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Comment Re:Variance, Risk, Interest, Hours (Score 1) 472

You might find this lecture interesting:

This passage in particular presents a different way at looking at the correlations in the Kane and Mertz study:

"Creativity may be another example of gender difference in motivation rather than ability. The evidence presents a seeming paradox, because the tests of creativity generally show men and women scoring about the same, yet through history some men have been much more creative than women. An explanation that fits this pattern is that men and women have the same creative ability but different motivations.
                        I am a musician, and I’ve long wondered about this difference. We know from the classical music scene that women can play instruments beautifully, superbly, proficiently — essentially just as well as men. They can and many do. Yet in jazz, where the performer has to be creative while playing, there is a stunning imbalance: hardly any women improvise. Why? The ability is there but perhaps the motivation is less. They don’t feel driven to do it.
                        I suppose the stock explanation for any such difference is that women were not encouraged, or were not appreciated, or were discouraged from being creative. But I don’t think this stock explanation fits the facts very well. In the 19th century in America, middle-class girls and women played piano far more than men. Yet all that piano playing failed to result in any creative output. There were no great women composers, no new directions in style of music or how to play, or anything like that. All those female pianists entertained their families and their dinner guests but did not seem motivated to create anything new.
Meanwhile, at about the same time, black men in America created blues and then jazz, both of which changed the way the world experiences music. By any measure, those black men, mostly just emerging from slavery, were far more disadvantaged than the middle-class white women. Even getting their hands on a musical instrument must have been considerably harder. And remember, I’m saying that the creative abilities are probably about equal. But somehow the men were driven to create something new, more than the women."

Comment The conditions that led to UNIX... (Score 4, Interesting) 293

There's a talk from 1986 by Richard Hamming at Bellcore, about how to do great research, but it also ends up in a short discussion about the conditions there that led to UNIX:

The whole talk is really excellent, and there's this theme in it that the really great things come from some unexpected places, by the compounding of seemingly unrelated character traits, work habits and organization dynamics.

At the end in the Q&A, Hamming gets into a short discussion with the host Alan Chynoweth about the origins of UNIX, evincing from Alan a favorite quote:

"UNIX was never a deliverable!"


"Hamming: First let me respond to Alan Chynoweth about computing. I [was in charge of] computing in research and for 10 years I kept telling my management, ``Get that !&@#% machine out of research. We are being forced to run problems all the time. We can't do research because we're too busy operating and running the computing machines.'' Finally the message got through. They were going to move computing out of research to someplace else. I was persona non grata to say the least and I was surprised that people didn't kick my shins because everybody was having their toy taken away from them. I went in to Ed David's office and said, ``Look Ed, you've got to give your researchers a machine. If you give them a great big machine, we'll be back in the same trouble we were before, so busy keeping it going we can't think. Give them the smallest machine you can because they are very able people. They will learn how to do things on a small machine instead of mass computing.'' As far as I'm concerned, that's how UNIX arose. We gave them a moderately small machine and they decided to make it do great things. They had to come up with a system to do it on. It is called UNIX!

A. G. Chynoweth: I just have to pick up on that one. In our present environment, Dick, while we wrestle with some of the red tape attributed to, or required by, the regulators, there is one quote that one exasperated AVP came up with and I've used it over and over again. He growled that, ``UNIX was never a deliverable!''"


Submission + - Amazon, watch out, OpenStack is coming (

Julie188 writes: "The open source cloud platform, OpenStack, promises to end cloud-vendor lock-in by making it easier to move workloads between cloud providers. Only problem was, there were no OpenStack cloud providers. Until now. Internap has launched the first OpenStack public cloud, and it chose the open source Xen as the base hypervisor. Rackspace, the official corporate champion of OpenStack, is in beta with its cloud as is HP. A stew of other OpenStack projects are ready to bubble over soon, too."

Submission + - Google TV update (

snowtigger writes: Google announced updates to the Google TV today. Features include better streaming video and music integration, a simpler user interface and apps from the Android market

Submission + - Japan Unveils World's Largest 3D Display (

kkleiner writes: "Japan has unveiled a new 200-inch, HD screen on which images shift through 57 different viewing angles to give the appearance of 3D – without the need for glasses. The trick behind the glasses-free 3D is an array of 57 projectors behind the screen, each projecting the same image at a slightly different angle. As awesome as the images are, the screen is not quite practical. You’ll need an extra room for the array and a forklift to move its 500 kg."

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