Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?
Get HideMyAss! VPN, PC Mag's Top 10 VPNs of 2016 for 55% off for a Limited Time ×

Comment Re:Writer is fine... (Score 1) 284

Is using the features present in Excel now considered abuse? In my position, I see and create a lot of Excel documents specifically because I can create OLEDB connections to transactional systems, aggregate information, and create visualizations all in one place without having to go through the long, painful, and often flawed process of creating a data warehouse / data marts, creating SSIS connections between all the difference sources, then use another product such as Tableau or even SSRS to run the summaries. While all of that is getting set up, the organization gets no visibility into current trends, etc. It's significantly faster to get a dedicated report using scripts created in Excel, even if it's a much worse solution in the long run. From what I've seen, LibreOffice doesn't even have the capabilities to do this kind of work.

Comment Re:Facing facts (Score 1) 247

Part of the problem here is that the U.S. is running short of options when it comes to employment, so a lot of people have jumped on the medical bandwagon because money still seems to be flowing in that sector. Across the U.S., approximately 12% of the total employed population works in the healthcare field ( That means expenses for medical treatment (the product of such employment) needs to cover the salaries of almost a tenth of the total payroll in the country on average. For comparison, in 1978, less than 7% of the population worked in healthcare. If, as I suspect might be the case, the metoric rise of healthcare costs is more related to the lack of living-wage jobs available in other sectors, it makes sense that the end bill will come out higher but results don't necessarily have to improve.

Comment Re:Sales Tax, Use Tax, and the Internet (Score 1) 347

Nit picky issue here: Nevada does have sales tax, it does not have state income tax. There is no use tax in Nevada, so goods purchased from out of state effectively have no obligation. However, about 30 miles out from Reno is Fernley where a very large Amazon warehouse exists. Depending on where the item is shipping from, Amazon may or may not calculate an owed tax on goods; if it's shipping from out of state, no taxes are owed.

Comment Re:Why ask a poll type question without a actual p (Score 1) 192

I think this has more to do with keeping an active discussion going. People have been commenting on Slashdot for years that the only reason they stay is for the comments. Posting "stories" which are really just encouragement for active discussion is a way of keeping people engaged so there are more comments and a more lively community in general.

Comment Re:Or you could use paper cups instead (Score 1) 299

It's been a while since I researched how recycling works, but if I remember correctly, for paper products, the main reason it's not terribly efficient is because of the ratios required to get a product that people will actually use. For starters, mixing recycled content with new content doesn't work. To get a reasonable grade of paper out of the end process, a certain (fairly high) percentage of the paper needed to be clean going into the process. So when you read, "30% post-consumer recycled" paper, the other 70% is also recycled, but it's recycled from previously unused paper. In the end, this doesn't result in savings, rather, it increases the amount of total paper required as well as the total chemical treatment of paper to make that "30% post consumer" feel-good number.

Comment Re:But if you have nothing to hide (Score 1) 403

The thing is, everyone has something to hide, either due to loss of status, embarrassment, or a whole host of other reasons. Lying is a common social interaction, and most people choose not to share every aspect of their lives, thoughts, feelings, et cetera with anyone who cares to ask. "That's none of your business" is a common phrase, as is lying to protect privacy. It also isn't enough for law enforcement to say, "We don't care about most stuff you would normally lie about." There is no way for an average citizen to enforce that contract. We shouldn't have to accept that as an argument, we have a constitution with explicit words to protect us from that.

Comment Re:False dichotomy (Score 1) 442

This article assumes a lot about private R&D, namely that it still exists. Searching private R&D trends on shows many studies on the effects of public policy on private R&D, and also shows a generally declining rate of private R&D over the past 30 years. I seem to recall a lot of tax cuts and incentive programs being implemented in that time, and yet companies still are increasingly not doing such research themselves. If private companies will not step up, then we are left with public entities such as NASA to pick up the slack.

Slashdot Top Deals

"We live, in a very kooky time." -- Herb Blashtfalt