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Comment May work with today's youth (Score 1) 76

As I grow older I keep on comparing the behaviors of those in their late teens and 20's to my own to best understand how the world, or at least the culture around me, might be changing. "Kids" today take for granted having a personal computer in their pockets at all times. They are not really forced to memorize as much, be quite as creative, or have as much face to face time. I've seen them sitting in the same room staring at their phone texting/instant messaging each other as a form of communication. WotC are latching on to this idea. Though I believe there is a lot lost in not seeing a friend stand up gleefully and make sword thrust motions after rolling a Nat 20 and confirming. I suspect this product will work. The biggest concern will be WotC's ability to be a software/service provider instead of just licensing to other developers as they have done in the past Presumably WotC would use their Magic Online development group to do this.

Comment Trial in Absentia (Score 1) 375

I will start by saying that I don't support a trial in absentia of Edward Snowden. But I would like that a president also pardon someone who is found guilty. Edward Snowden is as far as I am aware innocent of any crime in the USA per the US constitution. He is a suspect, he may have even publicly admitted guilt or involvement in something that might be a crime. However he has not been brought to trial in person or not in person and been found guilty of a crime. The president doesn't have to pardon Mr. Snowden. Ms. Loretta Lynch the current standing US Attorney General could just submit some kind of legally binding communication that the US would drop any current and not press future charges of Mr. Snowden if he were to return to the USA. Furthermore that the US would not seek revenge for documents Mr. Snowden may have leaked.

I am not suggesting that I agree or disagree with this view. But I would strongly prefer that our law process is followed and not circumvented for convenience. A pardon seems to strong a process and to soon given the current circumstance.

Comment Risky at 17 (Score 1) 337

I remember back when I was 17, I drank some very good beer. Wait, that was a Simpsons reference. At 17 you don't think about consequences and largely you don't have much to lose. Still using commercial services in a way the company did not intend might have consequences. My hope is this kid will get a kudos for bringing the fault to light for T-mobile, a slap on the wrist to say be more careful about what you play around with, and later a fun and successful college career and productive life. The failure was to make it public if the fault in the system still exists because it could cause the company monetary damage. That damage would then likely come back to haunt the kid. The correct order for all of you out there who might be in the same boat is to hack politely, cause no damage, report only to an authority and/or owner who can responsibly fix the issue. Yes, there is still the potential for consequences but at least one could argue that they brought the greatest benefit to what was hacked and that they did not bring harm or intended harm to a person or persons.

Though really it is best to hack only things that you own or "have an implied license to own."

Comment Re:Who would have guessed? (Score -1) 252

Accenture consistently drives high performance and has a history of satisfaction on projects for the worlds top organizations. What sets Accenture apart from the competition are its management. The skill and level of analysts from every contracting company can vary greatly. However Accenture Senior Management staff have shown consistently high levels of skill and communication. Problems can happen with any corporate or government project. Rarely does everything go according to plan and often requirements change mid project. It is how a consulting company handles these changes that count. Accenture sets its self apart in this situation.

It's not the destination that matters but how you get there, Accenture(High Performance Delivered).

Comment Re:Mainframes in the airlines (Score 2) 239

Many planes are leased or rotated off of budget after a certain maintenance schedule. Airlines run very thin profit margins despite how it may appear. Think about all the choices you have when flying? The Northwest airlines portion of Delta used to run mainframes in Minnesota. I don't know what they use in Atlanta. Mainframes can be much more efficient than a bunch of Oracle/Microsoft DB's running on VMware. It isn't a trivial task to fail over to DR for most companies. One of the scariest things are DB sync lag. If the database in DR becomes too far behind the primary DB then hundreds if not millions of people that purchased tickets, transfers, baggage logistics etc might be lost. The chaos from that might well outstrip the chaos from delaying all flights until the primary DC might be recovered or at minimum networking from the primary DC/Databases can be restored to the DR site and a 100% sync status can be confirmed. Even if everything seems perfect, going to DR is really scary. Please take everything that a company does in this situation IT and Management wise with a massive grain of salt. One last thing that is really hard to swallow as an airline customer. You don't have the "right" to fly. You have a privilege. Any business has a monetary incentive to give you that privilege. It would be bad business otherwise. But at the end of the day no business has the legal responsibility to serve you. With the exception of health care and health insurance in the US.

Comment Re:Incompetent IT (Score 2) 239

I know people get upset about these kinds of things and airlines have really high public exposure to failure. But processes do fail. I don't work for Delta and don't have any affiliation with them. But I work in the sector and have felt the sting of system failure. Don't be quick judge and hindsight is 20/20. An example of what could have caused this is a complex network + storage device failure. It is reasonable for devices that never get turned off to experience failure to turn on if they ever lose power. I'm sure Delta has a DR site but the DR site may also have experience failure if it was in close proximity to the main site. Also failing over to a DR site can often take many hours. This is all the price to be paid for the efficiency of computing. A year from now few people except for employees at Delta will even remember that it happened.

To all the folks around the world affected by this, hang in there. If they are offline after 24 hours then it is probably time to question what is going on. To the fine IT folks at Delta, I've been there good luck to you and don't forget to rotate out folks for resting. A freshly rested brain works faster.

Comment Then make it special (Score 1) 331

Theaters today either cater to those who can't afford a home theater or to those looking for something special. Theaters can offer some spacial effects that you just can't get in a home unless you have 100+ foot walls at your disposal. Theaters need to sell their sound stage, image quality, and ambiance. They are less likely to sell on price, snacks, or customer service.

The other problem that theater face, and probably the biggest one is that the movies themselves are not enough to keep a theater in business. The studios take too large of a cut for something of a constricting market. If studios were to take less of a cut from theaters, theaters were to sell their services either as a cheap alternative to a tv at home or a quality experience surpassing a home theater, then the market would be sustainable. As it is the home experience is a growing market and a day of release streaming service is just another example of someone "getting it."

Comment Minority Report (Score 1) 81

If facebook makes storing bio metric data and also sharing that data with its partners part of the terms of use then people would potentially be allowing the use of that bio metric data to be tracked and advertised to. Legally it is obvious that governments will want to have a legal handle on this sort of behavior before it is widely exploited. If this kind of marketing behavior is found to be legally acceptable then a whole new market would be opened. Who holds the patent rights to this business process I wonder?

Comment Re:I'll believe it when I see it. (Score 1) 168

IBM has lot's of expensive licensed software out there. In places where there isn't IBM hardware the software will be lurking in the shadows. IBM has mainly transitioned to a consulting firm. My guess is that hardware, especially things like laptops, are becoming commodity and harder to lock down with IP and just a few component manufacturers out there who make the real money. IBM puts a lot more focus these days on things that are very difficult to replicate or very easy to defend as IP. All the while making great returns on what it keeps. IBM is an old and savvy business and all of the decisions the business has made shows a lot of future insight to its competition. HP recently spun off their consumer line and likely will end up better for it.

Comment Re:Minnesota does a few of these (Score 1) 400

I agree. Twin Cities buses will often times be found flying down the shoulder at 50-60mph while traffic is going 10-15mph. You are required by law to yield to any bus that is stopped or merging. If you get on a city bus you either take a seat right away and pay when you get off or if you don't pay immediately and you are the last one on the bus driver will regularly start moving the bus. Non-school buses don't stop at railroads. Finally a potentially unsafe but efficient method of bicycle storing is a metal rack on the front of the bus requiring a passenger to step in front of the bus to load and unload a bike. Buses around the twin cities can be a bit of an exciting ride but they serve their purpose. Unfortunately car pooling with two or more people is almost immediately is a better deal than riding a bus. Dedicated lanes, shared with buses, on many freeways. As low as 20$ downtown Minneapolis/St. Paul parking plans. A government funded ride share program that matches up people with similar source and destinations.

Comment Tin hat (Score 1) 503

Sadly, this mother should have had invested in a tin hat. She should have also removed all cellular phones form the house, wrapped it in a Faraday cage, and removed any televisions, vacuum cleaners, microwave ovens, computers, really anything with an inductor. In addition I would suggest that she consider joining an Amish community. I won't argue with her that large amounts of electro-magnetic energy can not affect the brain. However to call it an allergy, where the body attacks itself due to an external irritant seems a bit far fetched. I think she would have a stronger case to say that her daughters brain formed a mutation or had a neurological pathway blocked in someway due to EMF to cause severe depression.

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