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Comment: Taligent (Score 1) 763

by yancey (#34567204) Attached to: OS I'd Most Like To See Make a Comeback

Taligent, or something along those lines. I would like to see a more object-oriented operating system. I got a small taste of such during some brief exposure to OS/400 years ago and wonder what it would be like to apply more OO concepts to other systems. Mac OS today has some very nice OO frameworks for application development, but I do think more operating systems could benefit from OO concepts as well. I enjoy the efficiency of UNIX-like systems, but always hope for something better.

Comment: Re:Confusing symbols (Score 1) 1268

by yancey (#33239886) Attached to: US Students Struggle With Understanding of the 'Equal' Sign

I have seen this several times in the public schools. I have also seen them use blanks in the problems. There is an assumption by those who develop the curriculum that students cannot understand the abstract concept of variables until they are older (typically beginning at 8th or 9th grade, when they take Algebra). I have also tutored middle-aged adults who could not grasp the concept of a negative number, yet were working at a high-tech business (think computer chip manufacturer, formerly involved in the U.S. defense sector). Life is a bit scary at times.

Comment: Re:Calculators (Score 1) 1268

by yancey (#33239732) Attached to: US Students Struggle With Understanding of the 'Equal' Sign

This could very well be part of the problem. I had not considered it before, but think your assertion is correct. The "=" symbol on the calculator simply means evaluate what I've typed so far. In that context, entering "4+3+2=" into a calculator would result in "9". Then the "+2" at the end of the problem is confusing. Students are then left to guess at the final answer.

Comment: Re:Caffeine?! (Score 1) 216

by yancey (#32510520) Attached to: New Google Search Index 50% Fresher With Caffeine

I think the way Apple sees it is that, by providing the hardware, software, and services together, they offer a complete package in a way that Microsoft and Dell just can't. They consider it a premium product which is worth the higher price, just as a Porsche costs more than a Ford. So they are not interested in lowering the price points or breaking up the product into separate parts.

Comment: Sounds Good to Me (Score 1) 581

by yancey (#30129982) Attached to: CERN Physicist Warns About Uranium Shortage

It seems to me that when we run out of uranium, it becomes difficult to create more nuclear weapons. I'm OK with that. Besides, there are better power production technologies in the pipeline. It seems that fusion will become a viable option by around 2013 (if we move quickly and provide sufficient funding). I'm thinking specifically of Dr. Richard Nebel's research with IEC fusion. There are other promising fusion research projects as well. However, from what I've seen, the ITER project should be shut down and its funding distributed to other projects.

Comment: Re:Schools dont change (Score 1) 705

by yancey (#29349147) Attached to: The Case For Mandatory Touch-Typing In High School

Perhaps schools are reluctant to change because people say we should "add a class," which would only take time away from existing subjects. Instead of compartmentalizing each minor skill into its own class, let us instead integrate typing and other minor skills into existing classes. Let's integrate typing into language classes, thus teaching computers and word processing together to write in that language (English or otherwise). Let's also integrate mathematics into more classes. The biggest complaint I hear about math is, "I'll never use it." Let's show them where it's used by (surprise!) using it in classes other than math class. From what I hear, the kids are often texting each other in class anyway. They can obviously multitask and apparently need more to keep them busy in the classroom.

Comment: Language Problems (Score 1) 1077

by yancey (#27406301) Attached to: Shouldn't Every Developer Understand English?

Having multiple spoken languages on this planet causes a great deal of confusion and often hinders successful communication. There should be only one spoken language (not necessarily English) to make global communication more efficient. As computers are tools used for specific tasks, having multiple symbol sets for specific problems seems appropriate. In other words, multiple computer languages are OK by me. Think about math symbols for a different take on a task-specific language.

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