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Comment Re: Sanctions lifted ... (Score 1) 229

Toyota's trucks and 4x4s share a code base with those cars that have unintended acceleration problems and over 2000 global variables. Remember them? For the price of a Land Rover you can get a Ford F350 - a vehicle that could literally pull a Land Rover up a 45 degree incline at freeway speeds while it fought with all its might to drive the other way.

We have this thing in the US called a blizzard. When your Land Rover gets stuck in snow (which isn't easy, their excellent 4x4s), an F350 or its GMC or Dodge equivalent shows up to save you. And then it continues on saving a few dozen more like you before it's driver has to stop for a nap.

Comment Re: Damned Lies And Politics (Score 1) 204

Uuhm. In general you're right about Nixon leaving office driving a lot of new information on surveillance of citizens into the public eye but Nixon was elected in 1969 and MLK was assassinated in 1968. So, if Nixon was monitoring MLK I'd imagine it was for a oligochaetology study.

J. Edgar Hoover monitored MLK and pretty much everybody else. Maybe that's who you were thinking of.

Comment Re:MISSION: To obliterate the wages of programmers (Score 1) 168

...better than spending up to one solitary hour hesitantly prodding at a poorly-explained API, never to be discussed or revisited?

I wish I had mod points because this is REALLY, REALLY funny!! There's just something so fatalistic and humble about it. how much of programming is just that kind of torture? You look at the "documentation" and there aren't even dates or version numbers and nothing in the API actually looks what's described except, "Hello World." You open the code and there's one comment every 500 lines. You dust off for the weekend just as you see an email announcing changes to API you just "finished" working with....

Kinda makes you wonder if you're really so smart after all.

Comment Re:MISSION: To obliterate the wages of programmers (Score 1) 168

Given that programming has the potential to be a creative act and that we've hardly scratched the surface of what is possible with technology, I strongly doubt programmers will go hungry if you add an additional few hundred million over the next few decades. The technology job pool is not a fixed thing.

Even assuming you recruit an entire generation, what programmer doesn't use and depend on applications other programmers write? Yes, you'll no longer be able to charge significant money for tech flimflam based on easy stuff. That would be the equivalent of knowing how to write a letter. But the higher you go up the capability chain, the better off you are that there are more programmers able to make use of your code.

If we built everything we can think of that we now consider physically possible, chances are there would be millions of more things we couldn't imagine by the time we were done and every one of them represents work for someone.

Comment Slide Rule vs Calculator Race (Score 1) 220

My HS science teacher would race people with calculators and always win with his slide rule. When he was at his desk he'd move the thing back and forth really fast but when he was racing someone he always slid it along all even and slow and eyeballed them like they were trying to get him to believe a lie or something. It was really funny to watch.

Comment Re:I find it amusing (Score 1) 152

Can I have a legible process tree with that magic, please? I like to actually know what's going on. I guess I can call systemd-analyze with whatever options look fun, ps with "matching options(?)" and then pipe those through a filter/formatter that gives me a static look.... Then run that on a loop to see a near real-time update.

And then there's doing something about it.... because if I find something that's not working for me I get to find something to replace that part of systemD, replace it (with whatever labor that takes) and recompile!!!

That's a fair amount of work for a system administrator to do compared to looking at their processes, finding what's causing a problem and replacing it with a better solution. It adds a layer of complexity.

AND, the dependencies of various applications will still be looking for systemD and expecting everything it does. So when I replace that thing, instead of knowing it's on a list of possible dependencies for a given app, I'm on my own.

SystemD adds opacity and what it gives back in exchange requires a sea-change in every corner of the *NIX ecosystem or the net benefit is negative.

And it makes it feel like your diddling a registry key whenever you touch it. It has that dirty, built broken, fuck you if you don't like it, we'll surprise you wherever the fuck we want signal built into using it. You feel like committing to learning it's intricacies is a boat ride with a psycho whose just going to change every time you think things will calm down. You can just tell by the releases it will NEVER settle into being one predictable, reliable thing. It's built to keep surprising us all. I used to work for a Microsoft Gold Partner and I know that feeling.

Comment Irony (Score 1) 403

The public is cinical?! Hundreds of thousands of American's have died protecting the freedoms we hold dear; we defend the rights of disgusting jate groups and obviously violent criminals protecting freedom; we forgo the benefits of a smoother running government protecting freedom..... And WE'RE cynical because we demand that you accoplish your mission without sticking a microphone and camera up our asses?!

And your interpreting of us protecting our freedom is that we have contempt for you mission to protect us?! Please resign. You don't understand your job.

Comment Crazy Idea (Score 1) 128

Here's a crazy idea.

Since, unlike browsers, node.js doesn't have 2 decades of code demanding backward compatibility, why not use node.js to FIX JAVASCRIPT. The Node.js devs could write a pre-process that barfs up big, clear, helpful errors whenever it encounters the kind of risky code BS we all have come to despise.

Just think, you could feed the typical garbage to node.js and it could spit back things like:

ERROR: Potential scope conflicts on the following lines. Explicitly declare all variables using "var = ".

WARNING: Nested function limit exceeded. The following lines call to the global scope, not the enclosing function's scope. Add "fixNestedFunctions = true" to config/index.js or accept one of the weirdest, sickest sources of potential bugs the world has ever seen as the norm in you code.

You get the idea.... Use the enthusiasm to make a better world!

Comment Story Bible (Score 1) 95

The package for selling a series typically consists of a treatment/pitch document, a pilot script and a story bible. The story bible typically contains the layout of the characters and main story lines for the first season and often has synopses of a;; the first season shows.

A series has a master producer called a Show Runner. If that guy or gal is concerned with continuity across episodes and seasons then continuity happens. If they are not then the only continuity you can count upon is adherence to the story bible and in-episode continuity which is handled by the script supervisor/continuity supervisor.

A good show runner keeps the story bible updated as things change and grow.

Submission + - Your Toyota's Software has 10,000 Global Variables (

obscuro writes: In 2013, Toyota settled an unintended acceleration lawsuit out of court for $3 million after software forensics experts explained that their system was run on Spaghetti code. This article is the first I'd heard of it and I thought it might also be /.'s first shot at it... or, at least, a chance to stroll down memory lane.

Comment Style - Toward Clarity and Grace (Score 1) 244

Get a copy of this book: Style: Lessons in Clarity and Grace by Joseph M. Williams (Author), Joseph Bizup (Author). Read it and obey it.

It teaches the reader how to write and rewrite based on what cognitive science has discovered about reading comprehension and motivation.

Some of the important basics are - avoiding the passive voice (with WHY you should do so and a very compelling discussion about AGENCY); chaining ideas from one sentence to the next and one paragraph to the next so cause and effect tracks with attention; how to group information so the reader remembers it; how to reinforce an idea.... Every page is a revelation.

From my own experience, I find reasons connected to examples go VERY far. Using examples, even for very complex things, was something to which Richard Feynman credited much of his success. He believed that if you couldn't come up with an example that illustrated the problem then you didn't understand the problem.

Also, PLEASE lead with the one or two things you know someone needs. Handle the 80% who are there to set something up and leave. A good anti-pattern for this is the man page for ifconfig. As man pages go it's very good but it requires digging to construct the line in the shell one might need. People go to the man page for ifconfig to connect to a wired or wireless network and have the most challenges with wireless. The top of that page (and many other man pages) should read something like this: If you are connecting to a wired network, get THIS + EXAMPLE information by doing THIS + EXAMPLE and then use it to do THIS + EXAMPLE. If you are connecting to a wireless network, get THIS + EXAMPLE information by doing THIS + EXAMPLE and then use it to do THIS + EXAMPLE. After each THIS + EXAMPLE have a statement like, "you'll probably see something like THIS" with an explanation of how to use it. Then it should have a basic, advance and troubleshooting section followed at the end by a related concepts section that you can use to find other man pages that might be helpful.

Comment Re:One small problem (Score 1) 509

Sorry dude, you're wrong on almost all of these counts and clearly don't understand the American system of government and law.

  • Number 1 is totally wrong. We don't derive our rights from being represented in congresses and George Carlin is funny but they aren't privileges.
  • Number 2 is totally wrong. Groups don't have rights. We recognize some groups as lacking sufficient majority to access their natural rights via the common channels of commerce, society and government so we make laws to reinforce their access to their rights.
  • Number 3 is not just wrong it's the definition of a totalitarian state - so please stop voting.
  • Number 4 is a problem. The only quote I see in the posts you might be referencing is quoting the Constitution, not "liberty and justice for all" from the Pledge of Allegiance. The Constitution can be found in the first section of the first chapter of the first book of US law.
  • Number 5 is wrong. It's like saying that the primary function of a company is being a company. Organizations exist to execute mandates not to be organized. Our government's purpose is specifically to, "establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence (SP.), promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity..." See the BLESSINGS OF LIBERTY part? Take a closer look.
  • Number 6 is a paraphrase from fucking MAO, "Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun." Here in the United States we believe that liberty comes from our creator (whoever we think that might be) and that it is protected by OUR continued maintenance of the capacity and right to use force. So, you're kind of right but if you elaborated I'm sure you'd show how wrong you can be about it.
  • Number 7 is a bizarre statement. Justice in the United States is about protecting people's rights to life, liberty and property. That's why it's POSSIBLE TO BE GUILTY OR INNOCENT. When someone deprives someone of their RIGHT to life, they are guilty of murder. GET IT?

The individual is the source of ALL RIGHTS, ALL RESPONSIBILITIES and ALL POWERS. The Declaration of Independence works like the givens for a geometric proof. "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed." There is no society contemplated here. Society is a collection of individuals that, JUST LIKE GOVERNMENT, is never presumed to have more rights than the individual.

Individuals have certain responsibilities that go along with those rights. "But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security." We have a duty to correct or abolish our government if it fails to protect and serve our rights AS INDIVIDUALS.

The particular limits on government called out in the Bill of Rights is instructive here. They are the rights necessary to correct or abolish our government or to establish and run one.

  • 1st Amendment - Free speech (exactly how does SOCIETY speak?) and free assembly (which can be two people or a million) - This is the right that we use freely AS INDIVIDUALS and that we grant to the government for the formation of courts, administration, departments, congresses, etc.
  • 2nd Amendment - Right to keep and Bear Arms - This is a right we use AS INDIVIDUALS and a right we grant to local governments for policing and to our national government for FBI and military. Our individual right to bear arms is also what qualifies our courts as those belonging to a free people. WE THE PEOPLE are the convening authority of our courts. If only the police and military had the right to bear arms then THEY would be the convening authority of our courts.

The list goes on. But the idea is that there is NOTHING in US law that society of the government is permitted to do that is not directly derived from rights belonging to the individual. And ALL POWERS granted to the government are granted under strict conditions.

It's forgivable that you don't know this. Democrats hate this stuff. It tends to seem quaint and it gets in the way of their plans. Nevertheless, it's true. When there weren't so many idiots in the news, discussion about progressive politics often centered on whether they could be permitted under the Commerce Clause since that is the door through which Democrats have driven their giant bus load of change.

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