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Comment "You have a lot of downtime" (Score 2) 848

Happens to the best of us, in fact we tend to work ourselves right out of these in-house positions.

You should probably find something else for yourself to do (say, like, implementing your side project), or start looking for other jobs. If they have no budget to implement core systems, they certainly have no budget to hang on to Sys Admins with "a lot of downtime".

Comment Expect more of this (Score 5, Insightful) 276

This whole move to respond to people's questions from the Executive Branch is very clearly a tactic to redirect voter ire to the Legislative Branch, where laws are made and passed. I would expect most of the replies to include some portion urging voters to contact their legislators. Recent administrations have left the American public under the impression that the executive branch can act unilaterally as long as you have Darth Vader as a vice president.

That's not the way this country is supposed to run. Things like this with the Executive communicating with voters directly are great, don't stop that, but call your goddamned lawmaker, too.

Comment Re:Finally, a meta-thread! (Score 5, Informative) 763

I really enjoy the community and the moderation system on Slashdot. The combination of the 2 are working well together, in my opinion, and I told them that.

I also lambasted the editors for not editing, for headlines that are downright false, and various other editorial issues. One thing that stops me from suggesting slashdot to my friends is that I never know when some story is going to get posted with completely false information in the headline or summary, with a 100+ comment conversation that ensues about information that isn't even accurate.

When that happens, and it happens often, it makes the site look foolish and by extension it makes me look foolish for having suggested it. Slashdot needs to tighten up the editorial department, for me that is the single biggest area for improvement on the site. I told them as much.

Comment Here's Your Texan Education Strategy (Score 0) 725

Graduation rates abysmal? Focus on increasing your dropout and expulsion rate (sticking these kinds of police systems in the schools is part of this). Suddenly your graduation rates are soaring, and everyone is happy! Well, everyone other than those who are looking at the racial and socioeconomic statistics of your graduates, that is. And everyone who is looking at the fact that your state has the most minimum wage workers of any state... but, hey, at least unemployment is lower!

Comment Re:The Rise of Non-Profit News (Score 3, Insightful) 16

You're right to an extent (the news cannot be free as in beer), but the nation-wide non-profit online only experiment that I was referring to is really more aimed at the kind of reporting you are talking about. See: The Voice of San Diego, The MinnPost, and The St. Louis Beacon for examples. Non-profit, local newspapers going 100% online and depending on their communities for support (with maybe some ad sales on the side). All of them are doing hard news coverage and in some cases are doing it better than their city's major daily paper.

Also, your local NPR station has long operated on the model that you just described, providing the kind of coverage that you've described.

The model may not yet be proven for "print" but it is certainly being tested, and seems to be holding up pretty well.

Comment The Rise of Non-Profit News (Score 5, Interesting) 16

The non-profit, online-only journalism model is being tested out across the country to some notable success. Granted, the orgs tend to partner with print and TV media to get their stories a wider audience (like ProPublica has done with the NYT, NPR and FrontLine), but the non-profit membership model of news gathering (like your local NPR affiliate or like ProPublica) is gaining steam.

Freedom of the press doesn't guarantee quality, which is what I think we all want. Put your money where your eyeballs are and throw a few bucks at ProPublica if you admire their work.

I don't work for them, btw... just a fan.

Submission + - Jail Mail May Fail (

loteck writes: A county jail department is quietly planning to dismantle an inmate email system, reports San Diego CityBeat:

Launched in 2007, the e-mail system allows users on the outside to send short messages to inmates via the Internet for free. Jail staff prints these messages and distributes them to the detainees, though the inmates cannot use the same system to respond.

The advisory group responsible for the system isn't required to notify the public of its meetings and no public comments are sought, according to the article.

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