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Comment Re:Gov. leaders unsually have no technical knowled (Score 1) 174

"Ranting" and "raging" is infantile behavior.

Hyperbole detection check: Failed. We have eloquently tried to express our concerns and displeasure with this development among mainstream users to gain broader support and failed.

Instead, prepare a set of laws and regulations that we recommend. Get the process started.

And the first thing any politician will ask is whether anyone wants this. The industry doesn't want it? People don't want it? If there is neither money nor votes behind it the proposal is dead on arrival. Besides what would these laws and regulations do, outlaw services? Agreeing to the Windows 10 EULA isn't even close to the stupidest thing you can legally do to yourself. Become a 500lb tub of lard. Get a face tattoo. Be the goatse guy. Proximity flying in a wingsuit. Become a NAMBLA spokesman. The EULA might not even make the top ten.

Comment Protect you against SQL injection? Really? (Score 2) 50

I would love to hear the explanation of how a general purpose language would protect you against attacks like that, clearly called out in the article.

You're doing the snowflake thing, blaming everyone else for the coders' incompetence and unsuitability for the job. Some dweeb wrote a tutorial and because it's not ready to be cut and pasted into production code, that's the tutorial writer's fault.

NB: Not everyone can code.

Comment Re:We ran the same calculus (Score 1) 174

However....backup, anti-virus, spam filtering, and a DR solution drives up the cost very quickly.

The marginal cost of backup and DR when you're *already* doing those things for an on-prem server environment is pretty close to zero, and if you're already virtualized and have a virtual-oriented backup software you probably already have DR integrated into your backup. AV and anti-spam are almost always done best these days by a third party service and the good ones do both anyway.

From the numbers I've run, it usually is cheaper to do it on prem above about 50 users with a 3 year benchmark. If you time the upgrade right, you can probably get 5 years out of it without falling more than a rev behind and cut the 50 user number way down.

It's pretty obvious Microsoft is heading subscription-only for everything. Since 2013, Exchange has lost much of its GUI which I think has been a way to scare on-prem admins away. They will ultimately either price on prem high enough that only a few compliance/security focused large organizations will consider it or support hybrid only (meaning you're paying for O365, used or not).

Cloud is about permanent vendor-lock in and rent-seeking, not economics. The marginal cost of a 5-9s commercial data center for hosting cloud services is greater than the marginal savings to users, which is why hosted systems always end up being so expensive unless you're doing something really trivial like a static web site.

Comment Re:Fortran (Score 1) 437

My father showed me basic when I wanted to use the computer as a calculator (basic arithmetic). I discovered programming.

He then saw talent in me and bought me a Turbo Pascal book (in my mother tongue... English would not have worked at that age) and a copy of Turbo Pascal (I presume from work, but... I don't know where exactly he got it from).

... and that's how he awoke my interest in computers and ultimately the profession I would choose.

Thanks dad...

Comment Re: Time to switch (Score 2) 174

Volume licensing for Office 365 is a lot cheaper per seat than simply multiplying the list price by number of employees. It also has a much simpler licensing model than previous Microsoft volume licensing, which makes compliance easier (you get all of the desktop apps for Windows, Mac, iOS and Android included). The latter point alone is worth it to a lot of big companies.

Comment Re:Why pay the Microsoft tax? (Score 4, Insightful) 174

One thing I've learned over the years is that Slashdot commenters are generally not good at reacting to abuse. Slashdot commenters make excuses, or react to abuse weakly.

I see the last 20 years have done nothing to dampen your idealism, good for you but maybe an ounce of reality wouldn't hurt? Back then your data was local, you had the executable and the only thing you didn't have was the source code to inspect it. Even though things like email went from your server to their server instead of peer to peer, things were pretty distributed and decentralized. Having access to the source code was mostly about being able to fix and extend it, not that it did something nasty.

Not only have consumers ignored open source solutions, they've gone totally the other way. Much of their data lives in the cloud, where they have no control of what's done with it. They use huge, centralized services like Facebook that collects a ton of data. Auto-updating devices download and install new executable code all the time and often rely on online servers. People don't care that they're being tracked and in many cases even accuse those who object of having something to hide. They sign away all rights in mile-long EULAs without thought.

We've ranted. We've raged. We've raised the banners and tried to proclaim YotLD many times. XPs online activation in 2001. Slammer & friends in 2003. Vista in 2006. "Trusted Computing" sometime late 2000s. Windows 8 in 2012. Windows 10 in 2015. Stealth telemetry in all VS apps in 2016. I'm sure there's many more things I've forgotten. I'm sure there's bad things about Apple, Google, Adobe and many others. We've raged out. It's like "OMG OMG Microsoft is... wait, what's the point? Why is anyone going to listen now, when they never have in the past?"

They earn billions of dollars that way. And in between screwing us over they sometime make pretty good software, so yeah... maybe open source is more efficient but one idealist versus a hundred paid developers is unfair teams. So I run Win7 and I got an iPhone. Should it have been Linux and a rooted Android phone? Maybe. But like I said, raged out. If I can't even stand the hassle myself, it's pretty hard to ask anyone else to fight a fight I feel is pretty hopeless. Pretty sure I'm not the only disillusioned ex-revolutionary here.

Comment Re:Examples (Score 1) 174

OwnCloud is almost there. IMHO, the devs should have a team which focuses on packaging a complete "appliance" images like pfSense capable of managing the storage subsytem from a web gui.

When I last looked at it, someone had done this themselves but it took some shell work to manage the OS storage side of things, certificates, etc.

There are canned EC2 instances, but for storage intensive versions the cost is approaching or over $1/hr.

Education

Slashdot Asks: What Was Your First Programming Language? (stanforddaily.com) 437

This question was inspired by news that Stanford's computer science professor Eric Roberts will try JavaScript instead of Java in a new version of the college's introductory computer programming course. The Stanford Daily reports: When Roberts came to Stanford in 1990, CS106A was still taught in Pascal, a programming language he described as not "clean." The department adopted the C language in 1992. When Java came out in 1995, the computer science faculty was excited to transition to the new language. Roberts wrote the textbooks, worked with other faculty members to restructure the course and assignments and introduced Java at Stanford in 2002... "Java had stabilized," Roberts said. "It was clear that many universities were going in that direction. It's 2017 now, and Java is showing its age." According to Roberts, Java was intended early on as "the language of the Internet". But now, more than a decade after the transition to Java, Javascript has taken its place as a web language.
In 2014 Python and Java were the two most commonly-taught languages at America's top universities, according to an analysis published by the Communications of the ACM. And Java still remains the most-commonly taught language in a university setting, according to a poll by the Special Interest Group on Computer Science Education. In a spreadsheet compiling the results, "Python appears 60 times, C++ 54 times, Java 84 times, and JavaScript 28 times," writes a computing professor at the Georgia Institute of Technology, adding "if Java is dying (or "showing its age"...) it's going out as the reigning champ."

I'm guessing Slashdot's readers have their own opinions about this, so share your educational experiences in the comments. What was your first programming language?

Comment Re: Time to switch (Score 2) 174

I'm curious how big companies justify anything over $5 a month.

Most companies of any size have virtualization which almost always means that running Exchange amounts to software licensing and a fairly thin amount of admin time.

A single Exchange server should scale to 500 users pretty easily -- at $35 month, you're making a $175,000 commitment or $525,000 over 3 years. The office and Exchange licensing for on-prem isn't $525,000.

I know some organizations have struggled with Exchange reliability, but I've worked in the managed services and consulting space and the vast majority of on-prem installs I've worked with have been extremely reliable and problems have usually been the result of some really bad admin decisions.

I've laid the costs out side by side for customers who have run on-prem, including admin costs, and almost none have chosen 365.

Comment Re:More science (Score 2) 220

Over the time scale of the next century, only one input signal will dominate: the amount of added greenhouse gases. All of that other stuff either oscillates too fast or has an insignificant effect. Other signals that would have a big impact, such as changes in the earth's orbit that drive ice ages, or movement of mountain ranges due to continental drift, are too slow to have an impact over the next couple of centuries.

Relative to the greenhouse gas signal, the climate *was* very close to an equilibrium on a human timescale. It certainly isn't any longer; it's being strongly driven into ranges hotter than it's been for millions of years.

Comment Re:More science (Score 1) 220

The final color of mixing two buckets of paint is the integrated effect of chaotic stirring (and all of the world's supercomputers probably couldn't predict the exact pattern of those swirls). However, the final color can easily be calculated with high precision using a hand calculator. Integration has smaller error bars than you think it does.

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