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Comment Re:questionable (Score 1) 287

The problem is, nobody earns any serious saving money in their 20s. My savings were for shit until I was in my 30s and quite often drained with stupid shit like car repairs, apartment moves or other life situation stuff. I felt like I was doing well not running around with $5k in credit card debt.

Plus today's 20-somethings are not just managing those expenses, but juggling $500 student loan payments.

I just think it's weird how society shits on people who are otherwise responsible parents. Where do they think human beings come from, a store?

You would think that supporting family life and the resulting mostly normal, well-adjusted contributors-to-society it generally produces would be a broadly accepted social value. Instead we seem to have greedy assholes who gripe about people taking care of their kids -- when they're not bitching about problems that result from the shitty family lives they enable by making it tough to raise a family.

Comment Re:questionable (Score 3, Interesting) 287

A lot of It workers are white males, and making any discrimination claim as a white male is challenging, especially if you're only in your early 50s. You can expect low unemployment figures and high salaries to be trotted out as examples of how you're not really a member of an at-risk class.

What I'd wager is intrinsic to the problem of age discrimination is that older workers often have family commitments, and when combined with spouses working at similar professional careers and children, leads to an apparent decline in workplace engagement. The older employee is less able to devote their lives to the job (learning new tech for free in their own time, or at least less of this, working overtime hours, short-notice travel, etc).

IMHO, it's less "age discrimination" than "life situation discrimination". Younger employees living in rental housing without spouses or children are just more competitive in the workplace because they have nothing to do but work.

I don't really know how you fix it, either. In an ideal world, I'd presume that the *society* would recognize that children come from parents and parents need to engage in their families to produce productive, well-educated children, and that workers of parenting age are going to be less engaged. Thus, labor would be structured in a way that doesn't penalize this kind of natural life cycle.

Comment Re:High-brow fails [Re:It depends on the use] (Score 1) 416

But the bottleneck is not CPU itself for a good many applications.

That's true, but it's also not relevant. For most "apps", the main issues are battery life and responsiveness. Multi-core is increasingly being seen as a tool to increase responsiveness rather than throughput, because the app looks like it hasn't fallen asleep even if it hasn't done the thing that the user asked yet.

If I ask a database to do a sort, it may use parallelism under the hood, [...]

Interesting example. I wrote the sort subsystem for a (non-SQL) DBMS in one of my previous jobs, so... I guess this illustrates that we come from different perspectives on this point. In case you are curious, it was single-threaded, although it was designed to work on a clustered database, so it was parallel in the sense that it did parallel sorting across multiple machines in a cluster (which is what we called it before we called it a "cloud").

That "root engine" may indeed use FP, but the model maker doesn't have to know or care.

Right, and that's the advantage: Pure functional programming ensures that the client doesn't have to care, because workers are guaranteed not to modify anything that they are not supposed to because they are pure functions.

Map/reduce was all the rage a couple of years ago. I think the main advantage was not the map/reduce model, but the realisation that when you have "big data", you take the code to the data rather than taking the data to the code. But on top of that, forcing yourself into a pure functional style means that your code can run anywhere because it doesn't care about the context in which it runs.

Comment That's easy... (Score 0) 85

Freakonomics by Dubner and Levitt. Assuming you already know the mechanics of being in business, the most important lesson you need to know is that people respond to incentives, but they rarely respond in the way you anticipated.

I can't imagine why anyone would want to emulate Steve Jobs. He died because he believed in woo-woo quack cures. I realise that denying reality is valued in the entrepreneur business, but surely that's why you should stand out.

Comment it was about greed? (Score 3, Insightful) 157

To say that "there can be no free market in the absence of regulation" is equivalent to saying that there can be no free market, period.

For a fundamentalist definition of "free", that's accurate. There can be no free market. There is only "more free" or "less free". And even then, you're often talking about various freedoms traded off against each other.

The real world is a balancing act which requires constant, nimble adjustment. Neither Bloated Government nor The Mythical Hand of the Market can efficiently supply this by itself.

Comment Re:High-brow fails [Re:It depends on the use] (Score 1) 416

Thus, it may not match or be part of the evolution pattern you outlined.

Of course. For every highbrow concept that became mainstream, there's three that only became niche and another 20 which died off.

I think that functional programming (and I include the actor model) is more important now because of the trend towards more and more cores on the one machine. Purely functional design scales to lots of cores in a way that sequential code does not. Whether or not the industry realises this is a separate question.

Comment Re:Save 30%, retire early (Score 1) 540

Or even better, zero family or friends.

You know, I think this might be key, especially the family thing.

The 2 people I know who are in their 40s with paid-for houses, good investments (above and beyond 401k, etc) and lots of savings are REALLY cheap people. Relentless coupon clippers. Buy a huge cut of meat at Costco, cook a giant stew and eat it for every meal for a week. Vacation is staying home from work 5 days to paint the house. Can do everything short of an engine rebuild on their car (which they have owned outright for 7+ years). Only watch movies they buy used from the pawn shop. Clothes all bought at discount stores.

And neither one has much of a social life and no spouse or girlfriend.

I don't think living that way would be that hard, but getting other people to put up with it would be. I think women kind of generally look at spending behavior as a kind of signaling -- how well will you take care of me -- and if they see a guy who won't spend on himself, they figure no way, he won't take care of me or will be unpleasantly cheap.

The only *families* I've ever run into that cheap are super religious, scrimping so mom doesn't work or some other kind of lifestyle goal. And I don't think they really are accumulating anything, they just don't have anything because of one income.

Comment Re:Storage? (Score 1) 474

The bigger problem is that as great as pumped hydro is, there's a lot of awesome places for windmills and solar panels that also happen to be deserts with no water and many are also flat, with no place uphill to pump it to even if you had the water.

The giant battery farms are interesting, but after 10 years what percentage of the batteries need to be replaced? Because battery tech is so primitive, building lots of battery farms with batteries that burn out after a decade starts to sound like a real problem, especially if it involves massive mining efforts for lithium at 10x the current demand.

Personally, I'd like to see more done with raised mass storage, including some of the novel systems using large concrete "pistons" over a column of water. During the day (or when the wind blows, etc), water is pumped under the mass, raising it up, and at night the water flows the other way, spinning the pump/turbine.and generating power.

It's kind of like pumped hydro, but all you need to do is dig two cylinders for pumping the water from/to the mass, you're not as dependent on pre-existing geography.

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