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Comment PCs mostly for professionals, not for homes. (Score 1) 51

I think the concept of the "Home" computer has pretty much died. Students need something to do assignments, people working in offices need something for work. That is pretty much it. Then to make it worse, other than fashonistas and a much narrower group of professionals who need powerful computers there is only a tiny audience of gamers who need the latest and greatest.

Just about everyone else will direct their disposable technology budget to a kick ass new phone.

If you look at the needs of the average "home" user it would range from nothing to 10 year old laptop or $200 chromebook type thing.

So yes the bleed has stabilized and probably will remain this way for 5-10 years at least.

I suspect that this is why MS is catering to programmers. They are one of the bastions of professional users who also create products for other professional users. If they programmers all go to linux and mac then there is going to be a trend to more and more professional products on those platforms.

This is a huge breath of fresh air where Microsoft spent a huge amount of energy trying to turn programmers into .net enterprise sales people forcing the entire microsoft ecosystem down our throats. The useless programmers adopted .net and went to work for government and big companies. The real programmers went elsewhere.

Now the real programmers are sniffing around Visual Studio as it kicks some serious ass and is getting better every day.

Comment Paypal is One step above Nigerian Escrow services! (Score 1) 98

Why would any company that give half a crap about customer satisfaction do any deal with Paypal. My rule for paypal has been (when advising clients) is that you use paypal because your bank hates you and other services don't yet trust you. But as soon as you establish a good revenue stream and can show that you are real, dump paypal like the turd it is.

Comment How is this only coming to light? (Score 1) 205

A friend of mine worked with schitzos. The medical and government policy was to pile on the tobacco as they all knew it was mostly good for their condition. Even the schitzos knew this as they would do whatever the hell they could for more.

Is this the sort of science that wasn't done as it was so obvious that everyone assumed that it had already been done.

Comment When I hear the word "Balance" I cringe (Score 1) 71

Quite simply there seems to be some kind of magical thinking that you can balance something unreasonable against basic rights. For instance anyone who thinks that it would be "Balanced" for a US court to order people in another country to do something is insane. The whole US revolution was about things like taxation without representation. So what makes the US seem to think that people in other countries should give two shits what their courts say when we have exactly zero input into the laws, the lawmakers, or any other body that would hold these bozos to account?

This is the sort of thinking that as the US economy runs down will cause the rest of the world to not even lift a single finger as they finally slip into unrelenting pain and misery.

Comment How do I block this? (Score 2) 172

That is my only question. How do I block this?

I see a dire need for a subscription service that stays on top of blocking all the shit that MS seems to think that they can infest our computers with. I didn't buy my computer to be a MS advertizing machine. I bought it to work. I have cut all forms of media that I can that advertize at me out of my life. No radio, no TV, adblock, I even hate roadside signs.

I literally was thinking of moving to a city I recently visited because they banned all but the smallest of outdoor signs. Certainly nothing that was like the eyeball melting LED signs that are at every major intersection in any city where the government hates the people.

So I switched to MS for visual studio. But I am 100% leaving if I see more than one or two popups like this. Definitely a 3 strikes and windows is off my machine.

Comment Why are there even still DVDs for sale? (Score -1, Troll) 316

My daughter and I were in Costco where they were selling Boxed DVD sets for breaking bad with a very nice cover. We both picked it up thinking it might be some kind of cool Breaking Bad card game or something. We both put our boxes down in revulsion when we saw they were DVDs. Why don't they put out the Breaking Bad soundtrack on 8 Track? Or they might have been BlueRays? We didn't care. They could literally have been free either way and neither of us would have wanted it.

I think at this point DVDs are for sad lonely men who pine for the 90's to come back when having a huge collection of DVDs was something that would generate envy among your sad friends.

Comment Re:500,000 job openings (Score 1) 197

I have seen very few companies that were making a profit not hire someone because of their age. What I have seen is companies not hire someone because they just didn't add anything. What I have seen in all ages, but more in older people, is a rejection of things that have passed beyond "fad" and into best practices. Things like unit testing, modular code, modern OS usage, modern mixes of data stores that include things like nosql alongside relational.

Being able to program many languages is fine, quickly putting out a quality product that can hold its own against the competition is critical.

Although it sounds like you aren't guilty of the worst part of people who are in their 50s, One language for all solutions (usually Java or .net).

Comment What would have and did help me become a coder? (Score 1) 197

Looking back at my very early start as a coder I would say that it was solving real world problems for people and then being rewarded for doing so. Given the incentive to code, I learned, I did, and I kept getting better.

But just sitting me down with double linked lists would have bored the crap out of me and I would have probably resented coding and dumped it.

So what could help kids today? I would say a combination of making sure they have the resources, the ability to get mentorship when they need it, and someone to connect them to someone who needs some code.

Comment Language and API are of a bigger concern. (Score 1) 501

Objective-C was effectively an Apple thing only, as is Swift now. Technically they could be used on other platforms but nobody but a few academics did. Java and the API tied into Android are pretty locked down there. Microsoft tried and tried to make .net the defacto Windows language. But I just code mostly in C++ and use various SDKs to get around everything OS specific. Mostly works for me. Occasionally I have do dive in and do an Objective-C or Java thing and then wrap it in C++.

But as long as I can keep coding in C++ on any given platform I am not trapped on that platform. If Apple screws the pooch in the long term, then all my Android portable code is perfectly happy. Or if Tizen takes off then, again, I am still good.

So while I sit here on my desktop that I configured exactly as I wanted I only have a minor concern that I will someday end up cut off. To me the simple fallback position is Linux. But for now Microsoft has put on a major effort to make Windows the center of a cross platform universe, thus I am completely safe. I think that MS sees what it tried to do and realizes that if it keeps things cross platform they can lock out companies like Apple or Google from trapping people in their little ecosystems. Microsoft won't "Win" but they will prevent the others from forcing them to lose.

Comment I am going to switch today!!! (Score 1) 205

No more C++ and all those silly libraries, no more Python and the way too convenient coding there and its crazy tie-ins with stats and ML libraries. I want something that is poorly documented, celebrated only in a small academic circle, and makes me do everything from scratch and have little access to the underlying OS.

Screw productivity and ever finishing a damn thing.

Comment Dealing with foreign slave workers is crap. (Score 1) 540

In Canada we have a similar and much worse program called the Temporary Foreign worker program. I want these assholes gone. They are nasty to deal with as their cultures and training are complete shit. They are working like slaves, driving wages down, and generally are giving unethical companies that hire them a leg up over good solid companies. Maybe some of them are nice people but I would send them all home tonight.

Luckily they are mostly in places like Tim Hortons, but the drag is that they are pretty much ending the ability for students to get even crap jobs and quadrupling the competition among students for those jobs that can't seem to get TFWs. This is great, a whole generation of young people who can't get even onto the bottom rung of the ladder of life.

Trudeau is a huge disappointment as I had a vague hope that he might erase this policy since it was a conservative one. My one hope with Trudeau is that he pisses people off so much that we elect our own Trump who won't feel one bit bad sending these people back to the third world hellholes they came from to suck the vitality out of our country.

People keep crapping on Trump over and over, and he certainly seems to be the human version of a botched boob job, but if he identifies a whole bunch of places where the emperor has no clothes and ends these monstrous policies then good for him. Silicon valley hated that they actually had to pay competitive wages while raking in obscene amounts of money. You have top companies with billions in profits not paying the people who make it happen enough to live in SF, WTF?

I love that Silicon Valley supported Hillary and now have been completely shut out of the White House. Best day in a very long time. I hope he burns the lot of them. Forces them to pay taxes, forces them to pay good salaries, and maybe figures out that the bunch of them are violating our privacy in ways that make 1984 look like a peeping Tom.

Comment Offering $25,000? Cheap bastards (Score 1) 49

There is something wrong with so many C level executives when it comes to giving people other than C level executives money. Not that the thieves deserve it in this case, but quite simply those laptops must be worth at least a million or more to get back.

Even when crime isn't involved I have seen companies self destruct rather than pay engineers what they are worth. I can name specifically two companies where they had a person with 3D skills that were in the top 1% of the top 1%. They were paying him something under 50K while the execs at the company took around 200k each (4 of them). So he goes off to a conference (that when they found out what he was doing on his vacation they pretty much told him that there would be no job waiting if he went) and gets a crap tonne of job offers. The one he took had a damn good salary plus bonuses for performance that were measurable and could easily double his salary. The company he worked for offered to come close to the salary but said no way to the bonus. Needless to say they were losing him even if they matched the salary as he was so pissed off for being underpaid. Company died less than a year later as they couldn't meet the quality and other requirements in a few contracts that he had been doing.

Another case resulted in an engineering company having to have an engineer with a very specific qualification. The engineer went and got the qualification on his own. Then the engineer left the company with a small group of other "junior" engineers and bid against their old company on the contract that had been coming up that required they have an engineer with that qualification. The old company lost their shit when they realized that they were losing a crazy critical contract to someone they had felt they could abuse and barely pay. The key was that he had tried and tried to get the company to pay for the training for the certification but instead chose to send one of the partner engineers instead along with his wife in first class style months before his retirement. But then medical issues prevented him from going. This junior engineer just took vacation, stayed in crap hotels, and got certified. Again to massive layoffs at the old company because that contract had been a "sure thing".

So where this company is offering 25K to get their product back, it just tells me that they don't understand the value that other people have (even if it is extortionate) and probably pay their engineers shit pay. Thus I hope their product is ripped off 100 ways from Sunday.

Comment Re:Maybe. But what's the point of your question? (Score 1) 286

Have spent, am spending, and probably will spend a good chunk of my career: trying to convince people not to use silver bullets, to stop using the silver bullet, or cleaning up after their silver bullet has given everyone lead poisoning.

My present fight: Sencha. What a bleak pile of silver coated excrement that product is. You will be 60% in the first 10% of your project. But you will never ever get past about 70% done unless you allow your definition of done to become very fuzzy. The key to their success is that if you look at any given problem that a team might encounter with Sencha there is a Sencha solution that looks good on the surface; except that in the context it was a Sencha workaround that required the creation of the problem in the first place; thus solving it becomes impossible without breaking something else. Thus the solution to any given problem soon becomes mutually exclusive to actual forward progress.

It becomes the scenario you are stuck in the mud and after spinning your tires for a while forward, some "expert" will suggest reverse. Except that the only real result will be spraying mud in another direction.

I just give up arguing with Sencha religious zealots who then defend many of its major defects as virtues. For instance there is only one real look and feel and that is from Windows circa 1995. Zealots will say that this is what most customers are comfortable with and it saves development teams from having to make design decisions. Or if you point out that it is slow as crap running uphill, they will say, "Any enterprise user will have new hardware."

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