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Comment: Isn't this obvious (Score 1) 289

It also features a built-in headphone amplifier, beamforming microphone, a multi-core Sound Core3D audio processor, and various proprietary audio technologies.

If you need that kind of stuff then, sure, it's probably a good investment.

I don't and, as a result, haven't bought soundcard since 1996. The ones that came with my various motherboards have been just fine.

Comment: Re:What's next (Score 1) 67

by Mr_Silver (#47388553) Attached to: Apple Hires Away TAG Heuer's VP of Global Sales

The laptops you mentioned aren't selling well because consumers are repelled by Windows 8, the design of most Windows laptops right now is dreadful, and Apple's marketing is ferocious.

Sales of computers running Windows have been in decline for may years now. In April, IDC reported that world-wide shipments of laptops and desktops fell 14% in the first quarter from a year earlier. That is the sharpest drop since IDC began tracking this data in 1994 and marks the fourth straight quarter of declines.

Even if all the issues you identified were resolved, I don't believe that it would reverse that trend.

Comment: Doesn't make much sense (Score 1) 669

One of Microsoft's main goals with Windows 9, the next major version of Windows, is to win over Windows 7 hold outs

If you're a true Windows 7 "hold out" then you won't be moving to a new operating system until that goes out of extended support in January 2020.

Working on one new update every two years, once extended support ends then it'll probably be Windows 11 that Microsoft will want those hold outs to move to, certainly not Windows 9.

+ - World's First Large-Scale Waste-to-Biofuels Facility Opens in Canada->

Submitted by Zothecula
Zothecula (1870348) writes "Thanks to its extensive composting and recycling facilities, the city of Edmonton, Canada is already diverting approximately 60 percent of its municipal waste from the landfill. That figure is expected to rise to 90 percent, however, once the city's new Waste-to-Biofuels and Chemicals Facility starts converting garbage (that can't be composted or recycled) into methanol and ethanol. It's the world's first such plant to operate on an industrial scale, and Gizmag recently got a guided tour of the place."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:As a Sr. Analytics Manager... (Score 1) 466

by garcia (#46996207) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Minimum Programming Competence In Order To Get a Job?

For many reasons including:

There aren't many places that do not have Office installed. People are very familiar with it and even if they aren't, they can usually make their way around it in with only a little coaching.

Most companies use Excel for basic analysis, charting, and data delivery to non-technical report recipients.

Deliver a raw dataset and allow the end-user to pivot, chart, etc. It takes the strain off the analytics team for basic tasks and gives the end user the power to do what they want with the data. Tableau seat licenses aren't realistic for most companies and building some sort of analytics platform from scratch in your language of choice isn't always something you can do in the short term and provide more functionality with less training required.

I could go on, but that gives you a general idea.

Comment: Re:As a Sr. Analytics Manager... (Score 1) 466

by garcia (#46990195) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Minimum Programming Competence In Order To Get a Job?

In the work my team is responsible for, I look for culture fit above anything else. I took a guy with some internship work during his graduate schooling and turned him into what I consider a stellar programmer/analyst.

I'd concentrate on your programming skill and your business knowledge, if any. A lot of organizations are looking for report jockeys and/or true analysts and in that case, highlight your visualization and analysis ability first, programming second. What sort of experience did you have during your schooling that you believe makes you a good fit for an analytics role today?

We have sponsored before, but we/I prefer to hire those who don't require it first.

Comment: As a Sr. Analytics Manager... (Score 2) 466

by garcia (#46989873) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Minimum Programming Competence In Order To Get a Job?

What I like to see are the following:

1. Statistics knowledge

2. Excel (pivots, charting, VBA, etc.)

3. SAS/R/SPSS (in order).

4. Unix shell scripting.

5. Some sort of data visualization tool usage (e.g. Tableu)


We are currently looking for analysts and the market is tough. We take people from all walks: CS, social sciences, Stats/Math/Econ/Finance, etc. The Analytics market is continually growing and in desperate need of people who are competent until higher education catches up and starts putting people out with a good mix of CS, Stats, and Business knowledge.

Get into Analytics IMO, the pay is great and the work is pretty fun.

Comment: Re:Time for a union that is only way to get the po (Score 1) 215

by garcia (#46979439) Attached to: Plaintiff In Tech Hiring Suit Asks Judge To Reject Settlement

I had a grievance filed against me for "not doing enough work" because my desk was...wait for it...too clean.

Yes, I had to go through 5 weeks of 3-5 FTEs spending several hours each week discussing the fact that someone claimed I was not busy enough because my desk was neat and tidy.

Want to know it was resolved? They came and looked at my desk and then we went to their office and looked at their desk (a fucking disaster area) and then it was dropped.

FTEs = Me, my union rep, the individual filing the grievance, their union rep, and an arbitrator. For 5 fucking weeks.

Unions are horseshit.

Comment: Interesting you say that (Score 3, Interesting) 252

by Mr_Silver (#46944109) Attached to: $200 For a Bound Textbook That You Can't Keep?

Whilst it might not be for everyone, here I am sitting at my PC looking at my Computer Science books (purchased between 1995 and 1998) and I don't think I've opened any of them in the past 10 years (looking at you "Unix System Programming" by Haviland and Salama, reprinted in 1994).

If I get a DRM free digital version after the course has ended and the pricing is right, then this might actually be more useful than a pile of dead wood taking up space on my bookshelf - most of which is probably long out of date.

Comment: Re:Better tablets out there for your money (Score 1) 386

by Mr_Silver (#46833017) Attached to: iPad Fever Is Officially Cooling

There are much better tablets out there for your money.

The problem with all the other non-Apple tablets is that they insist that 16:10 is the perfect aspect ratio because it means that there are no black bars when watching video.

Unfortunately it completely ignores the fact that doing anything in landscape at that aspect ratio means that whenever the keyboard pops up, you lose almost half of the screen. Given a choice between that and some black bars (which I already get on my TV), I'd rather deal with the black bars.

I'd love an Android tablet the size and aspect ratio of the iPad Mini, yet (like high specification handsets with a screen size below 4 inches) no-one in Android land wants to make it.

Comment: Re:What?? (Score 1) 116

by Mr_Silver (#46831415) Attached to: WhatsApp Is Well On Its Way To A Billion Users

Very cheap almost to the point of being free.
Text messages are already free.

They may be for you, but they aren't for everyone. The USA != The World.

- 1:1 and group chat support.
Already do that with regular text messages

SMS doesn't support group chat. Messages to more than one person are sent individually, there is no way for the recipients to see all the people who were messaged and therefore there is no way for them to group reply.

- Picture and content sharing.
Already do that with regular text messages

You might want to read up on the specification for "regular text messages". SMS has no provision for much beyond simple plain text messages.

- No additional fees when you're roaming.
"Roaming" doesn't really happen in most of the modern world

Again, the USA != The World. If I go from France to the UK or USA then I'm roaming.

Like I said, it's a small niche, and it's shrinking rapidly as more and more people just get unlimited texts.

A one billion person niche that isn't solved just by a bunch of unlimited text messages.

Comment: Re:What?? (Score 1) 116

by Mr_Silver (#46830675) Attached to: WhatsApp Is Well On Its Way To A Billion Users

It seems like the only point is to get around the few remaining billing plans on the planet that don't have unlimited text messaging.

This comes up every single time something is posted on Slashdot about WhatsApp.

Lots of people have packages with tonnes of text messages making them, essentially, free or very low cost - however SMS doesn't do anything beyond 1:1 communication in plain old text. So picture sharing and group chats are out.

MMS can do that, but it's often excluded from SMS packages - so after a few messages it can start to get rather expensive. Even more so when you are sending these things to different countries.

iMessage can do that too and it's nicely integrated into iOS. If your friends aren't using iOS though then it all falls down.

So, combining these all together gets you the following wish list:

  - Very cheap almost to the point of being free.
  - 1:1 and group chat support.
  - Picture and content sharing.
  - No additional fees for sending worldwide.
  - No additional fees when you're roaming.
  - Not tied to users of one operating system.

WhatsApp (and the like) fill this gap.

Comment: Well .... duh. (Score 5, Insightful) 358

by Mr_Silver (#46804527) Attached to: Google: Better To Be a 'B' CS Grad Than an 'A+' English Grad

In other news, industries where command and use of the English language is the priority will state that it's better to be a 'B' English Grad than an 'A+' CS Grad.

Google's comments don't prove anything new about the value of the degrees of either course - short of the fact that it's generally better to have a degree in the industry you intend on working in.

"I've seen the forgeries I've sent out." -- John F. Haugh II (jfh@rpp386.Dallas.TX.US), about forging net news articles