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Comment: Wow... really, Slashdot? (Score 1) 173

by Yosho (#47736111) Attached to: How many devices are connected to your home Wi-Fi?

Given how this is supposed to be a community of nerds, I'm surprised at how many people here are proudly stating that they don't even have a wireless router (or they choose not connect anything to it, or they don't even have an internet connection).

I mean, the whole point of technology is to improve quality of life, right? Sure, I could spend time running cable through the attic and installing panels in the walls... but then I'd have to spend time doing that, and I'd still have unsightly cables running from the walls all over rooms. On top of that, I've got plenty of devices that don't even have ethernet ports. Sure, I've got my router and a gigabit switch next to it that both have things plugged into them, but that's only convenient for things that are near the router. Sure, ethernet would be faster, but 802.11n is still enough to saturate my internet connection -- and if really need to copy a ton of data between computers on the intranet, nothing beats a USB hard drive. So, going down the list...

2 tablets
1 laptop
1 phone
2 Nintendo 3DSes
1 Playstation Vita
1 Roku
1 Ouya
1 Wii
1 Wii U
1 Kindle
1 desktop computer

That's just for my wife and me, but I could easily see having several more if we had kids. And I've got an isolated guest network for my friends to use with their phones and tablets whenever they come over. I've probably had two dozen devices at once connected to my router.

Comment: Re:What to know (Score 4, Insightful) 533

Your outdated "value-adding" "service provding" skills are so 20th century. 21st century careerism is about networking. Networking. Networking. Netowrking.

Look at item number one on TFAs list.

1. Take names. ...

In five to 10 years, that will all be different and the person who you ignored because they were boring and couldn't help you will be the person who could have won you an important opportunity.

Network! Impress people! Dress right! Booze people up! This is how successful companies are made. You will not attract the rright venture capital with your simple abilities. Most companies won't even use those anyway.

2. Problem solving. .....

Problem solving is essentially the same thing you learned in abstract in seventh or eighth grade or whenever you learned simple algebra.

See! Look at this! The people this guy is writing for don't even know how to solve problems. They just code stuff nobody really needs -- and they're still successful! You think your ability to analyse and abstract is something all the cool kids will pay for? Think again. Your geek/nerd/hipster/bro-grammer cred wil matter far more.

6. Work more than 40 hours per week.

Profession? You think programming is a profession. Get back on that hamster wheel and like it code monkey. And get some hair dye. First sign of a grey hair or stress line from yellow packs like you and we sack you and hire a fresh young grad to suck into a husk.

5. Think in terms of a career, not a series of jobs.

Translation: "You can either join the fed-money, app-cloud bullshit wagon, or you can learn to love foodstamp lines. Either way, it'll still be a superior outcome to any science-fiction fantasy you imagined programmers were capable of making in a rational universe. The Market wants fart-buttons, not robots, so drink the kool-aid or join the lowest caste of contract workers you, you, you..... Loser."

No wonder so many programmers go into management.

Comment: Re:"Great minds think alike"... apk (Score 1) 178

by metlin (#47722387) Attached to: Professor Steve Ballmer Will Teach At Two Universities This Year

I would characterize those areas as IT and software engineering, and not necessarily Computer Science.

I would perhaps state that some areas of computing (e.g., systems design, architecture) are better grouped under software engineering, given their nature.

I almost feel that there needs a distinction between software engineering and computer science. To paraphrase David Parnas, computer science studies the properties of computation in general while software engineering is the design of specific computations to achieve practical goals.

Muddling the two disciplines causes heartache because you have people who are great at designing software, but cannot grok advanced math; and on the other hand, you potentially limit your solutions to what's within the realm of current applicability, without exploring other possibilities (e..g, reinventing new algorithms for quantum computation).

Comment: Re:"Great minds think alike"... apk (Score 1) 178

by metlin (#47722065) Attached to: Professor Steve Ballmer Will Teach At Two Universities This Year

I would add a nuance to your point and state that real world experience matters in IT, but not in CS.

Computer Science is more about algorithms, systems architecture, and a lot of math. I did very little programming when I did CS in grad school and a whole lot of pretty awesome math (computational complexity, graphics, optimizations etc). Not sure about undergrad, since I did ECE, which, once again, was a whole lot of math (DSP, control systems, engineering electromagnetics, circuit theory, VLSI etc).

In any event, real-world relevance is more important to IT than it is to CS. I would say that it is however somewhat important in engineering, which, once again, is a professional degree.

Comment: Re:Is he a scientist? (Score 3, Informative) 178

by metlin (#47719907) Attached to: Professor Steve Ballmer Will Teach At Two Universities This Year

B-schools often hire people who are not in academia per se, but have rich real world experience in solving business problems.

For instance, you will often find senior partners from top consulting firms teaching classes, because they bring to bear not just academic knowledge but also practical experience.

People who do their MBA are not there to just learn the latest and greatest management technique from academia -- they also seek to apply that to the real world.

And this is not just true for MBAs -- it is also true for law schools, medical schools, and many other professional degrees. You'll find former judges and lawyers teaching classes, and you'll find doctors and surgeons with real world experience tempering your academic knowledge with their real world experience.

Public policy is another area where you former civil servants often teaching classes.

Comment: "more than a year" = "immediately"? (Score 1) 174

by SuperBanana (#47686511) Attached to: Tesla Removes Mileage Limits On Drive Unit Warranty Program

There's a problem and they're handling it immediately and responsibly,

Uh, these drivetrain failures have been happening for at least a year. Google around and you'll see reports of failures around early 2013.

Edmund's Tesla has had the drive unit replaced FOUR times since they bought it last year.

Comment: Re:Trophies and gold stars are not what is wrong w (Score 2) 81

by supercrisp (#47684011) Attached to: Is Remote Instruction the Future of College?
YES! I am a university professor, and I can tell you that books are written saying this same thing. They go back to the early 1900s. The basic argument, from the academic side in the early days (like 1930s), runs like this: "University is for theory and cultural polish, community college is theory/polish for poorer or less-prepared people. Sure, industry wants us to do their training for them in junior colleges, but they should do it themselves. Besides, professors aren't good at professional training because we'll always be trailing the innovations of industry." To a degree that's a true statement. Sure, you can pull in engineers to do some teaching. But you won't get cutting-edge engineers at the junior college, and not many engineers (or other professionals) will give up the salary to be a professional. I, personally, differ in that I believe the "soft skills" and the theory and even education in the humanities all make better engineers. But I know that is not a widely-shared opinion on /.

Comment: Re:Getting it very wrong (Score 1) 81

by the phantom (#47682001) Attached to: Is Remote Instruction the Future of College?
You clearly took very poor math classes. The only time I ever teach calculus as "simple computation" is when I am teaching business calculus for business majors. Mathematics is about logic and, as such, should be almost nothing but problem solving (generally in the form of proofs and model construction).

Comment: Re:Why not community college rather than online? (Score 2) 81

by the phantom (#47681255) Attached to: Is Remote Instruction the Future of College?

Speaking as a guy who adjuncts at a big university, I have to second the guy who works in ed tech. In addition to the comments above, you also stand a better chance of getting more qualified instructors at a community college. I taught lower-division math classes as a graduate student. Indeed, much of the teaching load in many departments is handed over to TAs at big universities. Community colleges often teach exactly the same classes out of the same books, but the instructors will hopefully have (a) better credentials (a masters in their field, though there are a disturbing number of people at community colleges who have masters in ed) and (b) more experience teaching.

Another point in favor of community colleges is class size. At a big university, classes can be huge. A calculus class that I TAed for had over two hundred students in a lecture hall. Yes, they broke apart into smaller recitation sections once a week, but recitation time with a TA is not the same as face time with a professor. Community college classes tend to be much smaller.

Unless you are trying to finish your degree in a top-tier, private institution (Stanford, University of Chicago, Harvard, &c) or a small, residential liberal arts college, there is no reason not to finish an associates degree at a local community college then transfer to a local university (or apply to an out-of-state institution, where you probably have a pretty good chance of being accepted).

You can measure a programmer's perspective by noting his attitude on the continuing viability of FORTRAN. -- Alan Perlis