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Comment Re:Anything the US does is suspicious (Score 1) 272

While on the topic of Nazi Germany, this whole ICBM in NK thing reminds me of the history surrounding Hitler deploying troops in Rhineland. This and subsequent military pushes violated a neutral zone established after WWI, and no other countries reacted because at that time the public was adamantly anti-war because, again, of WWI. By the time any actual resistance was established against Germany's invasions, it was too late. I've heard historians identify the occupation of Rhineland as the last time at which Nazi Germany could have been contained without nearly as much loss of life.

I don't know all the complexities with NK politics today and their relationship with China, etc. So I hate to suggest this but with them having developed nukes and now testing ICBMs, it seems to me like today could be a modern-day parallel to that pre-WWII situation in some ways.

This is dangerous talk because it's such a vague analogy and makes more of an emotional issue out of this than anything else. I'm generally strongly in favor of talks and negotiations, but I'm a little worried that in some situations there is a clock ticking and negotiations have a time limit.

Comment It would be more useful.... (Score 1, Insightful) 246

... to just take that $4 billion, and cut a "bonus" check to every IT worker in America.

The problem isn't that women don't know how to program as well as men, it's that the field just isn't as attractive to them. Woman tend to value job stability over income, and it's hard to find that kind of stability in IT. IT requires a lot of brains, a lot of hard work, isn't very social, has a lot of guys with behavioral issues, and their job might get outsourced to India so the MBA middle manager can get his quarterly bonus and afford some more blow.

IT and the medical field require similar levels of intelligence and work, yet medical jobs don't often get outsourced to China, the demand for medical skills is relatively constant, and while there are behavioral issues, they usually fall along the Doogie Howser Dipshit Doc/Nurse axis rather than the male/female axis.

Do you want to attract women to IT? The best way to do it would be to change it in ways which also make it more attractive to men too: 40 hour work weeks, reasonable pay for the work/brainpower involved, job security, etc.

Comment Re:I like AMD... (Score 2) 174

I bought the Intel i5-4960 because, having done high-performance computing for over a decade, current Intel CPU's absolutely maul AMD CPU's when it comes to numerical work. It was my first new computer in almost a decade, and I wanted a "no excuses" gaming box. Games *can* be good on AMD, but many top tier games require various trade-offs.

And I'm not an AMD hater. Once upon a time, we had 100's of AMD Opteron's in our compute cluster. But it's been several years since they have put out a competitive chip. I am hopeful that 16nm + Zen will make them competitive again, if only to make Intel more competitive on pricing.

Comment I like AMD... (Score 5, Insightful) 174

My work desktop is AMD, my home fileserver is AMD, and both my parent's desktops are AMD. That's because in those use cases, AMD is "good enough". Web browsing and email don't require a lot of horsepower.

That said, my gaming/transcoding PC is an Intel i5-4690, because AMD's top line CPU can barely compete with Intel's I3 line. CMT didn't pan out, and they've been held hostage by TSMC/GloFo's failure to produce a sub-28nm lithographic process.

I love AMD's engineers, they have some impressively smart people working for them, and I hope Zen + 16nm heralds a new beginning for them. But today, they aren't "competitive", merely "good enough".

Comment Re:Temba ... his arms wide ... (Score 2) 104

I don't know the details, but the signals they are looking for are particular distributions of light. There are a lot of background processes that produce light, but in patterns or distributions that can be subtracted out. The experiment is carefully designed to have small backgrounds with respect to the signals they hope for, but I'm sure there is still a lot of data being generated.

Comment Re:Perspective (Score 1) 331

I feel like you're parroting back to us things that skilled politicians have been teaching the public to think. This is fear propaganda.

Yes, there are serious turmoil problems going on in the world right now. I won't try to moralize on how we put this in perspective and deal with it. It's worth having conversations on this subject but only if that conversation is rich in content and reason, and depleted of propaganda. One thing is that terrorism is a highly asymmetrical thing (quite unlike war). It costs many orders of magnitude more money to directly fight against or rebuild from very low-cost attacks. Effective strategies are non-military ones.

Comment Ultimately Intel's fault... (Score 1, Insightful) 115

I'm curious why my previous post was marked a troll. I *have* worked in academic HPC for over a decade, have assembled dozens of server motherboards over the years, and over two dozen for myself and family. I'm not exactly a newb here.

Intel consumer-grade OEM heatsinks (as of Haswell at least, perhaps they fixed the issue on Skylake OEM heatsinks and I'm unaware) are boat anchors. On two quality Haswell motherboards (Asus H97M and H97I) I have, the OEM heatsink fails to mount sturdily in the motherboard, and pops out with only the slightest jarring.

Third-party heatsinks would be much less necessary if the OEM heatsink would actually do its job.

Comment It's Intel's fault (Score 2, Interesting) 115

This would matter less if Intel would include a usable heatsink with their CPU's. I have worked in high performance computing for over a decade, so putting a heat sink on isn't exactly some exotic task to me, but I couldn't get either of my home OEM Haswell heatsinks to hold onto the motherboard, they would both pop off after the slightest bump. So I *had* to use third-party heatsinks.

Intel should make backplates with threaded mounts mandatory, and should ensure that their OEM heatsink is capable of actually staying on the motherboard and keeping the CPU from thermally throttling during a Prime95 run. If the user needs a third-party heat sink due to overclocking or unusual case geometry, that's fine, but their OEM heatsink should work properly for 95% of users. But it doesn't.

Doing the right thing at Intel's scale couldn't cost more than a dollar (a little extra aluminum/steel in the right spots), yet they mysteriously cheap out. Even AMD's stock heatsink is better.

Comment Re:Took longer than expected (Score 1) 181

It said something like "Don't worry, your files are exactly where you left them."

I started to worry a lot when I saw this. Either MS was being fantastically condescending, or someone had hacked into my network and was encrypting my filesystem. It was taking a long time, so I was leaning toward the latter possibility. I expected the next message to be a ransom notice and I was reminding myself of how to restore from backups, how long it would take, and what I might lose. I finally thought to google the message on my phone. Phew, it was just MS being condescending. But honestly why would they even say this?! It's a cruel joke I think, and it worked brilliantly.

Comment Re:Simple problem with a simple solution (Score 1) 131

I didn't know about GPS devices using Kalman filters. But I noticed this issue when using MyTracks to measure my hikes a couple years ago. I wished the project was open-source so I could go in and add some sort of algorithm to correct the issue. I think the problem isn't the lower-level GPS reports but the way the tracking apps are designed.

One could use piecewise linear regression to fit a series of line segments through the GPS data, only adding in kinks when doing so results in a significantly better fit. One could additionally throw in a fudge factor to correct for a predictably inflated distance measurement.

Comment Re:We're not the MSM (Score 1) 97

I just take this kind of comment from Trump as the usual "I'm not politically correct so get used to it" bluster. If we take his statement literally, I guess it would translate into an executive order that everyone must say "Merry Christmas" at a certain time on Dec 25, probably while kneeling and facing Bethlehem. :-) Hopefully that's crazy... I think it's just Trump being the expert demagogue he is.

There is something to be said about excessive political correctness and hypersensitivity, but a U.S. President is not in a good position to take on cultural issues like that.

Comment Re:I'm a pretty nerdy computer guy ... (Score 1) 492

Afraid we don't have any openings at the moment. You can go to, click on "jobs", and search for "accre" every few weeks, we post jobs there.

If you're looking for a foot in the door, you can search the jobs website for jobs involving R, Matlab, C, Fortran, Perl, Python in other departments and find a position that will get you some experience.

David Lipscomb has a small "Big Data" department, but they smart people and big ambitions, and I was quite impressed when we took a tour. You might also check those guys out.

There are several local Meetup groups devoted to Big Data, R, etc. You might look some up and try to network. Afraid that's the best advice I can give you.

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