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Comment: Re:Stay Put (Score 1) 772

by swrider (#37070340) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Am I Too Old To Learn New Programming Languages?
I am 57 and still coding. I took care of the management issue by being a principle in every company I worked at for the last 30 years. It is a pain to code and do the books and deal with personnel, but it is worth the effort. It isn't hard to learn new the languages if you can forget about the basics you learned years ago. It isn't the syntax, it is the paradigms. That, and figuring out how to get around all of the 'tools' that are supposed to make you more productive.

The hardest thing is trying to convince someone that even though you want to charge them twice as much as a rookie just out of Brown Institute, you will produce a better product in one third the time. It is difficult to find companies that want to pay for the experience gained over 35 years. And, that experience is not just in what makes a good program, but what makes a good product.

If you still want to feel the exhilaration of writing golden code in a product that solves someone's problem, keep fighting the fight wherever the battle takes you. If you are tired and coded out, hang up the coding sheet and move on.

Comment: WiFi is Useless for Laptop Users on Airplanes (Score 1) 101

Unless you have a tablet or smaller device, WiFi will be useless on an airplane because as soon as you fire up your laptop, sign up, and pay your fee, the old lady in the seat in front of you will fully recline her seat. You won't be able to open your laptop more than an inch or so, unless you forgo your tray table. And, if you politely ask her to pull her seat up a bit, she will turn into the old lady that walked across the ceiling in that shitty apocalypse movie from a couple of years ago.

The airlines should set aside a section of seats with more space between seats, power outlets, and dedicated attendants for the people who want to pay extra to work while flying. Throw in a dedicated head and free drinks and it might almost be worth it.

Comment: Re:Hard to reconcile (Score 1) 201

by swrider (#35472828) Attached to: Court Rules It's Ok To Tag Pics On Facebook Without Permission
If someone took my picture without my permission, or over my objection, is there something in the law that would prevent me from getting my picture back?

A few months ago I had to reiterate my objection to having my picture taken several times. I knew the photographer was planning on posting the pictures on Facebook and tagging the subjects and I did not want to be included. He finally understood.

Comment: Re:I may have been one of the first players (Score 1) 53

by swrider (#35070562) Attached to: <em>Oregon Trail</em> &mdash; How 3 Minnesotans Forged Its Path

When I went to Winona State University then next year we still connected to MECC, only now we moved up to punch cards. All our programming all 4 years was saved on punch cards. When programs were due towards the end of the quarter there would be sometimes a 2 hour wait from when you fed your cards in until you got your response from Mankato.

You were feeding your card deck into a Sperry 1004. In Mankato, at the end of the quarter, there were so many card decks being processed that the weight didn't even need to be put on the stack of cards in the input hopper. The printer was pretty much running continuously, also, since most of the programs would error off immediately, due to syntax errors.

The Sperry 1106 you were feeding your card decks into was not a part of MECC, though. It was the academic processor for the State University Subsystem. The administrative processor was in St. Cloud.

As the third shift operator during the mid to late 1970's in Mankato, I had the computer to myself after the data centers closed for the evening. I never had a problem getting my programs run. ;->

Comment: Re:Poor TiVo (Score 1) 112

by swrider (#34996102) Attached to: Microsoft Sues TiVo

All of them are painfully underpowered. Scrolling through the guide is always waaaay too slow. .

I don't know about the others and I haven't seen a recent Comcast DVR, but one reason they were extremely painful and slow is that the DVR made a round trip request to a Comcast server on every button push.

I have had multiple TiVo's from a series 1 through my current HD Dual Tuner with cable cards. The interface needs an update, but is still pretty good. Maybe the Web version is snazzier, but I haven't forked over the dollars to upgrade.

Comment: Re:The Joys of employeehood.... (Score 3, Interesting) 509

by swrider (#34974414) Attached to: IRS Nails CPA For Copying Steve Jobs, Google Execs
In 1994, I started a local ISP as an S-Corp. I had no other employees and ALL of the revenue went into buying more modems, phone lines, servers, etc. As I came down to the end of the first year, I was not certain what my profit would be, if there would even be one. I did not pay myself a salary because there was no cash in the bank to do so. All of my revenue was going to keep the business going.

Four years later, the IRS came back and imputed a salary of $24k for me so that they could collect the Social Security contribution. They couldn't collect Income Tax because I had no income.

That is when I learned that as a S-Corp owner, you cannot forgo a salary, even if you have no money to pay it. Any actual cash on hand goes to pay the taxes first and then the company can owe you.

Seventeen years later, after selling my network and customer base in 1998, the shell of that ISP is still around and I pay myself $16k a year to manage it. Not the $50k some might think necessary, but $16k is a good salary for managing a company that currently has no revenues. My accountants haven't said anything about this being too low and the IRS hasn't bothered me in awhile. Hopefully, they look at other factors such as effort expended and corporate revenue received, and don't just have a number from a table.

Comment: Re:Ick (Score 1) 359

by swrider (#34776822) Attached to: Smartphones For Text SSH Use Re-Revisited
I can only hope that you work in a large organization with all of the resources you need, lots of additional support personnel, and a customer base that doesn't care what happens.

I agree that one should not plan on performing normal maintenance from a phone on a regular basis, but if one works in a smaller company with limited resources, one had better plan on being able to perform emergency maintenance in any situation, or there will be blood.

The one day you'd sell your soul for something, souls are a glut.

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