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Comment Motivation (Score 1) 944

Individuals still act out of self-interest even when contributing their time & energies to FOSS. The payoff can be ego gratification, skill enhancement, position in the community, etc. In other words, self interest doesn't have to mean capitalistic self-interest only.

Developing talent/skill is in furtherance of capitalism:

"Money demands that you sell, not your weakness to men's stupidity, but your talent to their reason." -- Ayn Rand, from "Atlas shrugged"

Comment I wonder if this human trait can shed light on (Score 1) 244

another current /. headline:

Think the prosecutors & defense attorneys allowed their set point to be an assumption that the data must be correct ? Sure they did.

And I've always wondered about the moral certitude which seems to guide the decisions of various group adherents, like the Moral Majority back in the 80's. Say even the Acorn folks now. Once the premise is accepted, all further reasoning is derived there from.

I think this is sort of common sense, though and we all know that this is how the mind operates. Otherwise, how could organisms effectively process all of the stimulus information present in their environments with the outcome being a rational decision, in the time span necessary for survival decisions, with the limited 'computing resources' that our brains provide. ?

Don't we all generally accept that human thought processes work from categorization ? Hence we get bad affects like biggotry, prejudice, racism, genocide, etc. along with the ability to decide quickly and hence survive our environment.

Comment Re:Linux isn't a replacement for Windows (Score 1) 270

sad but more or less accurate. you can see why it frustrates us who prefer Linux, right? I mean, it's not the fault of the Linux kernel developers, or Red Hat, or Canonical, or anyone else who can fall under the designation of "Linux" that so many of these necessary apps are without a native Linux version. Adobe and others primarily don't port them because of Linux's tiny market share, according to the popular excuse - but Linux's market share is small mostly because of the lack of apps. it's a catch-22. Far more people dual-boot than the statistics show, because the statistics are based on what OS was pre-installed. but if I'm willing to keep windows on my system for the apps, why make a Linux native version?

the whole thing just frustrates us to death, and it's actually even more complicated than that because there is also an entire group of people who refuse to run any non-FOSS on their machine at all. But for a guy who simply prefers to not reboot into an OS i don't personally like just for one app i need, it is at least nice to think that it will ever-so-slowly get better. for example, if Adobe officially supported running Creative Suite apps on Wine, that would be an intermediary that would allow more shops to switch. only a Linux-native version will really be satisfying, but you have to start somewhere. I had been thinking that games (easier to port since they rely less on the OS's UI) would be the first area to really embrace the paradigm of supporting all platforms equally, but Id Software was one of the leaders in that department and some of the recent news from them is worrisome. I've been playing almost all my games on Linux lately and would love to skip buying a copy of Windows for my next computer, but that milestone is probably years off still.

I do think we'll eventually get to a point where everyone can run whatever software they want on whatever platform they want with just a few exceptions. obviously, there are big corporations who won't want that, but I don't think they can prevent it. It will be interesting to me to see how much Linux would benefit from the removal of the "but there's no apps!" barrier. Either way I am pretty sure it will continue to be my primary OS anyway, though.

Comment Re:Overpriced wrong price (Score 4, Informative) 200

That billion dollar price includes the communication system between the aerostats radar and the targeting radar of other systems like anti-aircraft missile systems. So it is a very misleading number. I would guess the "blimp" or really aerostat part is less than 5% of the total cost. This is really an integrated detector system that happens to use a blimp as one of its inputs.

Comment Re:How is this new news? (Score 1) 183

This story is about *linux the kernel*, the only real linux and not "linux the operating system"; although obviously the word is colloquially used to refer to an operating system (even occasionally by me). Are you new here or are you just slinging mud at something you don't understand, perhaps on the company payroll?

That said, I don't think this story is really news. Every time FOSS projects gain better Windows compatibility in some aspect, it shouldn't be news...let alone wishy-washy bullshit about M$ and FOSS holding hands...

Comment Re:The guys with Tin Foil Hats maybe? (Score 5, Informative) 324

Uhm, you do realise that most of the mainstream media in the US is own by Rupert Murdoch, and other wealthy Republicans?

Not even close to true. He doesn't own ABC, CBS, or NBC. He does own Fox, one of four major networks. On cable, you have Fox News owned by Murdoch (very Republican-oriented, granted), CNN owned by Ted Turner (debatable), but the rest of the news channels aren't close to right-leaning in general. For newspapers, he owns the WSJ, which is the only prominent right-leaning paper, with the Washington Post and New York Times being the two most prominent newspapers in the country. They also happen to be *extremely* left.

So your big Republican conspiracy is 1 out of 4 major networks, one or two major cable news channels, and one major newspaper. That's a lot more than those that are clearly left-leaning. The network news tends to skew left, as do newspapers in major cities.

Comment Re:Absurd (Score 1) 1100

What's poppycock is introducing legislation that will drastically affect people's lives on the presumption that man's contribution is anything more than a drop in the ocean, that changing man's contribution will do anything to slow or reverse the process, and that the process itself will be detrimental to human life.

Comment The lesson to be learned (Score 2, Informative) 189

for sys/net admins is to keep in the back of your mind that your actions can be scrutinized somewhere down the line, even if you are the most conscientious, morally upright employee.

If you work in an environment where you are the key technical resource, and others don't have the chops to safely manage the systems you designed/built, you still need to be sure that you put mechanisms in place to track access first, and then you need to provide equivalent access as agreed with management, to other administrators. Since you have the tracking mechanisms there, you can unravel who did what if there is an issue.

I know that it's hard to do this if you work in a hostile environment, or one where people are defensive about their jobs. This is especially true if you are the lead or only techie with the skillset to safely operate in the environment. But without being too paranoid about it, try to inform management as to what you're doing occassionally, track access of yourself & others (if you exclude yourself by using other means of authentication or access, you won't have a leg to stand on, since your actions weren't logged and you could have 'hidden' them).

Try to foster a trust environment with your peers, help them along in becoming competent while giving them access appropriate to their skillset (but make sure others know they are accountable for their actions), and you would improve your chances at exonerating yourself if the PHB's ever start pointing the accusing finger at you.

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