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Comment: Re:Game (Score 1) 374

by vigmeister (#43635203) Attached to: Why US Mileage Ratings Are So Inaccurate

Doesn't this translate into some kind of propaganda to influence what people care about when buying a car?

Have we collectively decided as a society that we are willing to compromise further on free speech to reduce emissions and fuel consumption (manufacturers should be free to decide how to advertise their cars)?

For the record: I do not deny climate change or its anthropogenic components - I just think the solution is to tax fuel, enforce truth in advertising (to prevent fraud) and wait for the technological breakthroughs that will make us look like luddites...

Comment: Re:Don't Bother (Score 1) 183

by vigmeister (#42827943) Attached to: Summer Programming Courses Before Heading Off To College?

This, but with a different conclusion. Learning programming meant I was able to do a different degree while working in the software industry and taking electives or doing a minor in CS. Eventually I ended up being competent in both areas which led to opportunities to dabble in an exponentially larger set of subjects...

Comment: Engineering student? (Score 1) 183

by vigmeister (#42827893) Attached to: Summer Programming Courses Before Heading Off To College?

For a student with a strong math/science background, MATLAB might be useful to learn especially if he decides to pursue engineering. It helps you to learn fundamental programming (at least procedural programming) concepts while not requiring too much time to get up an running. The symbolic toolbox along with more traditional capabilities will also give him a massive leg up in doing assignments and projects because he can focus on learning concepts in most of his classes rather than executing procedural mathematical techniques (matrix operations and PDEs, I am looking at you...).
P.S. I know a TI-xx can do some of this, but calculators are the slide rules of the 21st century...

Comment: Re:As a professional, I would say... (Score 0) 183

by vigmeister (#42827787) Attached to: Summer Programming Courses Before Heading Off To College?

Having been a successful programmer for 35 years, I would discount the value of touch typing. It has been my experience that thinking is far more important than typing skills. Fast typing helps, but I think your son would find this boring.

Ah, see what you did here? A is useless. B is more important than A. (Which is orthogonal to whether A is useful in itself.) (And now the admission.) A helps, but is boring.

You missed the implication that learning to think would be a better use of the kid's summer than learning ho to type even though the latter helps...

Comment: Car analogy (Score 1) 232

by vigmeister (#42802937) Attached to: Making Sure Interviews Don't Turn Into Free Consulting

This is silly... It's like a car mechanic who will not diagnose your problem and starts talking about his skills and expertise. Most places give you a free quote to have you as a customer. Lawyers and doctors charge for the first consult too and you could take that approach by *BEING* a consultant rather than interviewing for a job. Or you could tell the interviewer to fuck off as opposed to taking your hour of consulting (worth $100 or so for a decently salaried position) and considering that an investment into your job hunt. Of course, if you are looking for a job, your time is probably worth far less to you, so make a grown up judgement call as to whether the odds of getting a job are worth taking the insurmountable risk of *gasp* working for free *gasp*!


Nothing is easier than to denounce the evildoer; nothing is more difficult than to understand him. - Fyodor Dostoevski