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Comment: Re:It all comes down to payroll (Score 4, Informative) 271

by Rene S. Hollan (#48868359) Attached to: The Tech Industry's Legacy: Creating Disposable Employees

As a former H1-B visa holder, current lawful permanent resident, and eligible for U.S. citizenship, you should know that the LAW requirs H1-Bs to be paid at least 90% of the prevailing wage, the employer to handle their INS legal expenses, AND bear the cost of sending them and their family home when they are layed off or their visa expires. H1-Bs generally cost MORE than locals, with all the extra hassles.

Now, where I would likely agree with you is that many companies BREAK those laws to bring in cheap labor, something which I would opose as well.

Comment: Disorderly Conduct (Score 1) 894

by Rene S. Hollan (#48822477) Attached to: Pope Francis: There Are Limits To Freedom of Expression

Yes, it's called "Disorderly Conduct", and is a misdemeanor most places.

HOWEVER, which that might explain a violent response, it does not excuse it: if you assault or kill someone because of what they say to you, even though their actions are criminal, so is your violent response. The proper response is a harassment charge.

Furthermore, that covers speech directed at you, not indirect speech intended for anyone who cares to listen: If I call a black man a nigger, I can certainly expect a punch (or worse). But, at least in the U.S., with it's First Amendment, I can write all the books and cartoons about niggers I want, without breaking any laws. Your recourse, if I offend you is simply to shun me.

Comment: Been wou a while.... (Score 2) 254

by flogger (#48765307) Attached to: Heinlein's 'All You Zombies' Now a Sci-Fi Movie Head Trip
This movie was released in Austrailia, I think. I'd already seen it when a students bought me a burned DVD of it. I teach a Science Fiction literature class and "All You Zombies" is the story we read to introduce time travel. (I know there may better for introducing the topic to a bunch of high school students, but it works well with the other reading selections I use.)

Anyway, I watched it and it is worth watching. The story is mostly all dialogue which makes one think it would make a horrible movie without much action or scenery. Especially since the text is mostly cerebral. However, the movie adds some interesting aspects to the film. In the story, the temporal agent is charged of preventing disaster (terrorists?) and recruiting other temporal agents. One of the disasters mentioned in the story is the Fizzle War. The writers of the screenplay, Spierig brothers(?), did a really good job of taking the twisted timeline of the protagonist and incorporating the events of the Fizzle war to make the movie even more interesting, and thought provoking.

I'm sure Heinlein would approve of the movie. I'll probably go watch it in the theater.

It may be better than Primer... Now there is a good Timey-wimey film.

Comment: Adminstration (Score 4, Interesting) 193

by flogger (#48506401) Attached to: Chromebooks Overtake iPads In US Education Market
Right out of the gate, Chromebooks are easier to administer at an "enterprise" level. Yes, the school district needs to "sell its soul to get the management console (domain control and device management.) Google has been helpful with support for any needs we have. Getting in touch with and help from apple for issues is near impossible.

Chromebooks come with some good tools for using existing infrastructure without too much of a learning curve. Getting teachers to open and use a spreadsheet on an ipad is a lot more tricky than opening the same file on a chromebook.

Bottom line, if you are dealing with more than 5 devices, chromebooks save a ton of time and energy.

Comment: Change in operations instead of cash.... (Score 0) 246

by flogger (#48500053) Attached to: 10-Year-Old iTunes DRM Lawsuit Heading To Trial
I have an ipod.. If I am part of this class action settlement, I'll get 10 cents (as someone said earlier). I don;t want the dime; I want to be able to add media to the ipod without going through itunes... Want a class action lawsuit to do some good? Make it so that there are fundamental changes. of course Apple will say that it is impossible to put media on the ipod with out itunes... I know a few jailborken ipods that show otherwise.

Comment: Re:Hard to beat MIT's Scratch. Free and graphical. (Score 3, Informative) 107

by flogger (#48413593) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Professionally Packaged Tools For Teaching Kids To Program?
I should just Mod this up, but I'll add to it.

I work with a lot of students at my school and I've purchased a few KANO kits. They are great and appeal to kids who want to program and kids who want to make cool cases in woodworking shop... Grab one and try it out. If it doesn;t work, donate it to a local school's computer club.

I also use RPG maker (There is a free version on sourceforge I think) which can be used to make some very elaborate 2d rpg style games.... At first the kids I work with love the mapping and simple switch oriented programming, but after a while, the kids are learning scripting and the logic behind all programming.

But, yeah, Scratch is great too.

Comment: The Ads are too late. (Score 1) 249

by flogger (#48083567) Attached to: Why Do Contextual Ads Fail?
The ads for me are always late. Here are a couple recent examples. I wanted the 5th edition D&D Players handbook. I knew about it from word of mouth within my local D&D group. I went to amazon and ordered it and a big bag-o-dice. For the next day or three, I see advertisements for stuff I have already purchased.

I frequent a blog HomeBrew Finds which is nothing more than a listing of sales around the internet. I saw a fermentor last month and ordered it. After I ordered it, I saw adds for fermentors.. .I don't need any more.

Contextual ads need to be a little more prophetic and a little less "I sold you so."

"Mach was the greatest intellectual fraud in the last ten years." "What about X?" "I said `intellectual'." ;login, 9/1990