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Comment: Ph.D. Program? (Score 1) 280

by kramer2718 (#48612027) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Should a Liberal Arts Major Get Into STEM?

You might consider a Ph.D. program. If your grades are good and you have the basics, and you can tell the department a good story, you can get admitted and get funding in many STEM disciplines.

You'll have to spend a long time getting your Ph.D., but if it's what you want to do, it may be worth it. You should probably choose a program that grants a Master's along the way so that if you don't finish, you'll have something to show for your time.

Comment: Re: 60 Minutes Pushing Propaganda? (Score 1) 409

by demachina (#48520877) Attached to: Is Chernobyl Still Dangerous? Was 60 Minutes Pushing Propaganda?

I donâ(TM)t blame /. Its hard to have insightful commentary on our society any more.

Who would have figured Wall Street and the The City would rape the global economy in 2008, and instead of going to jail the central banks rewarded them with free money for six years and theyâ(TM)ve tripled their money as their punishment.

There was a brief glimmer of protest in the Occupy movement and it was crushed like a bug. The Department of Homeland security has turned most small town police force in to something resembling an occupying army you would see in Iraq, and they seem to be spending much of their time arbitrarily confiscating cash and cars for profit, no judge, no jury, no trial.

The Five Eyes are not just spying on some stuff, they are spying on EVERYTHING and we all know it and there isnâ(TM)t really anything anyone is gonna do about it. To stay on topic, 60 minutes had a shill do a great peice on the nice kids that work at the NSA.

We figured the Republican brand was destroyed as of 2008 and we elected this hopie changie President. It turns out heâ(TM)s pretty much as bad or worse than the previous clown and nothing changed. There is a high probability the next one is gonna be worse than the last two. In six years the Democrats have laid such waste we are welcoming the Republicans back. We donâ(TM)t really want either of our parties any more but they arenâ(TM)t going to allow us an Option C.

Its hard to find biting satire or piercing commentary that does it justice and you know it isnâ(TM)t gonna change a God damn thing. After everyting thatâ(TM)s happened over the last ten years, there should have been change, our civilization was ripe for it. There just wasnâ(TM)t any. The man seems to have his jack boot on our necks and heâ(TM)s got us down.

Comment: Re:oh boy! (Score 1) 253

by turgid (#48312859) Attached to: Tech Recruiters Defend 'Blacklists,' Lack of Feedback, Screening Techniques

From my experience, the boneheads were almost exclusively in the HR agencies.

About a year ago, in my previous job, I was recruiting for some Linux Kernel/Drivers/Embedded C (with a bit of C++) people. I was dealing with some of these boneheads but I made sure I had a very good, strongly-worded chat with them to explain the types of candidates I was looking for, making it absolutely clear that I needed people who were proficient in C, not just C++.

The reply that took the biscuit was, "To be honest, you'd be better off looking for C# programmers."

Comment: Re:That's the part that "counts" (groan) (Score 4, Interesting) 443

by demachina (#48258217) Attached to: Antares Rocket Explodes On Launch

Pretty sure NASA has blown more on Constellation, Orion and SLS, launchers to no where that never launch, than SpaceX has spent on successful development of 2 new rockets and Dragon1, and will probably spend on Falcon Heavy, Dragon 2 and their reusable program.

NASA's problem is not insufficient funding. Its inefficiency, bureaucratic bloat, corrupt contractors, and the inability to build or do much of anything in the vacinity of its manned space program. JPL and a few others places are doing fine but they are an exception to the rule.

Some people at Orbital probably do need to be sacked for trying to use 40+ year old Russian engines, the engines are actually that old not just the design. Some people at NASA probably should be sacked for buying in to a contractor proposing such a flawed concept.

Comment: Not Anti-Social If Done Properly (Score 1) 786

by kramer2718 (#48200061) Attached to: NPR: '80s Ads Are Responsible For the Lack of Women Coders

Software development is usually done in an anti-social way. You chunk up a release or backlog or whatever into features, each dev takes a feature and goes off and writes some code. Later there is some collaboration in testing, code reviews, troubleshooting, etc.

But that is a TERRIBLE way to do it. The wrong code gets written way too often. Designs are bad because people aren't contributing along the way. Requirements get missed because the developer makes an assumption that s/he didn't know was an assumption. The more eyes on the code at all times the better. Devs should be constantly communicating with testers and people who understand the business case (product owners). One way to do that is pair programming. It sounds like a waste of time, but it is actually faster. Silly mistakes get caught right away. Debugging goes faster. Another way to do that is to chunk the work into very small pieces and constantly communicate to integrate your tiny piece with the other devs' tiny pieces. This leads to clean interfaces and modular code.

The Cowboy Superhero model of software development only makes sense if you are the only one developing a project. And remember in that case, your code dies when you get hit by a bus (or kill your wife and go to prison).

Comment: Re:Of course! (Score 1) 571

by turgid (#48153715) Attached to: Lockheed Claims Breakthrough On Fusion Energy Project

No way.

I'll bet money that Lockheed have already had this working for years in a Black Project. I'm also willing to wager that some UFO sightings are secret experimental aircraft with fusion reactor power sources and combined electrical/thermal engines (glowing lights, hovering, vertical flight....).

Since they know it already works, they're announcing it so that they can do a (fake) clean-room reimplementation of the physics and engineering research, that makes it work, in the open so that they can get away with commercialising it/patenting it.

Comment: Re:No WMD's...Really? (Score 4, Insightful) 376

by demachina (#48153565) Attached to: Pentagon Reportedly Hushed Up Chemical Weapons Finds In Iraq

Its no secret Iraq had chemical weapons. They used them liberally against Iranian human wave attacks during the Iran Iraq war.

The reason they were hushed up is because they were provided by western countries. You do know the U.S. and Europe backed Saddam in the Iran Iraq war and most probably encouraged the use of chemical weapons against Iranian teenagers right? Iran had a huge population advantage, Iraqi Shias weren't that keen on fighting Iranian Shia, so Iraq needed technology to level the field and the West helped with that edge.

The West was really happy about a lengthy, bloody stalemate in that war bleeding both countries white.

Comment: IronNet Cybersecurity is the ethics issue (Score 5, Informative) 59

Most of the ethics questions around Alexander involve his company IronNet Cybersecurity. He founded it when he retired. He's charging big banks $1,000,000 a month to protect them in cyberspace, and its not exactly clear what he has to offer to justify the price tag, other than classified insider knowledge of cyber threats from his NSA years, he probably shouldn't be selling to the highest bidder.

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