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Comment Re:Funding (Score 1) 434

I realize I'm talking to a school teacher here. School teachers in high schools and elementary schools don't write grant proposals, because that's university stuff.

There are actually quite a number of opportunities to write for grants at the high school level. They are typically for equipment, supplies, or activities only -- such as buying new sensor units, buying binoculars and telescopes to start up an astronomy course, taking a class on a trip to a national lab-- but they are out there.

I received a grant that supported about 80% of the model rocketry supplies my physics class needed this year. The poor state of the economy is a great motivator to locate alternative sources of funding...

Comment Re:So funny.. (Score 1) 684

Why people would even try cheating in a CS class at a decent university is a mystery to me. At my school in Cambridge, Mass. (not MIT, the other one), every line of code turned in for intro CS classes was run through a code analysis and similarity detection system.

I wonder what it was like for the first two or three years using that detection system. It must have been rough, expelling entire Intro to CS classes from the university after their "Hello World" assignment.

Comment Re:"Hey, I know!" (Score 1) 275

4. How many super duper Level 5 trained people want to move to Cow's Butt, Kansas?

The Manhattan, Topeka, Lawrence, and Kansas City are all reasonably close to each other, and offer fairly decent living accomodations. Lawrence and Manhattan are classic large-university cities, Topeka is the state capital (and a reasonable sized city), and Kansas City is a contiguous metropolitan area of about two million people.

There are plenty of desolate places in Kansas, but the area where this research facility has been proposed is not one of them.

Comment Re:Are the slashdot editors getting desperate? (Score 1) 315

This hardly seems like 'grasping at straws', and the issue is not minor. I think you severely underestimate the number of people who will download and use the XP virtual machine to run software that doesn't run (or run well) under 7.

If Windows 7 is supposed to be the release that gets people with XP to upgrade, then it is going to need to be a worthwhile upgrade. That means it must do one of two things:

1. Be so unbelievably awesome that I don't care that my old programs don't work, or

2. Do its thing well, AND support my old programs.

Since operating systems are reaching 'appliance' stage, it is exceedingly unlikely that (1) is going to be the case. Therefore it must be (2). Looking at the computers I might want to upgrade, I find that the processors do not have the necessary virtualization built in. My newest machine is a Core 2 Duo, T5300.

Some of my daily use software is still with me from Windows 98 (e.g., Matlab 5), and some of the software that I run 'once in a while' extends back another decade or so. I am not inclined to re-purchase software that already does what I need it to do.

If both (1) and (2) are false, then Windows 7 is not a reasonable upgrade path for me.

Comment Re:Public education... (Score 5, Informative) 1322

Please forgive my ignorance, but wouldn't you have 3 months a year to do some other work to make up a chunk of that difference? Or do teachers end up working during summer break?

The break varies, in my district it is 9-10 weeks. Most teachers are required to take continuing education to maintain their licenses, and many of those classes, workshops, and other professional activities are done in the summer to accommodate teacher schedules.

For example, I would love to get a part time job this summer--and I am looking--but I have a week-long workshop in June, and a few other job-related full-day commitments before the end of the summer. Many employers are not interested due to the swiss-cheese scheduling that is required to accommodate my professional obligations.

Comment Re:America against Bandwidth Caps (Score 4, Insightful) 382

I pay X amount of dollars to have Y data download rate (and Z data upload rate). My ISP advertised the rate, I bought the rate, that's what I expect them to be able to deliver "most" of the time.

Now, if they want to put a cap on my useage, say C gigabytes per month, then if that limit is less than (2592000 s * X bits/s), I expect my useage fee to decrease proportionately to however much smaller my new download limit becomes.

DECREASE. Not increase. They will be taking away value that I expect based on the advertised service. I expect to pay less for less value.

Comment Re:HDMI and DVI? (Score 4, Insightful) 318

I know lots of old displays still use DSub VGA but when can I get one with HDMI?

It'd be really cool if I could just hook this up to a digital TV which everyone seems to have these days.

Wow. Full circle...from plugging my TRS-80 MC-10 into the television, through several generations of specialized monitors, to the "wonder" of watching TV/video on the computer screen, and now back to plugging the computer into the TV.

Comment As part of the general concept of "logic"...yes. (Score 1) 474

I think that CS topics, especially as part of a curriculum that promotes logical thinking and well-structured design, would have value as a core educational component.

CS integrates well with much of science and math, too. I'm in the beginning stages of including programming in my regular high school physics course, and so far the students think it (through VPython) is at least 'interesting'.

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