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Comment: Re:Boil it down to cost (Score 1) 97

by plover (#48200901) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Event Sign-Up Software Options For a Non-Profit?

You have essentially lead them into making the decision that you want them to make.

I agree with everything except your conclusion. It's not a contest, with a winner and loser. Everyone at the table needs to be trying to serve the users and business interests. Once the goals and requirements come out, it may turn out his initial decision was not the best. It's about cooperating to deliver the best fit solution that meets everyone's requirements to the maximum extent practical.

To that degree, it often helps not to look at it as a process of compromise; it's better to think that you're all agreeing to deliver the most important stuff.

Comment: Re:Why do companies insist on producing shit ? (Score 1) 114

I imagine that it also helps (at least in terms of customer acceptance) that most of these RFID tags are probably replacing something that was as bad or worse. Keys are clonable, provide no record of use(much less timestamped logs of individual users) and if one gets into the wild re-keying the place is Not Fun. Magnetic stripe cards are trivially clonable; but on the same level as most RFID tags in terms of access logging and enabling/disabling access. Adequately rugged optical sensors have historically been pretty expensive, so bar codes, hand scanners, and any other biometric gimmicks are likely niche players.

I'd be pretty annoyed if some salesweasel lied to me about it; but it's unlikely that an RFID installation replaced something that was harder to clone, and it's still easier than keys, slightly more robust than mag stripe readers, and reasonably cheap per tag. In some ways that makes it even more obnoxious to harass the researchers, though.

Comment: Any woodworkers around? (Score 1) 37

by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (#48199101) Attached to: The Bogus Batoid Submarine is Wooden, not Yellow (Video)
My experience with boat maintenance is (thankfully) limited; but I do know that wood tends to shrink and swell rather cheerfully as its moisture content changes, and that larger wooden vessels tend to suffer some 'play' from the hogging and sagging induced by wave action and any changes in relative buoyancy as cargo load changes from voyage to voyage, hence the fine naval tradition of oakum, tar, and endless manual labor lest you die a watery death.

Thinking of that, the pictures of a whole bunch of curved ribs(in what look to be several varieties of wood) forming a cylinder/cone thing with loads of joints that is expected to be immersed during use, caused me to immediately start imagining assorted ominous creaking, stress fractures, and hull geometry issues that you'll have a heroic time hammering out.

Is the coating adequate to prevent that sort of thing? Are they using some carpentry-fu of the same type that holds wooden barrels and wheels together? Will it in fact be a disaster in short order?

Comment: Re:DOS version? (Score 1) 76

by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (#48198905) Attached to: Samsung Acknowledges and Fixes Bug On 840 EVO SSDs
Some vendors skip the helpful 'provide a damn bootable freeDOS image, you cheap bastards' step, which is very annoying; but it's pretty common to use DOS for firmware updates. When the vendor is feeling polite, and for more common ones, you usually get a windows executable with some dire warnings about running it as an administrator and not interrupting it; but DOS is a pretty good choice when you want an OS that isn't going to be multitasking behind your back as you scribble over some bit of firmware that will brick the device if handled indelicately.

It probably will be an amusing test of whether Apple's BIOS emulation layer is up to scratch, or whether it was written rather closely against the specific versions of Windows supported by bootcamp and the bootcamp drivers...

Comment: Re:Wonder what brand is best now... Intel? (Score 3, Informative) 76

by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (#48198703) Attached to: Samsung Acknowledges and Fixes Bug On 840 EVO SSDs
They had that one a while back where the drive would mysteriously decide that it had a capacity of 8MB, though that has been quashed for some time.

The tricky thing (and I'm not actually certain where they stand on this now) is that Intel's initial reputation was founded on the superior performance and reliability of the in-house controller design that they used in their x-18 and x-25, especially dramatic back when there was some utter garbage floating around (JMicron controllers, OCZ living up to their reputation) and the safe options were comparatively slow and extremely expensive.

Then, for some reason, they just sat and stagnated on that controller design for several generations, and eventually shipped a Marvell controller in order to have something with SATA 6Gb support. Since then, they've released some Sandforce based stuff, and some of their own; but it isn't as clear exactly what "Intel" on the label means anymore.

Comment: Re:Enough with the concern trolling (Score 2) 501

by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (#48198337) Attached to: NPR: '80s Ads Are Responsible For the Lack of Women Coders
Do remember that 'women in tech' has some very vocal friends among employers of techs.

This is not to say that nobody involved is genuinely concerned; but it should be remembered that complaints about the labor market can come from either side, with the supply side generally having the numbers and the demand side generally having the influence. (And, at times, they even shift remarkably quickly: just remember how fast getting women into heavy industry became a national cause during WWII, and how fast encouraging them to keep house in the suburbs become one afterwards.)

Comment: Re:Solving the problem wrong (Score 1) 501

by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (#48198143) Attached to: NPR: '80s Ads Are Responsible For the Lack of Women Coders
It sounds like your post answers its own question. A burn-and-churn industry in a period of high demand has a strong need for new workers(lest the alternatives of cushier working conditions and/or higher salaries be resorted to to retain and re-attract the existing ones and the burnouts). Since the supply has skewed heavily male for some time now, there is some reason to suspect that finding a way to increase female recruitment is the best hope of locating a new source of human resources.

Comment: Boil it down to cost (Score 5, Insightful) 97

by plover (#48197639) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Event Sign-Up Software Options For a Non-Profit?

A couple of years ago, I was asked to be the registration chair for a national event, which we successfully held this spring. All previous events had been run strictly on paper-and-pencil mail-in forms, but that involves a lot of manual work, including a lot of last minute work at the event door. I looked long and hard at various open source and commercial event management offerings, and I spoke to other people who ran similar events. Based on recommendations from other event organizers, I landed on regonline as a good blend of features and customizability, even though it was a bit expensive (though they offer a discount for a 501(c)(3) organization.) What it came down to for me was effort. I wouldn't have time to set up all the hosting needed, to install and configure the software, or to integrate with a payment gateway, and I got a lot of really valuable features from their system. I didn't want us to make our attendees suffer through hour-long lines at a registration booth. And I was able to provide instant reports to the conference chair, who used them to help run the event smoothly.

Something it sounds like you need to do here is figure out "who is the Registration Chair"? If it's you, your only question to the Event Chair should be "what is my budget?" Base your solution on the bottom line. If your budget is $5/registrant, and it includes lanyards and ID cards, your options are wide open. If your budget is $0.50/registrant, and you have to use a box of old "Hello my name is..." stickers, your options are a bit more limited. The important thing is: the Registration Chair is in charge of registration. He or she decides how to best solve the problem, not "here are some random developers, you must write us a site."

One thing that still isn't clear is why you would have to "write" a new site. It sounds like you created one a few years ago, and then another, and then another. I realize your group is a precious snowflake, completely unique in the world, but events really are just events. They all have web sites, registrants, admins, venues, agenda items, merchandise, travel, lodging, taxes, payments, receipts, badges, volunteers, and reports. And there is nothing in that list you can't get from the marketplace. Ultimately, if you absolutely can't use a packaged solution because of [illogical rationale], you should only need to have someone reconfigure the existing site. That's a lot less effort, perhaps not much more than c/2014/2015/g

Finally, if you're taking payments on line, you're going to run into extra effort and risk to interface with them. No matter what, you really, really don't want to be responsible for someone else's credit cards. Not these days. The risk is more than you can imagine. If that's something you can foist off on a third party, you'll keep a ton of liability out of your organization.

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