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Comment Re:You guys understand why they're doing this, rig (Score 2) 42 42

The prices for engineers are quite high, and the PR cost in importing them is also quite high, so they're pouring money into education as a long-term investment in driving down the cost of developers in the future.

That's like a 5-10 year plan. The messaging here is that Microsoft wants engineers from the US and wants people to become computer programmers, and they're doing "everything they can" to stimulate it, so just let us hire all the H1Bs we want this quarter. The messaging presents the premise that "there aren't enough engineers" in the US, thus H1Bs are justified today. "Maybe in the future" this situation will change, but for now we "have to" have "targeted, short term high-skill immigration reforms."

Nadella and the people involved might just love computer science and want to share it with the world, these things do happen.

You don't have to be Mitt Romney to question PBS's announcement that it will air the Microsoft-funded 'reality' show Code Trip

Why are we supposed to question it, exactly? Is it some question of MS influencing PBS programming? That couldn't be it, considering how dependent PBS is on corporate sponsorship.

Is it that the program itself sounds sorta fluffy and probably won't reach a wide audience, but it'll be a boondoggle that MS can use for tax evasion, while getting the Center for Public Broadcasting and several charitable foundations to pay for what essentially Microsoft's public relations? Maybe.

Comment Re:Passed data with a ton of noise? (Score 1) 368 368

I got into this with an audiophule type a few years ago. He, with a completely straight face, asserted that double-blind testing was an inherently flawed methodology for evaluating the objective marvelosity of some silly audiophule crap he was touting.

This has been a consistent argument from audiophiles for several years:

In short, for the important stuff, like "Do amplifiers or cables or differing storage media sound different", "blind testing" of any kind, single or double isn't likely to work because there are simply too many characteristics present and changing, and (if only because of the way human perception works) it's virtually impossible to isolate them and make sure that all of the testees are hearing the same test of the same thing in exactly the same way.

In short, "we believe in high fidelity but only in a purely non-falsifiable experiential sense." You can talk all you want about your error rates and THD+Ns but all they want to hear about is the "clarity," the "smoothness of the tone," and the "space around the instruments."

And these aren't crazy things to talk about, but insisting that a physical thing, a $300 ethernet cable, can actually create these things in a way that a cheaper one cannot is a kind of fetishism.

Comment Re:wait, what? (Score 1) 368 368

They tested the $340 one because they weren't willing to pay for the $1000 "Ethernet audio" cable.

Under normal circumstances a manufacturer would provide a sample for a media outlet. Audiophile gear manufacturers don't do this, for some reason -- reviews in audiophile mags usually seem to come from enthusiasts who've already bought-in, literally.

Comment Re:Mod parent up. (Score 1) 368 368

Keep in mind that the "directional" cables are grounded at only one end, and you can't guarantee that digital and analog will have separate ground paths.

The ones the audiophiles sell don't generally lift the ground on one end; also this is an ethernet cable which means it's electrically isolated, it usually doesn't have a shield and "signal" doesn't flow unidirectionally down it.

It makes sense to lift the ground on an XLR cable because in that case the cable shield is connecting either the audio or chassis grounds on two pieces of gear, but again we don't automatically lift the ground on the sending or receiving side, because it usually depends on wether or not both sides are audio ground, wether the ground is lifted in the box on one end or the other, and where this cable connects relative to where the ground stake is. Ground lifting is something you do once you've built the room, you don't just let the manufacturer do it.

Comment Re:Slippery Slope (Score 2, Insightful) 164 164

By reddit's metaphysical rules, an SJW is just someone who you disagree with.

Or perhaps more to the point: an SJW in anyone who has less Reddit karma than you, and fails to abide by the carefully-arbitrated deontological ethics of Reddit. Namely, to offend is Good, unless such offense is directed at the interests and peccadilloes of Redditors.

Comment Re:Sad (Score 2) 452 452

It's not about wether or not everyone's within their rights, nobody contests that the mods don't have the right to do what they did, I think. The question, more for Ellen Pao and the mods than us, is wether it's actually appropriate or good community conduct to shut down the whole website because she decides to let someone go.
Nobody's going to work for Reddit if they're told at the door: "We'll keep you around as long as some splinter cell of mods doesn't start a flashmob against you. And we try to fire bad people but if they have loyal mods they're impossible to get rid of." So exactly what do the redditors want reddit to be, assuming we call them constituents or stakeholders, and not mere content sharecroppers? Do they really want to be involved in Reddit's internal business process? Why?

In California at least, there are strict legal protections for people who are fired, their boss cannot necessarily talk about why or how someone is fired in public, not without courting significant legal liability. So I'm not sure what "transparency" or "involving the community" can practically accomplish, without getting everyone tied up in torts.

Comment Re:Sad (Score 4, Insightful) 452 452

They need to launch a /r/WeWantToFireThisPersonIsThatOkWithYou every time this comes up to prevent spoiled babies from holding message boards hostage?

Reddit may eventually have to decide if they're an actual business that's supposed to make money or a hip BBS. The two identities are sorta in tension and I'm not sure it's resolvable.

Comment Re: The author doesn't understand Herbert (Score 1) 234 234

"No... down with the people appropriating people that don't share their ideology or way of thinking as members of their group."

In your opinion. It's up for interpretation, and anyway there's a lot more to the Guardian than some caricature of brain-dead leftism, and there's a lot more to Dune than a one sentence quote from Paul Atreides.

Imagination is more important than knowledge. -- Albert Einstein