Slashdot is powered by your submissions, so send in your scoop

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror

Comment: Re:Fuck you. (Score 4, Insightful) 618

by samkass (#49711783) Attached to: Editor-in-Chief of the Next Web: Adblockers Are Immoral

I'm of the opinion that advertising is immoral.

Do you like the existence of Google? Should the Internet be purely pay-to-play like in the old AOL or GEnie days? For that instance, should Slashdot exist?

Yes, by the end of your advert I might "want" your product that I'd never heard of, but as the OP says, "fuck you". You are taking money out of my pocket that I did not plan to allow its removal. In some circles, that's theft.

You know what ACTUAL theft is? Consuming someone's product (ie. visiting an ad-supported web site) and then refusing to pay (ie. allow the ads to be shown). If you want a moral and ethical ad-blocker, implement a plug-in that refuses to let you visit any site whose ads you don't want displayed, or which allows you to pay micro-payments per visit.

Comment: Re:Not exactly a hack (Score 1) 78

by samkass (#49607139) Attached to: Hacking the US Prescription System

Recently, I noticed that when I picked up a prescription for a (for me new) medication that's mostly used for one purpose, I suddenly got dozens of spam e-mails wanting to "help" me with a particular diagnosis I don't have. And that's the few that went through the double layer spam filter. It was way too pervasive to be a coincidence.

I've been taking moderately special purpose meds off and on for years (the sorts of things you take when you have a bone marrow transplant).

I have NEVER gotten any spam emails as a result (unless you count that "you really need to refill your prescription since you're about to run out of pills, you dolt!" sort that I get as a reminder from the drugstore)....

I don't know if it's the cause here, but if you Google for something, obviously Google's entire value model is to sell that info to advertisers. Likewise if you send or receive gmail about something. Then there's also looking it up on WebMD or another site to find the side effects. I would be a lot more suspicious of online activity "leaking" to spammers than a pharmacy selling it.

Comment: Re:Test of Time (Score 4, Informative) 181

by samkass (#49514209) Attached to: Swift Tops List of Most-Loved Languages and Tech

This was my reaction to that comment, too. Swift is a strongly typed language, it just infers the type at compile time so the programmer doesn't have to manually enter it when declaring the variable. Considering it also differentiates between variables which can contain "nil" and ones that can't in its type system, I'd say it's one of the most strongly typed languages in common use, so I don't understand the statement.

The one platform thing is a bummer, but it's changing pretty fast right now so I don't blame Apple for not wanting to lock any decisions in with third parties yet. I hope they add it to their pile of open source projects before too long, though. Considering the reference implementation is LLVM-based, it shouldn't be hard for it to become very portable very fast.

(Besides, who doesn't like a language which has the entire unicode character set available for variable names, including the symbols? Can make for some colorful code.)

Comment: Re:Minecraft Mods (Score 3, Informative) 315

by samkass (#49443607) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How To Introduce a 7-Year-Old To Programming?

This is how my kids started with Minecraft plugins, a plugin called ScriptCraft: https://github.com/walterhiggi...
It lets you write mods in JavaScript, either with separate .js files in a directory or directly on the command line in-game. JavaScript was very approachable and forgiving, and gave them immediate visual feedback on their code. Now my 10-year-old has written a Java mod while my younger one is interested in trying. I swear the desire to mod Minecraft is doing more for STEM than any Pearson curriculum...

Comment: Re: It depends (Score 1) 486

by samkass (#49337671) Attached to: No, It's Not Always Quicker To Do Things In Memory

Actually, even beginner Java programmers know to use a StringBuilder for these cases, which allows for constant-time appending. It's a little harder to do "right" in C and accidentally get O(n^2) time by reallocating memory each time, but still not hard. The language here isn't making the difference it's their algorithm.

Comment: Re:Reasonable royalty (Score 1) 32

by samkass (#48985575) Attached to: Dept. of Justice Blesses IEEE Rules On Injunctions and Reasonability

The problem comes from "reasonable royalty". The price list should be set by the vendor and once set they shouldn't be able to change it depending on who wants to pay for it.

You can't ask one million or 1$ per unit from company XYZ and then turn around and ask a company that is your competitor ten times the price "just because".

I would add that no standards essential patent should ever be allowed to require a percentage of the final product price as a licensing fee. Your contribution to, say, a networking technology is not necessarily more valuable because someone else added a more expensive case, screen, or battery. It can hardly be "non-discriminatory" when the price is different for each product.

Comment: Re:Academic wankery at its finest (Score 4, Insightful) 154

by samkass (#48836017) Attached to: The Anthropocene Epoch Began With 1945 Atomic Bomb Test, Scientists Say

Also... from TFAbstract, they chose the date because all of the nuclear explosions have left a clear marker of radioisotopes which can be easily located when tracing the geological record.

And importantly, this will be true globally. This seems to be what most posters here seem to be ignoring... A hundred thousand years from now you'll probably be able to dig into the ground and identify this epoch anywhere on Earth where the rocks are old enough by the distinct atomic decay signature, among other things.

Comment: Re:Qualifications (Score -1, Flamebait) 479

by samkass (#48831421) Attached to: Fighting Tech's Diversity Issues Without Burning Down the System

"1) Push your technical recruiters to hit 20% thresholds for female candidates"

At the expense of the qualified candidates?

No. Just make sure that 20% are considered as candidates, even if it means adding 20% more candidates. We all know that the exact same resume with a female name is much more likely to be rejected without being considered. This is just to push back against this bias.

Comment: Re:It helps to actually use the thing. (Score 5, Informative) 296

by samkass (#48217865) Attached to: How Sony, Intel, and Unix Made Apple's Mac a PC Competitor

Pay no attention to the fact that Apple has sold an entry-level Mac Mini for $499 for the last 9 years.

They have sold the entry-level Mac Mini for $499 for 1 week. Before that, it was $599.

It used to be $499, then went up to $599 for a few years, now back to $499. Which is all beside the original point: there is not a high barrier to entry for the Mac. And it has a lot of additional value to a lot of people: simple for the beginner, and an entire open-source UNIX for the advanced user, combined with high-quality parts and great service, a big ecosystem of software and services, and almost no viruses or threats to worry about, and a lot of folks (me included) think life is too short to deal with Windows at home.

Comment: Re: Issue with FSF statement... (Score 4, Insightful) 208

by samkass (#48008657) Attached to: Apple Yet To Push Patch For "Shellshock" Bug

It's true, Apple releases the full source code to the UNIX underlying MacOS X, including all the user land command line utilities and the OS kernel. You can rebuild them all.

So what is this article about?? Things are working exactly like FSF intended. Apple users can download the source to bash, patch it, and install it on their own machines. If people wait for the vendor to patch, what's the difference between it and closed source?

It is your destiny. - Darth Vader

Working...