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Submission + - John Cook's experiment with online science trolls

Lasrick writes: John Cook is a researcher who writes about climate change denial at SkepticalScience, and he writes here about dealing with online trolls. Not only has he turned online trolling into a source of data collection, but has also come up with a very effective way to deal with trolling. Great read: 'When I turn the spotlight around to expose the techniques of science denial, the reaction can be intense.'

Comment Re:Better vs. Perfect (Score 1) 147

So we're throwing out the "better" in search for the "perfect?" Until tokens gain the ubiquity of phones (which seems unlikely), doing away with SMS-based two-factor authentication may just force many users back to the password-only era.

Two words: Google Authenticator.

There is no excuse for using SMS for 2FA when you have TOTP with a well-documented interoperability standard in RFC 6238.

Submission + - Scribbles reveal Leonardo da Vinci ahead of his time, again

schwit1 writes: A historian doing a detailed study of Leonardo da Vinci’s research on the nature of friction has discovered his first notes on the subject, where da Vinci outlined the laws of friction two hundred years before they were finally documented by a French scientist.

“The sketches and text show Leonardo understood the fundamentals of friction in 1493,” says Hutchings. “He knew that the force of friction acting between two sliding surfaces is proportional to the load pressing the surfaces together and that friction is independent of the apparent area of contact between the two surfaces. These are the ‘laws of friction’ that we nowadays usually credit to a French scientist, Guillaume Amontons, working 200 years later.”

It is an unfortunately thing that da Vinci lived and worked in Italy. Though this was where the Renaissance blossomed, it is also the place where some scientists at the time were persecuted for being too honest about their research. To protect himself da Vinci confined his scientific genius to his private diaries, written in a backwards script he created so that no one could easily understand them. Thus, while his brilliance as a painter was recognized in his lifetime and after, the discoveries he had made about engineering and science were lost for literally centuries.

Comment Re:Pissing contest (Score 1) 326

At home, dual IPS 1600x1200 displays that are over a decade old. Home-brew Intel i5 4690. 32GB RAM. 250GB SSD. 2TB spinning rust (4TB mirrored). Nvidia GTX 970 graphics. Fedora 24 w/Cinnamon desktop. Primarily used to run Eclipse, KiCAD, Chrome.

At work, 8-core Xeon E5 running RHEL7/Cinnamon, 32GB RAM, 250GB SSD, no spinning rust, and three 1920x1200 IPS displays, plus 3 other headless E5 boxes with same RAM and SSD.

On the go, a 2013 Macbook Pro running El Capitan with 8GB RAM and 250GB SSD. Often found running Windows 10 under Virtual Box, Simplify3D, Eclipse, and KiCAD.

On the sofa, a Google Nexus 10 running Lollipop because those bastards dropped support for the best tablet ever made.

Now, please excuse me while I get off your lawn, old man.

Comment Re:Arguing over the subjective (Score 1) 523

GC is unusable for real-time systems. Heck, dynamic allocation can be unusable for some systems. RAII provides deterministic behavior and timing. And if is useful for far more than memory allocation. Suggesting otherwise just demonstrates ignorance. Not throwing in destructors is rarely a limitation. GC has its place, but IMO it is overused in modern systems.

No one memory allocation is better than another. They all have their place and it is a well-rounded professional that knows this.

Comment Highly Inefficient (Score 1) 112

First off, this is a good question, since I see this happening more and more.

It can be done, it is just highly inefficient from a management perspective. More of the manager's time will be spent soliciting and providing feedback. Without being there in person, if there is a performance problem, it may be hard to tell what the political situation on the ground is like, and whether the team dynamics, developer or PM is at fault for any project-related issues that come up. And there is no substitute for in-person meetings when it comes to providing reviews, feedback and coaching.

If you are a manager in this situation expect to travel quite a bit in order to meet with your team members (at least quarterly) and their local co-workers and PMs. If, by chance, your company does not permit that sort of travel or you do not want to travel, I recommend finding new employment. It is not likely to work well.

I would not want to manage in that sort of environment unless I understood what problems they are trying to solve and was convinced that it was the most efficient way to solve it. The real key question for me has always been "are they paying me enough to put up with this shit?" It's going to be a lot more shit to deal with. You should expect to be compensated for it.

Submission + - Companies Finding It Harder To Conceal H1-B Abuses (nytimes.com)

JustAnotherOldGuy writes: In America, it's common practice to make severance pay for laid-off workers contingent on signing a "nondisparagement clause" that prohibits workers from ever speaking ill of their former employers. But as more and more layoffs are precipitated by illegal practices like hiring H1B visa-holders and forcing existing workers to train them as a condition of severance bonuses, workers are growing bolder and refusing to sign gag-clauses — or breaking them and daring their former employers to sue. Marco Peña was among about 150 technology workers who were laid off in April by Abbott Laboratories, but he decided not to sign the agreement that was given to all departing employees, which included a nondisparagement clause. Mr. Peña said his choice cost him at least $10,000 in severance pay. “I just didn’t feel right about signing,” Mr. Peña said. “The clauses were pretty blanket. I felt like they were eroding my rights," he revealed in an expose by the New York Times.

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