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Comment Re:Patent office should have to pay legal fees (Score 1) 143

And reduce the funding to pay for more patent examiners? So the worse they do, the worse they get. Beatings will continue until morale improves.

Some internal controls are warranted. (If n of your patents gets invalidated, you're canned and we hire somebody better to take your place.) Taking money from the gatekeeper so that he can guard the gates better isn't the way.

Comment Worth trying (Score 5, Interesting) 318

Everybody poo-poos it, I'm a better coder on my own, the other guy's wasting time, etc. But I tried it and I was never a better coder than when I was working in a pair. You'd get all the "missing semicolon" stuff that everybody talks about, which isn't exactly a waste, but you also have two brains deeply enmeshed in the code and data structures, so you can blend the best of two styles of programming. Sometimes I'd write a braindead construct and the other guy would simplify it, and sometimes he'd create this god-awful structure and I'd clean it up. But you can bounce ideas off another programmer without having to explain the function, show him the code, let him get his head wrapped around it, all that. It's not all grunting and pointing, sometimes it's, "Dude, use a switch/case" or "Just use the library function."

It's not for everybody - nothing is - but it's definitely worth trying with an honest effort.

Comment Re:notepad++ dude. (Score 5, Insightful) 300

Way to really not even try to be helpful.

WYSIWYG editors are wildly helpful when it comes to saving time and opportunities to typo your code. If you can put together an error-free 7x9 table in Notepad++ in five seconds, get off Slashdot and get back to your hyperproductive life. (Also, I call BS.) If time and accuracy are no object, it's a hobby or you're learning. In those cases, by all means, use a straight up text editor, because you're writing web pages for the joy of doing it, or you need to do it more to practice and get better at it.

For the rest of us, who do this sort of thing for a living, or as a time-sensitive project, we need pages coded quickly and accurately, which is why we (convince our employers to) pay hundreds or thousands of dollars for products like Dreamweaver. The split view in Dreamweaver is really useful for doing tricky layouts. Let the program do the heavy lifting by dropping in whatever blocks/tables/whatever that you need, tweak the code as necessary to get the desired result, push the changes up to pre-production, and get on to the next thing that needs to be done ALL WITHOUT SWITCHING WINDOWS. It doesn't leave out tags, it doesn't typo parameters, it doesn't forget the name of that one variable you need to change to get what you're looking for.

If you're shunning tools to make you more productive in the name of intellectual purity, you're just being difficult and spiteful to yourself, your boss, your employer, your client, or any number of other stakeholders, people who need to see the work done for a reason other than to demonstrate you can do it.

tl;dr: No.

Comment More update than addition (Score 4, Informative) 1167

This isn't entirely new. They're basically expanding "Computer systems analyst, programmer, software engineer" to "anyone working in a computer or IT related occupation". Analysts, designers, coders, testers of software were out before. Looks like they're expanding it to DBAs, IT managers, sysadmins and other IT gigs. IANALegislator, so your read is as good as mine, or better. Presented below for your reference:

(17) any employee who is a computer systems analyst, computer programmer, software engineer, or other similarly skilled worker, whose primary duty is—
(A) the application of systems analysis techniques and procedures, including consulting with users, to determine hardware, software, or system functional specifications;
(B) the design, development, documentation, analysis, creation, testing, or modification of computer systems or programs, including prototypes, based on and related to user or system design specifications;
(C) the design, documentation, testing, creation, or modification of computer programs related to machine operating systems; or
(D) a combination of duties described in subparagraphs (A), (B), and (C) the performance of which requires the same level of skills, and who, in the case of an employee who is compensated on an hourly basis, is compensated at a rate of not less than $27.63 an hour.

(17) any employee working in a computer or information technology occupation (including, but not limited to, work related to computers, information systems, components, networks, software, hardware, databases, security, internet, intranet, or websites) as an analyst, programmer, engineer, designer, developer, administrator, or other similarly skilled worker, whose primary duty is--
‘(A) the application of systems, network or database analysis techniques and procedures, including consulting with users, to determine or modify hardware, software, network, database, or system functional specifications;
‘(B) the design, development, documentation, analysis, creation, testing, securing, configuration, integration, debugging, modification of computer or information technology, or enabling continuity of systems and applications;
‘(C) directing the work of individuals performing duties described in subparagraph (A) or (B), including training such individuals or leading teams performing such duties; or
‘(D) a combination of duties described in subparagraphs (A), (B), and (C), the performance of which requires the same level of skill;
who is compensated at an hourly rate of not less than $27.63 an hour or who is paid on a salary basis at a salary level as set forth by the Department of Labor in part 541 of title 29, Code of Federal Regulations. An employee described in this paragraph shall be considered an employee in a professional capacity pursuant to paragraph (1).’.

Comment Re:I don't work in the public sector. (Score 1) 382

Having worked both public and private sector IT, I'm interested in your perception of "zillions of perks".

Health insurance: Provided at a discounted rate to public sector employees as well as private. Working public sector, I have the local BC/BS HMO, for which I pay out of my paycheck. Working public sector, same thing. I paid part, my employer paid part. I see no difference.

Unions: I've never been a member of a union, public or private. No difference there.

More holiday time: Two weeks a year time off both ways. Private sector, I had the day after Thanksgiving and the day before Christmas off. Public, I get Columbus Day and Washington's Birthday off. On balance, not much of a difference, if any.

Guaranteed pay raises: I don't know if you remember, but federal employees' pay rates were frozen last year. Now I have guaranteed NO pay raises for a few years. I imagine private employees don't have legislation prohibiting them from getting cost-of-living increases. There's a difference, but not the one you'd expect.

Are there more, or are we taking four as being equivalent to "zillions", and "roughly equivalent compensation" for "perks"?

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