Follow Slashdot stories on Twitter


Forgot your password?
DEAL: For $25 - Add A Second Phone Number To Your Smartphone for life! Use promo code SLASHDOT25. Also, Slashdot's Facebook page has a chat bot now. Message it for stories and more. Check out the new SourceForge HTML5 internet speed test! ×

Comment Re:Mathematics (Score 1) 589

Windows 7 is about $100 and Office 2010 is $200, total cost $300. An office worker making near minimum wage costs $10/h. If that office worker loses 30 hours of labor, it becomes worth while to buy the software. A reduction of productivity by just 2% over the course of a year amounts to 40 hours of labor lost.

A non-productive worker actually costs much more than their hourly wage though, benefits, employer taxes, facility costs also which roughly double that cost to $20/h. We can safely assume that it'll take a few hours to get acquainted with new software, after words your productivity returns to it's previous value, but if that learning curve costs just 2 work days they've come out behind with a cost of 20*8*2=$320.

Comment Re:preaching from the choir (Score 1) 264

Educators may not like it, but the entire K-uni system is geared to vocational training. In the US, it costs taxpayers ~100k to pay for a K-12 education for each student. Public universities are further subsidized about 10-20k per pupil leading to a net cost of ~200k to taxpayers to produce a college educated student. You'd need to be able to justify an increase in tax revenue of at least 5k a year to justify such expenses given a 40 year long career. Based on tax brackets, this would mean 10-15k a year increase in salary. This isn't even covering the money that students themselves spend which is typically now on the order of 30k for a 4 year program.

Comment Half a million in minutes? (Score 3, Insightful) 271

The people who die in the first few minutes are going to be those who's lives are dependent on technology. That's list contains almost exclusively those in planes and those dependent on medical devices. How's a power grid update going to protect those people? Hospitals already have backup generators and you can't do anything about fried equipment.

Comment Re:3D Printing - Anachy ? (Score 1) 207

I find it amusing that Anarchy will supposedly spring forth from a technology that depends on highly refined, multi-disciplinary engineering and built from precision materials that are only manufactured and sold at affordable pricing in the context of a highly ordered society.

There can be order without a ruler. P2P technologies is a human made prof of that. I am sure there are many others and many more example in nature. Fuck off.

The ruler within technology is the standards committee. These groups designed every layer required for P2P software from the physical connections inside and between computers to the software protocols that permit packet transfer to the P2P protocol itself. They're not legally binding regulations, but realistically driving the wrong way on a freeway isn't going to result in a ticket either. Selling software or hardware which can't interact with existing products would be suicide too.

Comment Re:space elevator failure (Score 4, Informative) 98

After reading the Mars trilogy by Kim Stanley Robinson, I think when talking about the space elevator, we should always consider what happens if (when?) it fails. Space fountains seem much more appealing.

* The center of mass is in orbit, the structure won't fling itself far off into space.

* The segment of the string above the break will be under less tension which means it'll spring back a bit, but it's not in orbit down there so it'll be pulled back down to the earth so we could repair it.

* The segment below the cut will plummet down. Regardless of the material, we can safely assume at least several hundred tons of material will be falling from the sky which will completely destroy the ground based installation.

* Weird part is that it's not going to fall straight down. Even though the thing is stationary over the surface of the earth, the angular momentum at the top is going to be higher than below. As the top falls, it'll speed relative to the Eastward rotation of the Earth causing it to fall on the stuff to the East.

Comment Re:warriors or experts? (Score 3, Insightful) 65

We need to kill the dumbass myth that the best programmers started when they're in diapers. The exception isn't the kid who've been making simple games for the last 6 years before academy or college, that's simply a kid who has 6 years more experience with loops, conditionals, and a handful of calls that can draw sprites onto the screen. A good student should be able to understand and properly apply those concepts in a few months and now their at the same level here. A great student is one who knows how to learn things that have not been taught to him. While the kid who taught himself programming in middle-school has this attribute, he's not the only one in the world who does.

Comment As always, customer comes first (Score 1) 258

The best way to create customers is to tell them that they are dirty, disgusting perverts and that if their family and friends knew what they where doing they'd be disowned.

Wait, if this is the world they want to pretend we live in, why would I ever buy a physical copy when it can be easily discovered. A password protected file of all my torrents is so much safer.

Comment Learning Curve (Score 1) 614

Remember how bad Microsoft Office was when you transitioned to 2007? Everything moved and you couldn't find anything! Now imagine that you are used to doing everything the same way for 12 years now. It's going to take a few weeks to figure out how to do your every day tasks again. A company can train you, costing profit; or they can wait for you to figure it out yourself, costing sales.

Say a company makes 10k a year for each employee, that's 200 dollars a week. Each of their employees makes another 500 a week in their own salary which means that the employee brought 700 dollars into the company each week. Say it takes just a week for an employee to catch up and perform his duties at 100% of pre-upgrade level and during this time, he performs at only 50%.... Now the employee is bringing in 350 but taking out 500. Your upgrade, which even if it's free, is now $350. This will take nearly an entire month to break even. For what? Long term gains 6 months from now.

Slashdot Top Deals

Not only is UNIX dead, it's starting to smell really bad. -- Rob Pike