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Comment: Re:Maybe it's a sign... (Score 1) 13

by afidel (#49618883) Attached to: Cisco Names Veteran Robbins To Succeed Chambers as CEO

Cisco is all about software defined, from the Nexus 1000V (full on virtual), to the fact that every single Nexus switch sold today can be controlled through a robust REST based API Cisco has bought the software defined religion. The issue for them is that if you take away their special sauce then you can get 90% of the performance for 10% of the cost and probably 5% of the annual support costs through merchant silicon. Then again as a midsized enterprise I have zero need for a software defined featureset (the 1000V has some potential uses for us, but since it requires Enterprise Plus on the VMWare side and that would be a high 5 to 6 figure expense there's no way it's worth it) , I need a reliable and well supported platform with lots of other folks hitting on it harder than me so that they can find the bugs and have them fixed before I go to the next featuretrain upgrade. There's a reason that folks go with the big players, and it's not that they offer better phone support (dear lord do the not), it's that due to some sort of corollary to the many eyeballs theory if you have many defacto testers you find the bugs faster and get them ironed out before a large percentage of your userbase runs into them (generally).

Comment: Re:Single shop most likely (Score 2) 137

He's probably talking about a fresh install, not an upgrade. During the first stage GUI installer it won't even ask you if it detects a SLIC key, there are ways around it but it's basically doing the hokey pokey blindfolded for all the advanced user friendliness it provides (ie we know better than you mere mortal)

Comment: Re:Single shop most likely (Score 4, Informative) 137

I don't know if the installer somehow determined a preset key based on a unique identifier associated with the computer itself
It did, for large volume OEM's Microsoft has them burn the key into the BIOS which is why most don't come with the hologram sticker anymore, there's no need for it on Vista+ systems. The only problem it can sometimes cause is if you're doing a cross version and cross type install without an existing OS on the box (ie it came with 7 home and you're doing an upgrade install of 8.1 Enterprise)

Comment: Re:Far too expensive for a used car (Score 1) 63

by afidel (#49617277) Attached to: Tesla Adds Used Models To Its Inventory, For Online Purchase

Unlike internal combustion engines, electric brushless motors can last pretty much forever. Drivetrain wear is probably the #1 reason cars depreciate in value. If there's no wear, there's no depreciation.

ahem, about that.

Three drive train replacements in 30k in an ICE vehicle would qualify it under probably every states lemon laws.

Comment: Re: The question is (Score 1) 212

by amicusNYCL (#49616989) Attached to: No, NASA Did Not Accidentally Invent Warp Drive

The NEXT trick is managing not to kill the crew from all the radiation generated by traveling very, very fast through a space full of - radiation.

Who says you have to travel through the space? Why is everyone assuming they know the physics of something that we have no clue how it would even fundamentally work? A bunch of armchair physicists suggesting theoretical problems to things that we have no clue about. How about moving the space - and everything in it - around the ship instead of moving the ship through the space? How would something like that work, you're asking? We have no idea! Just like any hypothetical you're referring to or making up!

Comment: Re:Scientifically driven politics (Score 2) 267

"Today, the solitary inventor, tinkering in his shop, has been overshadowed by task forces of scientists in laboratories and testing fields. In the same fashion, the free university, historically the fountainhead of free ideas and scientific discovery, has experienced a revolution in the conduct of research. Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers. The prospect of domination of the nation's scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present – and is gravely to be regarded. Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific-technological elite. The prospect of domination of the nation's scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present – and is gravely to be regarded. It is the task of statesmanship to mold, to balance, and to integrate these and other forces, new and old, within the principles of our democratic system – ever aiming toward the supreme goals of our free society." - President Dwight D Eisenhower, Jan 17, 1961

Everyone remembers his points about the military industrial complex, but amazingly they forget his points about what he called the scientific-technological elite that he made in the very same speech.

Comment: Re:Since last move (Score 1) 84

by afidel (#49616353) Attached to: I've had my current ISP (disregarding mergers) for ...

I have two cable companies, U-Verse, and a WiSP available at my house, though only the competitive cable provider interests me since I have no desire to deal with any big telco at home since I deal with them way too much at work and the WiSP has some fairly restrictive limits on usage relative to my families usage (~200GB/month and we haven't even cut the cord yet, if we do I expect that to roughly double).

Comment: Re: I have *two* ISP... (Score 1) 84

by afidel (#49616211) Attached to: I've had my current ISP (disregarding mergers) for ...

My buddy who lives in the hill country (near Dripping Springs) uses a WiSP for his connection and uses T-Mobile's WiFi calling since literally no provider offers service at his ranch. If you want something a bit more convenient than the cell download two-step perhaps look to see if they're available in your part of the hill country =)

Comment: Article asks an important question (Score 5, Insightful) 212

by davidwr (#49616083) Attached to: No, NASA Did Not Accidentally Invent Warp Drive

From the article [numbers added for clarity]:

So let me ask you this, aspiring (or armchair) scientists: what would be the criteria you'd demand as the extraordinary evidence necessary to convince you that this is real? For myself, here's what Iâ(TM)d demand at minimum:

  • [1.] A detection of thrust that scaled with input power: the greater the power, the greater the thrust, in a predictable relationship.
  • [2.] A thrust that was at least many standard deviations above the measurement error.
  • [3.] An isolated environment, where atmospheric, gravitational and electromagnetic effects were all removed.
  • [4.] A reproducible setup and a transparent device design, so that other, independent teams can further test and validate the device/investigate the mechanism.
  • [5.] And finally, a detailed results report with the submission of an accompanying paper to peer review, and acceptance by the journal in question.

* I would certainly demand #4 - this combined with #3 (or a substitute - see below) is the gold standard for "there is really something here even if we don't know what it is".
* I would demand #5 or a similar process of independent peer review
* I would allow "enough reproductions over enough diverse environments to rule out environmental factors" as a substitute for #3.
* As for #2, the less the measurement error could lead to misleading results, the better, but a result that is "at least many standard deviations above the measurement error" may not be necessary to declare that we have an interesting, publishable result worthy of further study.

I would let #1 go: If the phenomenon was caused by something that did NOT scale with input power, it could still be interesting. It might not get us to space, but it would be worth publishing and studying.

Comment: Well, if you really want recent college grads... (Score 1) 438

by davidwr (#49615915) Attached to: Recruiters Use 'Digital Native' As Code For 'No Old Folks'

... create a job where the essential functions of the job really do require at least 30 clock-hours of recent (in the last 5 years) training OR equivalent on-the-job/volunteer/self-study experience in a broad list of non-technical courses typically taught in undergraduate programs AND which candidates who have not been in school the last 5 years likely won't have.

For example, most recent graduates who went to school full-time the last 4-5 years studied at least one semester of
* American history
* Writing or composition ("English 101")
* Differential Calculus

If you have a job that really does make use of these jobs - even if you've deliberately gone out of your way to engineer the job requirements so that someone without this knowledge would have difficulty doing the job - you should be alright.

Round out the list with "relevant" technical courses. For example, for a programmer position, structure the job so that it really does require that a candidate recently had 30 classroom hours of ALL of the following courses or had the equivalent experience or self-study in these areas:
* algorithm design
* computer hardware
* [list two programming languages that weren't in vogue 10 years ago here]
* [list another skill that is widely taught in school but which only a small fraction of "industry hires" will have more than a passing knowledge of here]

Then for good measure throw in things like "must have given at least 3 technical presentations of at least 15 minutes each in the last 5 years, at least one of which is to a non-lay audience."

Again, this will only work if the job really does require the knowledge and skills that the job description asked for. If a motivated candidate that lacks one or more of the requirements could reasonably be expected to "fill in the gaps" through self-study before he needed to use those skills between the time he started the application/resume process and the time he needed them on the job, then making them a job requirement could be seen as a sham and it could get you into trouble.

Here's a hypothetical "engineered" job designed specifically to require such skills:

Job posting: Web programmer Level I
Salary range: [keep it on the low end but not OMGTHISMUSTBEANHB1POSITION low]
Primary duties: Work under supervision to design, implement, and maintain web sites using [list 2-3 fairly new web-development environments]
Secondary duties: Give short talks about your projects to other teams in the company; attend short talks given by other teams and provide feedback; present papers at technical conferences
Non-technical duties: Represent company in college- and high-school outreach including participating in "adult vs. youth" contests like "Are you smarter than an 11th-Grade American History Student," giving talks to middle school students on topics such as "how to make a ripple-carry adder circuit from the things you find at home," and giving talks to high school Calculus students on topics like "not all computers are digital."

Now, Mr. Employer, I have to ask you:

Is it really worth re-jiggering your employees' job duties specifically so your typical industry hire would not be qualified but your typical recent B.S.-holding technical-degree-graduate would? Add to that the fact that more seasoned professionals bring certain hard-to-define qualities to the job that you typically just can't get from less-seasoned professionals and recent grads? Also, don't forget loyalty: People who have kids-in-tow or who have lived in the area for awhile are very unlikely to want to move to a new area once they hire on with you. While you can't ask about kids or length-of-current-residence in a job interview, you can generally assume that your average person over 30 is more stable/reliable and less likely to "jump ship" for more money or a minor on-the-job annoyance than someone under 25.

Oh, and as for salary:
It's not like the 1990s, we, the "older tech workers," get it: We know that despite the benefits we bring to the table from our years or decades of technical experience, you are paying us to fill a specific role that does not require the benefits of our long experience. We get that we shouldn't expect any more pay now than the 22-year-old college grad who is also interviewing for the position and we get that unless we earn a promotion or change jobs internally, we won't be given any more in the way of pay raises than the 22-year-old will get if he gets the job. We accept this as an economic reality. If we wanted or needed more money, we wouldn't be applying for jobs that a 22-year-old with almost no "real-world" experience could do.

Reality must take precedence over public relations, for Mother Nature cannot be fooled. -- R.P. Feynman