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Comment Re:It's true (Score 2) 286

Pixar was unique in Silicon Valley companies in that we had deadlines that could not move. The film had to be in theaters before Christmas, etc. I'd see employees families come to Pixar to have dinner with them. I took the technical director training but decided to stay in studio tools, first because Pixar needed better software more than they needed another TD, and second because of the crazy hours.

Comment But I have a routine . . . (Score 1) 388

Everyone gets used to doing things a certain way, and gets irritated when things are improved.

An example among data-entry types is being able to use keyboard shortcuts vs having to use a mouse, It slows them down to have to use a mouse.

Another is the Microsoft Ribbon, where people had the old menu system totally memorized, and suddenly couldn't find anything because it had been "improved" and "re-arranged for you convenience". Instead of making it an option that you could toggle, it was a mandatory upgrade.

This is totally irritating, especially when the new version has improvements that are geared to the enterprise, or software profit margins. I have talked to too many people who would routinely tell me this. This is a minor point of contention.

I still have an old computer that works just fine thank you, and run an old word-processor without a lot of this extra fluff. Heck, George R. Martin uses an old dos word processor because it is more convenient for him.

In this context, I am reminded of the old video about choices in spaghetti sauce. turns out, that in the world of spaghetti sauce, there is no one perfect spaghetti sauce, despite decades of advertising to the contrary. The truth is that there are many perfect spaghetti sauces (chunky, vegetable, extra spicy, etc) and you get more sales by catering to the individual tastes of people. Which is why we now have multiple varieties of sauces, etc on the shelves these days.

You can watch the full video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?...

Large companies like MIcrosoft are still in pursuit of "the perfect software" or "the perfect user interface" when they should give users options and choices when it comes to user interfaces and performance behavior. There is no one best interface, etc. just like there is not one best spaghetti sauce. While there should be an update for security reasons, etc. what does that have to do with the sort of an interface a person likes?

Similarly, there can be genuine product improvements when you do things a certain way, but also it is merely the pursuit of the cool and novel vs actual improvement. I upgrade systems because I need a certain functionality, and sometimes it is a royal pain when I cannot

I am a constant crank about software as a service. Especially if I can do what I need and keep a system running well for many many years, so that it is cheaper than paying a yearly fee.

Comment Re: The problem with your explanation (Score 1) 307

If you look in the FEMA site, they say that they provide gramts to perform repairs not covered by insurance. And no, they don't do a needs test. Now, the typical rich person does not let their insurance lapse just so that they can get a FEMA grant. Because such a grant is no sure thing. They also point out that SBA loans are the main source of assistance following a disaster. You get a break on interest, but you have to pay them back.

Comment Re: The problem with your explanation (Score 1) 307

I understand your point about view land being desirable even though it's a flood risk. I live a mile or so from the Hayward fault. But I have California's risk pool earthquake insurance. The government wouldn't be paying me except from a fund that I've already paid into. I imagine that the government does pay some rich people in similar situations, but as far as I'm aware disaster funds go to the States from the federal government and should not in general become a form of rich people's welfare. Maybe you can find some direct evidence to show me that would make the situation more clear.

Comment Re:The problem with your explanation (Score 1) 307

What you are observing is economics. As a city or town population grows, the best land becomes unavailable and those who arrive later or have less funds available must settle for less desirable land. Thus many cities have been extended using landfill which liquifies as the San Francisco Marina District did in the 1989 Loma Prieta earthquake, or floods. Risks may not be disclosed by developers, or may be discounted by authorities as the risks of global warming are today.

Efforts to protect people who might otherwise buy such land or to mitigate the risks are often labeled as government over-reach or nanny state.

Comment Re:The problem with your explanation (Score 1) 307

Oh, of course they were caused by misguided engineering efforts. Everything from the Army Corps of Engineers to Smoky Bear goes under that heading. The most basic problem is the fact that we locate cities next to resources and transportation, which means water, without realizing where the 400-year flood plane is. Etc. We have learned something since then.

Our problem, today, is fixing these things. Which is blocked by folks who don't believe in anthropogenic climate change, or even cause and effect at all. They don't, for the most part, register Democratic.

Comment The problem with your explanation (Score 5, Insightful) 307

The problem with your explanation is that it's fact-based, and stands on good science. This is the post-truth era. Thus, the counter to your argument will be:

  • Evidence for a human cause of erosion is thin and controversial, and is being pushed by loony liberals.
  • We need those oil and shipping jobs, and jobs building and maintaining levees, not more regulation that stifles them!
  • Cause and effect is not a real thing, except for one cause, God is behind everything.
  • This is part of God's plan for us. The end time is coming, and when the Rapture arrives it will not matter that Louisiana's coast has eroded. Cease your pursuit of unholy science and pray to save your soul!

Comment Re:So... (Score 1) 346

so far hasn't done anything irreversible.

I think the first victims have been farmers who can't bring in their crops. Just the people who voted for him in California's central valley and wherever else we depend on guest workers. I don't see citizens lining up to pick those crops. The small family farmers, what's left of them, will feel this worse, the large corporate ones have the lawyers necessary to help them break the rules and truck people in from South of the border.

The second group of victims will be the ones who need health care that doesn't come from a big company. It's a lot more difficult to start a small business when there is no affordable way to get health care. And that is the case for my own small business - I'd be in bad shape if my wife left the University. I think that's the real goal - to keep people from leaving employment in larger companies and going off on their own.

Comment Re:So... (Score 4, Interesting) 346

Donald Trump, unfortunately, satisfies a common desire among the populance to right things by means that won't actually right them. It's a desire to rid Washington of inaction by cleaning it out of the current folks who don't seem to get anything done: and then you find that the things they were working on are harder than you understood. It's the feeling that you can get things going right by having a manager who lights a fire under the responsible people: just the way that bank managers pressured employees to increase revenue or be fired until those employees started opening accounts fraudulently for customers who hadn't asked for them.

What I am having a hard time with is how our country gets back out of this. I fear Humpty has had such a great fall that there is no peaceful recovery.

Comment Discrimination City (Score 5, Interesting) 155

I have to staff exhibit booths a few times a year. I absolutely hate that applicants treat it as a modeling job and send me their photos. My wife hates it too :-) .

I ask that they be capable of standing for 8 hours per day for three days straight, and that they be well dressed, well groomed, and personable. I will always hire the smart ones (you'd be surprised how many folks with a Masters or Ph.D. are looking for weekend work), and they rarely are the model folks.

I started putting "NO PHOTOS" in my ads a while back. I am thinking of asking folks to use a first initial and not indicate their gender, just to see what happens.

Comment Re:This is why BLOBs are a bad idea (Score 3, Informative) 154

If they don't use BLOBs, wouldn't that just mean the vulnerabilities are baked into silicon?

Your device generally includes some sort of CPU, which is usually programmed in C. It might also include a gate-array program, which is written in verilog or VHDL. Backdoors and bugs live in both of these things.

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