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Comment Yeah (Score 2) 366

I used to work for a company that produced avionics software. Obviously, we had to write solid code.

The On-Board Shuttle group is (was) even more bad-ass than that. For them, 5 9s (99.999% failure rate) was unacceptably lax.


But how much work the software does is not what makes it remarkable. What makes it remarkable is how well the software works. This software never crashes. It never needs to be re-booted. This software is bug-free. It is perfect, as perfect as human beings have achieved. Consider these stats : the last three versions of the program -- each 420,000 lines long-had just one error each. The last 11 versions of this software had a total of 17 errors. Commercial programs of equivalent complexity would have 5,000 errors.

Comment Re:This article is bullshit! (Score 4, Insightful) 404

who was devolving deeply into socialism toward the end of his life

Welcome to 2013, Mr. Fossil, where the word "Socialism" doesn't make red-blooded Americans wet their pants the way it did back in the '50s.

Of course, I'll have to ask you to stop using our Socialist services, including: roads, Fire/Police protection, public parks, water/sewer lines, power grid, internets, national defense, FDA-approved foods/drugs, labor laws, radio/broadcast spectrum, currency and education systems.

Thank you.

Comment Re:funny how everyone 'wants' your phone # (Score 5, Interesting) 185

I told Facebook to FO when they asked for my number too.

The better way to deal with such data-harvesting schemes is to fill it with plausible but junk data.

That serves two purposes:

  1. You don't stand out as a "problem"
  2. Finding and correcting said junk data becomes an impossible task if enough people do it.

So in the case of Facebook asking for your phone number, use the correct (or neighboring) area code and make up the other digits. Don't use 555-xxxx or Jenny's number as those are too easy to spot.

Of course, if you use two-factor authentication (which is a good idea to thwart the majority of crooks who happen to be unskilled/stupid), you'll have to provide your real number, or a working proxy.

Comment You're about 60 years too late (Score 4, Informative) 103

Long ago, if you didn't post a copyright notice on your work, it would lose copyright protection. That was changed by our brave congresscritters (may Sonny Bono rot in hell!)

Now copyright applied the moment the work is fixed.

Unless someone posts it Public Domain or one of the CC flavors, it is Copyrighted, period.*

*US only. YMMV, especially if you're a foreigner, living in some country where everyone speaks backwards, wears funny clothes and eats smelly food. Also, the music! Don't get me started.

Comment Why not? (Score 1) 527

Sorry, but it's national security, not a kindergarten classroom. I'd like everything to be hugs and handshakes as much as the next guy, but that won't actually work for the U.S. borders.

It worked for the 225 years before 911. How many "Terrorists" have been caught since it was implemented? How many people have been located by their fingerprints and deported after their visa expired?

Any time someone uses the "nation security" trope, it is a good bet that they have no credible reason. Ditto for any variant of "you and everyone you love will die horribly".

Comment Inconvenient Facts (Score 4, Insightful) 660

Want to cry in your soup?

For the middle class, real wages haven't risen since 1978. (chart). Of course the upper class has made out like gangbusters.

In other words, your buying power is the same as your Leisure Suit-wearing predecessors, whereas the rich have accumulated whole closets of never-been-used ivory-handled backscratchers.

Comment Um, yeah (Score 4, Insightful) 716

I put myself through college and ended up with ZERO debt. Yes, it was a pain and I ate a hell of a lot of ramen (and oranges, to prevent scurvy), but I not only got my degree, but gained much knowledge in fields outside of my major, which have surprisingly proven to be more valuable than my degree.

In my view, a degree in and of itself means nothing, except that hopefully a person is more well-rounded than some "self-made" person who has a very narrow vision of the world. Like unvaccinated people, people without lateral knowledge are bad for society. Without knowledge of history, sociology, literature, engineering, art, music, science, foreign languages, etc., those people will be little more than idiot-savants.

Comment My God (Score 1) 76

You wake up and find yourself chained up in a farmer's sex dungeon and he proceeds to sodomize you for 3 months until you finally die of an impaled rectum.

You describe perfectly what a seasoned, experienced developer feels like when he (or she) has to wade through a typical *MP "application" in order to fix and extend it.

Proof Cthulhu is real: *MP kiddies believe view logic is Best Logic.

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