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Comment Re:Link broken? (Score 1) 1191

When you show the grandparent's comment to your overlords, please take the bolded section and print it in 72-point text. The new design is quite possibly the worst thing I've ever seen anyone try to do to Slashdot and it will kill the site. I'm not as active as I was a year ago due to lack of time, but in your statistics last year I was one of the 5 most active commenters for one or two quarters. I would not visit Slashdot if they switched to this abomination.

Comment Re:Relationship between Apple Darwin and FreeBSD (Score 1) 133

Some bits of the FreeBSD kernel make it into the BSD server in the XNU kernel. One of the big ones is the MAC framework (SEBSD), which is shared between FreeBSD and XNU and supports pluggable access control policies. This is used to implement the code signing logic on Juniper routers and the application sandboxing on iOS and OS X. There are some pretty big differences to the VM subsystems on both (they're both derived from Mach 2.5, but they've diverged hugely since then).

Comment Re:but Linux even more so (Score 2) 133

You might want to scan the Android stack for FreeBSD copyrights sometime. Most of the Android libc is a slimmed-down version of the FreeBSD one, and there are quite a few other bits of FreeBSD code in there too. In terms of lines of code, I think there is about as much FreeBSD code in Android as there is Linux code.

Comment Re:The Blame Game (Score 1) 1532

I'm not sure what your point is. In the House, all seats were up for reelection and the Republicans won on seats but did not get the majority of the popular vote, so this means that they represent the will of the people? In the Senate, not all seats were up for reelection, but in the 1/3 that were, the Republicans lost 2 seats overall and lost the popular vote, so this means that they represent the will of the people? In the Presidential election, there is only one seat and it was up for reelection, the Republicans lost both the popular vote and failed to win the seat, so this means that they represent the will of the people?

You can write off the Senate elections as only giving you the views of 1/3 of the country, but you're still left with two national elections where more people voted against the Republicans than voted for them (I'm not sure what the statistics are for third parties, so this may be true for Democrats too) and where more people voted for the Democrats than voted for the Republicans. And yet you still claim that the Republican majority in the House represents the will of the people?

So yes, by the rules of the system, which are arguably superior to the hypothetical rules you seem to wish we operated under, the House Majority Republicans *are* there due to the will of the people, and *do* represent it.

If by 'the people' you mean the commission that defines constituency boundaries, then I suppose you're right. If you mean 'the people who voted' then you are wrong. If you mean 'the people who are eligible to vote' then neither party can claim to be even approximately representing the will of the people.

Comment Re:The Blame Game (Score 1) 1532

The popular vote count in both elections is definitely relevant if you're claiming (as the grandparent was) that a narrow victory represents 'the will of the people'. Getting 49.6% of the popular vote does not mean that you represent the will of the people, it means that you represent the will of about half of the people. Having a majority with this amount of the vote means that constituency boundaries favoured you this time. It is most definitely not a mandate to push through your agenda without compromising, as the grandparent appeared to think.

Comment Re:The Blame Game (Score 4, Informative) 1532

You're an idiot, you know that? The House of Representatives represents the will of the people. The people want to get rid of Obamacare.

You realise that in the last election:

  • The Democrats won the Presidency.
  • In the Senate, of the 33 seats that were up for election, 23 were Democrat and the Republicans only needed to take 4 of them to have a majority. Instead, they lost 2.
  • In the House elections, the Democrats won the majority of the popular vote, got 3.4% more of the popular vote than last time (the Republicans got 4.8% less than last time), gained 8 seats, but still don't have an overall majority because of the way constituency boundaries are placed.

Or, to put it another way, in 2012:

  • In the Presidental election, 51.1% voted Democrat, 47.2% voted Republican.
  • In the Senate election, 53.7% voted Democrat, 42.1% voted Republican.
  • In the House election, 48.3% voted Democrat, 46.9% voted Republican.

So, in terms of popular vote, the Democrats go a (very slim) majority in two of the three elections, the Republicans didn't manage it in one. In the election where the Republicans did best (the Presidential race, 47.2%), they didn't get as much of the vote as the Democrats did in the election where they did the worst (House, 48.3%). Neither party got anywhere close to the percentage of the vote that enables someone who doesn't lie for a living to claim to have a mandate from the people.

Now, I realise the state of mathematical education is pretty poor in the USA, but being able to tell which of two numbers is bigger than the other is surely something that is covered.

Comment Re:Pay Scales (Score 1) 149

That's not usually the case. If you keep the fact that you're gay secret from your wife, then there's something that you can be blackmailed over. That makes you a security risk. The security clearance process that I've been through (in the UK) didn't care if you were gay or had a string of mistresses, as long as these weren't things that you wanted to keep secret.

Comment Re:Wonder the accuracy rate (Score 1) 77

The study was published a year or two ago, so I'm not sure why it's appearing on Slashdot now - normally I'd blame the 'editors' for this kind of late submission, but apparently they found a 'news' site with a slow news day that decided that old research papers now count as news. It's a pretty neat concept though and more recent work has improved the accuracy a lot by feeding other sensors into the mix.

Comment Re:Megalomanic (Score 1) 290

Okay, since you've obviously never even visited a research lab, let alone worked in one, let me give you a brief overview of how it works:

There are funded projects and there are resources. Some resources are allocated to a specific project and some are not. Typically, the ones allocated to a project can be used for other things if that project doesn't need them, but it gets priority. There's usually a fair amount of unused infrastructure that can be used for unofficial projects if no one else needs it.

In a well-run research lab (of which Bell Labs and Xerox PARC in this era are archetypes), there is no strict accounting of time to projects. People are expected to work on some things as part of big ongoing projects, but they have a lot of free time to devote to other things that they consider fun and interesting. This is done because the people running the lab know that these spare-time projects are how you get the seeds of the next iteration of big projects. The same is true in most research labs, including most universities, which is why I suspect that you've never been to university, as you'd have encountered this concept before.

UNIX was such a project. It was not part of any funded project at Bell Labs and was done by a few guys for fun. It then grew and was used in some funded projects (troff was the product of one such project), but wasn't officially backed by AT&T until long after it was created.

There is a distinction between funding a project and paying an individual's salary. The small group that worked on UNIX (well, UNICS back then, in one of Peter's characteristic puns - it was renamed UNIX later when it had multi-user support) had their salaries paid by Bell Labs, but they were being paid to work on other things. Their work on UNIX was not backed by management and was not funded. They had no resources allocated to the UNIX project, they used whatever they could scrounge. I've done similar things with machines a few generations old to build infrastructure for fun projects and occasionally these go on to become funded projects.

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