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Comment: Re:More Anti-Republican Prior Art (Score 1) 160

by Grishnakh (#48681337) Attached to: N. Korea Blames US For Internet Outage, Compares Obama to "a Monkey"

The monkey thing is only racist if a white person calls a black person a "monkey".

However, this incident has North Korea comparing Obama to a monkey, so it can't be racist. Many people here in the US believe it's impossible for non-white people to be racist.

Comment: Re:Idiots (Score 1) 56

by Grishnakh (#48678605) Attached to: Romanian Cybersecurity Law Will Allow Warrantless Access To Data

From what I hear, the movie is crap anyway, so Sony is likely making more money off of it because of all the hype and press surrounding it. (They're selling it as pay-per-view on their own website.) The whole incident may have even been orchestrated by Sony as a giant publicity scheme, who knows.

Comment: Re:But wait,there's more (Score 3, Interesting) 135

by ledow (#48676295) Attached to: Donald Knuth Worried About the "Dumbing Down" of Computer Science History

It's even simpler than that.

Computers are a tool. That's what they were designed to be, that's what they are. You can use them, or not.

Computer science isn't about using a tool. It's about creating a tool that's useful, and enhancing existing tools.

Every idiot can pick up a hammer and bash a nail it. Not everyone could forge a hammer-head, wedge it strong enough into well-prepared wooden handles, etc.

That you can use the tools made by others to get rich - it's undeniable. It's also very rare and down to little more than chance. And gaming is the one that attracts young minds because they are ALL users of games and games devices.

But there were a bucket of clone games before the existence of and while things like Minecraft, Angry Birds, etc. were being developed.

The programmer who wrote the map editor for Half-Life probably couldn't put a level together. But a 3D artist can take that tool and slap it together even if he doesn't really understand what a shader is. It's two entirely separate areas that people STILL confuse.

Want to play games? Go ahead. You just need a computer. Want to write games? You have to become a coder, or use the tools other coders have written for you. Want to write the tools? You have to be a coder. Working in IT in schools, I get a lot of parents tell me their kids are "good with computers" and should be in the top IT classes, etc. and what university should they go to to write games? I advise all of them against it, when they come from that angle. Because immediately my first question is Have you ever written one? No. Then find another career path. Or go away, write one, come back in six months and ask me again.

The parents get miffed, but they are the ones that have come to me for the advice. And yet, the ones who COULD make it in computer science, they don't need to ask. They know where they're heading. They can knock up something in an afternoon or tell you how to go about it.

Using the tools can be a skill. I wouldn't want to be up on an oil rig handling some specialist device to build the platform, and it probably takes years of on-the-job and other training to do it properly and safely. But the guy who designed it? You'll probably never see him. If he turns up on the oil rig, it's in a hardhat and business suit to look at the job, and then he's gone.

Everyone can use a basic tool. Some can use a complex tool skilfully. Others can design and make the tools in the first place. It applies to all walks of life and all careers, though, not just IT.

You can no-doubt drive a car. But you'll never win a rally no matter how good you think you are. And though you might be able to cobble together parts to make something that moves, to build and design the car to similar specifications from nothing takes decades of experience and a high level of skill.

You can no-doubt browse the web on your computer. But you'll never run your own network effectively. And though you can cobble together parts to make something that works, to build and design the chips, the protocols, the electrical specifications, etc. takes decades of experience and a high level of skill.

You can no-doubt play some kind of instrument. But you'll never be a concert performed. And though you can cobble together parts to make something that makes a good sound, to build and design and PLAY the instruments properly takes decades of experience and a high level of skill.

You can no-doubt draw. But you'll never be an artist. And though you can cobble together parts to make something that looks good, to knock up a work of art takes decades of experience and a high level of skill.

We just need to separate the idea in people's heads. Using a computer is different to "being good" with a computer. which is different to "knowing" about the computer, which is different to programming the computer, which is different to designing the computer.

The deeper you go, the more skill and knowledge you need.

Working in schools:

Everyone is a computer user.
50% of kids think they are "good" on the computer.
1% can program effectively on their own.
And out of that 1%, less than 1% will ever go on to become a computer scientist - in name or job.

And I've worked in independent (private) and state schools long enough to see tens of thousands of children pass through my IT suites and be taught. The computer science stars are literally in the one-hand-of-fingers range of counting. I'd barely trust most of them to operate a computer after they left school, let alone be responsible for it.

The problem is, this means that computer-science graduates are few and far between, and those kids are unlikely to ever be taught by one at the moment.

Comment: No better press than to be banned. (Score 2) 145

by ledow (#48676211) Attached to: Crowds (and Pirates) Flock To 'The Interview'

Not saying that Sony would have been planning this exactly, but I don't see why a movie should create as much fuss or - if so - why we should care, "force" corporations to show it, etc. As far as I can tell, people are going to it to somehow "stick it to the man"? It's a crappy comedy that happens to insult a foreign leader, who got insulted. Whoopee-do.

If there was some kind of black comedy portraying, say, Obama as the worst kind of racial stereotyping, released in Korea, are we going to have a war over that too?

The modern digital war is now about hearsay, childish attacks, "what they said about me", and threatening action on the back of the worst (or zero) evidence.

I really hope you don't start WWIII because of pissing about like this.

Don't ban the movie. Don't make a fuss about it either. Let it blow over into the history of stupid things people haven't liked. When you have the PRESIDENT having to say that a corporation should show a movie, because of some political motive, it really is the beginning of the end.

Comment: Re:systemd? (Score 1) 63

by Grishnakh (#48674103) Attached to: Linux 3.19 Kernel To Start 2015 With Many New Features

The point is that that's the opinion of people who dislike systemd. That doesn't automatically mean they'll also dislike "a Systemd like init".

People like that might not (those who think it's implemented poorly). The people who will are the ones who insist on an init system that follows the "Unix philosophy". They're not going to be satisfied with anything other than sysvinit.

Comment: Re:more NOS and less lense flare (Score 1) 327

Into Darkness on the other hand, is shit. JJ Abrams is shit. Therefore, whoever's replacing him has a low bar to overcome.

I agree about JJ, but I think they've managed to do even worse here. The director of the Fast-n-Furious movies? Are they fucking kidding? This is even worse than hiring Michael Bay to make a movie.

Star Trek is dead.

Comment: Filters (Score 3, Insightful) 290

by ledow (#48660335) Attached to: BT, Sky, and Virgin Enforce UK Porn Blocks By Hijacking Browsers

I don't have a filter on my bookcase.
I don't have a filter on my movie collection.
I don't have a filter on my video game collection.

Why do I need one on my Internet connection?

I work in schools. Nobody's ever really given me a satisfactory answer that doesn't include pushing parental responsibility to a third party.

I'm with Virgin. They haven't asked me yet. The only time I've ever been asked such things is when I signed up to a mobile network and they asked me if I wanted to turn off the filter on the connection. Given that I work IT, the answer was yes. I want as few third parties between me and my service providers as possible, thanks. But the number of times I'll be using 4G to go looking for anything is going to be slim.

By all means ask... but it would have been so much easier to not ask and let those who worry about it fix it for themselves.

"Flattery is all right -- if you don't inhale." -- Adlai Stevenson