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Comment Re:It has its uses (Score 2) 405

"People are realising that inheritance is not the be-all and end-all... They're realising that deep inheritance hierarchies often lead to complex code which is tricky to understand exactly what code is going to execute when..."

I'm pretty sure it was 1990 when one of my professors said, "We used to worry about spaghetti GOTOs; now we have to worry about spaghetti inheritance".

Comment Re:Not surprised (Score 5, Insightful) 505

Of course you're correct about all that. But let me add some perspective to the America-firsters position, because it is, in its horrible way, at least partly consistent.

The majority of tourism dollars and employment go to the coastal, well-to-do, cosmopolitan, educated, liberal cities. The fact that alt-right anti-visitor policies are going to cripple the tourism industry isn't a bug to our regressive political thinkers; it's a feature. The fact that the coastal cities, the educated people, the cosmopolitan culture, the LBGTQ-friendly places, the colleges that receive foreign students, will be in a shambles is expressly among the things that they desire. Arguing that fact will not dissuade them; it will actually reinforce how wonderful these policies are.

Comment Telephone Game: Racist Edition (Score 3, Interesting) 197

Reuters version -- "applicants who have ever been present in territory controlled by the Islamic State" * (link)
Verge version -- "applicants who have ever visited ISIS-controlled territory" (link)
Parent version -- "applications from people who like to hang out with ISIS" (above)

* Comprised in the majority of citizens who were victims, prisoners, kidnapped, abused, forced slaves and wives, i.e., any brown-skinned refugees.

Comment Uber Isn't Even Profitable (Score 4, Informative) 200

"It's hard to find much of a precedent for Uber's losses. Webvan and—two now-defunct phantoms of the original dot-com boom—lost just over $1 billion combined in their short lifetimes. Inc. is famous for losing money while increasing its market value, but its biggest loss ever totaled $1.4 billion in 2000. Uber exceeded that number in 2015 and is on pace to do it again this year [2016]."


Comment Re:Interviews need training, too (Score 1) 1001

Likewise: One of my last interviews in my gaming career, an interviewer (producer) asked me to convert a string of ASCII digits to an integer value. I did happen to remember the algorithm directly from my machine architecture class (which I feel is quite memorable). Didn't believe me when I said it's actually more efficient to walk in the forwards direction through the string and multiply by 10 at each step (he maintained you had to search to the end of the string for the lowest place-value, the walk back right-to-left). I even walked through an example to show him correct result and total operations -- still didn't believe me. No job offer, left the industry.

Comment Re:BS detector went off and is overheating (Score 1) 309

Well... "it has no other interpretation" is a bit strong. Capital Pi is of course used as the multiple product symbol (like capital sigma for sums).

More on-topic, lower case pi can get used for different purposes in mathematics. The one I'm most familiar with is the population proportion in statistical work.

More: Greek letters used in mathematics, et. al. (pi).

Comment Re:Hang on - let me put on my shocked face... (Score 2) 197

Sure, e.g., here are the first few 5-score comments from the Slashdot thread "How President Trump Could Destroy Net Neutrality" on Nov-10, 2016:

"Trump can't do squat..."

"Reality is, for Trump business ventures Net Neutrality is a huge plus and as such it would be really dumb to cripple his and his families future business interests."

"This is through-and-through FUD. To best of my knowledge Trump is rather anti-media, and all big players that would benefit from NN repeal are also happen to be media."

Etc., etc.

Comment Re:Do you just need the right teacher? (Score 2) 229

A major problem is that practically no teachers in U.S. elementary schools actually understand math (and so they teach the emergency fall-back of remember this nonsense). Education majors in the U.S. have perennially had the lowest qualifications of anyone entering college, and the highest rating for math dislike/anxiety. They're effectively self-selected for lack of mathematical understanding. I talked to a guy who used to run a middle school, and he said that he had no hope or even desire of getting math experts into the system, because they couldn't possibly be good with young kids.

There was an excellent article by Patricia Clark Kenschaft in the Notices of AMS (2005), on how she observed this functioning at both poor and wealthy schools, and concluded that most people who got math in elementary school must have some outside/home resource to make that happen. (Link)

Comment Re:This Is What Happens When You Ignore The People (Score 1) 502

Just to begin the breakdown of fake news here: elected politicians actually do deliver on the majority of their promises (66.7% of such promises in the U.S.). That 83% of Americans believe otherwise is simply one of their many mass delusions.

Comment Non-Discoverable Interfaces (Score 5, Insightful) 489

For me, the #1 modern UI sin, which wasn't included in the list here -- Non-discoverable interfaces. Interfaces based on some "gesture" which is never explained, and for which one cannot find an explanation (unless you already know the gesture to get there, if it exists). Pinch-zoom, hover in a magic corner, drag from edge, press screen for short vs. long time, invisible menu bars, etc., etc. In the 1984-2010 era I could follow the words in the menus and discover new features in any piece of software (and so could anyone, assuming they weren't illiterate). The last few years have brought my first experiences with software that I just couldn't begin to figure out how to do anything with.

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