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Comment Re:Such hypocrisy (Score 3, Insightful) 945

How does net neutrality interfere with how you wish to use the Internet? Net neutrality "restricts freedom" in the exact same way that abolishing slavery "restricts freedom". In the first case ISPs are limited from restricting your freedom. In the second case replace "ISP" with "slave owner".

Comment Re:A good software company needs good programmers. (Score 1) 182

Well admittedly we must come from very different areas of programming. I've programmed business software for the past ten years and everything I've never really needed artwork for anything. For user interface design, developers just need access to the customers. Putting people between the customers and programmers makes things worse, not better.

I don't believe in developing and marketing products. The idea of developing a product first and then trying to sell it doesn't make much sense to me. The only stuff I code is stuff that has an immediate need to exist.

I'll grant that manual writers and QA can be valuable even when they don't code. I'll also grant that artists can be valuable and necessary, depending on the project. I disagree on workflow designers or user interface designers. Just keep the customers in the loop and between the customers and developers the best solution will develop.

Comment Re:A good software company needs good programmers. (Score 1) 182

You assume by "programmers" I only mean "implementers". "Programming" as I'm using it subsumes all stages of the SDLC. If you need to have separate roles for each of those things you described, then your company probably isn't doing well. A good programmer can tell a customer that what he wants doesn't make any sense, and that there's a perfectly good alternative that will do everything the customer actually wants while being very easy to implement. If you have five people between the customer and those who understand the technical limitations, then nipping issues like this early is going to be difficult.

The same goes for management. You need management that's adept both leadership-wise AND technically. Otherwise the coders won't have any respect for him. A software manager that thinks the low level details are beneath him is a manager that's going to fail. Sure, it's impossible for everyone to know everything. But the manager needs to have the ability to understand technical issues that arise, even if they are very low level.

I don't know the specific histories of Microsoft Bob or Duke Nukem Forever. My impression is that Bob was a product that never should have existed. Anyone with common sense should have realized that, not just a programmer. My understand of DNF is that they kept changing the underlying engine. Perhaps they wanted it to be too perfect for its release, due to the limited life of most video games. I'm more familiar with iterative products that build upon previous releases and don't have the market issues inherent to game programming.

But I do want to mention Diakatana. Romero wanted the game design to be completely independent of the implementation details. That didn't work very well for him.

Comment A good software company needs good programmers. (Score 2) 182

That's it. No tools, methodology, procedures, or what have you will make up for the lack of good programmers. And good programmers will do well no matter what the tools, procedures, methodologies, etc are (barring Kafka-esque hindrances).

So here's my revised list:
1) Is the company full of good programmers?

Of course, acquiring and maintaining good programmers doesn't just happen. New hire interviews need to be technically based, the staff needs adequate compensation, and management should not get in the way of programmers trying to do their job. However, employees don't need to be treated like prima donnas. They just need management that commands respect and respects them likewise.

Comment Re:IBM & company (Score 1) 763

The Fed's artificial inflation of the dollar is going to bring a lot of jobs back to the US. Most people won't want these jobs, but they'll have to swallow their pride if they want employment.

Goods and commodities will become more expensive, especially oil. Our standard of living will go down, but we'll have jobs. Welcome to the graceful collapse of yet another empire.

Comment Confusing popularity with importance (Score 5, Insightful) 1153

Music and literature may be popular, but they are hardly essential. And history's importance mainly comes from informing politics.

Do most people need to know multivariable calculus? No. But one thing most people are missing is an understanding of basic statistics and logic. Statisticians don't help much. Courses need to be more than just memorizing a bunch of statistical formulas. People need to understand why basic statistical reasoning works. If people don't have that basic philosophical understanding of why statistics work, then they'll just forget all about the formulas they were forced to memorize after the course is over.

These types of courses should be essential for all, but they aren't even available until college--and even then they're optional.

Comment Re:The Apple Way of Life (tm) (Score 1) 764

Linux and other free software were pioneered by people like RMS and Torvalds. We were never cool. But we've always been about freedom when it comes to computers. Apple is worse than Microsoft when it comes to software freedoms. We have no love of either. But we'd hate to see bad replaced with worse. That's why we regularly criticize Apple's policies.

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