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Comment: Re:I can feel it now (Score 1) 63

by minstrelmike (#47388607) Attached to: Does Google Have Too Much Influence Over K-12 CS Education?

I have a degree in mathematics, a required hs course. forcing everyone to take math has not caused a deluge of mathematics majors. why would any other subject be different?

We haven't taken a good hard look at education in general.
For grades 9-12, there are four years required for English. Why?
And more importantly, how well does that work for us as a nation?

Comment: Re:the problem with cs4all, et al (Score 1) 63

by minstrelmike (#47388593) Attached to: Does Google Have Too Much Influence Over K-12 CS Education?

These programs are born of a fundamental misunderstanding

Yup. My daughter went thru all the "grrrlz in STEM" stuff thru 12 years of schooling.
She ended up becoming a statistician but I suspect she would have done that regardless. All of her other classmates who went thru the same extra-curriculars and science AP classes ended up going into interior design and anthropology.Those women-in-engineering initiatives are a good idea, but they miss a most basic point--there is a huge disincentive for guys to be smart in school, geeky, teacher's pet crap. It's always been that way yet there is a certain percentage of guys who go into tech anyway.

Substituting one class for another is probably not going to address that education issue.

Comment: Re:The last sentence (Score 1) 212

by minstrelmike (#47101737) Attached to: Games That Make Players Act Like Psychopaths
Uhhh no. The _only_ reason _WE_ act civilized is because we are a eusocial species.
We've have always depended on each other to survive. The myth of the single man subduing the world is a myth.
Daniel Boone could not build a musket and powder all by himself from rocks and trees.
Same with any of Ayn Rand's characters. You think the government is a pain in the ass, well take your great idea and build it in Somalia and see if you can make any money. We build on each other.

The reason we get along in general and specifically far more often than we don't is because we are eusocial. The tribe is a single thang, just like an anthill is.

Comment: expand or die (Score 1) 60

by minstrelmike (#46878679) Attached to: Why Does Amazon Want To Sell Its Own Smartphone, Anyway
Amazon's business model is actually still the same as any startup--expand or die.
Going into a new area such as smartphones keeps investors interested.
If they stopped expanding into new areas and technologies, then shareholders would start expecting them to make a profit and that has yet to happen at Amazon.

Comment: Re:Too funny (Score 1) 74

The report doesn't sound analytical at all to me.
Computing the average of all salary offers is like computing the student population based on average nr of students who apply to the university rated against the number who actually attend.
Since 3/4th of students don't accept (because students apply to 4 or more universities on average), then the "student" population of NC University is not 34,000 as stared in its brochures but "actually" 8,500--if you're going to use the same sort of "reasoning" and "logic" the salesmen for the Data Analytics program are using.

I only have a b.s. in math but this sounds like a completely different kind of bs, probably marketed toward folks who think buying a lottery ticket is a good investment.

Comment: Re:um (Score 1) 305

by minstrelmike (#46825747) Attached to: 'The Door Problem' of Game Design
The article reminded me of the basic design decisions Joel Spolsky talked about simply putting a trash can on a street corner.
It's got to be big so it holds lot of garbage. It's got to be heavy so it doesn't blow away. It's got to be light enough to empty.
It's got about 20 conflicting real life counter-manding requirements.

She's whining about the folks who say writing a game ain't that hard. Ain't no harder than writing a novel. All you've got to do is type the right words that tell an interesting story. How hard can that be?
Harder than it looks.

Comment: Re:Will the door have windows? (Score 2) 305

by minstrelmike (#46825689) Attached to: 'The Door Problem' of Game Design
People play games to avoid real life because it is boring.
ditto for movies and books. The reason "literary" stuff is boring is because it's too much like real life where nothing interesting happens.
Books that sell are full of violence and sex.
If you want any excitement at all in real life, you've got to troll the slashdot comments.
And if you want sex, you need to learn to type one-handed ;-)

Comment: Re:dangit (Score 1) 342

by minstrelmike (#46825571) Attached to: Aereo To SCOTUS: Shut Us Down and You Shut Down Cloud Storage
At first I assumed Aereo's lawyers were just trying to fan the flames. No way would the ruling affect serving up documents out of the cloud.
That would be as bogus as arresting people for announcing software bugs after giving a company a few months to fix them.
Or like being able to copyright a one click checkout.
That would be absurd.

Comment: fbook=aol (Score 2) 53

by minstrelmike (#46676929) Attached to: Facebook and Google's Race To Zero
I think Facebook now actually _is_ the new AOL. And that portends a significant downfall in future profits.
Grandma loved AOL because it was easy. Then her son created a site on Geocities. Then her grandkid's band had a MySpace site.
Then finally it got easy enough to post baby pictures on the fBook and that site collected a boatload of users--all of whom specifically chose that site consciously and many of whom don't use it anymore. Sure, Zuckerberg can force newbies to use his site pretty much exactly the way AOL did by plastering everybody with installation CDs
The fBook has probably got all the sticking power of popularity that AOL has. It's still around apparently, but it ain't big business and it ain't the internet and it ain't even on anybody's minds anymore.

Facebook used to be the new AOL. Now it is turning into the current AOL. Technology, like life, moves on.

God made machine language; all the rest is the work of man.