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Comment Another plu g for orgmode. (Score 1) 170

Orgmode is also the most useful note taking tool I've found. Of course, it helps if you're OK doing it in Emacs. I will point out, though, that many people learn Emacs simply so that they can use orgmode - it's that useful. If I had to guess, I would say that since 2008, more people learned Emacs to use org mode than for any other reason.

Comment Re:Real-world examples, shaky foundations (Score 2) 580

While you have a point, I'll make a counterpoint:

First, a lot of mathematics majors get a poor mathematics education when teachers teach to the demographics in these classes (which is mostly non-math majors). As a result, a number of mathematics professors have gotten irritated and they'll insist that their courses exist to serve the mathematics students, no matter how few, and if the engineers want something more applied and tied to reality, then the engineering department needs to step up and offer a course rather than leach off the math department at the expense of their students. Of course, department politics and funding come into play which is why they end up having to teach non-math majors.

You may be collateral damage in their battle, but as someone who's been on both the EE and the math side, I think they have a very valid point: Catering to outsiders is hurting their own math program (which ultimately affects the rankings of the math department, although most usually are not driven by that).

Second, if you plan to go to grad school, for many disciplines in EE and CS, you'll likely need all the theoretical stuff that linear algebra professor was trying to teach, and many grad schools will expect you to know it. In my experience, those who know that material coming in will ususally excel. Many EE/CS departments will try to teach the same material as part of some other course that may need it, but the students often don't learn it as well as if they had taken it from a proper math course.

And that's the other battle: Undergrad vs Grad school. In EE/CS, most undergrads do not plan on going to grad school, but the grad school folks are understandably upset that incoming students are ill prepared (which affects their rankings, and more importantly, the university's research). This being academia, the grad school advocates have more say then you'd perhaps like.

Comment Re:notmuch (Score 1) 282

I second notmuch. You don't have to use it as your mail reader - you can just use it for indexing and queries. It has Python bindings which makes it really nice. It can search by all the criteria listed except perhaps attachments (it does tag messages with attachments, but I'm not sure what types of searches the submitter wants to do with them). Date based searching is possible, but the syntax is a pain - a nicer way to specify dates has been on their TODO list forever.

At the moment it doesn't support mbox, and all my mail had been in that format. It was a pain to convert everything to maildir or a similar format it supported, but it was only a one time pain...

Comment ipython (Score 3, Insightful) 43

The Ipython notebook, although not an original idea (I think they were inspired by the Sage notebook), is just fantastic. I do a fair amount of exploratory analysis and it's so much better doing it in a notebook than in a standalone script - I get to see all the plots, and document as I go along. Most importantly, it lets me experiment with commands as one would in a regular interpreter shell, but without the clutter of all my faulty commands.

If anyone wants to help open source, I would strongly recommend helping improve ipython, scipy or matplotlib. Fernando Perez pointed out in a recent conference that while on the surface these all seem like excellent, well polished projects, if one looks at the committers, they'll find most commits are being done by 2-3 people (for each project). It's not healthy for it to depend on so few people. As a case in point, the main committer for matlplotlib passed away recently and everyone's nervous about its future.

Comment Why do they have comments on news sites? (Score 4, Insightful) 298

I've never come across a news site that allowed "open" comments not become dominated by their inaneness.

Why do news sites allow them? I suppose there may be a connection between allowing them and traffic (I really don't know) - but I see highly serious, respectable local news outlets that already have a strong base suddenly decide "Hey, everyone's doing it, why not us?"

In ye old days we had "Letters to the Editor". Open comments are not a viable replacement. The former were heavily moderated.

Comment How about one I can install on my webserver? (Score 1) 287

Since we're on the topic, does anyone know a good RSS reader that I can install on my own web server?

I currently use Gregarius but the project is no longer under development.

I don't want a desktop based one as I need to ensure it checks the feeds whether my computer is on or not. Also, there's nothing more convenient than simply clicking links within a browser.

Comment Re:Not true. (Score 1) 984

The mere fact that they issued 3 times as many tickets as there are people in the town is an indication that something is wrong here

Not really. Most of the vehicles were likely people from out of town. 18,000 vehicles go through it every day - it's in between two highly populated areas.

Comment Re:Detractors... (Score 1) 197

Good for them if they're comfortable with their sexuality, but "gimp" is derogatory slang for a disabled person.

And the more people use GIMP, the less derogatory the word will appear.

It's almost as if people here want to preserve a biogted, derogatory word.

Comment Re:Holy slanted summary, Batman! (Score 1) 476

The posting is NOT a "scathing rant", it's a pretty clear, calm and well-reasoned explanation as to issues that the author sees with GNU and GNU software development. There's no flamebait, no ranting, no name-calling.

1. It is scathing.

2. The person who wrote it describes it as a rant (see the subject line).

Comment Re:So let me get this straight (Score 1) 158

You want to start working freelance and you don't want to publicize how people can reach you? I'd expect a decent head shot, a phone number, a short bio and an email address.

Pretty much this.

If you were to open your FB and other social network accounts with business ONLY information, and keep your personal information (name, image, etc) off the Facebook account...will this keep your personal privacy still from them

This is silly, and I don't mean in the Internet era, but in any era. Go back to ye old pre-Internet days. Would you expect to be able to place an ad in a newspaper but refuse to give them your name, phone number, address and credit card information?

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