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Comment Where are these Cobol positions? (Score 1) 362

Serisously: Where are these Cobol positions in desperate need of filling?

If they really are desperately needed, they should translate into 80 000€+/Year, 40 hour workweeks, 30 days of vacation, zero-fuss relocation support and some other niceties. Give me that and I'll drop my current hard-pressing hipster-induced TypeScript/JS/NodeJS ambitions instantly and dive into Cobol right away. I'll be the Cobol master in a year and enjoy it aswell. And as a guy with ERP/E-Commerce order processing experience, I get serial processing (which banks still do for transactional safety) and other old-school super-conservative ways of doing things.

But somehow something tells me they want people no older than 28 with 10+ years of Cobol experience and top-grade proficiency with Oracle 4.x and some obscure version of AIX. And offer a laughable 44 000€/Year and I have to move to Frankfurt, a town that is ugly as hell and has real-estate and living costs move off the charts big time, even more so since Brexit.

So, unless I get a call by a banking Ops manager telling me that he's in desperate need for Coders willing to move to Cobol and if I would care to give it a shot and offers me something along the lines stated in the first paragraph, I'm not really holding my breath or feeling to much pitty for the banks.

My 2 eurocents.

Comment Re:You're being a bit naive (Score 2) 287

It would be child's play to maintain artificial scarcity. If you're a member of the ruling class who's power, wealth and prestige depends on that scarcity it's in your best interests to maintain it.

That's where the Cyberpunk comes in. Tribes and groups building alternate societies and cultures utilitzing technology salvaged from the mainstream or built as an alternative to established ways of dealing wiht things. This always happens. Only the revolution in tech is rarely violent in a classic class-warfare sense. It's simply people building alternatives to systems that don't work. As technology get's cheaper that becomes easyer for more and more people. One trait of the age of cyberpunk is that cultural and economic spaces aren't spacially divided but stacked on to each other and basically spread out globall - which is a side-effect of current developments. As further advanced technology gets, the easyer it is to actually implement marxism, because it becomes easyer and easyer to take what I need without taking away from others. See FOSS for a prime example.

Likewise, maintaining artificial scarcity is pointless when what I need can be provided faster and easyer by robots than the people I would want to control. There is no incentive anymore to control people beyond a certain point in such a society. It would be more trouble than it is worth and is much better done by netflix and facebook than with all-out opression.

What I'm doing right now I can do in just about any part of the world thjat has an internet connection. A sign of things to come. Yes, sure, Google or some other megacorp will own everthing but it will be so dirt cheap to use it and so costly to deny it to people that we can very well have an Utopia.

Comment Re: Flying car? (Score 1) 148

Public transportation that works, in my America? Ha ha... unlikely outside of NYC and a few other urban hotspots.

No the 'MERICAN solution would be to have a fleet of air cranes (helicopters with freaking huge electromagnets) on standby that could come pluck your car out of traffic and set you down near your destination while you laugh manically at the losers stuck behind in gridlock.

Comment Re:Missing option: None (Score 1) 168

Yeah... Try that in a multilingual environment.... I dare you. I routinely work with five languages in a day, but my phone only knows one. Okay, it knows four of the five, but I have to select one.

It also assumes it does understand what you said. My experience is: it doesn't even when I do talk English to my phone. Obviously that is my fault. I'm not going to deny that.

Where I live, you see/hear no one use these systems.... For good reason.

On a decent keyboard, all of those are -by the way- faster than what you say. You conveniently omit the "Sir/Alexa/OK Google/Cortana" detection phrase, then your inquiry, then the processing, then the verification of what has been detected, then the acknowledgement of the fact that detection has worked correctly. Otherwhise you get such things as "When date LGBT closet tonight". Not really acceptable.

Comment The post-scarcity economy is coming either way. (Score 4, Interesting) 287

I think what many people don't get is that the post-scarcity economy is coming, one way or the other.

Point in case: I do web development in an agency, and while my work isn't always all-out pointless like that of some of my peers who produce power-point presentations (no joke - they produce presentations for a living - we make quite an amount of money of this), I also see clearly that most of my work comes from LAMP and WordPress being so shitty that building something that resembles a useful model often requires hours of custom programming per project. I work part-time, 5 hours/day, so I don't go insane and even that remaining work is mostly a classic "bullshit-job".

We are moving into an all out cyberpunk post-scarcity economy - that's a plain and simple fact. Meanwhile the luxury problems I have come from cellphone manufacturers artificially inflating phone-storage prices or not offering the exact type of phone I'm looking for, the girls I meet often being to tied up in social media to be useful for quality time and me being to lazy to book my surfing vacation for late summer.

Money in it's current for is either becoming worhless (negative interest) or being removed alltogether (sharing economy, access culture).

The problems that await us will stem from people and societies who can't deal with a post-scarcity economy and turn fanatic - religiously, politically or otherwise. That is the problem Jack Ma is probably talking about.

Other than that I personally see no problem with the rise of robots.
If we play our cards right, we can have an utopia in a century. But probably the nutbags are going to screw this up again, using religion and/or totalitarianism, as usual.

My 2 eurocents.

Comment Functional Programming is a good thing. (Score 1) 416

So is knowing and understanding it.

FP basically forces you to do multiple steps in one and trains your brain to think faster. Getting rid of state wherever possible is a neat thing too and enables more complex programms and routines that are less error-prone and more vertasile.

As long as you can wrap your head around what your doing FP is great. I've made a habit of using it whenever I can. ... Although sometimes I'm just to lazy or tired and start wittling about with variables again.

Comment Re:Fortran (Score 1) 629

My father showed me basic when I wanted to use the computer as a calculator (basic arithmetic). I discovered programming.

He then saw talent in me and bought me a Turbo Pascal book (in my mother tongue... English would not have worked at that age) and a copy of Turbo Pascal (I presume from work, but... I don't know where exactly he got it from).

... and that's how he awoke my interest in computers and ultimately the profession I would choose.

Thanks dad...


Slashdot Asks: What Was Your First Programming Language? ( 629

This question was inspired by news that Stanford's computer science professor Eric Roberts will try JavaScript instead of Java in a new version of the college's introductory computer programming course. The Stanford Daily reports: When Roberts came to Stanford in 1990, CS106A was still taught in Pascal, a programming language he described as not "clean." The department adopted the C language in 1992. When Java came out in 1995, the computer science faculty was excited to transition to the new language. Roberts wrote the textbooks, worked with other faculty members to restructure the course and assignments and introduced Java at Stanford in 2002... "Java had stabilized," Roberts said. "It was clear that many universities were going in that direction. It's 2017 now, and Java is showing its age." According to Roberts, Java was intended early on as "the language of the Internet". But now, more than a decade after the transition to Java, Javascript has taken its place as a web language.
In 2014 Python and Java were the two most commonly-taught languages at America's top universities, according to an analysis published by the Communications of the ACM. And Java still remains the most-commonly taught language in a university setting, according to a poll by the Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education. In a spreadsheet compiling the results, "Python appears 60 times, C++ 54 times, Java 84 times, and JavaScript 28 times," writes a computing professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, adding "if Java is dying (or "showing its age"...) it's going out as the reigning champ."

I'm guessing Slashdot's readers have their own opinions about this, so share your educational experiences in the comments. What was your first programming language?

Comment Errrm, yes. ... And? They're friggin' CHROMEBOOKS! (Score 1) 84

They run Chrome OS. Basically an extension of Google into your lap. Like android phones are a extension of Google into your hands and pockets.

Complaining that Google is observing it's users is like complaining that water is wet. Observing users is Googles freakin business model, that's what they earn money with. That's why you get all the neat stuff including cloud storage basically for free. This is also the reason Google is not another MS or Apple. They are a different league. They don't care what your device costs and which software it runs, as long as you use Google. Plain and simple.

And because of this, Google could offer services for minors no other company could. Like, for instance, warning parents when the child is communicating with a person that is obviously an unknown middle-aged man posing as a teenager.

I guess the EFF get's the Captain Obvious Award for stating that Google observes it's users. ... Allthough I do like them basically doing public education on the matter - probably needed in the US I presume.

Comment Re:IMAP & SMTP (Score 2) 70

That is because you assume that "Apps" are the same as "Applications" or "Programs". That isn't really the case: "Apps" come from the mobile space and are usually touch optimized dumbed down versions. Often they are just fronts for web applications, instead of full native applications. Applications or programs like Thunderbird are not "Apps", they stand on their own and talk SMTP and IMAP and are compatible with all servers that speak these open protocols. That is inherently superior than proprietary "Apps" that do not talk open protocols.

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