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Comment: Re:School me on well water (Score 1) 226

I'm not offended. I'm just correcting what swb said. The reality is that most well water doesn't have to be filtered for safety. In some places you need a radon bubbler to get the radon out of it, but for the most part the stuff is fine. When I was on well water in southeastern Arizona, we definitely filtered it, because it had a high sulfur content and didn't taste very good, but it was fine to drink.

Comment: Re:Lives be damned (Score 1) 226

We put those congresscritters there. The fact that we were bought by bread and circuses does not mean that the people who gave us the bread and circuses are at fault. This is why I bother getting into these arguments. The only people who have any power to change this are we, the citizens. Sure, it sucks that [name your favorite despotic billionaire] is trying to buy the election, but what they are actually buying are are votes. We need to learn how to stop letting them buy our votes, or nothing will change.

Comment: Re:this already exists (Score 1) 164

by TheCarp (#49623041) Attached to: USBKill Transforms a Thumb Drive Into an "Anti-Forensic" Device

Actually there is no downside AT ALL to using it.

In the end, the drive still exists, you still have the data. If there is nothing there to find, you can always find a way to cooperate and use the data on the drive. However, this tool lets you do that at your option rather than at theirs.

Comment: Re:Except they just turn the power off (Score 2) 164

by TheCarp (#49622869) Attached to: USBKill Transforms a Thumb Drive Into an "Anti-Forensic" Device

Maybe, but, I like this better personally because its more immediate. "USB attached to the wrist" scenario is a clear winner because it means the system is shutting down before they even realize what just happened and they have little or no time to respond, there is precious little they can really do to prevent that stick from being pulled.

In the past a friend of mine and I were musing about a setup like this, but our idea was a bit more drastic and less portable.... no battery at all, and power wired to a switch that opens or closes with the door to the room, so just opening the door to the room would kill the system

Comment: Re: News? (Score 1) 327

by Bengie (#49622861) Attached to: The Programming Talent Myth

Of course your misrepresentation of the 10x rule isn't helping. The 10x rule is that the best developers are 10x as productive as the worst 10 developers. That's all it says. So you can replace them with 10 worse developers, that's the whole frickin' point of the 10x rule.

The 10x rule assumes you have a lower limit on your worst.. No matter how many people you throw at a problem, if they do not understand the problem, you won't get the job done. When it comes to programming, nearly all problems seem simple at first. A big part of my job is arguing with people to keep them from painting themselves in a corner. Feature creep happens, you need well defined designs and functionality. I want my code to not only break, I was it to break early, break loudly, and tell me exactly what the issue is. I spend more time designing my code to break than to work.

Comment: Re:oh the fun (Score 1) 164

by TheCarp (#49622771) Attached to: USBKill Transforms a Thumb Drive Into an "Anti-Forensic" Device

Even back then I knew stealing was wrong.... but unauthorized writing of new files never bothered me.

So I used a race condition I found in the Macintosh security software at school and used it to copy icons of porn over all the desktop icons, so anyone trying to launch word got tits.

And of course, I did it as my person Senior year prank, on the way out the door when all the other classes still had a couple of weeks, on the last day for seniors I slipped unnoticed into the computer lab, did my deed, and slipped out, and walked out of the building.

They never suspected someone without the password did it (a bunch of people had the password of course).

I ran into some of the guys from the lower class years later and got a "wow that was you!"

Comment: Re:2-Butoxyethanol (Score 1) 226

And all it would take would be a home mechanic spilling a bottle of one of those products to get to that same parts-per-trillion levels in their own well water.

It would take a lot more than that, in all likelihood. It's usually not trivial for something you spill to wind up in your well unless you've got an open well, and you spill into it.

Comment: I agree with the reasoning but not the conclusion (Score 1) 327

by Bengie (#49622719) Attached to: The Programming Talent Myth

The truth is that programming isn't a passion or a talent, says Edge, it is just a bunch of skills that can be learned.

Then why do so many "programmers" not have these skills?

Programming isn't even one thing, though people talk about it as if it were; it requires all sorts of skills and coding is just a small part of that. Things like design, communication, writing, and debugging are needed.

The problem is that too many programmers don't realize that they don't have these skills and pretend that they do. They you get stuck with poor design or buggy code. Even worse is that many of these areas have massive overlap. You can't design a good program unless you know how to program and debug. You can't program a good program unless you understand the design. etc etc.

I guess what I'm getting at the programming is a poster child of "the whole is greater than the sum of its parts", by a huge amount. Each skill is a multiplier for all of the other skills. With so many overlapping skills, someone with all of the skills is suddenly magnitudes better than someone with slightly fewer skills.

Comment: Re:Why isn't the Water Dept filtering the water? (Score 2) 226

The reason these chemicals are expensive to dispose of is that they are difficult to destroy by any means other than sweet, cleansing flame — and a whole hell of a lot of it. Throwing it in your campfire won't do it. Anything that can't be gotten out of your water by relatively simple means isn't filtered out by your municipal water department.

Comment: Re:Not BS. (Score 1) 117

by drinkypoo (#49622661) Attached to: How the NSA Converts Spoken Words Into Searchable Text

I said, "I have a question about a charge on my bill," and it correctly connected me to the chargeback section.

it eliminated all but the keywords, and got "question", "charge" and "bill". It may only be scanning for about 20 keywords at the most at any given prompt. That's a very easy job compared to natural speech recognition which actually gets all the words. You could get that on a chip 20 years ago.

Comment: Re:Make them drink it ... (Score 1) 226

Have you seen the nasty things salt does to metals and plants? Yet you happily eat that every day.

Because people have eaten salt for millennia without negative effects.

How long have people been drinking benzene, toluene, xylene, and ethylbenzene? Not to mention the substances that we don't know about that are in fracking fluid because they're "trade secrets".

The earth is like a tiny grain of sand, only much, much heavier.