is easy .... (Score 1) 394

by ezakimak (#49393645) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Living Without Social Media In 2015?

Low 6's here, and only because I waited 2 years before actually signing up--otherwise I'd be what, only 4 digits?

I have many friends that have deleted their FB profiles for various reasons. They are still social, active participants in the *real world*, which is what matters.

Seems that depending on your personality type, the relation between your FB activity and in-real-life activity is either directly proportional (you're already a social creature), or inversely proportional (and with a high coefficient)--because even if you're introverted you still seek social interaction--just preferrably via distance communication.

Regardless, attempting to infer any meaningful information from someone's online activity or lack thereof seems a stretch (unless they explicitly blog all of their activities and opinions--and assuming they are *truthful* about all of it).

Comment: Re:What about abandoned devices? (Score 1) 100

by ezakimak (#49042617) Attached to: Starting This Week, Wireless Carriers Must Unlock Your Phone

I already have a Nexus 5--I'm not looking for a new phone--just want to make my old Photon 4G useful again. Recycle value last I checked was a whopping $17 because of this. It's got 2 1GHz cores and 8GB memory--it's still decent hardware. Shame to be deprecated so early.

Practical people would be more practical if they would take a little more time for dreaming. -- J. P. McEvoy