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Comment: Re:Correct, although you are missing the obvious (Score 1) 88

by lgw (#48431539) Attached to: UNSW Has Collected an Estimated $100,000 In Piracy Fines Since 2008

Students give the University hush money, gets a slap on the hand "oh noez, no free wireless for up to a few months" and the University profits. Copyright holders are not seeing a penny of this money, Law enforcement is not prosecuting people for theft.

In what way is downloading copyrighted material any kind of crime? Is it even a tort?

Should the University fine rapists for profit and not turn them over to Law enforcement as well? Oh wait, this already happens in the US (if people are charged at all)

What are you on about? The standard for accusation at a US university is vastly below any judicial standard for rape. At some places, the accused isn't even given a chance to defend himself.

"Harvard's policy was written by people who think sexual assault is so heinous a crime that even innocence is not a defense." -- Alan Dershowitz

Comment: Re:So close, so far (Score 3, Informative) 500

by lgw (#48428995) Attached to: "Barbie: I Can Be a Computer Engineer" Pulled From Amazon

No-one is asking for special treatment

Every third-wave feminist is, along with most SJWs.

which by practically every metric shows that women are at a disadvantage in society

They have every advantage in family law. There are colleges where men are just assumed guilty of any charge of sexual assault, and cannot even question their accusers in the adjudication process. There's no wage gap for those under about 35 if you adjust for hours worked. Sure, there are certainly still areas like "competitive power lifting" where women are at a disadvantage, but so what?

We (feminists) want everyone to be equal,

Clearly you don't. You say this a lot, some of you (others wear shirts saying "I bathe in male tears"), but then go on to claim that women need special treatment in one way or another.

Equality in society means equality of opportunity: the same rules apply to all, the same social services are available to all, blind to sex and race. It does not mean equality of outcome. Different individuals make different choices, and have different skills and abilities, and the very nature of liberty is that your success in life is influenced by all of that.

Everyone has the right to walk their own path to happiness. You don't get to define "success" for another, you can only measure it against what people chose to pursue in life. You also can't guarantee that people will succeed even there: some people pick a stupid path to their goal.

Even if "the woman" said gamers were werewolf pedophiles from Mars, the backlash from the community demonstrated that what she said was true

Ah, so it's the victim's fault then? 8 Gaming sites/magazines simultaneously published articles attacking "gamers", which is to say, their readers. It's not a leap to deduce that something is rotten in the state of gaming journalism.

The core issue here seems to actually be semantics, oddly enough. People have legitimate complaints about the culture of the tiny corner of gaming that includes CoD and similar games, and call those people "gamers". But anyone who plays Candycrush or WoW or that PvZ shooter or whatever 20+ hours a week is every bit as much a "hardcore gamer", and the overall population was incensed by the offensive stereotyping. Funny how that works.

Education

Interviews: Ask Adora Svitak About Education and Women In STEM and Politics 142

Posted by samzenpus
from the go-ahead-and-ask dept.
samzenpus writes Adora Svitak is a child prodigy, author and activist. She taught her first class on writing at a local elementary school when she was 7, the same year her book, Flying Fingers was published. In 2010, Adora spoke at a TED Conference. Her speech, "What Adults Can Learn from Kids", has been viewed over 3.7 million times and has been translated into over 40 different languages. She is an advocate for literacy, youth empowerment, and for the inclusion of more women and girls in STEM and politics. 17 this year, she served as a Youth Advisor to the USA Science and Engineering Festival in Washington, DC. and is a freshman at UC Berkeley. Adora has agreed to take some time from her books and answer any questions you may have. As usual, ask as many as you'd like, but please, one per post.
Businesses

As Amazon Grows In Seattle, Pay Equity For Women Declines 437

Posted by timothy
from the gee-that's-a-lot-of-cash-on-the-table dept.
reifman writes Amazon's hiring so quickly in Seattle that it's on pace to employ 45,000 people or seven percent of the city. But, 75% of these hires are male. While Seattle women earned 86 cents per dollar earned by men in 2012, today, they make only 78 cents per dollar. In "Amageddon: Seattle's Increasingly Obvious Future", I review these and other surprising facts about Amazon's growing impact on the city: we're the fastest growing — now larger than Boston, we have the fastest rising rents, the fourth worst traffic, we're only twelfth in public transit, we're the fifth whitest and getting whiter, we're experiencing record levels of property crime and the amount of office space under construction has nearly doubled to 3.2 million square feet in the past year.

Comment: Re:Yawn ... (Score 1) 158

by lgw (#48423663) Attached to: Microsoft Azure Outage Across the Globe

If these are on 24x7 you're going to be paying through the nose

Check out he prices for EC2 reserved instances, if you know you'll need that server for 3 years. Prices are similar per core to buying entry-level Dell rackmount servers with 3-year support contracts. Of course, the physical Dell has more memory and disk than the VM with the same core count, so you come out ahead there if you needs lots of memory, or local disk, but not by a lot.

Comment: Re: Better go kick WSUS into a sync... (Score 1) 170

by lgw (#48420875) Attached to: Microsoft Releases Out-of-Band Security Patch For Windows

I help develop and operate a service that makes a hefty sum by doing all those things you deride, implementation-wise. It all works quite well - well enough that if routing patching causes any customer-visible disruption, you're in for extensive analysis, paperwork, and perhaps ritual abasement before an angry VP.

Yes, yes, there are many technical problems involved with consuming "eventual consistency". In the 20th century these problems were seen as blocking, and anyway just buy a bigger DB server. But the 20th century was along time ago, and while there's still a need for a transactional store, most problems can be solved without one, given sufficient thought - and at sufficient scale, it's really worth figuring out how.

Not that safe patching is incompatible with SQL, of course. In my last job we routinely pushed patches to farms of many thousands of SQL servers, and again if there was any disruption visible to the mid-tier, important people would become seriously angry about that, and we didn't use fancy servers, beyond RAID controllers (and even that concession I abhorred). It's always safe for a single server to fail, or be rebooted for maintenance, and if two servers holding your primary copies of the same data should fail, you better have taken serious, well-reviewed steps in planning to limit the number of DBs affected and the minutes of data lost and the minutes until you're back up.

And even that, which was a nice system, feels outdated now that Amazon went and announced this, which productizes the modern SQL DB and wraps it up in a pretty bow. /jealous

Comment: Re: Better go kick WSUS into a sync... (Score 1) 170

by lgw (#48415823) Attached to: Microsoft Releases Out-of-Band Security Patch For Windows

About 40% of my servers would have serious issues with that. From SAP systems to certain SQL jobs. That would be a resume writing event.

SAP? SQL? Party like it's 1999! For me, having it matter whether any given server suddenly fails would be a career limiting move. We push-restart patches to services every week or two, and if that affects a customer in any way TSHTF.

Comment: Re:10x Productivity (Score 1) 215

by lgw (#48414333) Attached to: Do Good Programmers Need Agents?

1) Why are you wrangling with project management systems? The amount of time you spend with that should be minimal, otherwise it's hurting you. Are you trying to update all the features to the next sprint or something? That's a waste of time, don't do it.

Large companies often require multiple levels of approvals, often from teams in multiple time zones, before you can even get on with the business of coding. A couple years back I had a project where getting the approval took 6 weeks, and the code took one day (yes, I left that company not long after).

2) If you need to 'translate user requirements from PMs' on a regular basis, it sounds like you are micro-managing a part of the process. If that's the case, then you can gain efficiencies by teaching your developers to do that. Push as many responsibilities down to the developers as you can, and watch how much more focused, effective, and efficient they become

Indeed. But junior developers, almost by definition, aren't good at this. Most large software actually corps have this firmly in their interview process: give the candidate ambiguous requirements, and see whether he asks clarifying questions or just jumps in and codes some arbitrary take on the problem. It's a good way to assess the senior-ness of a candidate.

Practically, "how big of a design/project can you own" is the best measure of a developer. A senior dev drags projects across the finish line despite all the obstacles created by the company being stupid. A junior dev can follow clear requirements, but gets stuck and needs help at every ambiguity (or worse, doesn't get stuck and just solves some arbitrary problem).

And I'm certainly not a manager. Tried that once - my ability to anticipate people problems before they happened were sorely lacking. But managers should be focused on the people first, and the technology only enough to tell when a developer is BSing (or just wrong) about the difficulty of some task. Making decisions about how to staff competing projects so that the best work gets done, morale stays high, and devs grow their skill set - that's hard work. Preventing personality clashes, recruiting, firing people who aren't making the cut, that's all hard work. That why there are senior devs - to provide technical leadership so that the managers can get on with the people leadership.

Comment: Re:10x Productivity (Score 1) 215

by lgw (#48411223) Attached to: Do Good Programmers Need Agents?

I don't see how you can scale well if you're not efficient in the first place.

I know you were talking about people, but that line made me laugh - imagine saying that about code in this century.

Your argument seems to imply that you believe being a rockstar programmer and a great leader are mutually exclusive,

Nope, I'm just saying that banging out lots of code is really important for your first promotion, after that it's still good, but becomes less important as you advance. "10x" is just a silly name for a talent agency.

The most exciting phrase to hear in science, the one that heralds new discoveries, is not "Eureka!" (I found it!) but "That's funny ..." -- Isaac Asimov

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