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Administration Admits Obamacare Website Stinks 516

Hugh Pickens DOT Com writes "The WSJ reports that six days into the launch of insurance marketplaces created by the new health-care law, the federal government finally acknowledged that design and software problems have kept customers from applying online for coverage. The website is troubled by coding problems and flaws in the architecture of the system, according to insurance-industry advisers, technical experts and people close to the development of the marketplace. Information technology experts who examined the website at the request of The Wall Street Journal say the site appeared to be built on a sloppy software foundation and five outside technology experts interviewed by Reuters say they believe flaws in system architecture, not traffic alone, contribute to the problems. One possible cause of the problems is that hitting 'apply' on causes 92 separate files, plug-ins and other mammoth swarms of data to stream between the user's computer and the servers powering the government website, says Matthew Hancock, an independent expert in website design. He was able to track the files being requested through a feature in the Firefox browser. Of the 92 he found, 56 were JavaScript files... 'They set up the website in such a way that too many requests to the server arrived at the same time,' says Hancock adding that because so much traffic was going back and forth between the users' computers and the server hosting the government website, it was as if the system was attacking itself. The delays come three months after the Government Accountability Office said a smooth and timely rollout could not be guaranteed because the online system was not fully completed or tested. 'If there's not a general trend of improvement in the next 72 hours of use in this is system then it would indicate the problems they're dealing with are more deep seated and not an easy fix,' says Jay Dunlap, senior vice president of health care technology company EXL."

NSA Surveillance Heat Map: NSA Lied To Congress 385

anagama writes "NSA officials have repeatedly denied under oath to Congress that even producing an estimate of the number of Americans caught up in its surveillance is impossible. Leaked screenshots of an NSA application that does exactly that, prove that the NSA flat out lied (surprise). Glenn Greenwald continues his relentless attacks with another bombshell this time exposing Boundless Informant. Interestingly, the NSA spies more on America than China according to the heat map. Representative Wyden had sought amendments to FISA reauthorization bill that would have required the NSA to provide information like this (hence the NSA's lies), but Obama and Feinstein demanded a pure reauthorization of FISA, which they got at the end of 2012." And if you don't mind that you might have your name on yet another special list, you might enjoy this Twitter-based take on the ongoing news.

Comment Skilled in what exactly? (Score 2) 195

Because it certainly does n't sound like it is in object orientated program design. Being able to code is just one part of being a skilled programer, being a "rockstar" style coder may seem impressive but banging out pages of code at a time is never a good sign and I say this as someone who spent a good five years working this way.

It is only when you have to maintain your own code for years that you start to step back and think more because at the end of the day you can not code your way out of trouble, well you can but the result is never pretty or maintainable.

Personally I find that I spend around 25% thinking, 25% coding, 25% testing and 25% documenting any one problem. The 50% spent testing and documenting is n't fun by anymeans but it's a necessary discipline. It's all about taming your inner coder and I think this is what the majority of these frameworks do indirectly by creating road blocks so that you have to hit the breaks every so often.

Comment Great Hardware (Score 4, Interesting) 134

Just saying that going with Android makes Nokia another "me too" company totally discounts that Noka phones are always beautifully designed and very robust.

The last two nokia phones I've had have terrible software problems but I could not fault the hardware. Where as my experience with HTC phones one had a joystick that broke and my current HD2 has had the USB power connector fail on me.

If they had gone with Android they could have easily competed with Samsung and had a good percentage of the Android smartphone market. The problem is Elop somehow managed to convince people that with Windows Mobile he could restore past glory and be like Apple. Sure they now have nearly have 100% of the Windows Mobile market, but whats that at the moment? 1% of smartphones?

The thing is Elop does n't understand the industry, he came from Microsoft. He's a Microsoft man, the question at the time should have been something like this "We have two available OS options, one has a proven record of being something customers want and the other has failed pretty badly up to now." . Which one would you go with? Sure you will have to compete with Samsung with the same OS, but they're now competing with Apple, Samsung and everyone else with a different OS and failing badly.

Regardless, it's a moot point now but I don't recall anyone at the time saying this was going to end well for Nokia.

Comment Re:ARM64 is a mess (Score 1) 160

> In the end, the few uses of conditional execution

That why x86 introduced cmov for doing conditional mov ?

I'd wager that there is n't a conditional move uOP when the x86 cmov instruction is decoded, in fact on the original P6 arch there is n't a major speed improvement by using cmov in fact cmov performance various considerably from processor to processor.

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