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Comment Documentation (Score 1) 332

Many open source programs have horrendous documentation. If you can read and write in English (or any other language) and are even remotely capable of reading source code then document it. Parts that you don't understand you can ask the developer to explain it to you. Pick a project you like, e-mail the maintainer and ask if you can contribute documentation.

Most engineers hate doing documentation. It takes up a ton of time that we'd rather spend writing code. If they're smart, they'll love you for it.

Comment Engineering (Score 1) 736

My company has conveniently solved this. We're engineers (like Scotty).

IT is the guy that fixes your desktop.
We are Software Engineers or Network Engineers.

Take the job and don't say anything about it except maybe in passing. Then always refer to yourself as Engineering. Get your subordinates to call it Engineering. Get other departments to call it Engineering. Put it in your email signature. Answer the phone "Engineering, <name>". Call the people that print business cards and tell them your department should read <something> Engineering.

Once the mindshare is won everything else will follow.

Comment Re:Unauthoriazed Copy (Score 4, Informative) 865

This goes back to the 80's, or possibly even 70's and deals with how computers work on a fundamental level. As you know, copyright means that the rights holder is the only one allowed to authorize copies. When a program runs, it is copied from the storage medium (i.e., disk, but back then it was tape) and into RAM. That's a copy. Copyright law was modified to explicitly permit these types of copies (I believe they are termed "transient copies") for license holders.

Apple's argument goes back to this statute. Apple's license says that you can only run Mac OS X on Apple hardware. Thus, the copy from disk to RAM on non-Apple hardware is an unauthorized copy.

It makes sense, from a letter-of-the-law point of view, and I find it very interesting because by and large nobody thinks about software copying in that sense anymore, but back in the day it was a very hot issue. I'm not saying I endorse this argument, but IIRC, this is how the law is written. Also, IANAL, so if you want to know more about this, go look it up yourself.

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