Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?

Comment Re:And no one will learn yet again. (Score 4, Insightful) 276

Because even though roads don't directly pay for themselves, and neither do airports (if the airlines had to really bear the cost of the airports and air traffic control system, tickets would be several times as much, or they'd go bankrupt), we somehow expect buses and trains to pay for themselves. We Americans are staggeringly bad at deciding that something is just what a civilized society should do - public transportation, funding the arts or libraries, public transportation, etc. And somehow, even though most of the American public has been begging at the table for scraps for the past 30 years as an ever-growing portion of national wealth goes to the already-wealthy, we somehow think that making things better for everyone will take away from each of us individually, even though most of us are only a single serious illness away from a major financial disaster.

Comment Re:It's not Harassment (Score 1) 525

Yeah, except that the TSA is starting to show up - like a pretend law enforcement agency - at train and bus stations, and at highway check points (via the VIPR program). Some of the more right-wing folks in Congress were proposing to get them stripped of their uniforms and badges - since they're not Federal LFO's - and they keep trying to act like they are. And they've been "consulting' with major league sports leagues and other venues.

Comment Re:patch much (Score 4, Informative) 187

Essentially - other than tunneling IPX over TCP/IP, which the site may or may not have been using - this version of Netware had no TCP/IP support. No web server, no nothing. Odds are this this wasn't much of a risk. My guess (the article didn't say) is that they were using it for something really specific.

Comment No, well, no. (Score 1) 271

Been using Thinkpads for years, and I've seen more models at work than I've owned.

The X-series subnotes (not the Tablet PCs) are great - the X200/201 was terrific, the X220 was great, and I can't say enough about the usability and the battery life of an X230 with a 9-cell battery in it. The new keyboard takes a little getting used to, but it's good and sturdy.

The X1C is a nice system, and the T4xx models have been pretty solid. The Lxxx models can be iffy, but I can't say that they're any worse than the R40/R51/etc.The 5xx series of any line, I just can't stand. I don't know what it is, but they lost the plot with the L and T530. It's like they can't decide what the "big" business notebooks should be, so they're just kind of a mess.

Comment Re:Archer (Score 1) 238

Can I point out that Enterprise occurred before the point in time when the timeline changed in the Abrams film, and never interacted with events from the other series outside of a self-contained Mirror Universe story, IIRC.

It's the only one of the series that could possibly exist in the new timeline.

Comment Nobody ever learns (Score 1) 141

The thing I love about this industry is that with every new platform, every generation of programmers manages to make errors that were made - and fixed - by a previous generation or on a previous platform. And it's an industry that aggressively weeds out experience - which is uniquely dysfunctional.

Credit card issuers and processors need to come down on this like a ton of bricks. Losing your access to a card network or losing your merchant agreement would probably be a powerful incentive.

Comment Re:Wireless (Score 1) 168

Actually, I get 59 down routinely with Cablevision/Optimum. Then again, I got a two-year, no-contract deal that gives me phone, cable, and their upgraded internet service for $85 a month. That includes a cablecard. When that deal is up, I'll either get them to extend the price, or switch to Verizon FIOS for a couple of years with no contract. Having real competition makes a HUGE difference. Looks like Verizon has given up on extending FIOS to any new areas, though. Look at Boston - no FIOS, and Verizon is not only not going to build it out, they're going to start requiring residential DSL customers to also pay for POTS.

I've heard that Verizon's percentage market penetration rate per mile of cable in the greater NYC area isn't good. Makes me wonder how long it'll be before they go to being an entirely wireless company, and they offload their physical network to other companies. If you're only grabbing 25% of the possible customers (for example), and the local cable company is at 60% or more, and you're having to maintain just as much cable, you've got an issue.

Comment Re:Chicago Teachers Rip 'Big Money Interest Groups (Score 3, Insightful) 404

Yup. Competition from essentially unaccountable charter schools or private schools getting public money with little or no oversight, and under a variety of guises able to reject students with physical, mental or behavioral issues. There have been studies showing that the "new school effect" is what may account for any short-term gains in charters, and that renovating and relaunching public schools could have the same effect. Charter and private schools aren't expected to act like social service agencies, dealing with all sorts of damaged kids. The regular public schools are. And recent studies about the effects of stress on neurological development pretty much shows that these kids are being wired to fail by their environments. Poverty, home problems, crime, etc. are the actual problems.

The motivated parents who move their kids to a new school? Those kids probably have less stress than the kids who have parents who are having more problems and aren't focusing on them. Charter/private with vouchers will lead to tons of kids being left behind.

Please understand - the for-profits, consulting companies, etc. have NO interest in actually fixing education. Education is one of the few places where there's a lot of public money, it's staying public, and it's largely going to middle-class employees. The entire point of the reform - from the standpoint of these companies - is to siphon off a ton of that money. Their profit margin will be built by lowering wages - leading to lower-quality teachers over time - and eventually making the whole thing even worse.

I halfway expect to see some of these for-profit companies running juvenile detention facilities soon as well. They make money either way if they do.

Comment Re:An extremely useful resource. (Score 3, Insightful) 110

Absolutely right. This is an attempt to take billions of dollars and shift it to private industry. Romney referred to us as "Company" and not a "Country" the other day. We're at the point where I'm nostalgic for Bush II calling us "Consumers" instead of "Citizens". The middle class was created when wealth was redistributed down. Those at the top have spent the last 60 years working to reverse that, and they've nearly succeeded. Four years of Romney with a Republican congress will seal the deal.

Comment Re:And who is surprised? (Score 2) 110

Yes, it is. First off, you're not just dealing with the students, you're dealing with (sometimes) batshit-crazy parents, in addition to your own supervisory chain. You're dealing with 25 students in a room, 12 of which have IEPs or 504 documentation, and you may or may not have any in-room support for those kids, depending on the subject area and district. And you're having to deal with students who just won't do the work or are disruptive, you're likely to get little support from the school in terms of disciplining the kid, and often less from the kid's parents.

Most programmers - most professionals - don't have to deal with that many individual people - and aren't expected to both cater to them and produce results - to the same degree as teachers. It's exhausting. And when you look at what charter schools are attempting to get teachers to do (and mind you, the charters often do a crap job of actually supporting their teachers), it's little wonder that a high proportion of charter school teachers quit after one or two years. BTW, the least effective teaching years for a teacher? The first two or three years. If your school has a high percentage of teachers with less than four years of experience, it's not going to be as good. I'm sure some of the /. readers will object to that, but there are a significant number of studies that have shown it over the years.

In addition, there's the pressure that if you can't get through to a kid, they're behind next year, and maybe more the year after that. And trust me, that bothers them. You're constantly battling to get kids to recognize that something is in their long-term benefit. Most goddamn adults can't figure that out.

Comment Re:Businessmen (Score 5, Insightful) 400

Yeah, but Ryan isn't a baby boomer. He was born in 1970, so that either puts him on the tail end of Gen X if you've extended past the "original" timeframe used for that term, or else early GenY. As a slightly-older GenX, I couldn't stand this kind of jackass 25 years ago, and I can't stand them now. He's clearly in love with himself, and how clever he thinks he is, and he somehow doesn't think he's relied on other people to get there. And let's not forget that he's only managed to get a couple of pieces of meaningless legislation (naming a post office and lowering excise tax on arrow shafts) through Congress in 14 years..

Hell, he even thinks he's brilliant enough to reconcile Catholicism and Objectivism. That's a level of mental contradiction that's only possible if you're shallow or delusional - or you're just a power-hungry, cynical political hack who doesn't have any real principles.

Slashdot Top Deals

"Gort, klaatu nikto barada." -- The Day the Earth Stood Still