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Comment Re: Nobody (Score 1) 236

use edge for the one and only purpose that most people use it for, it doesn't stop there. You type "Firefox download" in the search bar, and the first thing you get is a prompt to stick with edge.

Close, but not quite, for me. I also use Edge to access Microsoft web sites, with the hope that it *might* work better, on their crappy site. So far, without success.

Submission + - Australian businesses, including international tech giants, push marriage change

Javaman59 writes: "Some of the country’s biggest businesses have upped the ante in the crusade for marriage equality by asking Australians to wear a specially designed 'acceptance ring' until same-sex marriage is legalised.

Led by accommodation provider Airbnb and supported by Qantas, ANZ, Fairfax Media and Foxtel, the Until We Belong campaign has been billed as the 'most public declaration for marriage equality' so far."

Google is included in the article as an active supporter, issuing the rings to staff, and EBay are also supporters.

See also:

Comment Re:I don't use a smartphone, you insensitive clod! (Score 1) 247

Uron /. and u don't have a phone? Really??? I tried going back to a feature phone and the keyboard just about killed me...

I recently tried going back to a dumb phone. I lasted about three months before I gave up.

Overall I was much happier with a phone which just did calls and SMS, but the critical limitations were: I often couldn't view pictures people sent me; I couldn't see emoji's in TXT messages... (which can be quite important when you are starting out on a relationship); the keyboard was 50/50 for me - the longer the message the more irritating it was; and the killer - it had a software bug which made it not send about 30% of my SMS's, with no indication that the SMS hadn't gone.

This was a $100 new phone. An old Nokia might have been a better choice - if you can find the right one.

Still, it was nice having a compact, light phone in my pocket, which would only cost $100 to replace.

I'm still hoping that someone will put out the perfect dumb phone.

Comment Re:The problem isn't that they're old... (Score 1) 194

Expense isn't the issue. OIder employees with similar experience (and similar compensation) are also discriminated against.

It's really blatant in some of the ads.. "Looking for YOUNG, dynamic, candidate who works to deadline" has actually be used by someone who was stupid in placing their ad.

I remember a few years ago an Australian startup, which was then hitting the big time, putting out a similar ad. Except they were smart enough to leave out the word "young" and just hint at it with "dynamic", "eager to learn", etc, and mention that they would be joining a "young" team.

A couple of years later the company was in the news, complaining that they couldn't recruit skilled engineers

Comment Re:Email lets you organize your thoughts (Score 1) 115

Not proceeding until you get the task in writing is very sensible - I do the same. I find that some bosses and coworkers get impatient and say "Let's just get on with the job" but I stick to my guns.

Keeping people accountable for what they ask is very important too, because you build up a list of tasks, with an email trail, and then ask "Which do you want next? Do you still want task X", rather than agreeing to everything and finding yourself working late because you feel responsible for what you've taken on - or even having to admit failure after weeks of effort.

Comment Re:Email lets you organize your thoughts (Score 3, Interesting) 115

I've found that the ones who always want a meeting or prefer phone calls also are terrible at keeping up with email. Sometimes it appears that they simply are trying to avoid leaving a paper trail and are always quick to shift blame onto others when mistakes are discovered down the line.

Good observation! That has been my experience also.

I've learned the hard way that being agreeable with bosses and acting on their verbal directions can lead to a thousand troubles down the line. These days, if I receive a verbal direction I always respond with an email saying what I think was said. About 30% of the time we discover that that there had been a misunderstanding - with a significant amount of potential work involved.

This practice (of putting all verbal decisions in writing) also cuts down waffle, as my bosses and coworkers know that I am actually listening to them, and that it will all cost money (ie. the time of the follow up email).

Comment Re:Thirty percent? (Score 1) 432

You've got a good point, but in fact the entire setup of the test is nonsensical. Here's how it should work:

1) Have a judge have two conversations, not necessarily at the same time, one with a human and one with a computer. (Obviously the judge does not know who is who.) 2) Give these conversations some time - more than five minutes, for sure. 3) At the end, have the judge declare who they think is the computer and who they think is the human. 4) Do this repeatedly, and use statistical methods to determine, at certain confidence levels, whether the judges were doing better than random guessing.

When someone's devised a program that fooled, say, n=200 judges whose judgement was tantamount to random guessing at a confidence level of p=0.01, start the presses.

Thankyou. Got it.

Congratulations AC - that is a concise, scientific definition of the test.

All that these researchers have achieved is to redefine the Turing test downwards, and to redefine it so far downwards that it is a completely different test, sharing only the name. However, I see from Wikipedia that there is some history behind this redefinition. It's as if 30% success, from a blind audience, over 5 minutes may be be a first step towards passing the test - according to some. Yah... like jumping 5 feet in the air is a successful first step towards jumping into orbit, or proving Fermat for n=1..10 is a first step towards proving it for all numbers.

The OP is a technological achievement, but nothing more. It is not even relevant to the science of the Turing Test


Comment Re:flame away, but... (Score 1) 516

its not just the start menu its the EVERYTHING that's changed all at once and requiring users to make a fundamental change in the way they use tools is going to meet resistance.

Changes like this should be introduced gradually, not because we're a bunch of whining sniveling children but because require a large adjustment all at once leads to user frustration and poor efficiency during the transition time.

That was my experience with Windows 8. I was very frustrated with losing the start menu, because, over time, I had customised mine to be able to do almost everything through it. All of a sudden I couldn't find anything, and couldn't understand what principles (if any) were behind how it was laid out. I had to google for how to shutdown the computer, how to close a Metro screen, how to run a DOS command, etc...etc...

I had expected it would take me about a week to master Win8, and be then I'd like it. After a month, I was still cursing it.

I considered gettting a Start menu replacement, but before I did I started to "get" the Metro interface, and realized that I actually like having two layers for mywork, ie. that I can leave some things on the top (Metro) and leave the desktop uncluttered. After a while I had also put all my regularly used programs into the taskbar.

So, it was a vicious learning curve which I would have abandoned if I weren't locked in, but now I'm happy with the Win8 UI, and would opt-out of the Start menu, if it were available.

If that's the experiece of a tech-savvy, Windows veteran, I can only guess at how less technical people have handled the transition. I expect that many of them still don't know how to close a Metro window (you "grab" the top with the mouse, and pull it down, btw)

Comment Sums it up (Score 1) 100

I'm not really seeing it catch on either, but OCaml's sweet spot was writing fast code that dealt with very complex data structures. It enforced static typing, but used type inference to figure out what the types of variables were. It has powerful operators for assembling and splitting up data structures that let you write very concise code that was checked at compile time for correctness.

I use F# daily for the Model (and ViewModel) in WinRT and ASP.NET MVC. Your list of advantages (from OCaml) are exactly the ones which I enjoy.

In a nutshell: "... let you write very concise code that was checked at compile time".

What F# adds, mostly, is the .Net libraries, Visual Studio support, and redistribution to any .Net host. F# has added some cool features (particularly Type Providers).

Comment F# Seven years ago, and in five years time (Score 3, Insightful) 100

I got into F# seven years ago, when it was just a research project and looked more like OCaml than a .Net language.

By 2010 it had become fully integrated into .Net, and was part of the Visual Studio standard install.

By 2014 it had evolved into a complete language with its own killer-features and it had spawned a large community, with blogs, tutorials, books and sample code. There are several significant third party add-ons, and numerous high profile adopters.

In five years time, rather than F# disappearing, it is more likely that it will be the preferred language of many developers and shops, and the early adopters will be thankful for our extra years of experience.

As for me, I'm thankful not just to have it on my CV, but because it helps me build better apps for WinRT, the web (with ASP.Net MVC) and Android. The root advantage of it being a functional language in the .Net world will always be its main attraction to developers, but its aggressive development by the F# team and widespread support increase its value. This latest strategic move (of opening it to open-source contribution) will accelerate its progress.

I expect that in five years time, or, hopefully, just two, I won't have to mix F# (for the model) with C# (for the UI) for WinRT and ASP.NET MVC.

I'll link back to this in five years with "I told you so". I'll still be Javaman59 then.

>> Not much chance of that. F# just hit #12 on the Tiobe Index, up from #69 this time last year:

Yep. The sooner you get into it, the better off you'll be in five years time.

Comment It was less than once a year, until... (Score 1) 415

Until last year when I went to my GP for a "general checkup". He looked surprised and suspicious, and asked "Why?". I told him I had been drinking too much. Since then I've had about four visits in one year as the effects of 20 years of alcohol, smoking, stress, obesity and asthma have all started to take a toll.

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