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Comment: I have no idea (Score 1) 333

by hpj (#41953079) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Developer Or Software Engineer? Can It Influence Your Work?

I've worked professionally as a developer/software engineer/product architect/technical prime my entire professional career and I have no idea what the difference is supposed to be. The work has been more or less the same regardless of what the title is.

The one to be careful about is manager because that will usually involve having to babysit other people and if that's not your thing you'd do best to avoid it.

Comment: Why would US not take as many as they can? (Score 3, Informative) 795

by hpj (#41782545) Attached to: Cringley: H-1B Visa Abuse Limits Wages and Steals US Jobs

As a long time H1B holder I am a bit offended by the article and there are quite a lot of inaccuracies.

* The people that I know who have H1B visas both at my company and others are definitely not scraping the bottom of the barrel wage wise.
* To get an H1B visa you generally have to find a company in the US that is willing to go through the hassle of getting you a visa (And the time this takes before you can actually come over and start working).
* H1B is a "dual intent" visa, meaning you are legally allowed to aspire for permanent residence while you are here. It takes forever though and during this time you have to stay at your company (It usually takes at least 8 years). While you are applying for a green card you can extend your H1B indefinitely (I'm just about to extend my own for 3 years and I have already been here for 9).
* O might not be attainable even if you have a exceptional talent. To get one for working in IT you are pretty much required to have a masters degree. I would contend that exceptional talent in the IT field have fairly little to do with official schooling.
* Some of the H1B visas that are "fraudulent" are also people who have gotten promoted while here and the company didn't refile the proper paperwork indicate their new job titles. This usually means that they have a more qualified job and are paid a higher salary. I am not saying actual fraud doesn't happen, just that I doubt it is as prevalent as the statistics might show.

And finally, on a macro economical note, why would you not take as many people as you could that are skilled earn a good wage, can't be unemployed and generally use social resources (If I loose my job I have 30 days to get out).

Science

+ - Last bastion for climate dissenters crumbling.-> 1

Submitted by Layzej
Layzej writes: The New York Times reports: "For decades, a small group of scientific dissenters has been trying to shoot holes in the prevailing science of climate change, offering one reason after another why the outlook simply must be wrong." Initially they claimed that weather stations exaggerated the warming trend. This was disproven by satellite data which shows a similar warming trend. Next solar activity was blamed for much of the warming. This looked like a promising theory until the 80's when solar output started to diverge from global temperatures. Now, climate contrarians are convinced that changes in cloud cover will largely mitigate the warming caused by increased CO2. The New York Times examines how even this last bastion for dissenters is crumbling. Over the past few years, Several papers have shown that rather than being a mitigating factor, changes in cloud cover due to warming may actually enhance further warming.
Link to Original Source

+ - Google I/O Code Jam competition featured faulty solution checker->

Submitted by hpj
hpj writes: There are red faces across Mountain View today after angry developers pointed out a flaw in the Chocolate Factory's Code Jam competition for tickets to the Google I/O conference in June. ...

Google opened up 100 tickets to developers who successfully wrote solutions in a Code Jam competition, but the checking mechanism for entries turned out to be borked.

"The validator – i.e. the thing that checks your program has created the correct output was broken — and people who submitted incorrect entries had them verified as correct and correct entries (like mine — not bitter at all) were marked as incorrect," emailed Reg reader Richard of Barcode Beasties/TonePush."

Google has still not come out with an official response to the snafu or how they plan on rectify the issue.

Link to Original Source

Comment: Rest of the world have done this for decades (Score 5, Interesting) 269

by hpj (#39456013) Attached to: US Mobile Carriers Won't Brick Stolen Phones

I've worked developing cell phone operator software for almost a decade on 3 different continents (Not in the US though) and many different countries and as far as I know every single cell phone operator that I have worked for use the GSM standard practice of blocking the EMEI number which will cause the phone to be bricked on any GSM network in the world (AT&T & T-Mobile base their network on the GSM standard in the USA) and I was flabbergasted when a few months ago my 2 week old iPhone 4S was stolen AT&T would not do the same here.

Normally the procedure in other countries is that you just bring your cell phone operator the police report and they will immediately block the phone, basically turning it into a big media player (Assuming it is a smart phone). I can't understand how the operators here claim that they need to investigate technical solutions. This was designed and built into the original GSM standard that has been around since the late 1980:s and as far as I know the feature has also been in use since that time.

I totally agree with the article that it is unconscionable that operators here refuse to do this I am assuming to save a few bucks on cell phone subsidies.

Comment: Might not be a great idea (Score 1) 134

by hpj (#39340693) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Who Has the Best 3G Coverage In California and Nevada?

Pretty much all the carriers have decent coverage in the metropolitan areas. And pretty much all the carriers have bad to no coverage outside the metropolitan areas.

Buying the device on eBay and then putting in any SIM card you can pretty much forget it since all the major carriers in the US have different and incompatible systems. Sprint & Verizon don't even use SIM cards at all. T-Mobile & AT&T are SIM based but they use different frequencies for their 3G network, 1700MHz for T-Mobile & 850/1900MHz for AT&T (Also notice neither of these are the same as the frequencies used in the rest of the world). In regards to LTE that's an even bigger mess and the coverage is really spotty regardless of what operator you choose so I would just ignore it.

In short it amazes me how bad the cell phone network in the US works compared to most of Europe (I originally come from Sweden where you have interoperability between operators and generally pretty good coverage even in rural areas.

Comment: The Economist pricing... (Score 1) 236

by hpj (#35223872) Attached to: The True Cost of Publishing On the Amazon Kindle

It's interesting that The Economist was the example chosen in the original text because I have personally complained about the pricing for that title. Silly me I complained to The Economist and not to Amazon. It is ridiculous that I currently pay $69/year for the print edition (Which also includes access to a podcast where actual humans read the entire paper to me) but if I want it on the Kindle I have to shell out over $125.

Comment: Cox has been doing this for at least 3 years (Score 1) 290

by hpj (#27004941) Attached to: Quebec ISP To Terminate Subscribers Over Copyright

I had my Cox Communications internet connection disabled about 3 years ago because of this. When I called up and asked customer support about (It just seemed like it was down from my end) I was told that they had detected a specific torrent being shared from my network. They also informed me that if they caught this 3 times they would disable my service so I don't see anything new here.

I have also heard from several of my friends that also use Cox Communication that they have had similar experiences.

If I have not seen so far it is because I stood in giant's footsteps.

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