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Comment: Re: What about switching to a proportional system? (Score 1) 413

by gmiller123456 (#48492073) Attached to: Mathematicians Study Effects of Gerrymandering On 2012 Election

It's pretty amazing how little attention proportional representation gets in the us. Too many people would rather argue about things they'll never agree on, than focus on things like proportional representation, which pretty much everyone would agree on (as demonstrated by almost every other democratic country on Earth).

Comment: Objective C for now (Score 1) 211

by gmiller123456 (#48491393) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Objective C Vs. Swift For a New iOS Developer?

Just in the past month or so I decided to make the jump and learn iOS programming. My experience is not at all similar to yours in that I have a CS degree and have been a full-time programmer since '94, and have been developing Android apps for over a year, and Blackberry apps before that, and PalmOS before that. Had I known Apple was in the middle of a language switch, I would have put it off a lot longer. It should be obvious that the one to learn is whichever one will win out in the end. There is no since in learning a language that will never take off, nor in learning a language that is being phased out.

So your goal is to predict which one will win. And, statistically speaking, the odds aren't in Swift's favor as almost all new languages fail. Granted, most of those don't have the power of a company like Apple behind it, but VBScript is one example that failed to catch on with an even more powerful company behind it. Microsoft had tried and failed several times to introduce VBScript in different environments. So, just because Apple wants it to succeed, and says it's the "new thing" in their documentation, doesn't mean it's going to. On the contrary, JavaScript is a good example of a language that likely would have failed, but has been immensely successful solely due to Netscape's adoption of it. So, which language is better really won't matter as far as which one wins in the end.

My current take on Swift is that it's too difficult to find working examples on how to call the framework libraries. That's not to say they don't exist, I just haven't been able to find them. Most of what you find on Google today is from the beta versions of Swift, and they're not syntactically compatible with the current version. It's certainly possible to figure it out yourself, but takes quite a bit of time. So the question boils down to: "If Swift wins, will you waste more time trying to figure out Swift today, or will it be more efficient to learn Objective-C today and switch to Swift after it's won?". IMHO, Objective-C is the answer today, and if you combine it with the fact that Swift will likely fail just by playing the odds, then Objective-C is the clear winner. If Swift wins, you'll likely spend a lot less time learning it later than you will spend learning Objective-C today.

Reading the comments above, there's obviously no shortage of people who think they absolutely know which language is the future, but I'll be the first to admit that I don't know. You'll have to hedge your bets they best you can. But if I were a betting man, I'd say Swift will fail as it's got several serious strikes against it:
- Most new languages and platforms fail
- It's a proprietary language with only one use case.
- The one use case it has (iOS) is declining in market share.
- The launch appears to have been botched with few sources of documentation available on how to actually use it for iOS programming.
- The language has already been polluted by the beta versions, leaving newcomers with no way to discern from the old and the new.
- Apps in the App Store are no longer the cash cow they once were, reducing the benefit for people to spend time learning it.
- Since iOS is declining, even if Swift wins the iOS language war, it's possible it won't be relevant.
- For existing programmers, there is no economic benefit to switching to Swift
- Swift brings no new functionality to the table, so there's no reason to switch to it other than Apple wants you to.

Comment: tint tiny rss (Score 1) 335

by gmiller123456 (#43974735) Attached to: Slashdot Asks: How Will You Replace Google Reader?

I went with Tiny Tiny RSS. despite its name, the native interface is actually quite bloated. But fortunatley someone has written a fairly minimalist plugin UI which performs quite well on mobile devices.

I'm not sure if it's just me, or if all of the "social" features of many of the other RSS are actually useful to others. But all I really wanted is a simple thing that tracks which articles are new vs. what I've read. Pretty much every reader I came across was bloated with a lot of features and decorations that slowed it down. I belive I've got a good enough solution with Tiny Tiny RSS. It requires you to host the app on your own website, so it's not going to work for everyone, nor be exactly easy to set up.

Comment: What does this have to do with Groupon? (Score 1) 209

by gmiller123456 (#36074684) Attached to: Groupon Deal Costs Photographer a Year's Free Work

Seems to me like the article referring to "Groupon Piranhas" was just looking for a reason to pick on Groupon. Even if Groupon didn't take a penny of the proceeds, the photography still wouldn't get enough to make it worth his/her time based on all of the assumptions made by the author. Even so, there are still plenty of logical explanations as to why a photography would agree to such a deal, even knowing what they're getting in to.

Having been a hobbyist photographer (never working for anyone) for the past 15 or so years I have seen plenty of people attempting to break into the professional photography business grossly under price their services just to get experience. Most of them are not good at all, none of them are great, but they all generally truly enjoy photography and would pay a pretty penny themselves to have 300 people pose for them in 300 different locations.

Comment: "Dynamic" hashing isn't cryptography (Score 1) 409

by gmiller123456 (#35150536) Attached to: Are You Sure SHA-1+Salt Is Enough For Passwords?

The problem with the "dynamic hashing" solution to the problem is it fails to account for the fact that a devoted attacker is going to be willing to dedicate vastly more resources to cracking it than you are to securing it. Dynamic hashing grows linearly with the amount of computing power used to secure it vs how much it takes to break it. So, for very weak passwords, rather than it taking .1 seconds to crack, it takes five minutes, which is not likely to deter any attacker.

It might deter someone from cracking a large range of passwords to your systems, or someone from guessing the password to your blog's administrative account. But it's not something you can rely on for systems that would be targeted by devoted attackers. At the end of the day, weak passwords cannot be made a secure authentication method.

Comment: Re:Let that be a lesson to you! (Score 1) 487

by gmiller123456 (#35126720) Attached to: Woman Gets Revenge Courtesy of Google Images

That's not surprising, the police have no duty to protect you:
http://www.firearmsandliberty.com/kasler-protection.html

"In 1989, in a suburb of Los Angeles, Maria Navarro called the L. A. County Sheriff's 911 emergency line asking for help. It was her birthday and there was a party at her house, but her estranged husband, against whom she had had a restraining order, said he was coming over to kill her. She believed him, but got no sympathy from the 911 dispatcher, who said: "What do you want us to do lady, send a car to sit outside your house?" Less than half an hour after Maria hung up in frustration, one of her guests called the same 911 line and informed the dispatcher that the husband was there and had already killed Maria and one other guest. Before the cops arrived, he had killed another. "

If your lawyer didn't listen, you need a new lawyer. Or maybe you just need to listen to your lawyer, the fact that you're still alive shows they were just empty threats.

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