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Comment Re:Wish they had this in Seattle... (Score 1) 55

Here's a thought: Elect some actual civic leaders in Seattle instead of the loony crop of social activists and grandstanders currently in leadership positions.

At this moment, Mayor Murray's next big thing is implementing a new soda tax. Oh, but he's now considering taxing diet sodas too, because someone told him that black and poor people drink more regular soda than white and affluent people, and we wouldn't want a racist, regressive tax. And Councilwoman Sawant is actively encouraging protesters to illegally shut down freeways and airports this May Day. Should make for a fun commute. But hey, love those rainbow crosswalks!

Comment Re:COBOL is still quite valid for use... (Score 1) 272

Huh? You can do binary integer and floating point arithmetic in any of those languages without any libraries, classes, or modules. You can only do decimal operations in those languages by either converting the decimal numbers to binary, operating on them, and converting back or by calling something written in a different language. Hiding those things elsewhere does not magically mean that the language supports decimal.

Comment Re:COBOL is still quite valid for use... (Score 1) 272

If Java, Python, and C support decimal operations, then why are a class, a module, or a library required? COBOL, on the other hand, directly supports decimal numbers. Two fixed point numbers can be read in, then operated on directly, then written out with no conversions. And the operations (add, subtract, multiply, divide, format, etc) are done with a single machine instruction (on a mainframe).

Comment Re:So what's the issue? (Score 1) 205

So you're telling me that they should have owned the issue that they caused, and worked around it instead of putting the burden and blame on the customer? Why, that's like an airline unexpectedly needing 4 seats to get its employees to another airport on time, and thus putting them on a turboprop or in a company car instead of calling the cops to beat up the passenger who won't give up his seat!

Comment Re:Knee-jerk Reaction (Score 1) 45

Microsoft Office is commercial software, if you're not paying them to keep the software up to date, then what are you paying for?

Open Source Office products, are generally gratis, and are patched in a more responsible manner. AND you have access yourself to patch it ... yourself, unlike ... Microsoft Office.

Comment Re: It's pretty simple (Score 1) 269

Two hours

From start to finish, my dishwasher is under 4 hours (not 2 above). We don't run it during the day. I am not sure how that saves energy/money, running for so long, but that is the theory. The dishwasher I grew up with, did a whole load in under an hour.

The biggest difference between the one I grew up with, and the modern ones is that lack of etching on glasses caused by high pressure jets with food washing that was the result from the ancient dishwasher.

Its so bad, that often I do dishes by hand, because it takes too damn long in the dishwasher. I am sure that is "Energy Star" compliant.

Comment Re:Another outrage article (Score 2) 269

companies put an agreed-on label on their products, they have an incentive to check unreasonable-sounding claims from their competitors as do consumer groups

I have NO problem with this. None. Zip. Zero.

What is NOT needed, is government program to do so. Consumer Reports does a great service, and is way more effective than government would be doing the exact same job. AND they aren't influenced by donations to political campaigns. The problem I have is "Government MUST do it, because nobody else will" mentality.

Comment Re:Yes, but... (Score 5, Insightful) 214

The problem with software development is that unless you've done that exact same task before, you really have no idea what's involved. And if you HAD done that exact task before, you wouldn't need to be doing it again, as you could re-use most of your previous work. Unlike with, say, constructing a building, once software is well-built once, it doesn't have to be built a second time, at least within the same company, or if its open source.

Management is also to blame on occasion. I put together a schedule for a videogame project for a major publisher, and the schedule was rejected, saying it wasn't detailed enough. They wanted finer-grained breakdowns of tasks, so instead of one to two week tasks, they wanted one or two day tasks. The only problem: the game wasn't even designed yet - only a rough idea of the genre and licensed property we were using. So, someone (not me, thankfully) dutifully put together a bullshit schedule with fine-grained bullshit tasks, and as the due dates arrived, we simply checked off those tasks in our official project management software.

In the meantime, we had our own spreadsheet with our real tasks and timelines that we used internally, although we tried to match up major milestones as best we could. Since it was a hard deadline, we finished the core game systems as soon as possible, ruthlessly cut extraneous features, and still delivered on time. I'm sure the publisher's producers still think it was their detailed scheduling that kept everything on track.

Comment Re: It's pretty simple (Score 1) 269

General Welfare is nebulous at best. It is used to describe just about anything someone wants, from Energy Star to just about every social welfare program that has become an Entitlement. Not sure how "Promote" becomes "Entitled" in perpetuity.

The odd thing is, we can't even begin to end programs that have long since served their purposes. Energy Star was great idea, but no longer has any meaning. As I pointed out, it has done nothing to curtail the greater energy sucking Vampires (LED clocks) that are plugged into every outlet of my house. Because my toaster needs a clock.

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"In the face of entropy and nothingness, you kind of have to pretend it's not there if you want to keep writing good code." -- Karl Lehenbauer