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Comment: Combination Insertion and Merge (Score 1) 195

by zmaragdus (#46378401) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: How Do You Sort?
With the jazz band I play in, we have a book full of a few hundred charts. When resorting them after a gig, I typically grab a small stack, sort it insertion style, set it aside, then do the same to another pile. Once a few piles have been done, they get merge sorted into a big pile. Big piles themselves are merge sorted, until all of my music is in order.

Comment: Re:Its just a dumb idea (Score 1) 814

by zmaragdus (#44297963) Attached to: Hardly Anyone Is Buying 'Smart Guns'
If a smart gun worked 99.5% of the time, go try to market such a device to a law enforcement agency or even the military. Go on. I'll wait.

Now that you've become the laughing-stock of gun salespersons to those groups, what did you learn? You need to vastly boost the reliability of such devices before even thinking of trying to sell them to serious buyers. Once the device failure rate improves by a few orders of magnitude, then try again. The actual number the military is looking for is of far higher reliability than a 0.5% error rate.

Comment: Re:Boom (Score 1) 814

by zmaragdus (#44297787) Attached to: Hardly Anyone Is Buying 'Smart Guns'
'Tis far better to gun-proof your children than child-proof your gun. What's the best way to dissuade a child from playing with a gun? Take the magic out of it. One very clever method I heard of was from a CCW instructor who made a ritual with his son every time he wanted to play with the gun. He'd pull out his snub nose revolver, empty the bullets out, show the kid the empty chambers, make the kid count both the bullets and the empty chamber, then give the (still empty) gun to his son to play with to his heart's content. What happened? After a few minutes of dry-firing, the kid got bored with it. As he got older, actual firearms safety & experience were layered in.

Comment: Re:Focus (Score 1) 100

Varying degrees of focus are required for various procedures. Think of brushing your teeth. Are you 100% focused on the action of brushing your teeth? Probably not. Now turn around and hand-solder some surface mount SOT-23 chips. More focused? You betcha. He specifically stated that he chose a very simple and straightforward procedure to test the setup with. He wasn't performing an organ transplant or anything of touchy nature. I doubt the surgeon was actively fiddling with the Google Glass and the HO setup throughout the procedure. Set it up, hit play, come back when the surgery is done.

Comment: Bang for your buck (Score 1) 116

by zmaragdus (#44030695) Attached to: Apple Details US Requests For Customer Data
So, if the NSA is working so hard to fight terrorism by violating our rights, why couldn't the government work just as hard on something that saves more lives in the long run? Vehicles kill tens of thousands of people per year. If the government is going to trash my civil liberties, at least save more lives in the process.

Comment: More Inefficiency (Score 1) 40

by zmaragdus (#44015455) Attached to: FDA Calls On Medical Devicemakers To Focus On Cybersecurity
I worked in the medical device field for a while. The level of paperwork and documentation required for validation activities is staggering, plus the medical field in general doesn't have as good a handle on fulfilling government requirements as well as, say, the aviation industry. The path to take a device from concept to validated, sellable product is a long one. Adding cybersecurity (while a worthy endeavor) will only exacerbate the arduous and hair-tearing experience of developing a product.

Comment: Why unpaid in the first place? (Score 2) 540

by zmaragdus (#43986327) Attached to: Federal Judge Says Interns Should Be Paid
I don't get why internships were ever unpaid in the first place. In the course of training someone to do the job they are interning for, they end up providing some form of valuable work, even if it is at a lower level of effectiveness/efficiency than a highly-skilled employee. As an engineer, I have the good fortune of being in a field where internships are almost universally paid, and paid well for that matter. (Many engineering internships run from double to triple minimum wage.) Even my most basic intern experience (which is barely considered "engineering" by my standards) paid over double minimum wage (back in 2006). I can't fathom a sort of situation where an intern provides absolutely no useful work. Can anyone provide an example?

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