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Comment: Re:Your employer (Score 4, Insightful) 168

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) 168

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.

+ - Satanists dramatize distribution of religious materials at schools

Submitted by tylikcat
tylikcat (1578365) writes "In response to a ruling allowing Christian groups to distribute bibles and other Christian oriented materials in schools, the Satanic Temple has decided to distributed their own The Satanic Children's Big Book of Activities. Let the games begin!

To be fair, the Satanic Temple is is forthright in stating that they would not have sought the right to distibute such materials on their own, but point out that most children will already be aware of Christianity, but this might be the first time they encounter to the practice of Satanism."

Comment: Silly design decision (Score 5, Insightful) 424

by Mr_Silver (#47921775) Attached to: Apple Edits iPhone 6's Protruding Camera Out of Official Photos

Does anyone know of any iPhone 5/5S users who complained that their phone was too thick?

I see no reason why Apple felt it necessary to slim the device down even more - when they could have just had the same thickness as the 5/5S resulting in no silly bulge for the camera.

Plus, they could have put a bigger battery in the case and maybe get an hour or so extra time out of the thing. Which I can imagine would be a lot more useful than shaving a couple mm off an already perfectly slim enough phone.

Comment: Re:Incredibly bad live stream (Score 1) 730

by Mr_Silver (#47870247) Attached to: Apple Announces Smartwatch, Bigger iPhones, Mobile Payments

Whoever was in charge of the live stream are a bunch of amateurs, incompetent idiots and should be fired, publicity shamed and never hired again.

According to this article there were a number of issues which were all caused by Apple rather than Akamai:

The bottom line with this event is that the encoding, translation, JavaScript code, the video player, the call to S3 single storage location and the millisecond refreshes all didn't work properly together and was the root cause of Apple's failed attempt to make the live stream work without any problems. So while it would be easy to say it was a CDN capacity issue, which was my initial thought considering how many events are taking place today and this week, it does not appear that a lack of capacity played any part in the event not working properly. Apple simply didn't provision and plan for the event properly.

I don't know enough about streaming to comment on the validity of the assertions made.

Comment: Re:It is time someone belled the cat. But wish.. (Score 2) 187

by Mr_Silver (#47799133) Attached to: Apple Said To Team With Visa, MasterCard On iPhone Wallet

There was a very nice system, including PIN numbers to manage the POS terminals. Way back when stock trade was 49$, it was 25 cent per transaction irrespective of the size of transaction. This should have become zero. But that is not what happened.

The 25 cent transaction fee is charged by the acquiring bank, not Visa and Mastercard - whose fees for debit are typically 1 cent per transaction as they are a volume based business.

The reason that acquirers charge is because they incur costs associated with that transaction (including, but not limited to, interchange fees). If they didn't charge, it would fail as a viable business model.

Pre-paid cards still have to use Visa or MC to get the request for the money from the acquirer (who has the relationship with the merchant and typically provides the terminal) to the card issuer (the bank that supplied the pre-paid card).

Regarding AppStore vs MC+Visa, in order for Apple to be able to accept payments directly they would have to get an e-money licence so they could issue virtual debit or credit cards for use on their phones. By doing so, they'd still need the rails that Visa and MC provide - unless they really want to get into the business of connecting themselves to all the banks worldwide (aka becoming a payment processor).

+ - Canada tops list of most science-literate countries->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "A recent survey of scientific education and attitudes showed the Canadian population to have the highest level of scientific literacy in the world, as well as the fewest reservations about the direction of scientific progress (full report). A key factor is a high level of scientific knowledge among the general population (despite comparatively low numbers of people employed in STEM fields). Another is a higher level of comfort with choosing rationality over religious belief — only 25% of Canadians surveyed agreed with the statement "We depend too much on science and not enough on faith", as opposed to 55% in the U.S. and 38% in the E.U.

I also wonder if the vaunted Canadian healthcare system plays a role. When advances in medical science are something you automatically expect to benefit from personally if you need them, they look a lot better than when you have to scramble just to cover your bills for what we have now."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Funny thing about email (Score 1) 232

by Mr_Silver (#47695111) Attached to: Daimler's Solution For Annoying Out-of-office Email: Delete It

This is Europe.
There _is_ no unpaid overtime!

I've worked for UK, Spanish and German companies and and sure there is, it's done all the time. Often when you work longer hours in the day and do the odd bit of work at the weekend.

If people check their mail during vacation, they are working, and they have to be paid and their vacation is still due an they can sue the company when they leave (or not) to get payment for the missed holidays or weekends.

IANAL but I believe that only counts if they specifically ask you to check your email. If they don't and you go ahead anyway, then you won't get paid for it.

I always leave my blackberry at home when I go on holiday.

Comment: Re:Better than doing this on a smart TV? (Score 1) 81

by Mr_Silver (#47637307) Attached to: Add a TV Tuner To Your Xbox (In Europe)

4. EPG being as inaccurate as the ones you get on a flat screen TV one.

This is a good point. Even though DVB-T/T2/S (not sure about C) can provide EPG data, Microsoft get their EPG data from third parties. This is a good thing because you get 14 days worth of data and extra meta-data associated with the program listing which allows them to do some quite nifty functionality.

Unfortunately the data is often wrong and (in the UK at least) the series link data is either not there (so you cannot record the season of a show because it thinks it's a one off) or on every single instance of a show meaning that you end up filling your HD with hundreds of repeats.

There is even a hacky bit of vbscript which is designed to attempt to delete any duplicate recordings, it's that bad.

http://www.fourteenminutes.com...

Comment: Re:T vs T2 vs S (Score 2) 81

by Mr_Silver (#47637283) Attached to: Add a TV Tuner To Your Xbox (In Europe)

Whoops misread the article and thought it said DVB-S not DVB-C.

DVB-C is television content through a cable. It's popular in a large number of countries and, for the UK, would be how Virgin Media would deliver their content.

Having said that, I'm not entirely sure whether or not you would be able to use a DVB-C tuner to get Virgin. The majority of people I know use a STB supplied by Virgin (which, in the past couple of years, has been a rebranded TiVo). Someone else with more knowledge than me will probably be able to confirm.

It'll be interesting to see how many tuners you get. If it's only one then you'll only be able to watch one channel and you'll only be able to record another if it is on the same multiplex. So if BBC1 and BBC2 are on the same multiplex then you can record one and watch the other - but you wouldn't be able to record BBC1 and watch ITV since they are on a different multiplex.

If they are serious about providing a good STB experience (and they are part the way there because Windows 7 Media Center and a DVT-T2 tuner blows most of the STBs I've ever used out of the water for experience and, sadly, cost) then they really need to be offering a dual tuner.

Comment: T vs T2 vs S (Score 4, Informative) 81

by Mr_Silver (#47637245) Attached to: Add a TV Tuner To Your Xbox (In Europe)

DVB-T is OTA SD television content branded as "Freeview". You get over a 100 channels but, to be honest, only about 30 of them are any good. There are all the major stations (BBC 1 and 2, ITV, Channel 4 and 5), their additional channels (BBC 3, ITV 2 etc), some +1 hour channels and some Freeview only channels. Whilst these are all subscription free, there is a small amount of subscription content and it's not essential to subscribe to these. You don't get many of the Sky channels.

DVB-T2 is the same as T but with the inclusion of 10 or so (I can't remember the exact number) HD channels. It's branded "Freeview HD". Again, subscription free for the majority of the channels. It's nice to watch Top Gear in HD.

DVB-S is the same as T2 but, I think, has a few more HD channels. It's branded "Freesat" and requires the installation of a satellite dish on the side of the house - which often fails the WAF test. It arrived before Freeview HD and so was the first way to get HD channels, although I'm not sure whether that really is the case any more.

For those that are wondering, "YouView" is actually a STB with a DVB-T2 tuner and a range of additional catch-up and VOD services bolted on.

The majority of people will probably get DVB-T2.

Comment: Gaming? (Score 2) 110

by Mr_Silver (#47628783) Attached to: AMD Prepares To Ship Gaming SSDs

Seems odd to call them "gaming SSDs" when they sound like just really fast SSDs. I'm actually surprised they are marketing them that way - especially since they'd reach a wider market if the didn't just target gamers.

Plus are games really that much faster? When I bought my Samsung 840 I put everything on there. However as soon as I found out that the load times in HL2 weren't noticeably different (probably because the longest part of the "please wait" wasn't disk access) I quickly shifted the entire "steamapps" folder to my HDD.

"If it ain't broke, don't fix it." - Bert Lantz

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