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Comment Re:Being a member of a union (Score 1) 594

As others have stated, unions have become self serving. Instead of representing the "local" they have become national organizations with homogeneous wants that may or may not reflect the local area conditions. In addition, if a shop truly wants to unionize, why wouldn't all employees get together, form the bargaining unit and go to work with management. Why do they need to pay dues and why does the union need money if it's truly an organization that represents those in the workplace? Finally, why are unions allowed to donate any of their hard-earned employees pay to any political entity? Can't the workers donate directly to the candidate of their choice?

Comment It's ugly (Score 2) 406

Most of the kids I work with have an Apple Watch to go along with their iPhones. I have an iPhone and love it but I can't bring myself to replace my current watch, which is a 28 year old Rolex, with an ugly Apple Watch. I bought my Rolex in the 80s and made payments on it for a couple of years. I wear it nearly every day so from a value standpoint, if I did an ROI on it and tried to compare it's value to tech that will probably only last a couple of years, I am sure the Apple watch is not a good investment. Call me a snob but maybe if they can figure out how to put the Apple Watch guts in an Oyster case, I may be more interested.

Comment Weighing Options (Score 3, Interesting) 313

Work just provided me with a new laptop. It was my choice and I selected a new MBP 15 inch. My reasons are longevity - my last MBP, which I own, lasted more than 4 years, and I am still using it. OSX is an excellent operating system. I sometimes go months without rebooting and I use the machine 8+ hours each day. I can also run Windows on my MBP. I prefer VMWare Fusion for my virtual machines but Parallels is fine too.
Had I selected a Windows laptop, I would have only a Windows laptop. Having the MBP allows me to test and develop against both platforms. It also provides me with a way to run the less expensive versions of any commercial software, should there be a difference in cost.
So, while Windows licensing sales may be up, there is no way to know where those OS's are running. Heck, it could be that folks are buying licenses to run on their Macs.

Comment I'm a grown up (Score 1) 95

Written in this way, even I am scared of what they can do with my data. Like most, I typically ignore the TOS as I blunder through it. Maybe this attorney, or some other attorney could do this for all the popular social media, music and other sites that collect data about me. It's probably too late for me but kids could benefit.

Comment Recycling Value (Score 2) 91

In some places, old landfills are being reprocessed. What that means is whatever is buried there now has enough value to make it worthwhile to dig up and recycle. If engineered correctly, landfills are safe places to "store" our waste. In my view, a landfill is an investment in the future. From leachate to precious metals, all have a value. That value may not currently be enough to make reprocessing attractive but in the future it certainly will be.

Comment Re:OTA programming + a la carte "premium" content (Score 1) 86

The lack of a compelling price point is why people like me are leaving cable and satellite services. When you are served up 50 channels of shit with three decent channels, and they (meaning the content providers and the satellite purveyors) still want to charge a ridiculous amount plus add-ons for HD, box rental, etc., one can't help but believe that any new service provided by the old guard will be exactly the same, just packaged in a new box.
Now that I have cut the cord, and have found I don't miss my satellite dish at all, it's going to have to really wow me before I spend a penny.

Comment Re:What's the problem, really? (Score 3, Interesting) 277

It's not a loophole. You don't need a gun show for a private purchase, it's your right as an individual and you can do it anywhere. That said, most gun shows today are cognizant of the media frenzy over their labeled "loophole" so the promoters no longer allow tables to be rented to private collectors. That means most transaction on the floor of the show will go through an FFL and background check.
Certainly there may be folks walking through the show with a weapon for sale privately, but let's face it, it's not easy for a private individual to carry too many.
I would also like to comment that as Americans, it is our duty to make sure we don't sell to someone who has nefarious tendencies. As an FFL, I am happy to log and transfer a weapon for a private sale. It literally takes minutes for the background check. If I was a private seller, I would gladly pay the transfer fee to know there was a paper trail, for my own liability.

Comment Re:Odd, this "free range" environment... (Score 1) 115

I too have worked in both environments. I prefer to have a private office where I can make it quiet or play some music without the need for headphones. As a current cube dweller, I don't question why management loves the "open" plan. They are either cheap or they saw a movie where a bunch of software geeks were huddling up and making ground breaking progress. That's not the way it happens in real life. Most "collaboration" is just bullshitting. I don't discount that real meetings and collaboration are important but getting the job done happens inside the developer's head and that requires a quiet environment free of interruptions.
What programmers really need is privacy - an office with walls and a door, enough bathroom space to accommodate everyone - typically, from what I have seen the minimum number of stalls is woefully inadequate at even the newest places I have worked, and a couple of public-ish places where collaboration is made easy. Finally, don't skimp on the furniture. Comfortable chairs or chairs of choice by employees who have a preference will keep them in their seats longer.

Comment Managed Risk (Score 1) 148

A lock only keeps an honest man honest. Same goes for a password. While a more complex password will do the job much better, as does a better lock, neither will keep out someone who wants to get in. Rather than meaningless password strength meters next to the password box, there should be some graphic that helps create or suggests stronger passwords. It may not prevent them from using more common passwords or phrases but it might better get their attention. On the other hand, some people just don't care enough to be bothered.

Comment My feeling exactly (Score 1) 472

While I am looking forward to the new Macbook Pro models, at the moment, my 3 year old, bought on Apples refurb website has worked nearly flawlessly. I use it for both Mac and Windows via VMWare's Fusion and while I wish for a larger hard drive, the SSD makes the machine super fast. I typically use an external keyboard and mouse so the only upgrade I was really concerned with was the retina display, which I have. All in all, I am not complaining. The machine was expensive but has earned it's keep.

Comment False Logic (Score 1) 760

"But the average rate of drug use among those recipients has been far below the national average -- around 1% overall, compared with 9.4% in the general population"

Isn't it conceivable that drug users might be aware that benefits come with a drug test and they simply don't apply? The 1% that do test positive are just too stupid to realize their habit will cost them benefits.

Comment Re:How about (Score 1) 369

Teachers develop curriculum but, in Missouri at least, it's the State Legislature that defines the educational goals. Teachers have no choice but to follow along and teach what they are told to, the best they can.
As far as fads go, I am not sure your point is valid. Teachers are trained to use different methodology to reach all kids. What works for one, may not work for another. You may think what they are doing is a "fad" but in reality, it's simply a tool to reach a goal.
I suggest spending some time in a classroom before dumping on teachers. We should also be looking at parental expectations (or lack of them) as well. No school district operates successfully if parents aren't happy with the education their kids are getting.

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