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Comment Be careful (Score 1) 206

Taking the advice from someone from the GWB administration is something you might want to think long and hard about. You remember the folks that wangled a legal opinion to support their insane idea that waterboarding and the like was not torture? He's from that bunch.

Comment It'll never work in the U.S. (Score 1) 183

The way roads are done in the U.S.:

1.) Award contract to the lowest bidder.

2.) Lowest bidder was the lowest bidder because they plan on using substandard materials.

3.) Resulting road falls apart in 4-5 years (or less).

4.) Go to 1.

There is no desire or advantage to build roads that don't need to be rebuilt very few years. The Free Market(TM) and your (and my) tax dollars at work. Everybody wins (road contractors, car dealers, repair shops, etc.) but the people who have to drive on the crappy roads.

Comment Re:Tax dollars at work. (Score 1) 674

Arcane? I was thinking along the lines of archaic. I was shaking my head and reaching for a dictionary to look up whether "abstracting" had any definitions even remotely related to "stealing" but, sure enough, there is one. It's number 13 in my Random House Unabridged Dictionary, though. Working that into the wording of an ordinance was the work of a dedicated bureaucrat with way too much time on their hands.

I'm right there with you on what transferring police power to uneducated bozos has done to airports. I used to like to fly -- well, "tolerated" is probably more accurate; I liked the flying part but never really liked the experience of dealing with airports -- but the complete and maddening waste of time that airport security has turned into makes me think twice (or more) about traveling anywhere that I can't reach by car.

Comment Re:Don't worry, they'll try again (Score 1) 229

Well, seeing as how the soon-to-be-former Disney IT folks were being forced to train their replacements, Disney had to know they were in a bad situation. Imagine the fix Disney would have been in had everyone told them to stuff their 2-3 month's salary bribes^Wseverance and boxed up their personal items after that initial meeting and there'd had been no knowledge transfer? One can only hope that someday, somewhere an IT team will band together and tell their employers to keep their paltry severance and walk out the door. (And, hopefully, straight to the press.)

Comment Re:Such a nice, sugary story.... (Score 3, Interesting) 614

I've trained my replacement before. Or I should say I trained my replacements before. My sysadmin job was sliced and diced to be done by multiple "teams". User account management? Separate team. Storage? Separate team. Backups? Separate team. You get the picture. Another admin and I conducted more than one online training session for each of these teams and those were followed up by two (count 'em!) in-person visits by several members of each of the teams. After my end date came around, the outsourcing company hired me on as a contractor (at about the same as I was making but I actually made out pretty well since the contract work was entirely remote and I had zero transporation costs). For the better part of four years I was still doing most of the work that was supposed to have been farmed out to these teams. Everything these teams were supposed to be doing was taking 2-3 times longer as tasks would sit and sit and sit in the queue until some manager got me involved. It was rather pathetic. Cost savings? Where? Well, I guess my previous employer didn't have to pay out my bonus anymore and I wasn't taking paid vacation time.

Comment Re:Such a nice, sugary story.... (Score 4, Insightful) 614

``In 2009 Bill Gates sat before the US congress, and explained that the tech industry was suffering from huge shortages, and desperately needed more foreign guest workers. At the same time, Microsoft was laying off thousands of US workers.''

And, no doubt, not a single one of those simpleminded Congresscritters called him out on the hypocricy.

Comment Probably for the best... (Score 1) 156

\begin{snark}

If we're unable to reproduce and dying off from testicular cancer, there will be less pressure on the food supply that will be dwindling as the pesticides kill off the bee population and the plant pollenation function they perform. The humans that are left can do that pollenation by hand when the bees are all gone.

See... it's all good!

\end{snark}

Comment As little as 32MB? (Score 1) 227

I can recall when an entire Linux -- not "pared down" -- ran in "as little as" 16MB. (No X Windows; server only.) It was the Anaconda installer that forced me to upgrade systems to 32MB. (At least temporarily; after getting Linux installed I could pull out that extra memory.) Of course, this was a "few" years ago. Nowadays, I have more memory than that in my old Laserjet. What's limiting these devices to have only 32MB? Power?

Comment Ooh! A letter of apology! (Score 1) 82

Try taking that with you to the bank when you try applying for a loan after your credit has been trashed by an identity thief. See how far along the loan approval process that letter gets you.

WTF are you supposed to do with a damned letter? Feel all warm and fuzzy that they care?

Unix will self-destruct in five seconds... 4... 3... 2... 1...

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