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Comment: Re:Carl Sagan thought Titan was more important (Score 3, Interesting) 98 98

by NormalVisual (#50003885) Attached to: Why Didn't Voyager Visit Pluto?
And what gives him the authority to dictate to NASA how to run their space program?

Mostly the fact that he was one of the most prominent and well-rounded planetary astronomers and astrobiologists in the world, and the fact that he had a pretty good batting average in predicting conditions on Venus, Europa, and other bodies that were later confirmed. Sagan didn't dictate the Voyagers' itineraries, but NASA sure as hell wanted to know what he had to say.

Comment: Re:Because titan has ice, pluto isn't even a plane (Score 4, Informative) 98 98

by NormalVisual (#50003825) Attached to: Why Didn't Voyager Visit Pluto?
I believe Voyager 1 still hasn't passed pluto if projected back down onto its orbital plane.

Voyager 1 is almost 20 billion miles away from us now, and is traveling about 35 degrees out of the ecliptic. Some really rough trigonometry shows that if you project that down onto the ecliptic, it's still about 16 billion miles away from the Sun, which is almost three times the length of the long axis of Pluto's entire orbit.

Comment: Re:It's all about the environment... (Score 1) 122 122

by NormalVisual (#50000273) Attached to: Mob Programming: When Is 5 Heads Really Better Than 1 (or 2)?
Hard to concentrate when you can smell your neighbor didn't shower this week.

Fortunately everyone in my office bathes regularly, but we do have an office manager that believes too much perfume is merely a starting point. Seriously, I'm four cubes down from where she works and I can tell when she's arrived to within five minutes.

Comment: Re:Confirmed... I've been hiring. (Score 1) 178 178

It allows the hiring company to keep an applicant from straying, without having to commit the resources to the checks until after you know the employee will accept the position.

Except that it doesn't keep the applicant from straying. If he gets a better offer from the time he accepts and the other company gives him a firm start date of next Monday while the first company still has two more weeks to go of dicking around with their internal paperwork, odds are the first company is going to get a phone call rescinding the acceptance and thanking them for their time, especially if they pay in arrears. On the flip side, I've also seen people accept an offer, start work, and then leave after two weeks when the job they really wanted with another company is offered.

Comment: Re: Labour laws (Score 1) 422 422

by NormalVisual (#49803223) Attached to: Mandriva CEO: Employee Lawsuits Put Us Out of Business
In which case the employees who said "give me my damned money now" spared themselves from being the ones with no chair when the music stopped.

Having been in the situation where my employer stiffed me out of thousands of dollars in pay (let's call it for what it is: "theft of services"), I've adopted the wisdom of Paulie Cicero: "Fuck you, pay me." Next time an employer can't make payroll, I'm out, with a small claims suit to follow if necessary. Not that I'll actually recover anything, but the time spent donating labor to an insolvent employer can be put to better use finding another job.

Comment: Re:So, the other side? (Score 1) 422 422

by NormalVisual (#49803181) Attached to: Mandriva CEO: Employee Lawsuits Put Us Out of Business
Some of the decisions might also be said to be in the shared traders best interest, but definitely not in the shareholders best interest.

Depends on what kind of shareholders you have. This business strategy sucks for those looking to gain long-term value or even (gasp!) dividends, but often works great for the day traders that aren't going to hold onto the stock long enough to see more than a couple of quarters pass in the quest for instant returns.

Comment: Re:50ms might not sound like much (Score 1) 125 125

Yes, being the professionals that they are, they recognized a potential issue, analyzed the possible solutions, and implemented several mitigating factors (only one of which you seem to be aware).

You know what they say about assuming...

Comment: Re:50ms might not sound like much (Score 1) 125 125

Modern hospital surgery has relied on power for decades, and they usually get by without an electrician in the room.

I'm guessing he hasn't seen the big standby generators with big fuel tanks that hospitals have. Lots of grocery stores too, for that matter.

Comment: Re:Spikes (Score 1) 125 125

Ever try and get AT&T or any other big carrier to listen to you while you explain in detail how their "bullet-proof service" is down and needs to be fixed?

I have. Even telling them where the packets are being dropped often doesn't help. My favorite was when my service went out, and after four days of going back and forth with them, it turned out that they'd somehow accidentally dropped the DSL router's MAC address from the authentication list.

"Even if you're on the right track, you'll get run over if you just sit there." -- Will Rogers