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A Conversation with Druva Co-Founder Jaspreet Singh (Video) 31

Posted by Roblimo
from the doo-wop-is-now-de-dupe dept.
This was originally going to be an interview about the state of enterprise-level backup software in an increasingly edge computing-focused world, but we rapidly drifted into talking about how Druva started in Pune (near Bangalore) and ended up moving to Silicon Valley. We hear plenty about American software companies moving to India, but not a lot about Indian software companies moving here. Druva had good reasons for the move, the chief one being a financing deal with Sequoia Capital. Aside from that, though, Jaspreet says the talent pool -- not just developers but software marketing people and other important staffers -- is more concentrated in Silicon Valley than almost anywhere else in the world. 'It's like Hollywood for geeks,' Jaspreet says. This doesn't mean business is necessarily easy in the USA: Jaspreet ended up laying off his entire staff. Twice. And he made other mistakes as a young, new CEO bringing a company to life in a crowded field.

Those mistakes, which Jaspreet shares freely with us, are like a business school 'Start-Up Pitfalls' class. You may never want to do your own startup, but if you're a developer or otherwise involved with the software industry, there's a good chance that you'll have a chance to work for one at some point. And if you have that chance, you'll be glad you watched this video (or read the transcript) before you take the startup plunge.

Learn About The Technology Education And Literacy in Schools Program (Video #2) 11

Posted by Roblimo
from the how-can-you-be-in-four-places-at-once-when-you're-not-anywhere-at-all? dept.
Quoting our intro from yesterday's 'Part One' video: 'The Technology Education And Literacy in Schools program (TEALS to its friends), started with one volunteer, a Berkeley CS grad named Kevin Wang who taught high school for a while, then went to Microsoft for a much higher salary than he got from teaching. But before long, he was getting up early and teaching a first period computer science class at a Seattle-area high school that was (sort of) on his way to work.'

TEALS is now in 130 high schools and has 475 volunteers in multiple states but still has a long way to go (and needs to recruit many more volunteers) because, Kevin says, fewer than 1% of American high school students are exposed to computer science, even though "Computer science is now fundamental in these kids' lives." He doesn't expect everyone who takes a TEALS class to become a computer person any more than chemistry teachers expect all their students to become chemists. You might say that learning a little about how computers and networks work is like knowing how to change a car tire and cook a simple meal: skills that make life easier even for people who don't want to become mechanics or cooks.

+ - Jason Scott of Wants Your AOL & Shovelware CDs-> 1

Submitted by eldavojohn
eldavojohn writes: You've probably got a spindle in your close tor a drawer full of CD-ROM media mailed to you or delivered with some hardware that you put away "just in case" and now (ten years later) the case for actually using them is laughable. Well, a certain mentally ill individual named Jason Scott has a fever and the only cure is more AOL CDs. But his sickness doesn't stop there, "I also want all the CD-ROMs made by Walnut Creek CD-ROM. I want every shovelware disc that came out in the entire breadth of the CD-ROM era. I want every shareware floppy, while we’re talking. I want it all. The CD-ROM era is basically finite at this point. It’s over. The time when we’re going to use physical media as the primary transport for most data is done done done. Sure, there’s going to be distributions and use of CD-ROMs for some time to come, but the time when it all came that way and when it was in most cases the only method of distribution in the history books, now. And there were a specific amount of CD-ROMs made. There are directories and listings of many that were manufactured. I want to find those. I want to image them, and I want to put them up. I’m looking for stacks of CD-ROMs now. Stacks and stacks. AOL CDs and driver CDs and Shareware CDs and even hand-burned CDs of stuff you downloaded way back when. This is the time to strike." Who knows? His madness may end up being appreciated by younger generations!
Link to Original Source

Learn About The Technology Education And Literacy in Schools Program (Video) 17

Posted by Roblimo
from the computer-science-for-the-high-school-masses dept.
The Technology Education And Literacy in Schools program (TEALS to its friends) started with one volunteer, a Berkeley CS grad named Kevin Wang who taught high school for a while, then went to Microsoft for a much higher salary than he got from teaching. But before long, he was getting up early and teaching a first period computer science class at a Seattle-area high school that was (sort of) on his way to work. Then some other local high schools came to him and wanted similar programs. Kevin's a smart guy, but not smart enough to be in four places at once, so he recruited coworkers to join him as volunteer computer science educators. Today (as this is being written) TEALS is in 130 high schools and has 475 volunteers in multiple states. Kevin works full time on the program, sponsored by Microsoft, but 78% of the volunteers now come from other companies.

TEALS has stuck with Kevin's original 1st period (usually somewhere between 7:30 and 9:30) schedule not just because it's convenient for many of the volunteers, but because (contrary to teen-nerd stereotypes) 60% of their students are in after-school sports and 20% are in band. The program is growing steadily and they're looking for more volunteers. We'll have another video with Kevin tomorrow, and that's when the transcript of both videos will appear. Meanwhile, you can read the TEALS FAQ and see how you might fit in with this group or one of many other similar ones either as a volunteer, as a student or as a teacher or school administrator interested in giving your students at least a basic grounding in Computer Science. (Coincidentally, today's 'Ask Slashdot' is about tech skills for HS students -- an unintentional but excellent tie-in.)

Comment: Re:Impressive... (Score 1) 150

Cheap and good can be done together. I am in upstate New York and my car is insured with GEICO. I switched to them for the reason they typically advertise: it's cheaper. The delightful surprise is that their customer service people are super-polite, sufficiently trained, sufficiently empowered, and on the two occasions when I have filed a claim with them, they have been fast about getting things back in order.

On a side-note, I've been to the Philippines. I think their English is more EN_ca than EN_us. I'm sure that's a lot like arguing EN_au vs. EN_nz, but there are some little bitty details that stick out if you are a native speaker of either. I've heard a lot of both, having lived in a border town.

Comment: Re:Markets, not people (Score 1) 614

by Phreakiture (#49719967) Attached to: The Economic Consequences of Self-Driving Trucks

Drivers need to be able to do things like hear breaks screeching, feel the thump when they lose a retread from their tire, feel a flat tire pulling them, etc.

The sensors for these problems are already pretty well available and many of them are even common. Every modern consumer car has TPMS on it (Tire Pressure Monitoring System) that tells you if your tire is low. If the retread flies off of a tire, it will get low right away because inward pressure on the inner tube will fall. Measuring engine temperature, oil pressure, oil level, coolant level, fuel level, etc. are also things that are already done by consumer vehicles. The auto-drive will already be gathering the data necessary to determine if there is an alignment problem or something else causing the vehicle to pull, and this can be identified by computing the trend of any adjustments it makes to its course. Transmission temperature is a no-brainer, using the same general tech as used to measure engine temperature. Brake and bearing temeratures are the only thing left that I can think of, and you just need to look to the railroads for a solution to that one, involving inexpensive infrared thermometers (though in this case, they would likely be traveling with the vehicle rather than stationary on the road).

Comment: Re:watermelons (Score 1) 18

by Marxist Hacker 42 (#49718333) Attached to: "The UN is using climate change as a tool not an issue"

I fully comprehend the positive concept behind libertarian thinking, even if I have become almost as disillusioned with liberty as I am with Marxism.

The one point that libertarians and distributists agree on is that more competition is always good; Net Neutrality, by forcing an even playing field for all bits/second, fosters a truly free market in cyberspace where the cost of participation is and should be low. If we're going to live in a capitalistic society, the least we can do is remove barriers to entry into estate ownership, so that all may at least have the dream of becoming an owner someday. Cyberspace offers us the opportunity to expand that a huge amount, even the children's game Minecraft has a space that if mapped onto the real world, would fill several planets.

Input Devices

Mechanical 'Clicky' Keyboards Still Have Followers (Video) 146

Posted by Roblimo
from the clack-clack-clack-the-keyboard-types-on-down-the-track dept.
For a good number of years, the sound of the old IBM or other mechanical keyboard clacking away was the sound of programmers (or writers) at work on their computers. Then, according to Edgar Matias, president and cofounder of the Matias Corporation, computer companies started using membrane switches and other cheaper ways to make keyboards, which made a lot of people mutter curse words under their breath as they beat their fingers against keys that had to go all the way to the bottom of their travel to work, unlike the good old mechanical keyboards we once knew and loved.

Enter Edgar Matias, who started out making the half keyboard, which is like a chorded keyboard except that you can use your QWERTY typing skills with little modification -- assuming you or your boss has $595 (!) to lay out on a keyboard. But after that Edgar started making QWERTY and Dvorak keyboards for semi-competitive prices. FYI: No Slashdot person got a free keyboard (or extra money) for making this video, but I have a Matias keyboard, and in my opinion it's far better than the cheapie it replaced. A lot of other people seem to want "real" keyboards, too, which they buy from Matias or from other companies such as Unicomp, which makes keyboards just like the classic, heavily-loved IBM Model M. Again, I've owned a Unicomp keyboard (that I bought; it was not a giveaway) and it was excellent. Both companies put out quality products that are far easier on your hands and wrists than the $10 or $20 keyboards sold by big box electronics retailers.

Comment: Re:In whose interest is this? (Score 1) 29

So your suggestion for our next video interview is.....................? Please make sure you provide contact information.

And realize: 10,000 or 20,000 Slashdot readers might be interested in something that doesn't interest you. And you and a *different* 10,000 or 20,000 may be interested in something else that the first 10,000 have no interest in whatsoever.

And 'the staff being interested in it personally' means what? Slashdot only has three full-time people, plus me working part-time editing videos and setting up video interviews. 'The staff' each have their own interests. Something that catches a Slashdot staff person's eye is almost certainly going to be interesting to at last a decent-sized minority of users.

Now I'm going to go eat, then edit a video interview Tim did with a guy who makes clicky keyboards. Some Slashdot users will like it and some won't. And some will say they can read a transcript faster than they can watch a video. Me too! So we run written transcripts of virtually all videos and still get comments about the lack of transcripts.

I'm sure we'll also get complaints about background noise, since Tim shot this on a noisy show floor.

We have a significant number of readers who are only happy when they are disparaging something or somebody, and I have learned over the years to wear lots of skin thickener cream and ignore idiotic comments (which yours was NOT) and the cowardly anonymous ones, to whom I pay no attention at all.

Comment: Re: How can I also advertise for funding on /.? (Score 1) 29

Why not find a topic or interview subject that might be interesting to at least a substantial minority of Slashdot users? I'm married and Timothy has a g/f, so sleeping with us is a no-go. Bribes? Might as well just buy ads. Your content will then be marked "advertising" or "paid content" and will differ markedly in appearance from editorial copy on Slashdot. FYI, that's how you tell something on Slashdot is a paid ad. :)

Air pollution is really making us pay through the nose.