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Comment No. But it destroys old cultural hegemonies. (Score 2) 110

What the internet and the modern world definitely do is level the playing field. Big time. Basically everybody can have professional tools at their hand. For free.
You can grap a guitar and spend the next three years flat, 8 hours a day, surfing youtube and learning how to play it and become an expert without ever setting foot into a classic music school.

Same goes for digital fine art. There is an abundance of digital painters out there that are at the level of the grand masters of old and perhaps even beyond. Because they have an abundance of paint and canvas. And many of them are still students and do art in their spare time.

You can go online and find videos of dancers no one has ever heard of and yet they belong to the best in the world because they've spend the last 4 years practicing in their parents garage in their spare time.

You find films that would've cashed an arthouse award on the spot 30 years ago but today barely get a few thousand views - because equipment is basically free and the entire world is making films.

What the internet does is take away the cultural hegemony of the academic field. It's not that the academic field is yelled at it's more like it's simply ignored and completely steamrolled without academic smart-alecs ever knowing what hit them. A university professor of music that merely focuses on classic and maybe two pieces of John Cage today would either have to admit that he doesn't really know that much about the world of music world today or risk being called out as being silly, stupid and ignorant. Old-school media critics know zilch about videogames and are so disconnected from what's actually happening they couldn't even form a useful opinion - allthough they sometimes do try.

An academic definition of science-fiction literarture I found in a school book two years ago is so stupid, you wouldn't even believe it.

Another very good example of this is the demo scene. They've been doing the worlds best multimedia artpieces for decades but are basically completely ignored by the academic world. Yet no one in their right mind would say that what the demoscene does does not constitute fine art in its highest form.

Bottom line:
Art is doing great. Better than ever. The concept of what constitutes 'real' art and who gets to decide about it gets shattered to bits and pieces every day though. And that is a good thing.

Comment This is again the time to remember Peter Thiel ... (Score 1) 632

... you know, that crazy super-rich silicon valley guy that made obscene amounts of money by investing in Facebook and such things.

He is quoted saying about the first internet bubble burst back in 2001 that the money that was lost didn't go away but moved into real estate. The bubble that burst there in 2008 proved his observation right. Since then he's been saying that the excess money that was in housing didn't go away but now moved into higher education an that we are now in a serious higher education bubble(!!). He does such things as rewarding students to quit university and get into startups ASAP and is pretty outspoken about asking people to stay away from college these days - at least in the US.

I don't know about you folks, but IMHO this Peter Thiel nutbag generally seems to be pretty spot on with his predictions - his bazillions of dollars seems to prove that aswell. I for my part basically second what he says am very careful about betting any sort of career on higher education and will only move into college on the side here in Germany because I want to learn the tough parts of CS and can do it for free. Or actually less money, counting the benefits I get as an enrolled student in Germany.

There is no effing way that I would go to college in the US these days - not if I can only move out with 30 000$+ in debt.

My 2 Eurocents.

Submission + - What is the best web ui toolkit? And why? (

Qbertino writes: The great thing about today is that the open standards web has basically won the platform wars. Flash is super-dead and it's a paradise of abundance of FOSS technologies all around in the frontend and backend. You could also call it a jungle. What JS/CSS/HTML5 UI toolkit would you recommend for real world projects and why? What have you had good experiences with and built working real-world products with? As a web developer it's not that I couldn't find something fitting, but I'm interested in other peoples experiences and recommendations and your educated opinion. Thanks.

Comment Bingo! (Score 5, Insightful) 391

Too much Fa(r)cebook.
Seriously, the number of people who spend all their relaxation time buried in that pile of steaming shite
and ignoring their partner is just astounding, no wonder no intimacy happens ...

Especially, I have to say it sorry, women. Many seem to spend much of their lives following all the other
women they know, and thinking that everyone else lives a better life than them (while also themselves
only posting the highlights of their own lives there, as glamorized as possible..).

I totally second that. Had precisely that experience with my last attempt to build a feasible relationship.
People need a basic ettiquette when it comes to social media and smartphones. Smartphone, tablet and laptop off when you're having quality time with your SO is my rule.

Facebook is not a social network, it's a global mental illness.

Submission + - City of Munich IT Lead: "There are no larger problems with LiMux"

Qbertino writes: As reports (German article), Karl-Heinz Schneider, lead of Munichs local system house company IT@M, responsible for Munichs IT setup, says that he was surprised about plans to decomission LiMux, the Cities staple IT project of migrating to mainly FOSS.

He goes on to claim "IT@M doesn't know of any larger technical issues with LiMux and LibreOffice." ... "We do not see pressing technical reasons to switch to MS and MS Office. [...] The concil [in their recent plans] didn't even follow the analysts suggestion to stick with using LibreOffice."

Furthermore Schneider stated that "System failures that angered citizens in recent years never were related to the LiMux project, but due to new bureaucratic procedures ..." and apparently decisions by unqualified personel at the administrative level, as Munichs administration itself states.

Raise your hand if this sort of thing sounds familiar to you. :-)

Comment The obvious: OS would be the special featureset. (Score 1) 383

Captain Obvious strikes again?

The OS then would be the specific featureset. Stuff like this happens already. In professional web development it's almost academic which OS you use on your desktop for development. Apart from some neat platform specific tools like Kaleidoscope, CodeKit, etc. that might tender to specific preferences of certain developers it's just about of nil significance which OS you use.

macOS has a neat for-money FTP client called Transmit, Linux usually has it integrated into the Filemanager.

But Atom, Geany, NetBeans, PhpStorm and so forth including local AMP or other devstacks Stacks run just about the same on all desktop OSes. ... OK, BSD might have some trouble getting some to run.

The OS is all about what you prefer at certain fringes of your work. If that's the case, that is a good reason to move to a FOSS OS btw. Which is why I moved from macOS back to Linux after 12 years and got a new 300 Euro netbook rather than the new 2300 Euro MB Pro - although I do like the massive trackpad and the keyboard - neat hardware from apple once again - no doubt.

My 2 cents.

Comment Plain and utter nonsense. (Score 1) 1001

If you're an expert pianist, you ought to be able to reproduce a simple tune on the piano, by ear and blindfolded. If you're an expert skier, you can ski backward and ski on one ski. If you're an expert chess player, you should be able to memorize any chess board at a glance. If you're an expert mathematician, you should be able to do simple integrals without reference tables. Those are not skills that you need, they are skills experts simply can't avoid acquiring as part of working in a field for many years.

Likewise, if you're an expert programmer, you should be able to write bubble sort on the whiteboard without a web search. If you're an expert Python programmer, you should have worked enough with strings so that you don't need to look up trivial functions anymore. Those skills are indicators of your experience, not specific job requirements.

Plain and utter nonsense. All the skills you mentioned above are acquired by repeatedly doing a move or a task over and over again. Programming is doing the exact opposite and having the machine do the repeating - if you are a good programmer. Memorizing bubble sort is beyond pointless for a seasoned programmer. To the contrary, if you can still recall bubble-sort, you're probably not that seasoned yet.

If you test problem solving in a job interview for programmers, you're good. If you're testing for by-heart reference knowledge, you're being silly. Perhaps the nearest equivalent would be to test how fast a programmer navigates his favorite development environment. That might actually be a useful test, vis-a-vis asking for him/her to recall bubble-sort in PL X,Y or Z.

Bottom line:
You got it totally wrong and missed the core and prime difference of programming to performing arts, sports and whatnot.

Comment Somebody has to make Keyboard phones (Score 2) 92

I like physical keyboards and it would be nice if Blackberry could continue producing them. The Keyone has me curious and an updated Passport with Android as OS would be interesting too.

Blackberry deserves to live on at least as much as Apple does.

And throughout the years their phones have gotten less uglier too. I remember my 8130 and 8310. Both very ugly and cheapy plastic all over. Not nice.
If they continue to build good phones with good keyboards, I'll always look into BlackBerry aswell when a new phone is due.

My 2 cents.

Comment It's The Age of Cyberpunk (Score 1) 805

I see a similar effect in my life and the society I live in (Germany, NRW State Capital of Duesseldorf, Germany).

I earn a neat salary for working part-time as sole web developmer in an agency, but I can only live comfortably and feel safe with a small 1-room apartment. Given, I have a daughter I support, but the truth is, jobs in IT and in these times are just to precarious and unstable to rely on steady income. That reflects on the size of the footprint I choose my every-day life to have. Basically I'm living like a well situated student, ready to move somewhere else in the republic on relatively short notice, should the need to take up a job 700km away arise.

I presume that this sort of lifestyle will only become more and more common in the future. The only people I see escaping it are my peers and friends basically going all-out alternative and setting up microhouses and organic farming collectives somewhere in cheap communities in easter Germany. Parallel to that, cultural borders are in full tilt, from vertical to horizontal, mingling and mixing in the ever growing mega-cities of the world.

If I right now had to move to some super-expensive globalized alphacity to get a job, I'd probably live in a coffin hotel or something - Neuromancer-style. Just to be able to save and have some leeway if things turn south. We're seeing what William Gibson and Neal Stephenson describe in their novels happening all over the place.

We're moving into the Age of Cyberpunk, plain and simple.

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I'd rather just believe that it's done by little elves running around.