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Comment Re:Spanish (Score 1) 514

I find Spanish the least helpful language to know, personally. I've always lived in east coast urban US. I'm a native English speaker and know a little Spanish and one of my parents is off-the-boat Colombian (she speaks perfect English and lost a lot of her Spanish since she was a kid, so very little carried over to me). But frankly anywhere I have traveled where Spanish is prevalent, in our out of the US, English and one year of high school Spanish is more than enough to get by.

I basically only ever speak Spanish with native Spanish speakers for fun, very rarely because it was particularly useful. Getting by with English among Spanish speakers is a lot more about being patient and gracious: ask them if they speak English, thank them for speaking English, etc. BTW to my fellow Americans, that applies anywhere.

As an adult who does travel quite a bit and wants to learn a third language, I tried to approach this as an optimization problem. While by population Mandarin is high on the list, it's not very prevalent outside of China. When I realized sheer population wasn't going to be a helpful way to look at it, I started looking at the numbers of countries and both their primary and secondary languages. If you ignore English, it turns out that German, Italian, and French start looking really helpful... not for speaking in Germany, France, or Italy, but in the most number of other places that don't necessarily have a lot of English speakers. I'm opting for French, personally, but I couldn't find any real reason to pick one over the other.

But to the OP's question, if s/he is not planning to travel and is specifically asking about programming, I have never needed anything other than English while programming, ever. At that point I'd say, you clearly have an itch to learn a language, learn whatever language you want to learn.

Comment Re:Censorship (Score 2) 369

Man, I hope you're a troll

Look, I was wanking daily by the time I was 12, I had access to porn years before that (probably at 8 or 9), and by that I mean magazines -- physical printed porn. This was before having internet in a household was common place, and I was one of the good kids (never had disciplinary problems, had to be home by 9:30pm, etc etc) and was a relatively late bloomer compared to my peers. Kids making out at parties started at 10ish. My first pregnant classmate was at 13. I'm currently healthy, married, MIT CS degree, successful career, not a single damned bad thing happened to me from having access to porn at 8 nor could anything short of living in North Korea or Alpha Complex have stopped me.

If you think this has any impact, even a little, on your 13 year old, you are completely delusional. At 13 they've already had as much access to it as they want to have. As for younger kids, if they're old enough to change the setting, they're old enough to find dozens of other ways to get at it, of which several won't even involve a computer. A better question would be how much alcohol or weed your 13 year old is going to have access to, if he doesn't already. Hint: Many of the honors/AP juniors/seniors do one or both regularly. Trust me.

Comment Re:Lazy Crap. (Score 1) 1184

Let's be fair here for a minute. "Here's a handful of rabid crazy vociferous bloggers with crazy opinions that will make an awesome headline that gets lots of page views" is very different from "random normal people whose primary use for their smartphone is to track and share recipes with relatives". Most news is news entertainment and is not a reflection of what sane normal people say and do. I assure you, real life iPhone users don't give a shit about Android phones and probably wouldn't even be able to tell you a single device that even uses it (*mumble mumble* Galaxy EVO Ice Cream *mumble mumble*), and the same goes true for Android users (*mumble mumble* iPhone 5GS II Turbo with Hyperfighting *mumble mumble*).

Submission + - Alcohol Disrupt Conscious Emotional Memory but Leaves Unconscious Memory Intact

An anonymous reader writes: Alcohol is known to often impair explicit memory, however new research demonstrates that it leaves implicit memory unharmed. The study, which was conducted by Suchismita Ray, an assistant research professor at the Center of Alcohol Studies at Rutgers University, examined whether acute alcohol intoxication disrupts memory for emotionally valenced and neutral images using explicit recall and an implicit repetition task.

Submission + - Nintendo Power to shut down (

stillnotelf writes: Ars Technica is reporting that the official Nintendo magazine, Nintendo Power, is shutting down after 24 years. The gaming magazine has been run by independent publisher Future US since 2007, but Ars Technica's source and deleted Twitter posts say that Nintendo is uninterested in continuing the paper magazine in today's digital age, and also unwilling to convert it into a primarily digital experience. There's been no official confirmation of the cancellation or word of how many issues remain of this bit of childhood nostalgia for so many gamers.

Submission + - Dell's profit falls 18% as PCsales slump. (

SternisheFan writes: "By NATHALIE TADENA (WSJ) Dell Inc.'s fiscal second-quarter earnings fell 18% as the computer giant recorded weaker revenue, led by declines in its consumer segment.
        Dell, which in recent years has looked to move beyond its core personal-computer business and broaden its own portfolio of products for corporate customers, faces stiff competition across its business lines. Dell has noted that some consumers were putting off computer purchases and instead focusing their attention on mobile devices. Faced with soft PC sales, Dell has attempted to boost both revenue and profit by acquiring higher-margin businesses, including data-storage, security and networking technologies. The company has made a number of acquisitions in recent months, unveiling in July plans to buy business-software maker Quest Software Inc. for $2.36 billion."


Submission + - After Hacker Exposes Hotel Lock Insecurity, Lock Firm Asks Hotels To Pay For Fix (

Sparrowvsrevolution writes: In an update to an earlier story on Slashdot, hotel lock company Onity is now offering a hardware fix for the millions of hotel keycard locks that hacker Cody Brocious demonstrated at Black Hat were vulnerable to being opened by a sub-$50 Arduino device. Unfortunately, Onity wants the hotels who already bought the company's insecure product to pay for the fix.

Onity is actually offering two different mitigations: The first is a plug that blocks the port that Brocious used to gain access to the locks' data, as well as more-obscure Torx screws to prevent intruders from opening the lock's case and removing the plug. That band-aid style fix is free. A second, more rigorous fix requires changing the locks' circuit boards manually. In that case, Onity is offering "special pricing programs" for the new circuit boards customers need to secure their doors, and requiring them to also pay the shipping and labor costs.


Submission + - RIM killing off BlackBerry enterprise servers due to BB10 incompatibility (

brocket66 writes: We received word from a trusted source that RIM will be stopping development on the current BlackBerry Enterprise Server platform. We were told RIM plans to end development with version 5.0.3 — and only security patches will be issued after that — but RIM has publicly announced at version 5.0.4. Once that version is released, or soon after, RIM’s existing BlackBerry Enterprise Servers will not receive further updates. And here is where things get tricky

Comment Re:Numbers don't lie (Score 4, Insightful) 349

That depends on your definition of average, mathematically speaking that's not true. What percent of numbers are below average in this set: {1, 1, 1, 1, 1000}

This isn't pedantry, this is a meaningful distinction: I expect the amount of good software is extremely outnumbered by the bad, and even good software developers can be forced into kludges by time pressures, bad team culture, etc. I don't see any reason to think that code quality globally resembles a normal curve.

Comment Re:Codenames are common. (Score 4, Insightful) 356

Yea that's not what this was though, this was a marketing term and they started pushing it very early. Similarly technical documentation for developers refers to it all as Metro, if they were going to change that because it's not the real name, they would have done it before it went RTM.

Consider this: they have no other name for it. "Aero" is still "Aero", but "Metro" is now "Windows-8 style UI".

Comment Re:It's a free tool! (Score 5, Insightful) 228

Okay, wanking about whether or not people have entitlement issues is missing the core of the situation.

There are developers that will be new to .NET development, and there will be developers that have already been developing desktop applications against the Express versions of the software. If we have learned nothing from the gaming console or phone platform wars, it is that you want to encourage application development. Any barrier to entry or project sustainability, even one that is merely perceived, will cause some number of people to pick a different platform to learn and grow on, and the .NET ecosystem will shrink. There are plenty of other languages and IDEs to turn to that are free, easy, and reliably maintained without having to worry about version-ed crippleware.

I am a full-time .NET developer. I'm an MSDN subscriber and so am utterly independent of the Express versions. Yet I feel very strongly that incidents like this hurt me and hurt .NET development on the whole. As a developer community we're already hamstrung by the lackluster (or totally absent, depending on how you look at it) cross-platform availability for the .NET framework and culture that leans more corporate/enterprise. The least we can do is provide a basic, sustainable development tools for learners and free/open projects.

Comment Re:90 Days!? (Score 5, Informative) 322

To be clear, they are not being ordered to implement the new strategy in 90 days, they're being ordered to implement the new strategy in 12 months. The 90 day requirement is to have a page publicly documenting their progress.

That said, I'm still curious whether agencies can move fast enough to get something like this done in even 12 months. =P

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