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Comment: Re:ABOUT FUCKING TIME! (Score 1) 765

by sfcat (#49201839) Attached to: Ubuntu To Officially Switch To systemd Next Monday

Systemd has laudable goals and people do want it. That's why it's been adopted, because some people want what it does. "It fills a use case people have" is what Linus says. And that use case happens to be the one that desired by the people responsible for building distros.

Ah, so its just like the cloud then.

Comment: Re:FFS (Score 5, Informative) 398

I don't think so. In university some pharmacy or chemistry guys could scrounge pure ethanol. (98 or 99%.) Screwdrives with that were nasty.

But nobody became addicted to that after 1 or 2 dozes, have they? Heroin, on the other hand, is so addictive, a decent percentage of humans get hooked after only a few dozes.

If that was really the case then people who were given morphine drips in hospitals would have high rates of addiction after leaving the hospital. But this doesn't happen. People who get addicted to Opioids either are in constant, on-going pain (due to injury or other reason) or are purely recreational users who are likely responding to external stresses. Basically, the entire model of addiction you are using is wrong and the numbers on addiction bear this out quite clearly. And before you tell me about "soldier's sickness" after the Civil war, remember that most of those soldiers had on-going, serious pain management issues (due to missing limbs and poor quality surgery at the time). This is why our "war on drugs" has been such a monumental failure, our basic model of addiction is wrong and leads you to believe non-sense (like your post). Heroin is certainly addictive but addiction is a response to stress and pain, not a moral failing or a bio-chemical crutch. A better model is provided by the Rat Park research. Policy using this model as a basis will be much more effective if for no other reason than its a far more accurate model of how humans behave than the practically medieval way we deal with addiction right now.

Comment: Re:Pointing fingers at problems (Score 1) 493

by sfcat (#49022339) Attached to: Will Elementary School Teachers Take the Rap For Tech's Diversity Problem?
Most security crews at nightclubs (I moonlight at one sometimes) must have at least 1 woman on them for dealing with problematical females. And generally the female bouncers are quite tough (but not always). Still wouldn't expect the same number of women in those jobs as generally males cause more problems depending on the crowd and thus more male bouncers. Police forces (where many bouncers come from) and other security fields are primarily male so this all works out.

Comment: Re:Excellent idea (Score 1) 779

by sfcat (#48965967) Attached to: WA Bill Takes Aim at Boys' Dominance In Computer Classes

CS is already badly damaged as it is. From the feeling that jobs are going to be at minimum wage rates, to the fact that there is extremely heavy H-1B competition for every single position, be it an entry level coder on up, to the fact that it is looked down upon [1]... all gets people to look for other professions. I've even met high school counselors steering kids away from STEM in general, and into law or business with the phrase, "there is no such thing as an unemployed attorney or CPA".

The last thing the industry needs is a state's foot on the neck of a section of the population interested in this occupation. It just means that that aspiring programmer is now doing other things, and that could be the next Linus Torvalds or Wietse Venema that gets shooed out of the field.

[1]: CS and IT get relatively little respect as a profession compared to others that take as much education and experience. Tell someone you are a veteran IT person, they will immediately ask you what to do because their Windows PC seems slow.

Tell that to my bank account, and my email account that receives at least unsolicited one job offer each day (which generally have a higher salary than a doc or CPA or a lawyer outside of a few select firms plus things they don't generally get like bonuses and options). All that and I can look at myself in the mirror each day (making lots of $$ is law generally requires you giving this up unless you are really lucky or good or both).

Actually, dumb policies like this help me as it will ultimately reduce the number of qualified programmers in the world. Please keep up your mis-information campaign. My banker and descendants thanks you...

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

by sfcat (#48962921) Attached to: WA Bill Takes Aim at Boys' Dominance In Computer Classes

I suspect most five-year-olds or confused squirrels know what "ignoring" means :)

Dude, reread his original post. And substitute the word 'learn' for the words 'be told'. Then it will make sense to you. He was a rude asshole, but you are still being either intentional dense or the idiot he says you are.

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

by sfcat (#48962851) Attached to: WA Bill Takes Aim at Boys' Dominance In Computer Classes

There isn't a section that explicitly says 'discourage white boys from signing up for class'. But, like the zero tolerance policies that are mis-interpreted to include biting a pop-tart into a vague gun shape, pointing your fingers, and having a 1 in plastic molded machine gun for your GI Joes, what will happen is if you can't get enough of the underrepresented demographic students into the class as a percentage of the entire class, then there's going to be a kid that really wants to take the class told 'Sorry, that class is full' when there's only 8 people signed up.

All just to keep the % of underrepresented students at a certain level.

Funny you should mention that. At Berkeley High (in CA), they had only a girls computer club despite the fact that dozens of boys wanted a computer club. There were no girls who signed up for computer club but they still wouldn't have a boys computer club (or a students computer club which is what it should be). So rather than teaching those that are interested, they denied everyone rather than have an out of balance club. Sad considering Berkeley High used to be an excellent high school. Its now behind the high school I attended in rural Kentucky that has less than 1/20th the budget.

Comment: Re:Don't let perfection be the enemy of good enoug (Score 2) 60

by sfcat (#48956693) Attached to: Test Shows Big Data Text Analysis Inconsistent, Inaccurate

That's a great question. Do you think 80% accuracy is good enough for medical use? If you're a doctor facing an unfamiliar situation, and your data says treatment X helped 40% of patients it was tried on, treatment Y helped 35% of them, and all other treatments (Z, W, etc.) helped no more than 30%, but you know the data might only be 80% accurate, what treatment do you choose? Are those ratios even meaningful in the presence of so many errors?

Consider the case where the patient's condition is critical, and you don't have time for additional evaluation. Is X always the best choice? What if your specialty makes you better than average at treatment Y? Maybe that 20% inaccuracy works in favor of the doctor who has the right experience.

It could it be used for ill, too. What if you know you'll get paid more by the insurance company for all the extra tests required to do treatment Y? You could justify part of your decision based on the uncertainty of the data.

In the end, historical data is just one factor out of many that goes into each of these decisions. Inaccurate data may lead to suboptimal decisions, so it can't be the only factor.

Great strawman, but your strawman happens to actually be a nuclear powered, armor plated tank...with sharks and laser beams!!! Turns out way back in the 60's, when they started to think about what problems computers could one day solve, they listed many: beat world champion at chess, drive cars, etc...one of them was medical diagnosis. It took decades longer than thought to solve the ones they have been able to solve with one exception: medical diagnosis. By the early 80s we had "expert systems" that were more accurate than human doctors at medical diagnosis (especially 24 hrs in to a 36 hr shift). The AMA and insurance companies have basically blocked this tech for decades despite overwhelming evidence that they were killing people by doing so. Today we have started to slowly role out this type of tech for things like drug interaction but not yet for medical diagnosis. Ironic huh?

Comment: Re:Jealous much? (Score 2) 431

by sfcat (#48927931) Attached to: Justice Department: Default Encryption Has Created a 'Zone of Lawlessness'

I don't think that this has to be a FUD scenario. I think law enforcement has a job to do, and they get to use certain tools to do it. If one of those tools becomes ineffective, then they have more trouble doing their job. Then they will complain because they are still expected to do their jobs.

Every year the city of Philadelphia along seizes $5.8m in civil forfeitures. Less than what robbers steal in that city. Right now, I'm more scared of being robbed by cops than by crooks. That's because cops are currently stealing more than the criminals on a dollar for dollar basis. Stuff like this...http://articles.philly.com/2014-08-14/news/52772884_1_forfeiture-program-drug-trafficking-property

Can you see why we don't trust them? Now tell me why again I should expose my personal information to them, (and ID thieves) to make their job easier? Maybe I'm not certain who I'm more scared of? And maybe I'm not sure them doing their job making my life better or safer. Maybe I think they are worse than the criminals. And it doesn't seem to matter what level of government we are talking about, local, state, or federal. Might be time to start over again with LE, and this time not exclude people with an IQ higher than 102.

Comment: Re:What Paul Graham doesn't get... (Score 1) 552

by sfcat (#48686845) Attached to: Paul Graham: Let the Other 95% of Great Programmers In

HP was famous for having parallel tracks for management and engineering talent. Promotion didn't mean moving to management, that was a separate skill set and managers would often be paid less than the people that they were managing.

I think IBM was initially known for this. It spread to most other major technical companies during the era when IBM was dominate. Sadly this seems to have stopped in many places now. Many software firms do still do this but not nearly as should.

Comment: Re:ETL (Score 1) 55

by sfcat (#48620413) Attached to: The Joys and Hype of Hadoop

I remember Cloudera saying that most people use hadoop for ETL. Not sure if you've checked, but hadoop is like the ne plus ultra of ETL tools. It's worth a look if you have to transform lots and lots of data.

Um, for what purpose? After you use it as an "ETL" tool, the idea is that afterwards you can query it, analyze it, etc. Traditionally you used an ETL tool to get data into a database then used tools that spoke SQL to analyze the data. With Hadoop, you have to write all your ETL tools yourself. So using Hadoop as an ETL tool is really a bridge to nowhere.

Comment: Re:I guess Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking (Score 1) 417

by sfcat (#48569153) Attached to: AI Expert: AI Won't Exterminate Us -- It Will Empower Us

Then it may just as plausibly eliminate them to replace them with something even more complicated and entropy producing. Are humans really the pinnacle of entropy production in the universe? No. Not even a blip on the radar.

I'm not sure you know what entropy is based upon that comment.

Comment: Re:I guess Elon Musk and Stephen Hawking (Score 1) 417

by sfcat (#48569125) Attached to: AI Expert: AI Won't Exterminate Us -- It Will Empower Us

I fear unethical humans programing AI computers to things and then just stepping back and taking no responsibility for the outcomes as they effect individuals.

They already do that, but instead of AI, but they call it corporate policy. I somehow doubt AI can be significantly more harmful than corporate executives making a one size fits all solution for corporate behavior.

Comment: Re:Qt... (Score 1) 89

by sfcat (#48399427) Attached to: GTK+ Developers Call For Help To Finish Cross-Platform OpenGL Support

Does QT use xlib or xcb under the hood on X11 based systems. I ask because I would like to thread applications without worrying about the finicky nature of xlib when threading is involved.

I'm not 100% sure but I think xlib. xcb is mostly dead these days, or so I get that impression. I really wish xcb had more traction but only a few apps need this type of multi-threaded GUI functionality (my app being one of those few) so it seems to get left behind.

Comment: Re:Qt... (Score 4, Insightful) 89

by sfcat (#48397839) Attached to: GTK+ Developers Call For Help To Finish Cross-Platform OpenGL Support
Couldn't agree more. I spent 3 years writing an OpenGL app using GTK+. I just spent the last 6 months porting it to QT. And even with having to using C++ in places in the code (I wanted it to be pure C) I couldn't be happier with QT. And I probably couldn't be less happy with GTK+. When I finally got the GTK+ version working on windows, it had terrible performance. GTK+ is a total mess developed by people with no desire for you to use their code. For years the GTK+ devs actively questioned the usefulness of supporting OpenGL and refused to even answer questions about the OpenGL support. The devs are openly hostile to things like OpenGL and they break compatibility on a regular basis. The QT version of my app's code has probably 30000 fewer lines due to far more sane APIs and much more useful widget APIs. Why anyone in this day would use GTK+ for anything unless they were required to use only pure C in their app is beyond me.

Time-sharing is the junk-mail part of the computer business. -- H.R.J. Grosch (attributed)