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Comment This isn't a victory for Behring-Breivik. (Score 3, Insightful) 491

Someone once pointed out that hoping a rapist gets raped in prison isn't a victory for his victim(s), because it somehow gives him what he had coming to him, but it's actually a victory for rape and violence. I wish I could remember who said that, because they are right. The score doesn't go Rapist: 1 World: 1. It goes Rape: 2.

What this man did is unspeakable, and he absolutely deserves to spend the rest of his life in prison. If he needs to be kept away from other prisoners as a safety issue, there are ways to do that without keeping him in solitary confinement, which has been shown conclusively to be profoundly cruel and harmful.

Putting him in solitary confinement, as a punitive measure, is not a victory for the good people in the world. It's a victory for inhumane treatment of human beings. This ruling is, in my opinion, very good and very strong for human rights, *precisely* because it was brought by such a despicable and horrible person. It affirms that all of us have basic human rights, even the absolute worst of us on this planet.

Comment Interesting findings; and related... (Score 5, Interesting) 123

I read another study about a year ago (the link for which I can't find, so I profusely apologize in advance for the lack of citation), which also found that warmer temperatures were causing eggs to hatch sooner... but that the new birdlings were starving to death for a different reason: the timing of their hatching no longer aligns with the bloom of insects which are required for their sustenance. Apparently the insects did not get the memo that the warmer temperatures should also make them spring forth earlier in the season. So they are still business as usual after the young birds are already dying out, but as far as the birds are concerned, the bugs are late to the party... now I wonder if an additional side effect is an atypically larger insect population due to the comparative lack of predators.

Comment Re:Big news, but not unprecedented (Score 2) 235

Registration doesn't solve any of the problems you perceive. The one thing it does is creates a barrier to entry to reduce the number of douche-bags flying around haphazardly. Though on second thought, making marijuana a controlled substance hasn't really reduced its usage, so more likely requiring registration won't make any difference at all. But one thing is for sure: I can't read the registration marks on a 747 in flight, much less an 18" quadcopter, soooo... good luck filing that complaint! It's a pointless publicity stunt to satisfy the cry for "somebody should do something!", even if that something is meaningless posturing.

Comment Just a tool (Score 1) 327

Don't ascribe to deficiencies of a tool that which can readily be explained as incompetencies of the user.

If anything, draft new policies that reflect in an employee's annual review to hold them accountable if they are required to hold effective meetings and produce supporting collateral. If it's not in their job description, then let it go. Some people are too busy being great at their actual job to bother improving their back-office skills - and until they are required to hone those skills as a part of their job, why should/would anyone else care?

Comment Re:No. (Score 3, Interesting) 507

My organization accounts for QA/QC with the definition of "done"; QA is not a second class citizen of the organization, but rather a crucial part of the development team/process - and the story is not DONE until QA says it is. Therefore it rolls over across iteration boundaries as needed, and is only demo'ed when it is done.

The problem we have had with Agile thus far seems to be our inability to produce accurate estimates without doing Big Design Up Front which ultimately means spiking every story before we can get started. Nearly every time we try to shoot from the hip on story estimation for anything moderately complex (or worse), we have missed by several multiples the actual amount of work needed.

This is mainly due to the product being very complex (think enterprise scale SaaS, tens of millions of users, terabytes of data, complex data modeling, and numerous technologies being adapted with a variety of API/interfacing solutions) with many interconnected systems across multiple data centers and cloud services... you just can't stare at a story in the backlog and come up with a meaningful estimate off the top of your head no matter how well defined the acceptance criteria are because no one person knows what the potential impact is to all those systems.

But we're committed to working on improving our processes, cross-training, and reduction of overall system complexity to eventually be able to do just that and are sticking with Agile because it has forced us to take smaller bites which has really been a challenge for our sales/marketing and product owner teams because they want the world and they want it yesterday... and Agile empowers the scrum team to give them a reality check and say no.

I apologize for the run-on sentences... too lazy to edit at the moment.

Comment Parallel pattern matching... (Score 1) 67

... I don't see how this would be an improvement over replicating the same structure in silicon with a comparator per RAM bit with as many inputs as there are bits. Compare 8 bits or a thousand bits in a single compare operation for a "pattern" match and a giant AND gate for a single 1/0 match/no match result by supplying all the input data at once....

Comment Ok, serious question time... (Score 1) 107

I'm pretty sure the only military/government interest in being involved with "attack" scenarios on the Internet stems from the military/government having some critical exposure there. Why don't they, instead of making a plan for cyber warfare, make an initiative to fully separate the military/government network from the Internet and let the public Internet fry if it's going to fry. I can't think of a compelling reason for U.S. national security to have any ties to the Internet... can you? Helping out to protect commercial interests from cyber attacks is one thing, but having critical infrastructure/military/government exposure to the extent that it becomes a matter of *national security* just seems asinine to me...

Comment Re: And was it really a punishment? (Score 1) 97

Also, as someone who works with Asterisk/VOIP... it's *really* easy to set your caller ID to any phone number you want - how about a random caller ID rotation through every legitimate phone number in the U.S.? Gonna block them all? And with text-to-speech being able to re-render variations of the message in any of dozens of voices, it could be quite difficult to pick up on patterns from audio streams. Just sayin... this problem is not easily solved. Some layer for verifiability would be needed. Maybe it's time for POTS to go the way of broadcast television with a fully digital replacement that has some accountability built into it...

Supreme Court Gives Tacit Approval To Warrantless DNA Collection 135

An anonymous reader writes On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to review a case involving the conviction of a man based solely on the analysis of his "inadvertently shed" DNA. The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) argues that this tacit approval of the government's practice of collecting anyone's DNA anywhere without a warrant will lead to a future in which people's DNA are "entered into and checked against DNA databases and used to conduct pervasive surveillance."

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