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Comment: Re:That drawing was a joke, but (Score 1) 276

I think you need to look at what drives innovation, i.e. making money. This in general this is done by making things more efficient, which has been going on since at least the industrial revolution and selling things that people need or want which has been going on at least since people started building towns.

Going to other planets takes a lot of energy an is expensive, how does it make anyone money? Until someone finds a big return on investment from space travel, either because it makes something more efficient than the cost of traveling to space or produces a good that people want, there will be no incentive to develop the tech to cheaply explore other planets.

AI is perhaps more likely, especially since it can make things like intelligence gathering and health care much more efficient. BUT, and this does seem a bit curious, society seems to optimize for efficient use of human resources. Think about clothing production, it is still all sewn by people on sewing machines, why? Because the cost of setting up and running CNC machines to do it out-weighs the cost of just getting cheap labour.

Comment: Re:Missing the point (Score 3, Insightful) 198

by khakipuce (#45431937) Attached to: SourceForge Appeals To Readers For Help Nixing Bad Ad Actors

It's more like ranching or fishing. The cattle and fish are not customers, they are your feedstock or raw materials. Treat them badly, over-fish, poison them and you have no feedstock and hence no revenue. Google gets this fairly well, they actively farm their users giving them plenty to feed on, and doing their best not to pollute the food supply (i.e. search results in google's case) they also add in cool stuff, new toys, etc. and hence Google's customers are happy fat cows who keep coming back for more - I know, I am one!

Comment: Re:Diminishing returns (Score 4, Insightful) 478

by khakipuce (#44754991) Attached to: Schneier: We Need To Relearn How To Accept Risk

The chances of dying are 100%. We all do it, it is just a case of when and how. As a society we are well into looking for very marginal returns - eat brocolli all your life to put off the chance of getting bowel cancer when you are 87 - and it is impossible to do valid experiments that show if measured take to mitgate one risk cause others.

I work on a large industrial site and management have voer the last few years been on a major safety push. One result of this is that they have been round and "risk assessed" all the walk ways and put barriers all over the place. The outcome is that walking from the car park to the office is now so convoluted that people just walk down the road ways. There never was any evidence that anyone was acutally injured in the areas where barriers were put up.

Comment: Re:Docs vs tutorial (Score 1) 211

by khakipuce (#44754951) Attached to: Writing Documentation: Teach, Don't Tell

Documentation should be tested. You test your code (I hope) so why not test your documentation??? Like all testing the very act of thinking about how to test it will make you improve it. Then developing documentation tests will help you improve it further. Testing the documentation will further test your application (sometimes what si written in the docs is right but the app doesn't do it).

Give the applicaiton and the documentation to someone with suitable skills but no knowledge of the application and give them some tasks to do. If they can complete the task with the documenation only then great. If they ask you a question, fix the docs. EVEN if the answer to the question is in the docs, if someone asked you then it's not obvious so fix it.Find out what steps they took to find the information and put it in the logical path.

Comment: Re:A Perl/Unix Way of Thinking (Score 1) 164

So as a Perl developer i guess he is not big on rich user interfaces? How does he propose to sucessfully convert say a Windows Forms UI to PHP?

Oh! I get it, that's out-of-scope, who needs UIs? We can all just run a bunch of command line scripts and applications.

But wait, didn't we do that already .. I seem to remember it being called Unix.

I for one welcome this bright new future!

Comment: Re:Nice (Score 1) 719

by khakipuce (#44295117) Attached to: Edward Snowden Nominated For Nobel Peace Prize

No, religion just provides the labels. The cause of wars, and much other fighting (gangs, football hooligans, etc.) is TRIBALISM. In Northern Ireland Catholics and Protestants are fighting again, but those are just convenient labels for "native" Irish and people descended from English invaders. Much of the fighting in in the middle east is between people with different tribal allegiances, the media just finds it easier to say Sunni and Shi'a.

Just to be clear, I am an atheist and know that a lot of terrible things have been done in the name of religion but I think if we took religion away altogether, certain groups of people will still see "them" and "us" and start fighting.

Comment: So thre are Pros and Cons (Score 3, Insightful) 54

by khakipuce (#44186909) Attached to: ARMs Race: Licensing vs. Manufacturing Models In the Mobile Era

Owning the Fab is a big capital cost and means the beast has to be fed but allows for more late-stage tweaking. Not owning that Fab means potentially more flexibility in choosing a process for the design. Of course ARM ahs to work with it's partners, that doesn't mean it's partners are in-flexible and far from cutting edge.

Seems like no great news, just the same old in-house vs. out-sourced debate...

Comment: Re:Wake up (Score 1) 524

Fact is if he has got a module with bugs in it and he has paid the contractor then HE HAS PAID FOR BUGS. His issue seems to be that he now lost his leverage to get the bugs fixed. He ought to insist that all code comes with a complete set of tests that ensures the code complies fully with the spec. He can then verify/validate the tests, run them and only pay when the the code is "bug free". But that would bump up the price.

It may be better to pay 50% on delivery and 50% on UAT with the proviso that if the original contractor can't/won't fix it the second 50% will go to someone else who can.

Comment: Re:Matter of time (Score 4, Interesting) 215

It's the other way round. Mathematics is just an abstract representation of the real world. No amount of physics, maths or theories of "everything" will cure cancer or invent the next IPhone. Patents are about (or at least should be about) the inventive step - i.e. the coming together of several elements to create something new.

The IQ of the group is the lowest IQ of a member of the group divided by the number of people in the group.

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