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Comment Yes still a dream (Score 1) 65

1 99.999765% of car drivers can barely handle 2 dimensions, going flying in 3 dimensions? Not a chance in hell.
2 the FAA will require a pilots license
3 the FAA will require aircraft maintenance. This means 99.999768% of all typical car owners will never be able to own one as they will whine like hungry babies when told they need to spend $8900 to have the engine rebuilt that is working just fine. Yes the FAA requires scheduled engine rebuilding.
4 Parking and FAA flight restrictions means you cant just fly from home to work.

Comment Re: Electric, or Jet? (Score 1) 165

Actually... I knew exactly what he meant.

I think the person being pedantic is you. He might being imprecise. I think you are the one who's being ostentatious about your learning or overly concerned with minute details or formalisms.



ostentatious in one's learning.
overly concerned with minute details or formalisms, especially in teaching.

Comment Re:Which is why bars serve peanuts pretzels and ch (Score 1) 78

For three thousand years, everyone "knew" that the only places to play go pieces in the early game was on columns 3 and 4.

Then A.I. played on column 5 in the shoulder position on move 37 and it payed off enormously with control of the middle of the board later in the game... which it won.

Salty snacks has seemed to make sense for a long time. But .. then a study comes along and what you always "knew to be true" may be shown to not be true.

Comment The Tautological President (Score 3) 619

President Trump has made a habit of signing executive orders which say we will do what we are doing.

And that's all the latest executive order does. It literally doesn't change anything. It simply says we will do what we've been doing.

And, really, that's all the president can do except veto things. Mr. Trump shouldn't even be able to order acts of war without prior approval of congress. It's one thing to attack terrorists (for which president's have some approval). It's illegal and unconstitutional to attack the legitimate military forces of sovereign nations without explicit approval by congress.

When are people going to catch on to the fact that Mr. Trump isn't really achieving *anything* with most of his executive orders except publicity? He's dependent on congress to budget money and to change laws.

And since his government is still largely unstaffed after nearly 90 days in office, he lacks the people to implement his policies. There is a serious disconnect between the presidency and the departments right now created by thousands of unfilled upper level positions.

Comment Re: Golden age of remakes maybe (Score 1) 1221

Memorable lines from The Martian:

  • Science the shit out of this.
  • Remember that astronaut ... nice funeral for? Turns out he's alive and we left him on Mars. Our bad. Sincerely, NASA.
  • Mark Watney, Space Pirate.
  • Mars will come to fear my botany powers.
  • if you didn't want me to go through your stuff, you shouldn't have left me for dead on a desolate planet.
  • I admit it's dangerous, but I'd get to fly around like Iron Man.
  • Once you grow crops somewhere, you have officially colonized it. So, I've technically colonized Mars. In your face, Neil Armstrong!
  • and I had to look this one up to get it all: "By the way, physicists, when describing things like acceleration do not use the word "fast". So they're only doing that in the hopes that I won't raise any objections to this lunacy, because I like the way "fastest man in the history of space travel" sounds. I do like the way it sounds... I mean, I like it a lot.... I'm not going to tell them that."

Great SF, near-future, heavy on triumph of humanity working together and science over superstitious antiscientific woo-woo.

Comment Re:I was most frustrated by ... (Score 1) 149

Developers deliver kludged, hacked up, cowboy code.

Maintenance programmers fix the bugs in that code and should also be able to make it easier to maintain.

I managed both development and maintenance teams and I was a maintenance programmer at heart from the first code I took over in the early 1980s.

The original rule was no one can touch the program INVTUP. After they grew confident in my abilities, they let me make a series of changes to the program that didn't change functionality but which did improve legibility and maintainability. It took about 15 months but at the end I'd reduced the program from over 30,000 lines of ill documented spaghetti code to about 12,000 lines of well documented, well structured code which was trivial for any programmer to maintain..

In many cases, I've helped other programmers debug their programs- often merely by having them change the variable names to be more descriptive. Likewise, using eclipse refactoring tools to extract subroutines can turn a block of hundreds of lines of code into a dozen subroutines and a block of code that each fits on one screen.

Once SOX came in, you could no longer do this kind of code improvement during downtime. Instead, you did nothing until something was approved. And in some cases, it was literally over a week of sitting doing nothing because you couldn't even check out the code without an approved ticket or project. And once things were approved, then you could start. And sometimes, they'd spent so long approving it, that you were very close to the point release date.

Comment Re:I was most frustrated by ... (Score 1) 149

Sure I could have done that- but as a low level manager (promoted after SOX), that would have made no difference unless i was assigned to a project to work on our controls and procedures. Complaining about the procedures beyond simple grousing would simply get you on the shit list as having a bad attitude.

Comment Re:I was most frustrated by ... (Score 1) 149

I live and love in Texas. I saw how age discrimination went in computer science back in the early 80's before age discrimination protections were gutted in 2009.

So I saved hard and I've been retired for several years now. The only programming I do is for fun (star fleet battles, minecraft, noodling).

The last employer was only cheap in some ways. As I said, they dropped about 1.5 billion on a failed SAP implementation. As implemented at the company the CEO and CIO were legally responsible for changes so they wanted assurances about every change from someone. We also had auditors who reviewed a about 2% of the changes every quarter and confirmed the process was being followed.

As I indicated, there simply wasn't enough time to approve everything for quite a while after Sox came out. We went 6 months where it was a real night mare and getting approvals was tight for another year or so. And then sap came along and consumed even more bandwidth (despite statements it wouldn't occur, there was a lot of bidirectional double development in the old and new system... and in the new and old system.).

If a coder made a change without approval- it was a firing offense. You could gamble and risk it I suppose but it wasn't worth the risk.

Comment Re:Is it marketable? (Score 1) 198

Nah, bro. All that shit is DIY if you're willing. The internet has fix my appliance websites and repair parts vendors. I've done every aspect of homebuilding from pouring a quarter-acre of concrete and stamping it, to plumbing gas & water (PEX is amazing), craning in trusses (my crane truck and operator was about $80 an hour or $600 a day... worth every penny) and sheathing / shingling roofs, etc. Phones... don't even come in here with how DECT6 at $100 for several extensions isn't as good as 1970-80 tech, let alone cellular. And my cellphone is fixable... until it is discounted from $800 to $200, whereupon parts costs outweigh replacement. Cars and computers last longer. A 20" screen is cheaper and better. We have so FUCKING much maker / DIY activity it is impossible to keep up.

There are problems with incomes stagnant and costs soaring. Corruption, a shitty misimplementation on neoliberal trade policy: they're to blame.

But if you're not doing the stuff your dad did... try it. Some of us still do. That part's entirely up to you.

> Can't do that no more, new building codes and other laws demand that you hire some "professional" to do it.
> Professional only means here that he's doing it for money. Not that he has any fucking clue.

Oh, and fuck that. Anyone that says they're incapable of (laundry list of DIY) then whinges about code and clueless 'professionals'... fuck that right out. Code = do things safely. And that professional knows something, if they're doing stuff you're claiming is impossible.

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