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Comment: Re:umm duh? (Score 4, Interesting) 148

by TheRaven64 (#47521437) Attached to: Dropbox Head Responds To Snowden Claims About Privacy
There are techniques that allow searching within encrypted files, but they rely on the client creating the index. You can then search the index for an encrypted search term and, if you know the keys, interpret the answer. Getting this right is quite tricky (there are several research papers about it), so he's right, but it's not impossible.

The main reason that I suspect DropBox discourages encryption is that they rely a lot on deduplication to reduce their costs. If everyone encrypted their files, then even two identical files would have different representations server-side if owned by different users, so their costs would go up a lot.

Comment: Re: Code the way you want... (Score 1) 353

by TheRaven64 (#47521383) Attached to: 'Just Let Me Code!'
Yes, almost certainly. The market for compiler engineers is very much a sellers' market at the moment. Universities neglected it for so long that most people graduate from undergraduate degrees with basically no knowledge of how a compiler works (if they're lucky, the know how compilers worked in the '80s), so there are 10 jobs for every person.

Comment: Re:"Just let me build a bridge!" (Score 1) 353

by TheRaven64 (#47521177) Attached to: 'Just Let Me Code!'
In The Humane Interface, written in 2000, Jef Raskin made the same complaint. The time between turning a computer on and having written a program to add two numbers together on, say, a C64 or a BBC Model B, was about 30 seconds. On a modern computer of the time, you wouldn't even have finished booting - starting the IDE would take even longer. The problem is, this misses the point. There are lots of scripting languages with REPL environments, including a POSIX shell and PowerShell on Windows, that can do this as a single command once the computer is running (on OS X, you can add numbers in Spotlight, so it's even quicker - just hit command-space and type the sum). If you want to write a more complex application, it's vastly easier today. Extend that simple calculator to show an editable history and show equations, and you'll find it a bit easier today. Now extend it to be able to print - if you've ever written applications to print in the era before operating systems provided a printer abstraction then you'll know how painful that was.

Comment: Re:Analogies are poor... (Score 1) 353

by TheRaven64 (#47521159) Attached to: 'Just Let Me Code!'
I don't understand why you think 'yum install gcc' is somehow different from 'download and run the installer for the VS command-line tools'. Especially on a modern Linux distro, where libraries come with -devel variants to save you the 10KB taken up by the headers in the normal install, so you end up having to install a load of headers as well to get the system useable.

Comment: Re: Code the way you want... (Score 1) 353

by TheRaven64 (#47521141) Attached to: 'Just Let Me Code!'
I was a consultant for a few years and didn't find that it did. Most of my customers found me, as a result of my open source work (usually to work on the same projects, sometimes to work on projects in similar fields). Contract negotiation didn't take very long (they list some requirements, you mutually agree on a date, you pick a number, if they haggle then you politely decline).

Comment: Re:This must be confusing to y'all (Score 1) 65

by MightyYar (#47517415) Attached to: Microsoft FY2014 Q4 Earnings: Revenues Up, Profits Down Slightly

Well, they've already become AAPL - their margins are almost identical at around 20%. But that is down from the roughly 30% margins they enjoyed over the last 5 years. And the trend is downward. A pessimist might look and see them trending towards Samsung's 12% margins if they insist on ramping up their hardware business.

Comment: Re:Yeah, students will use bandwidth (Score 1) 285

by MightyYar (#47517353) Attached to: How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

I agree that it is hard, but we've had over a hundred years of public education to figure this out. I suspect some combination scoring from peers, parents, and administration along with maybe some test scores. We have to do something, and that is why I don't push too hard against the standardized testing - despite the obvious flaws, at least they are trying to affect change. It should be completely routine to lay off the bottom performing teachers in a district each year or so. Tiny districts are exceptions, of course - but most of your cities and suburban schools would stand to benefit.

"People should have access to the data which you have about them. There should be a process for them to challenge any inaccuracies." -- Arthur Miller

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