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Comment: Re: Change management fail (Score 1) 90

by pla (#47578755) Attached to: Passport Database Outage Leaves Thousands Stranded
Sorry but DevOps requires you upgrade all servers at the same time very fast, with no regard to individual server ordering.

Did you mean NetOps? DevOps refers to a development paradigm. If your development paradigm risks actual user-impacting down-time, you need firing ASAP.
Assuming you meant NetOps, can they live with provisioning me at least four (dev, test, UAT, and training) clones of the entire production environment? No? well then, they can make their case to the CTO whether inconveniencing them or our end users will have more of an impact on the bottom line. If the CTO says "go", hell, I'll code right in the production environment - Oh, you wanted that mortgage payment to go through this week? Bummer!

Developers should never have the power to affect end users. If they do, it represents a failure not on their part, but on the entire IT corporate food chain, all the way to the top. Choosing customer-facing downtime over a few more terabytes and VMs amounts to corporate suicide.

Comment: Re:Change management fail (Score 0) 90

by pla (#47578691) Attached to: Passport Database Outage Leaves Thousands Stranded
It takes two to fail to communicate. You should not be asking questions that require a direct "yes or no" answer. In many cultures, that is considered rude.

Sorry, what part of paying you to do a job requires me to give a shit about whether or not your failed third-world culture doesn't like answering direct fucking questions?

"Rude" does not apply. Breach of contract, however, does. I just wish more companies would catch on to this before they decide to outsource, rather than paying extra for literally nothing more than a built-in scapegoat for any and all problems.

Comment: Re:No matter how common you think it is... (Score 1) 162

by pla (#47577343) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: When Is It Better To Modify the ERP vs. Interfacing It?
Many of have absolutely nothing to do with Enterprise resource planning in our day-to-day lives. A lot of us don't care about a strategic business unit. Most slashdotters are in the field of making software, not babbling almost-but-not-quite-meaningless business jargon about software.

I agree with you in general, but in this case, if you don't know those acronyms intimately, I can safely say you have zero ability to provide a useful answer to the underlying question.

As for the question at hand - They seriously use Access and Excel as the interface? Fire them now. Access and Excel have their place, and enterprise level data access ain't it. Buy a working ERP package that meets your needs, and spend your in-house development time on integrating with something that meets 95% of your needs rather than trying to bolt functionality on to a piss-poor 50% solution.

Although you might at first prefer to work with the Devil you know, the biggest problem with extending what you have now will rear its head when you try to upgrade it to the latest version, and find that virtually all your customizations have broken. Even if you pay your vendor to make those customizations, you may have somewhere to point a finger, but you can still expect months of pain telling them which parts of their own damned software they broke and need to repair.

Comment: Re:Very original (Score 1) 156

He got similar results to a $1000 product, and told everybody how to do it.

I think the problem we have here comes from the comparison to a $1000 product as little more than a red herring.

He strapped a (replacement) HEPA cartridge - A well-proven technology for removing particulates from the air - To a fan. He basically made a "ghetto" HEPA filter. I have little reason to doubt it would work.

I would, however, question how well that $1000 filter performs compared to a sub-$50 Holmes/LG/Honeywell/etc filter. If Talhelm managed to get the same performance from just a replacement filter for one of those strapped to a fan, I would expect "not at all" as the answer.

So we should certainly credit him for his real "discovery" here - That expensive consumer-targetted air filters don't do any better than the Wallyworld special. Anything beyond that amounts to marketing for his new company manufacturing something even crappier than those Wallyworld specials.

Comment: Re:Identifiers (Score 5, Insightful) 101

by pla (#47573629) Attached to: Countries Don't Own Their Internet Domains, ICANN Says
What's hard to understand about this, seriously?

The part where someone apparently doesn't understand the difference between a name and the thing itself, and that the thing itself doesn't always "own" its name.

Seizing Iran's TLD as part of a judgement against Iran makes exactly as much sense as seizing the assets of the Iranian American Society of Engineers and Architects, solely on the basis that it contains the word "Iran" in its name.

As TFA specifically points out, seizing ".ir" doesn't just affect the government of Iran. It affects thousands (millions?) of privately-owned subdomains. Imagine enforcing the same ruling against the US - Not just talking about ".us", but pretty much the entire set of legacy TLDs. Does it make sense that "" suddenly belongs to some litigious asshat because of the inadequacy of US foreign policy? And as TFA also points out, ICANN doesn't even have the ability to do this unilaterally (they only directly control root server L), and trying to do so could well trigger as schism.

Comment: Re:Decaying ratings (Score 1) 234

by pla (#47573435) Attached to: Is the App Store Broken?
Last time I checked software did not age.

In a static world, on a static computing platform, I would agree with you entirely. We do not live in that world.

I remember back in the DOS days I had a wonderful programming-oriented text editor, named "Brief". It supported programmable macros, column editing, triggering external programs (ie, compile and run without leaving the editor). Completely blew away everything else available at the time.

I don't still use Brief, despite it still working just as well as it ever did, and despite still having a need for a solid programming-oriented text editor.

Comment: Re: Lockdown (Score 2) 97

by pla (#47573391) Attached to: "ExamSoft" Bar Exam Software Fails Law Grads
Sure a bunch of geeks with no legal training could use Wikipedia and slashdot. To pass a law exam. Maybe yahoo news posts for the constitutional parts.

...Or maybe just use any of an hundred searchable online testbanks of past Bar exam questions?

TFS mentions Wiki, but you'll notice that TFA did not, nor did I. No doubt, if someone seriously tried to do this, Wikipedia would fall pretty far down the list of places to look for answers.

That said, what the GGP and I jokingly pointed out counts as a much more serious issue for those borderline folks actually studying law. Sure, I would probably have trouble even figuring out the intent of some of the questions, and even if I didn't get stuck on the impenetrable jargon, I probably couldn't realistically look up the answers fast enough to finish it in the time given. Someone who (barely) made it through law school, however, would no doubt have at least picked up enough of the core skills to successfully (and quickly) make use of online resources, given the chance.

Comment: Re:Scale and proportion. (Score 1) 509

If you didn't already take the UN's word for it, then I have nothing that you would accept as any better, of course.

Kinda like this week's "defensive" move - Those 3000 people in a UN school, packed 80 to a classroom and having fled as directed by the Israeli government before bulldozing their neighborhoods - We both know they must have magically had a cache of rockets hidden up their asses - Right? Wink wink nudge nudge?

Comment: Re:Lockdown (Score 1) 97

by pla (#47573071) Attached to: "ExamSoft" Bar Exam Software Fails Law Grads
Yeah, that'll work, because nobody has internet capable cellphones, secondary machines or even Virtual Machines.

I had wondered about that myself... Do they seriously not require taking the Bar on controlled hardware? Hell, a bunch of geeks should take and "ace" the Bar just for the sake of making fun of it.

"Oh, JD huh? Yeah, I have one of those too, figured I'd just drop by in my spare time and take a go at it, and whaddya know, perfect score. Oh, sorry about all those 100 hour weeks of study you put in, but hey, I'll bet you can look back now and have a good laugh, right?"

Comment: Decaying ratings (Score 1, Interesting) 234

by pla (#47569859) Attached to: Is the App Store Broken?
Subject says it all:

Don't allow a once-five-star app to rest on its laurels forever. After six months if you haven't inspired anyone new to rate you, your rating should decay to zero. Not only would this tend to favor new apps over old ones, but it would also effectively punish those developers who "fire and forget" app after app after app with zero support or updates for old apps.

Comment: Re:um yea... (Score 1) 559

by pla (#47569661) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
Money transfers are also a lot easier to manage [...] Why use this horribly complicated system

Horribly complicated?
Credit: Swipe card, sign the receipt, done.
Debit : Swipe card, enter your PIN, done.

I don't see how you can call the latter process "a lot easier", unless you have some sort of crippling hand disease that makes signing things difficult.

Why use this horribly complicated system if you can transfer money from your savings to the shop anywhere?

This likely varies by country, but in the US, you have a $50 maximum liability, period, for fraudulent credit card swipes (as in, someone physically has your card), and $0 for non-swiped transactions.

For debit cards, you have that $50 liability only if you notify the bank within two days of the fraudulent charges. That shoots up to $500 if you take more than two days but less than 60 days, and you have full liability if you take over 60 days to report it.

Thanks, but I'll go through all the trouble of signing a receipt in exchange for not paying out-of-pocket to redecorate some thief's apartment just because I had two busy days in two consecutive months and didn't have the time to go over my statement with a fine-toothed comb.

Comment: Re:um yea... (Score 4, Insightful) 559

by pla (#47562719) Attached to: 35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'
And that's the problem with the publics modern perception of credit. Because I do not have a credit card and suggest that you shouldn't either, I'm considered a quack. I buy just as much useless garbage as anyone that modded me down does. I go on vacations, I order things online, I buy soda at the gas station. The only difference is I don't pay a 7% to 30% fee to do all of those things. And that is exactly what a credit card does. It doesn't help your credit. That's a lie driven by marketing campaigns of credit card companies.

You no doubt got modded down because you have virtually every fact you mention entirely wrong. Having a credit card doesn't mean carrying a balance month-to-month, and you don't pay a single penny extra if you don't carry a balance (unless you stupidly sign up for a card with an an annual fee). I actually get 1.5 to 6% back on all my purchases, depending on how they categorize it. Now, you could argue that we pay 3%-ish more for everything as a result of stores passing on the transaction fees to their customers, but then, so do you, and you don't even get the benefits as a result.

And as for your credit rating, sorry, but yes, having a small number of regularly-paid cards most certainly does improve your credit, compared with having no credit history. I could provide you with an hundred links discussing the optimal number of cards and how much to cycle through them monthly, but you could already have done so and apparently chose not to.

Yes, we have a sick view of what "credit" means as a society. That doesn't invalidate the concept itself, just points a damning finger at how badly we tend to misuse it. Kudos to you for at least living within your means (and I mean that sincerely), but you massively overstate the case-for-cash while remaining blissfully ignorant of how credit cards really work in the modern world.

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