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Comment: Re:They've got a lot of catching up to do... (Score 1) 431

by frank_adrian314159 (#46743531) Attached to: Is Germany Raising a Generation of Illiterates?

Did you ever meet a black person with a college degree?

Here you go off the rails with respect to your argument. When you are talking about subcultures, you're not talking individuals, you're talking statistics. And the statistics here are pretty awful - 8% enrollment gap for black males, 18% for Hispanic males. Female gaps are worse, as are those for college graduation. But appealing to anecdotal evidence (i.e., "Did you ever meet a black person with a college degree?") is not a valid argument when talking about an entire subculture, just as assuming that an entire subculture is deficient based on one metric (in this case, academic achievement) is pretty specious. In fact, did either of you know that, after compensating for socioeconomic status, the racial gap disappears?

Of course, neither of you know this and God knows it doesn't fit in with either of your world views, so it doesn't register in either of your discourses, both of which are based on emotion and specious arguments. If you want to really acknowledge the issue, it's socioeconomic status - class, in short. Liberals (even when they pay lip service to this notion) are too chickenshit to actually do anything about it; Conservatives won't even acknowledge it. Both are useless. Just like arguments on Slashdot.

Comment: Re:Retraining miners (Score 1) 578

by frank_adrian314159 (#46727087) Attached to: Michael Bloomberg: You Can't Teach a Coal Miner To Code

This doesn't end well.

"Oh, come, come, my good sir! Surely you jest. Of course it ends well! Just think logically... Since we in the upper class hold all means of governance, manufacturing, communications, energy and food production, provisioning of service - in short, all meaningful economic activity - the basic necessities of life, only a fool, no matter how mistreated, would ever rise up against us. And, if he did, he and whoever he might conspire with would be tracked, caught, convicted, and confined, his friends and family persecuted and ruined. And now, for the sake of jest, let us propose that somehow, by some fortuitous fluke, enough of these malcontents band together to become even a minor annoyance to us. Our mercenaries will track, find, infiltrate, and neutralize them. If necessary, our superior technology shall target and kill them. Because that's the final trump, my good fellow - our superiority in bringing death to those who oppose us.

"It is the way of evolution, my dear man. And it will not be stopped. And atop this shining edifice? Striding across the globe, confidently able to command and reap the benefits of our leadership? Why us, my boy! Us! That is, if we don't falter. If we don't lose our nerve...

"And, well...


"Well, there's always a chance the bloody wogs might find some way of rising up before we're ready. Hire some more mercenaries, up the amount of infiltration, and get started on that wholesale bringing death thing, will you? Economic ruin, leading to deprivation, starvation, and illness should get most of them, while our prisons, bombs, and bullets will get the rest. Cary on, Maxwell... Oh, and send in Hansen..."

"Yes, sir!"

Comment: Oh wow! Now I HAVE to type my own comment header r (Score 4, Informative) 97

by frank_adrian314159 (#46720675) Attached to: MA Gov. Wants To Ban Non-Competes; Will It Matter?

And you've taken away the I-tag again! I don't know why I'm still coming back here...

Apple, of course, invented their UI all by themselves, right? Never took any ideas from Xerox. Nope.

Nope. They bought the rights from Xerox. Different thing entirely. Micorsoft and the movie industry, though - they wer another matter and have the lawsuits (and subsequent settlement in the case of Microsoft) to prove it.

I wish the Apple-haters around here would at least get their history straight. I'm not an Apple fanboy. However, I am a computer history fanboy and I wish the amateurs would at least not keep spreading misinformation.

Comment: Re:Wiretapping? (Score 2) 313

I'd have an easier time believing in "equality of opportunity" again if economic power were more evenly distributed. Unless you're telling me a lower-class kid from the ghetto, a middle-class kid from the 'burbs, and an upper-class kid from whatever upper-class enclave you wish to name all have the same "equality of opportunity". From my vantage point, the first has opportunity of jail or long-term unemployment and welfare, the second lifelong debt and wage slavery (until about age 50, where they slide down into the lower-class), and the third gets the opportunity to have just about anything he or she wants. And the statistics about outcomes and class mobility seem to bear this out. The only way to win a rigged game is to change the game.

Comment: Re:Why OpenSSL is so popular? (Score 4, Insightful) 301

by frank_adrian314159 (#46714821) Attached to: Theo De Raadt's Small Rant On OpenSSL

First, make sure that code that must be secure is transparent. That means little (or no) optimizations, standard calls to OS functions, and clearly structured. It's clear that the OpenSSL developers made their code more opaque than was prudent and the many eyes of open source land could not see through the murk. Yes, clearer code would mean that it ran more slowly and some folks would need to run a few more servers, but the security problem might have been uncovered sooner (or not have happened) if someone hadn't thought that performance was a reason to make the code more complex.

Second, formal independent review would have helped. Most code (especially in volunteer-based open source projects) is only vetted by people directly on the development team. Any piece of software as ubiquitous and critical to the operation of today's internet as OpenSSL cannot have verification and validation mainly by its own developers. For software like this, where security is critical, you should have external review. Start an independent project that vets these things, folks.

Third, understand the limits of testing vs. design. More unit tests would not have caught this. Simple designs lead to simple and correct implementations. Complex designs (or no designs) lead to seas of unit tests that simply tells you the ways that the code happens not to be broken at the moment. Code like that in OpenSSL ideally should be simple enough to be formally proved correct.

I think we've known about why these sorts of things happen ever since I entered he field thirty years ago. We have ways to prevent them, but they usually take time, money, or lowered performance. That they are still happening because of performance zealotry, bad process, and "teh web-speed is everything" mentality is a black mark on our profession.

Comment: Bad either way... (Score 2, Informative) 255

by frank_adrian314159 (#46192145) Attached to: Big Pharma Presses US To Quash Cheap Drug Production In India

I am not a shill for the drug companies by any means. That being said, I think the third world's energies would be better spent dealing with their quality issues before they got butt hurt over this move by big pharma's lobby. In reality, drugs sourced from India and/or China are a crap shoot. Read Derek Lowe's blog "In the Pipeline" for information on this industry and pharmacological chemistry.

Yes, India may be getting unfairly punished for it's ability to manufacture drugs inexpensively, but unfair things go on all the time - just look at Slashdot beta!

Comment: Known issue... (Score 1) 876

by frank_adrian314159 (#46192025) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Why Are We Still Writing Text-Based Code?

Text is more dense than graphics. Graphics, depending on how it's laid out can provide better or worse documentation than the code itself. Debuggers run on text, not pictures. Text can be edited with a variety of tools; any graphical notation will have its own editor, which will probably suck. Big diagrams are too tangled, while small diagrams provide too little context or require enough off-page connectors to make any intent opaque. No good way to connect to globals without use of (again) said off-page connectors. Need I go on?

People have been trying out and discarding graphical programming interfaces since the early 1970's (at least). Nobody keeps using them. Get the clue.

Plus, fuck beta.

Comment: My first non-Fuck beta submission! (Score 0) 175

Any organization that has a "Senior VP of People and Places" needs to rethink what the hell they are doing. Stupid titles are a sign of stupid management. I bet Slashdot has a "Senior VP of Beta:".

Damn it! I did it again. Sorry...

Oh well... Fuck beta!

Comment: I wonder how much this beta cost... (Score 1) 176

But I see Dice is convinced that piling on to sunk costs for a broken project is a great strategy for success. Tells you all you need to know about the company. Web gazillion.0 idiots at their best! Arrogance and idiocy all rolled into a big steamer delivered fresh to your browser every day!

Fuck beta!

"If value corrupts then absolute value corrupts absolutely."