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Comment Re:The difference... (Score 1) 97 97

I've recently been pawing through my old Basic manuals (I'm implementing a Basic environment for run). And what stands out is how incomplete and limited most of the old environments were (although I did love them at the time).

The Basics were grossly limited. Examples includes the Sinclair AND and OR statements, the very limited FN statements and severe limitations on FOR loops. Given the high expense of disks in those days, it's no surprise that disk handling was uneven at best.

Networking capabilities were trivial to non-existent, and mostly non-existent.

The connection to their environment was deeply weird. From a modern perspective, the first thing we normally do when we see a bit of hardware is to wrap it in a little bit of code to make it simpler to control. The common pattern in the old days was to revel in the POKE and PEEK statements, directly setting hardware registers.

The difference between then and now is that then my plan was to write an program to play lunar lander. My plan today is to write a program that will listen to my mailboxes and change the color of my lights accordingly ("Make it pink!", "Make it blue!")

Comment Re:SubjectsInCommentsAreStupid (Score 1) 529 529

So, of that persons comments, the one about branded actually makes sense. Different companies actually do work on different frequencies (and there's a bunch of other differences; frequency is just part of it). Once we posit that some microwaves cause problems, it's very reasonable that different frequencies would cause more or fewer problems.

Comment Re:Two things... (Score 1) 583 583

I'm going to rephrase what you said, and change it. Don't whine at your boss. Don't complain at your boss.

But do ask for advice ("this other team is delivering really slowly, how should I handle it?", or, "I think I have a better solution for the problem of the day, but I'm having trouble advocating for it, can you help me?")

And let them know when you're behind. My company takes the output of many, many teams and sells the result; there's nothing they hate more than surprises.

Comment Re:Last week I tried to write a Win8.1 universal a (Score 1) 133 133

I've got several apps in the store. Most of the UI code is fully shared, and moderately adoptive to screen size. In a few places, I needed something special for one or the other.

My trick is that the 8.1 universal apps have two mainpage.xaml files (one for desktop, one for phone). I just make a shared UserControl. Each MainPage just has one object, which is the shared control

(BTW: I work at Microsoft, but not in the group that does XAML; my way works but that doesn't mean there isn't a better way)

Comment Re:Lift the gag order first... (Score 1) 550 550

It's called, "the general operations budget" I work for a big company; from on high we get general guidelines ("computers are expected to last xyz years" and "you have abc to spend on travel this year"). itt's up to the more lower-level people to decide how to portion it out.

In the FCC's case, congress has already given them money to inforce their regulations (and gave them the authority to make the regulations, but also gave them requirements like hainvg a certain number of public hearings). The FCC can then spend it on those things.

Comment Re:Lift the gag order first... (Score 1) 550 550

So you're in favor of government regulations for conduit? Because seriously, none of the existing companies are very willing to share their expensive conduit, and nobody will build it for "everyone" unless they can get some serious customers.

Comment Re:This thread will be a sewer of misogyny (Score 1) 779 779

How's this for a counter-example? Orchestras used to have a ton of reasons why women were grossly under-represented -- they just weren't interested, they didn't have the skills, they didn't have the long-term ability -- whatever. But when orchestras started to have players audition behind curtains, suddenly a lot of talented women started getting hired.

Right now there are plenty of teachers who literally don't want women in their high-tech classes. This bill helps solve that problem, and doesn't let the teacher weasel their way out with cop-out answers.

Comment Re:5th Admendment? (Score 1) 446 446

Quote: "within their jurisdiction". That means that the court has ordered (in compliance with your rights) that certain data be discovered or turned over. Seriously, folks: the police do get to investigate crimes. If they need to look at your car (or, in 18th century terms, your horse), they get to.

Submission + - NASA Spacecraft Images Crash Site of Retired LADEE Probe->

An anonymous reader writes: In April, NASA ended the mission of its Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer (LADEE) mission by de-orbiting (read: crashing) it on the far side of the moon. The Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter has now directly imaged the crash site, showing a small crater and the spray of rocks and dust caused by the crash. "LADEE's grave lies about 0.5 miles (0.8 kilometers) from the eastern rim of the larger Sundman V crater, just 0.2 miles (0.3 km) north of the spot where mission team members predicted the spacecraft would go down based on tracking data, NASA officials said. ... The new crater is less than 10 feet (3 meters) wide. It's so small because LADEE was just the size of a washing machine, and the probe was traveling relatively slowly (3,800 mph, or 6,116 km/h) when it impacted the surface. The LROC team was able to spot LADEE's impact crater after developing a new tool that compared before-and-after images of the same lunar sites, researchers said."
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Khrushchev's 1959 Visit to IBM->

harrymcc writes: In September of 1959, Nikita Khrushchev, the premier of the Soviet Union, spent 12 days touring the U.S. One of his stops was IBM's facilities in San Jose, which helped to create the area later known as Silicon Valley. The premier got to see the first computer which came with a hard disk, which IBM programmed to answer history questions. But what he was most impressed by was IBM's modern cafeteria. Over at Fast Company, I've chronicled this fascinating and little-known moment in tech history, which will be covered in an upcoming PBS program on Khrushchev's U.S. trip.
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Statisticians Study Who Was Helped Most by Obamacare writes: We know that about 10 million more people have insurance coverage this year as a result of the Affordable Care Act but until now it has been difficult to say much about who was getting that Obamacare coverage — where they live, their age, their income and other such details. Now Kevin Quealy and Margot Sanger-Katz report in the NYT that a new data set is providing a clearer picture of which people gained health insurance under the Affordable Care Act. The data is the output of a statistical model based on a large survey of adults and shows that the law has done something rather unusual in the American economy this century: It has pushed back against inequality, essentially redistributing income — in the form of health insurance or insurance subsidies — to many of the groups that have fared poorly over the last few decades. The biggest winners from the law include people between the ages of 18 and 34; blacks; Hispanics; and people who live in rural areas. The areas with the largest increases in the health insurance rate, for example, include rural Arkansas and Nevada; southern Texas; large swaths of New Mexico, Kentucky and West Virginia; and much of inland California and Oregon.

Despite many Republican voters’ disdain for the Affordable Care Act, parts of the country that lean the most heavily Republican (according to 2012 presidential election results) showed significantly more insurance gains than places where voters lean strongly Democratic. That partly reflects underlying rates of insurance. In liberal places, like Massachusetts and Hawaii, previous state policies had made insurance coverage much more widespread, leaving less room for improvement. But the correlation also reflects trends in wealth and poverty. Many of the poorest and most rural states in the country tend to favor Republican politicians.

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