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Comment Old stuff "discovered" by the ignorant (Score 5, Informative) 504

I am an economist. Economists have already extensively studied this kind of approach. It's called an Input/Output Model. Communist countries used it in their approach to central planning during the 1970's. It failed miserably for two reasons:

1) It assumes zero substitutability between inputs. E.g., to make a car you need exactly 1.35 tons of steel, 52.7 kg of rubber, 217 kg of glass, 1.73 KW of electricity, 29.4 hours of labor, etc. No other formula is possible, you can't use more energy and less labor, for instance. For reference, the production function is known as a Leontief production function. To be fair, adding any kind of substitutability between inputs results in a completely intractable problem. However, without substitutability this is a lousy way to actually model an economy.

2) It assumes perfect information on the part of the central planner. While this is an oft-used simplification in economic models, it's a lousy reflection of reality. It's simply impossible for a central planner to gather and correlate sufficient information to make it work.

Yet another piece-of-crap opinion article written by someone who couldn't be bothered to do an hour's research on Wikipedia.

Submission + - Asian Americans use Google Docs to Fight Prejudice

plsuh writes: Little-known outside the Asian American community there is a strong strain of racism against blacks, especially among the older generation. As reported in the Washington Post, in the wake of the shootings in Louisiana and Minnesota Christina Xu and a group of online contributors used the joint editing capabilities of Google Docs to create an open letter about the significance of the Black Lives Matter movement. The letter is addressed to "Mom, Dad, Uncle, Auntie" — the first generation of immigrants who may not understand and harbor prejudices of their own from the old country. Translations into Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Vietnamese, and tens of other languages are in progress.

Comment "If it ain't broke, don't fix it?" Fuck off. (Score 4, Insightful) 147

I hate that goddamn phrase. When the inevitable time comes when suddenly the old system *does* break, it's no longer under any support, nobody's left at the company who knows how it works, there's no budget for a modern replacement, and it has to be fixed in four hours or the company goes bankrupt. Been there, done that, ate the T-shirt after hours of working with no break for food.

People who say "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" are the same idiots who brag about uptime.

Pro tip: *every* system is broken. The trick is being able to repair or work around the broken parts without disruption, not to just seal it behind a wall and rediscover it years later when trying to track down what's still pinging.

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