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Comment: Re:Your employer (Score 4, Insightful) 129

by garcia (#47965099) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Who Should Pay Costs To Attend Conferences?

The IT world is certainly competitive; however, ALL companies should see the internal benefits to training employees and working to ensure they do not leave. Companies with the mindset you laid out above are doing themselves a double disservice by not training their employees and leveraging the benefits and immediate returns provided by investments in their human capital. In some fields and with some resources, professional development is seen as a bigger happiness motivator and retention tool than more salary.

What you have outlined above is a company which is not interested in its people and only its immediate bottom line and one where it's clear its people should move on regardless of payscale and internal short-term opportunity provided.

Comment: Conference Attendance and Funding (Score 2) 129

by garcia (#47965007) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Who Should Pay Costs To Attend Conferences?

As someone who has repeatedly attended and presented at conferences in my field, I make it a point during negotiations for any new job to ensure these are funded fully but only if I am presenting; otherwise, I opt to share in the costs associated in attending with my employer.

Each and every company I have worked at in the past (and current) has a budget for training and professional development of its employees, some more than others; however, by making a case that I am giving back to a community of like-minded professionals and putting our name and brand out there during presentations, I have found this is an easy sell for companies for which I want to work.

I work extensively w/SAS and utilize a lot of the conference (SAS Global Forum/SUGI prior) materials in my day to day both for myself and our entire organization. By making it clear to my employers that I want to give back by presenting, I have opened organization's view on how the sharing of information benefits the business while benefiting the entire industry.

Make your determination and desires known when you sign on and, if that is not an option, make it clear to your management that you want to do the same thing. While I have received a variety of different types of pushback over the years for this view, they have all relented and ended up changing their world view when the benefits are presented as they are.

Conferences are not inexpensive (SAS Global Forum is usually around $3000 - $3500 for a single person encompassing travel, conference registration, lodging, meals, etc) but the ROI can be HUGE beyond that depending on the knowledge transfers that occur, the networking opportunities, and the new business development which I have seen from these conferences.

While I did not attend SASGF 2014 this year, it was solely due to my available time to develop a presentation topic, not because my company would not send me (this was my first missed attendance since I became involved in the SAS world) and I look forward to contributing to and learning from others in the future.

Best of luck.

Comment: Re:Alibaba's AliExpress store is ripe with fakes (Score 1) 190

by DarkOx (#47953031) Attached to: Why a Chinese Company Is the Biggest IPO Ever In the US

If he actually cares about decent hard working Americans he saves Amazon because Amazon investors at least own the company and Amazon is a US company providing a useful potentially profitable service.

Alibaba investors on the other hand are Wall Street gamblers who don't actually own anything other than some moon beam and unicorn promises that Alibaba really will distribute its profits to the Cayman islands company they actually own. That also presupposes the Chinese government won't just decide the whole arrangement isn't legal in the first place.


Comment: Re:Why is Alibaba selling IPO in USA? (Score 1) 190

by DarkOx (#47952997) Attached to: Why a Chinese Company Is the Biggest IPO Ever In the US

I know I can't believe this facts are being so under reported myself. The Alibaba management or the Chinese government (which probably could no matter what) is basically able to do just about anything they want and completely screw the investors who will be left with essentially no recourse legal or otherwise.

Its crazy to get into this deal where equity investors have essentially no rights or claim.

The cynic in me thinks the institutional guys buying up this IPO know this perfectly well and plan to unload it all on the retail folks before the next show drops. This deal stinks in so many ways; hopefully good people and their 401k managers will have enough sense to stay the hell away from it.

Comment: Re:But the movie selection still sucks (Score 3, Insightful) 174

by DarkOx (#47946139) Attached to: Native Netflix Support Is Coming To Linux

I agree I like Netflix a lot. $8 a month is a bargain compared to pretty much every other option.

I am going to go see the major "Block Buster" titles I am actually interested ( maybe three of four a year ) at the cinema with buddies; those are social events and quite honestly, (/me ducks the incomming flames) movies like Avengers while good are only great out with pals. Take the social component away and try watching the film alone in your living room and its far less compelling.

Maybe its because I don't generally watch movies for the sake who can show me the most photo real destruction of NYC and the occasional boom mike or obvious cardboard cutout in the shot does not ruin the suspension of disbelief for me; but I find that many of the Indie stuff Netflix offers me is just as entertaining as the AAA stuff Hollywood churns out. In the end that is what I want out of it to relax and be entertained.

Rating everything definitely helps you get good suggestions and the flat rate all you can eat model makes it safe to take a chance on something. If after 30min you find you are not enjoying a flick switch to something else and you are not out anything more than a little time. Even placing $2 bets on iTunes or something you could easily exceed the cost of Netflix without having had much fun to show for it.

Comment: Re:When will it work in Seamonkey and Firefox (Score 1) 174

by DarkOx (#47945979) Attached to: Native Netflix Support Is Coming To Linux

I listed SeaMonkey first for a reason that is the browser I use. First because it comes with a mail client that runs in process, and I need a mail client running most of the time anyway. The IRC client is not great but its useable. Finally the browser UI itself is sane, If you get rid the "home" bar which you can the interface is not cluttered but does put the tools you need for the web at your finger tips; rather than hiding them.

I don't get the minimalist interface crap, no I don't need fifty bars and side panels, but there is plenty of room for useful things like the address bar, status bar, and menu bar + nav buttons. Why that can't be displayed with a "full screen mode" option for when you really need the space is baffling to me. Did everyone go back to 640x480 and not send me the memo or something?

I basically included Firefox because its the same HTML rendering engine underneath so when one gets support the other browser will as well; and if you don't want to use SeaMonkey for some reason the Firefox UI can be "fixed" with a few plugins.

Thanks for pointing out the issue is EME; was not sure what the missing feature secret sauce was. Now I'll know what to watch for in the change logs!

Comment: Re:Shetland and Orkney (Score 1) 192

by DarkOx (#47944563) Attached to: On Independence for Scotland:

often if you are on the wrong side of a revolution you are a criminal.

That might be true but that isn't really what we are talking about here. A peaceful succession following a vote is not a revolution.

If you have a criminal record often presto you can't travel internationally

Yes if you have demonstrated you are unable to follow the rules of your society you loose rights in that society. No shock there and unless we are talking about specific laws that were decidedly unjust its hard to get morally outraged. I am not an expert on the UK or Canada; but neither are exactly known for examples such as systemic institutionalized, racism, religious oppression, etc, at least not in the previous couple generations. So its hard to get normally outraged by this "issue" in these contexts.

if you own property, you are your kids are part way through an education etc

Wow how very entitled, what about all those folks who own property, have kids part way though education etc that do want to succeed? Are their well being, needs, and desires less important than yours? This gets directly back to that democracy thing, not everyone is going to like every outcome, that is a given in any system. At least with a democratic system you get some say, you get to try and convince a plurality of others your way of thinking is best. If you can great, if not well those are the breaks. Hopefully the "winners" remember they are not always going to be and mike some allowances and concessions for the minority.

Comment: Re:Shetland and Orkney (Score 1) 192

by DarkOx (#47939921) Attached to: On Independence for Scotland:

what happens to the Atlantic provinces (PEI, NB, NS, NFLD)? What happens to the people in Quebec who voted against it?

That is trouble with democracy sometimes your side looses. The good news is free societies also let people move. That was not true of like the Soviet Union for example.

I highly doubt Scotland or Quebec will bar folks from leaving especially to return to their former Canada or UK nations.


Comment: Re:So then they get another warrant ... (Score 1) 503

by DarkOx (#47938725) Attached to: Apple Will No Longer Unlock Most iPhones, iPads For Police

The is nothing necessarily wrong with that. If they get a warrant to do than its fine. If they do so without a warrant they will CLEARLY have been acting as an agent of the state and the evidence will be in admissible.

What this does is give Apple cover from the accusation they are providing a convenient back door for the government to go on fishing expeditions. "We don't let the FBI/NSA/etc" just browse thru your stuff on our servers because we can't just browse thru it."

It does not mean for a second they won't cooperate with a legal warrant.

Comment: Re:Seriously? (Score 1) 529

by DarkOx (#47935999) Attached to: AT&T Says 10Mbps Is Too Fast For "Broadband," 4Mbps Is Enough

It used to be people only had one TV and everyone watched the same thing. It isn't a lie that 4Mbps is enough! You can utilize pretty much any online service offering with that. You are not missing out on any economic opportunities etc with access to that much speed. You can telecommute with that just fine.

Would you like more so everyone can use it at the same time, sure you'd probably also like everyone in the family to have their own bathrooms and their own car too but plenty of house holds can't afford those either. Unlimited wants limited resources is nothing new.

Lets be careful with "needs" vs. "wants" here. I think it would be a good policy to try and make sure everyone has access to "broadband" and that needs to be defined so 128k does not get called broadband, but we also need to avoid setting the bar to high so the effort does not fail or get written off as too pricey.

Comment: Re:Seriously? (Score 1) 529

by DarkOx (#47935921) Attached to: AT&T Says 10Mbps Is Too Fast For "Broadband," 4Mbps Is Enough

2 Netflix streams is asking a lot from 3Mbps but have you considered it might be your router that is the issue. I have a 3up/6dn connection and I don't have any of the problems all these people are complaining about with their 10Mbps+ connections.

So either their ISPs suck and are way over subscribed so the fact they get 10Mbps to the CO is meaningless because from there they just queue

Or their home routers are not up to the task. That 7 years Linksys probably can't handle large numbers of flows and high packet rates well. Probably not even enough to saturate 3Mbps connection in worst case conditions. Really get yourself and ASA off Ebay or go buy a nice shiny new higher end consumer device on Newegg. You will probably find things run much better.

Comment: Re: I never thought I'd say this... (Score 4, Interesting) 325

by DarkOx (#47935753) Attached to: FCC Chairman: Americans Shouldn't Subsidize Internet Service Under 10Mbps

Maybe you should consider living somewhere else than if you want a career in IT. Through all of history the characteristics and features of a geographic location have dictated the type of economic activity that goes on there.

Ever wonder why big cities tended to be near rivers or coasts ( at least prior the development of the automobile? ) there is a reason!

Wonder why all those orange groves get planted in Florida and not Maine?

I do IT consulting work mostly from home, but hop a plane about one a month currently. I am looking to live to more rural area myself because I am hiker and it would be nice to near on of the big State or National parks, but I have made it perfectly clear to my real estate agent that I can't look at properties unless they have good high speed internet service available at the location (by good I mean 800Kbps up down or better low latency; which is enough to remote into virtual servers where you do your real work from at the corporate offices).

You just don't always get to have it both ways! If you want to work in Information technology you probably have to stick close to where certain infrastructure is, and there are good economic reasons for where that is and isn't. You probably should consider another career path or maybe moving.

Comment: Re:Worse than it seems. (Score 2) 221

by DarkOx (#47930669) Attached to: Obama Presses Leaders To Speed Ebola Response

I am not sure where some of your numbers are coming from but you are correct about one thing. There are likely *many* unreported cases out there.

I hope we are not putting our service people into harms way against an enemy that they are not trained or equipped to fight; just to look like we are 'doing something'.

Real programmers don't write in BASIC. Actually, no programmers write in BASIC after reaching puberty.