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Comment Re:Teach CS with Math classes (Score 1) 293

I know that I will be in the minority here, but I don't agree.

I would much rather see programming taught as a language or linguistics course instead of as an offshoot of math. I'm an English major with a great dislike for math. I've taken no math courses beyond the required Algebra II to get through calculus, no trig, and I would have failed them if I'd had to take them anyway. I've gone on to become the lead developer at 2 companies and worked my way to up to CTO of third. I've never felt as though math was intrinsically important to writing code. Creativity and problem solving skills yes...Math not so much.

I've always felt that it was more like learning a foreign language. First you learn the rules of the language, then you learn to speak it, and eventually you become fluent enough to tell stories as though you were a native speaker. That's how I view programming, much like writing a well layered story with background and subplots and ideally no loose ends.

Comment Pointy Stick (Score 1) 310

I was out hiking and I couldn't get couldn't get a coding problem that I was having out of my head. When the solution finally came to me I was in the middle of nowhere with nothing but a patch of sand and a stick. I wrote out my code as clearly as possible and took a picture with my camera...this was pre-cell phone days, so I had to wait for the film to get developed before I could see my code.

Comment What? (Score 2) 209

Yes you are reading that wrong. What they are saying is that since you can end up with similar looking creatures that took different DNA routes to get there, it's only the results that matter and not the DNA framework.

If you can end up with the same body style with different DNA then if you rewind the clock and started over there would be no reason to believe that you would end up with the same creatures we have today.

Comment Why is everyone complaining? (Score 2) 227

"Always on" issue - gone
Gold Membership to use streaming apps - gone
Bundled Kinect - gone

Almost everything that people have complained about has been removed / improved / fixed. I know there is a long tradition of slamming Microsoft on Slashdot ... almost a sport really, but come on. They are doing exactly what we've been asking them to do and everyone is still bitching about it. I for one commend them for listening to feedback and addressing the issues that we've known were there from the start.

I don't own an XBOX One, I'm a PC gamer, but I have to say I'm impressed to see a company that's willing admit their mistakes...I'm looking at you Nintendo...get your act together.

Comment His poll was too squishy (Score 2, Insightful) 555

Having people categorize themselves on an objective technical skill such as math is at least slightly more reliable than having people self judge on such a subjective skill as writing.

Many people I went to college with were certain their one act plays could win awards and that their sonnets would outlive them. I certainly wouldn't trust many of them when it comes to something as nuanced as the American legal system.

A better breakdown of the populace would have been to separate out people based on the level of education achieved, or perhaps by specific college degree, or even split out people with legal backgrounds from the average layperson. This would remove all the "touchy, feely" issues his current survey has.

With that said, this Tennessee man may be a danger to society, and his actions really creep me out, but I don't believe that he broke the law as it is currently written.

For what it is worth, on his poll I would have fit this profile
Writing skills > Math Skills


Study Compares Brain Activity In Games Against Humans and AI 37

Ars Technica covers research done using an fMRI machine to map brain activity game players. The study compares brain patterns in players competing against what they think are other humans against what they think is AI. It also goes into the differences in how games affect the male and female brain. "The human brain appears to try to parse the intentions of others by engaging its own decision-making process; in short, it appears to model another person's mind by seeing what it would do if it were in that other person's skull. The three areas of the brain that the authors identify are involved, in part, in making executive decisions for that brain's owner, in addition to evaluating other people's executive decisions. So, the fact that they're busier when a person thinks they're playing another human could also be interpreted as them focusing harder on an identical decision making process."

Indian GPS Cartographers Charged As Terrorists 269

chrb writes "Following on from the discussion about Apple disabling GPS in Egyptian iPhones, we have a new case of the conflict between the traditional secrecy of government, and the widening availability of cheap, accurate GPS devices around the world. On 5th December, two software engineers employed by Biond Software in India were arrested for mapping highways using vehicle based GPS devices. Further evidence against the pair emerged when it was found that a laptop they had been using in the car contained some photos of the local airforce base. The company claims they had been commissioned by Nokia Navigator to create maps of local roads and terrain. Following an investigation by the Anti Terrorist Squad of Gujarat the cartographers have now been charged with violating the Official Secrets Act and will remain in custody."

Submission + - Nike unveils shoe just for American Indians

ianchaos writes: Nike on Tuesday unveiled what it said is the first shoe designed specifically for American Indians. According to MSNBC, Nike designers and researchers looked at the feet of more than 200 people from more than 70 tribes nationwide and found that in general, American Indians have a much wider and taller foot than the average shoe accommodates. The average shoe width of men and women measured was three width sizes larger than the standard Nike shoe.

Submission + - Kodak seeks to shake up inkjet market

jkl6648 writes: Kodak recently announced that they are getting into the ink jet market, the catch?.. They plan to undercut all other manufactures age old pricing model of selling the printer for cheep, and making all the money on inks. Kodak plans to sell a black ink cartridge for $9.99, and a full color cartridge for $14.99. Will this new pricing structure cause the other printer manufactures to reexamine their pricing models? Will consumers finally get fed up with paying out the nose for ink?

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