Follow Slashdot blog updates by subscribing to our blog RSS feed


Forgot your password?

Comment Evil Overseer approve, disapprove or computer use? (Score 1) 212

Evil overseeing, please inspect all activity on user's computer and approve or disapprove the following:

1. downloading of the digital media content file from the host computer system to a user's media content device.

2. adding to the list any digital media content files that the user purchases from any of the plurality of sources for purchasing digital media content files.

3. sending of email to granddaughter about not listening to that crap music pushed on her by the lame music conglomerate seeking to resurrect Paula Abdul's singing career with new techno-voice-warblator.

How insane is the music industry? This is a patent for a product that would give the music industry control over the inner workings of a user's computer. It has very little to do with an "electronic network," as most people would think of it.

Comment Re:killer app, but really new tech? (Score 1) 140

Heh...tell that to Google. They arrived late in the search engine scene, but simply did it better and with less intrusive ads. Better algorithm + better delivery.

+better run company. Seems that ongoing, insane innovation in a number of areas such as Google docs, chat, email, etc. was what pushed Google over the top. Google provided a plethora of cool products for free that attracted throngs of adoring fans to its shores. I'd argue that improvements in search algorithms helped, but were not the driving forces behind companies ongoing successes.

Comment killer app, but really new tech? (Score 1) 140

Given the pittpatt founders come from CMU, I'm sure they are brilliant and will find more creative and interesting ways to turn pattern recog into $$. However, is this tech really new/cutting edge? Facial recog has been around for a while. Heck, I had to write similar software as projects in grad school. Sounds like pittpatt founders might have developed faster, more accurate/reliable algorithms (far better than I could do). However, is this really enough to support a new company? Maybe the interesting details just haven't been made available. If not, then this may be a premature slashdotting. Comp vision, pattern recognition, and machine learning are all popular courses at top comp sci grad schools. Hence, I expect to see hordes of new companies and lots of competition for these folks in the not too distant future. Having a better algorithm is not nearly as good as having a great, new, innovative product.

Comment How Grad School Works... (Score 1) 372

You mentioned a couple times that you are unsure how grad school works.

I'm finishing up my MS in Computer Science from a really good/competitive school, my 2nd MS degree. Grad school at a good, research focused university is an opportunity to delve into topics that you are interested in and to build proficiency in those areas. Going into such a program, you should be focused on personal development, not career development. As such, you should be thinking about what your interests are, what floats your boat.

Some rules of thumb for you:

1. Don't bother getting a MS from a non-competitive diploma mill. Also, don't bother getting a MS from a school of continuing education (these are essentially diploma mills), even if it is in a good university. Choosing such a program tells an potential employer several things. You probably gained very little from your degree. You are probably not terribly motivated. You are not very good.

2. Only go to grad school if you have identified a topic that really interests you. Grad school at a good university is a lot of work. You will do very little of anything else while you are there. You better like what you are doing.

3. Once you have identified a topic of interest, find a good university that has a robust research program in that field. This is huge in that research drives funding and funding drives the hiring of good faculty. This might not apply so much to you since you want to stay where you are.

4. Go deep instead of broad. In grad school, I think that there is very little benefit from trying to be a jack of all trades, especially in a field such as comp sci. You want to come out the other end as a specialist in your field of interest. In the world of comp sci, this might be security, AI, comp vision, networking, etc.

As to your quandary with respect to becoming an IT-guy, an MBA suit, etc. First step to answering this is to decide if you want to be a tech guy or a manager. Most people have a strong preference one way or the other. Holy crap, man. Being a manager would be the equivalent of getting my nuts cut off with a dull knife, shoved up my anus, and then sucked out my nostrils (in terms of pain and suffering). That's just me, though. Assuming you decide that you want to stay technical, then I'd say go as tech as possible. That is not IT. It's a field full of good, smart people. However, really good IT people end up being managers anyway.

Whatever you decide, think before you act. Let your actions be driven by goals. Set your goals based on your interests. Don't be a schmo-loser who tries to live his life according to other people's opinions.

Comment Gesture control for TV (Score 1) 138

Talk about timing. I'm considering building a gesture control system for my TV as a project in a comp vision class. The image recognition from a vid camera is fairly straight forward. However, I'm not certain what HW I will need to take in digital TV signal (assuming Haup TV card) and that export pic/sound to my TV via HDMI cable after processing. I want to enable image pause/zoom/draw menus, buttons/etc., which is why I need to intercept pic. Anyway, processing time and resulting latency would seem to make this approach infeasible for gaming. Also, the users looked horribly uncomfortable in the video. The lag could just be due to the use of poorly designed algorithms, but I'm not certain since I haven't yet delved into my project. Also, I'd suggest not being so literal with the hand gestures used for various things. Comfort is key to a good interface.

Slashdot Top Deals

To communicate is the beginning of understanding. -- AT&T