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Submission + - US Dept. of Ed: English, History, and Civics Teachers Good Enough for CS Class

theodp writes: In A New Chapter for Computer Science Education, the U.S. Department of Education explained earlier this month that the federal STEM Education Act of 2015 'provides an unprecedented opportunity to fully leverage federal resources' to address large gaps in students’ participation in Advanced Placement (AP) computer science classes based on gender and race. "In three states," lamented the DOE, "not a single female student took the AP computer science exam" (that only 8 boys took the AP CS exam in those same 3 states was apparently not a concern). And the DOE has good news for those hoping to tap Title I and II funds for CS, but don't have any computer science teachers. "A background in math or science isn’t necessarily a requirement to teach CS," explains the Dept. of Ed, "as disciplines like English, history and civics can also provide a solid foundation for teaching CS concepts." So, is "good enough for CS class" the new "good enough for government work"?

Submission + - Will 'Every Student Succeeds Act' Make White Boys Less Successful in CS/STEM?

theodp writes: On Thursday, President Obama signed into law the Every Student Succeeds Act, a rewrite of the No Child Left Behind law. "This legislation," explained Microsoft, "will increase access to STEM and computer science learning nationwide and will advance some of the goals outlined in Microsoft’s National Talent Strategy." But some odd wordsmithery in the No Child Left Behind replacement suggests that it may not be all good news, at least if you're a K-12 White boy seeking out new CS/STEM enrichment opportunities afforded by ESSA. From page 176 of the Every Student Succeeds Act (pdf): "Each local educational agency, or consortium of such agencies, that receives an allocation under section 4105(a) shall use a portion of such funds to develop and implement programs and activities that support access to a well-rounded education and that...may include programs and activities, such as...programming and activities to improve instruction and student engagement in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, including computer science, (referred to in this section as ‘STEM subjects’) such as-(i) increasing access for students through grade 12 who are members of groups underrepresented in such subject fields, such as female students, minority students, English learners, children with disabilities, and economically disadvantaged students, to high quality courses." In its July analysis, the STEM Education Coalition, which counts Microsoft as a member, attributed the enrichment eligibility criteria clause to NY Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. Last year, Gillibrand said, "Typically, in STEM fields, science, technology, engineering and math, it's typically white men. Very few women, very few minorities, very few from economically disadvantaged neighborhoods. So we want to change that." So, mission accomplished?

Submission + - No Child Left Behind Replacement: More CS Opportunities for All But White Boys?

theodp writes: Microsoft is celebrating the passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act, a rewrite of the No Child Left Behind Act, which President Obama signed into law Thursday. "This legislation," explains Microsoft VP/lobbyist Fred Humphries, "will increase access to STEM and computer science learning nationwide and will advance some of the goals outlined in Microsoft’s National Talent Strategy. And its passage comes at a unique time during Computer Science Education Week, which is intended to highlight the importance of computer science education" (during CsEdWeek 2014, Humphries looked on as President Obama 'learned to code'). But, what Microsoft doesn't mention is that the No Child Left Behind Act replacement may leave at least some groups of children behind when it comes to the new CS/STEM opportunities. From page 176 of the 391-page Every Student Succeeds Act (pdf): "Each local educational agency, or consortium of such agencies, that receives an allocation under section 4105(a) shall use a portion of such funds to develop and implement programs and activities that support access to a well-rounded education and that...may include programs and activities, such as...programming and activities to improve instruction and student engagement in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics, including computer science, (referred to in this section as ‘STEM subjects’) such as-(i) increasing access for students through grade 12 who are members of groups underrepresented in such subject fields, such as female students, minority students, English learners, children with disabilities, and economically disadvantaged students, to high quality courses." And if that wordsmithery means you'll be seeing fewer White boys in CS, well that would seem to advance some of the goals outlined Thursday in Google's CS Education in Media Strategy!

Comment Re:Trump is front and center (Score 1) 452

(*) I'm a fan of Trump, and would welcome informed debate about the candidates. Unfortunately, most people here can't rub two words together to spark a rational argument. Anyone is welcome to take that as a challenge, if you feel up to it.

If you can listen to Trump for more than 60 seconds without recoiling in disgust and wanting to change the channel then I have bad news for you. That makes you an even bigger douchebag than Trump.

I suppose trying and failing is better than not even trying at all.

Submission + - P=NP and More

FredK writes: I have recently posted a proof/algorithm that P=NP and more. I'm going to see if crowd sourced refereeing can get me past the the road blocks I've encountered. Details at http://mathalacarte.com/pnp

Submission + - Will you be able to run a modern desktop environment in 2016 without systemd?

yeupou writes: Early this year, David Edmundson from KDE, concluded that "In many cases [systemd] allows us to throw away large amounts of code whilst at the same time providing a better user experience. Adding it [systemd] as an optional extra defeats the main benefit". A perfectly sensible explanation. But, then, one might wonder to which point KDE would remain usable without systemd?

Recently, on one Devuan box, I noticed that KDE power management (Powerdevil) no longer supported suspend and hibernate. Since pm-utils was still there, for a while, I resorted to call pm-suspend directly, hoping it would get fixed at some point. But it did not. So I wrote a report myself. I was not expecting much. But neither was I expecting it to be immediately marked as RESOLVED and DOWNSTREAM, with a comment accusing the "Debian fork" I'm using to "ripe out" systemd without "coming with any of the supported solutions Plasma provides". I searched beforehand about the issue so I knew that the problem also occurred on some other Debian-based systems and that the bug seemed entirely tied to upower, an upstream software used by Powerdevil. So if anything, at least this bug should have been marked as UPSTREAM.

While no one dares (yet) to claim to write software only for systemd based operating system, it is obvious that it is now getting quite hard to get support otherwise. At the same time, bricks that worked for years without now just get ruined, since, as pointed out by Edmunson, adding systemd as "optional extra defeats its main benefit". So, is it likely that we'll still have in 2016 a modern desktop environment, without recent regressions, running without systemd?

Submission + - ESR: Radical Feminists Are Attempting to Frame Linus, Others for Sexual Assault (ibiblio.org)

_KiTA_ writes: Open Source Pioneer Eric S. Raymond has revealed explosive allegations on his blog, claiming that he has a source with evidence that the Ada Initiative, a tech initiative designed to support women in open source, has been attempting to frame Linus Torvalds and other high profile members of the Linux and Open Source community for sexual assault. Linus has been noted for never being alone at conferences as of late, apparently this is a defensive move due to repeated attempts to "scalp" him — getting him alone and then immediately pushing a fake claim of sexual harassment or assault to either have him arrested or pulled off Linux development.

Possibily related to October's Linux Kernel Dev Sarah Sharp Quits, Citing 'Brutal' Communications Style story on how feminist Sarah Sharp took words out of context to try and suggest Linus and Greg were being aggressive monsters on the Kernel Mailing List — something she equates with physical violence on her blog.

Sarah Sharp is a member of the Ada Initiative's Advisory Board, the group that is apparently behind the attempt to frame Linus, among others, for sexual misconduct.

Comment Re:MIssing Option ? (Score 1) 164

Parents choose to have children.

Children do not choose to be born.

This means that children owe their parents nothing in exchange for taking care of them before they are capable of taking care of themselves. It was the parents' actions which are responsible for the state of the child's infirmary (relative to adult capabilities), therefore it is their responsibility to correct.

Everything that parents do to bring their child into adulthood is simply the fulfillment of a obligation they incurred when they created a helpless and dependant child.

Do you expect your bank to go out of their way to thank you for paying your mortgage on time every month?

Comment Re:MIssing Option ? (Score 4, Informative) 164

Mother's Day (and Father's Day) would be a meaningful if there was a general acceptance that parents need to accomplish a bit more than merely breed and see that a child survives to adulthood in order to earn special recognition.

I can't think of another situation where the "everybody gets a trophy, no matter what" effect is more harmful than parenting.

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