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Comment Taught by who? (Score 1) 313

I don't think there are a lot of qualified programers working as teachers these days. Back in the day, I took a COBOL class in high school, but had to leave the class after two weeks because the instructor only knew the language up to the point of reading data out of a file. Once I wanted to write data to the file, she was over her head.

I think a section of a Math class on programming would be interesting.

Comment Re:Pros and Cons (Score 1) 462

You might think that, but I just discovered that the 5-year-old software that I am working on was converting times from UTC by getting the current offset from UTC. No consideration was made for the actual date being converted. The people who wrote this weren't stupid, they just didn't really think through the problem. That, and the company had no culture of code reviews or even documented designs. The times, they are a changing.

Seriously, though, getting the current time is easy. Converting an arbitrary datetime for an arbitrary location involves a bit of thought. This is especially true when you have to deal with Arizona. And, that is without having to consider the conversion of historical data that occurred during different DST rules.

Submission Ask Slashdot - Is there a standard data link for emergency vehicles?-> 1

schiefaw writes: I am working on a medical device that could be useful in a mobile environment. I am currently evaluating 3G connectivity, but I was wondering if there was some defacto standard for a data link being used by emergency vehicles. Any information would be appreciated.
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Comment Re:Is SETI wasting its time? (Score 1) 90

Good point. And if the aliens use digital communication (maybe with a bit of encryption and DRM on top of it :p), it will only show up as noise after analog conversion.

Even digital data uses a carrier wave.

The problem with this idea is that the human brain does not react well to large amounts of negative data. Eventually, the mental "squelch" of the viewer will drop to the point where they will see a pattern whether one exists or not.

I could see sending flagged data to humans, but this project is in "real-time". I think this is just a publicity gimmick.

Can anything be sadder than work left unfinished? Yes, work never begun.