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Comment meh.. (Score 1) 168

The thing that annoys me the most about Android's permissions model is that it's all-or-nothing -- you either grant every single permission in the manifest or you grant none of them and then don't get to install the app.

I'd much much much prefer being able to say "no, this dumb widget does not need to access my location (ads) or know my phone number (ads)" or "no, this 'trojan' does not need to be able to send SMS". But, you can't - you eithe grant access to everything, or you can't install the app. I was very disappointed by that.

Comment Speaking as a "young developer" (Score 1) 742

It's not that we're not interested in the kernel, it's that the kernel moves so rapidly along with the sheer size of the kernel, where's one supposed to start?
I've seen some Google tech talks from Andrew Morton and Greg Kroah-Hartman, they both recommend that patching the kernel is the best way of learning it.

Most universities that I know of either use OS161 [] , Nachos [] or Minix from Tanenbaum. These kernel's are small enough that a student can know all of it, but is that any good for "real" kernel's like Linux, BSD, etc...?

I don't think systems programming has lost it's "cool", any respectable university still has a low level operating systems course where they either work on simulated hardware like SYS161 or work on actual real hardware where they have to get their hands dirty with assembly for context switches/interrupt handlers/low level IO (UART's and Serial/Parallel) and do Processes/Multiprogramming/VM in C.

And no, we're not given any IDE's like Visual Studio, it is still just a text editor (vi or emacs, pick you weapon) along with Makefiles and gcc/gdb. And yes, we were taught Java/.NET/Scheme, and we know when and where to use these languages/tools appropriately.

Its more about transferring these experience from the "Ivory Tower" world of academia to the real world, and we have no idea how to start that.

How did you experienced developers start? Did any of these academic kernel's help at all?

Comment Re:IANAL, but... (Score 1) 430

The problem here is that if you do take them to small claims court there is one of two things that will happen. Thing number one is that you'll pay for filing a small claim (usually around $50 court costs to file) win a default judgment and UBI will just ignore you. Now you're out another $60 but Hey! You have your satisfaction. Thing number two is the same as thing number one, but instead of ignoring you, UBI will appeal the verdict, get the claim moved to a court of their choosing closer to their lawyers and you'll have to do some serious traveling to defend your claim. In which case you are out some serious cash now. THAT is why taking this kind of stuff to small claims just isn't worth it, either way, you're gonna end up being screwed more than you were going in.

Comment Re:Ballcrushers (Score 1) 742

The sad part is that the author of that ACM article complaining about bad developers is also the inventor of C++, the impending doom of students who need to learn how to program through problem solving, not fiddle with language-specific configs and compiler BS. Why is it that CS professors feel like C++ should be the very first language students should dive into? Are they trying to destroy their passion?

And no, I'm not recommending VB as a replacement.

Comment Re:What does Linus always say? (Score 4, Insightful) 742

If some college kid can get better results than coders who have been working on the kernel for 20 years, then that's great.

Thing is, that is very rare at this stage of Linux maturity.

Hence fewer and fewer young new developers working on the Linux kernel each year. At this point, most of the new kernel developers who actually contribute are going to be experienced developers from other areas who have decided to work on the kernel, and young developers will need to work on smaller, less complicated projects to build experience.

Linus was able to start the Linux kernel because he was bright and nobody else was doing it. He got it to work, and work pretty well, but it was nowhere near as good as it could have been. Every year since then the experience needed to be able to work on the kernel has grown. This is not some arbitrary level they are setting; as the quality of the code improves, the quality needed in order to contribute to the project increases. Quality code generally comes from experience in dealing with the myriad of programming pitfalls one experiences throughout the years. Linus and the other early kernel developers have simply grown with the project; they are much better programmers than they were when they started out, so they move right along with it.

Comment Re:Right (Score 1) 106

People get all sorts of mad over the "corporations as people" thing, because it sounds terrible on the front of it. The most recent addition to this argument, though, deserves a closer look than most people give it.

Citizens United v. Federal Election Commission was, at its core, about Citizens United being unable to promote and advertise its documentary, Hillary: The Movie. Now, you may not know, but Citizens United is a non-profit political organization. Under the McCain-Feingold Act, they were prohibited from showing this movie on TV or promoting it publicly so close to an election, because it was about a particular candidate. Many people, I'm sure, would not deny that Citizens United had the right to do this.

The Supreme Court ruled that corporate funding of independent political broadcasts in candidate elections cannot be limited under the First Amendment. Of course, this brings up horrible images of huge faceless corporations running elections in their favor. However, the ruling was made on the case of a small, politically oriented non-profit. Perhaps the Court overstepped here, but where do you draw the line? There are other corporations like CU where they should have the right to financially support political broadcasts. Clearly something is wrong with the current law. What do we change to make this all make sense?

This Supreme Court ruling was not something evil. It was made to correct something seen as wrong with our current laws. The Court overturned a previous law they saw as unconstitutional; this is in their right. It is not in their right to create a new, better law to replace it, and they haven't. That is the role of Congress.

If you don't like the state of things, don't blame the ruling. They acted according to the rights and role they have. Go write Congress and get them to enact a saner law in the void that is now left.

Comment Re:Received Used Hard Drive That Failed (Score 1) 447

My god. What are your shipping policies down there? Oh right - Newegg uses UPS.

I'm Canadian, and I order off NCIX. Everything comes via Purolator. I gave up on UPS when they started shipping in packages missing sides of boxes. Some of my American friends finally gave up after well packaged lamps and stuff got trashed during transit. I don't know what they do, but whatever it is, it's far harsher than anything the airlines put your cargo through.

I have never had a DOA HDD, and in the past year I've probably ordered two dozen. They come in an anti-static bag inside that single-layer orange bubblewrap. The boxes, as always with Purolator, have no dents or missing sides. Inside the box, the extra space is filled with air bags or recycled paper. (recycled paper is more common, and seems to work well)

Out of these drives, approximately half are Seagates, and half are Western Digital. 6 Seagates failed within 1 year. Of course, after being RMA'd, some failed again. And then one a third time. All the WD drives are still going strong.

At home, my old Seagate drives from ~2005 finally crapped out, but I have Raptors from around then that are still going, and other WD drives that are fine.

Seagate drives seem more trauma resistant - it was high-pitch chirping noises that finally killed mine. WD drives seem more reliable if you don't get a dud - which I haven't, thus far.

I have good news though. The last time I received something from UPS, it actually came via Purolator! Looks like they finally gave up on servicing my area, and now contract out to the better company. Hurray! I still always ship via Purolator, though - I wouldn't want to encourage UPS to come back.

Comment Re:Yeah Not Really (Score 1) 184

he was writing a mind bending kids story, not "satirizing" his trade.

Why not? Did you even RTFA? The arguments are sound, the evidence is there.

It isn't an unusual literary device to write allegorically about other topics. For example, the Wizard of Oz was a play on the politics of a silver based economy and westward expansion.

If I had such a gifted imagination, perhaps I could write a children's story based on floppy discs and CDs, of filesharers and industry groups, but all dressed up like trading kittens and bunnies eating cabbages and milk. (If that sounds awful, well, I'm not very good at writing children's stories now, am I?)

Comment Re:Luddites (Score 1) 171

Nope, not a bit of that works. Since God works in mysterious ways, and can only be understood by faith, there is an out for any scientific or logical test you want to throw at the problem. Anything you might say of the bibe only proves man to be fallible. The true believer will tell you that God will miraculously allow them to understand the truth in spite of the errors of the text. Anything you still don't understand is just the devil clouding your faithless mind.

Comment Re:Ads suck (Score 1) 1051

You mean like cable television where I pay $40/month for the two channels I watch simply because it is part of a package with 75 other channels I could care less about?

Great plan! Where do I sign up?

Yes, I see your idea where you get to choose who you like and don't like (hello Twitter generation!), but again, this is the reason why I pay for 3 channels of ESPN and the Golf Channel - lots of people like sports, and I couldn't care less about them. This is why TV is chock full of reality TV. The point is, most people don't mind the ads much (which is why this model continues to work - so far), and so if you go by popular vote, things are much moe likely to stay the same. Since you are viewing Slashdot, it is a safe bet that you are largely in the minority of Internet users. Most people on the Internet are the tweens using MySpace and Twitter or the Average Joes managing their fantasy football league. You want them choosing what you pay for in your network?

The current model isn't perfect, but at least I only pay for what I actually enjoy, rather than paying twice as much (or more) in order to support everybody else's crap. You might say that because my interests are niche, that the things I like receive insufficient funding under this model, but I can prove otherwise (by the fact that they exist and continue to flourish). In your model, I would be forced to join (and thus pay for) potentially dozens of networks that each contain only one or two sites that I like. Sure, the Slashdot bundle would probably be worthwhile, but I also visit a wide variety of web comics and news sites that are distinct enough that they would be highly unlikely to be profitable in the same network unless I can customize my own network, a la the micro-payment plan discussed earlier.

Also, how would your plan (or the one I just linked) work when I go looking for information using Google - I will likely hit dozens of sites that aren't in any of my networks, are hidden behind paywalls thanks to the abolition of ad revenue, and that I don't want to sign up for (at $10/month because I have to buy a whole package) because I will probably never visit them again (and they might not even have the info I was looking for anyway)?

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