* Posts by Danny 6

16 posts • joined 21 Oct 2010

The human factor: Get the users on board first

Danny 6
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Sadly enough...

You are most likely correct. The article is spot on, in any major implementation technical issues are eminently solvable. It's the management of things like change whether it's cultural or process that take the most time and energy, or should.

Unfortunately, too many of our colleagues either do not understand business or have decided the business isn't their problem. They are incorrect in this view, of course, and many companies suffer as a result.

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Capitalism killed the Martians, suggests Hugo Chavez

Danny 6
FAIL

@AC 16:06

Err.... obviously you didn't actually read the article. Lewis was reporting statements made by Mr. Chavez that were way out there. Capitalism/Imperialism killed life on Mars? Seriously? I guess he thought Ray's novels were some sort of science text. Maybe he thought some of Heinlein's stuff was historical in nature.

It's not as if this is the FIRST bout of crazy Chavez has had, I mean the King of Spain had to tell him to STFU a couple years back.

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Ellison drops iceberg in front of HP's unsinkable Itanic

Danny 6
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Oracle isn't going to abandon Power

That is, of course, unless they want to lose all of their big iron clients to SAP and that business isn't insignificant.

Since the Itanic never caught on with anyone other than HP, I can see some reason for the move.

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SWAT team cuffs masked Dell flack for 'deadly' tablet promo

Danny 6
Alert

If you're gonna be dumb you gotta be tough

Rik has a point. Texas has a concealed carry permit and it's entirely possible one or more employees would be packing. After what happened to the congresswoman in Arizona last month, pulling a stunt that makes people think they're under threat is what's known as a "bad-Idea", or "Darwin award bait". Lord knows if some moron in a ski mask started acting in a manner that convinced me my life was in danger I wouldn't hesitate to put him down.

For the AC above, when a SWAT (Special Weapons and Tactics) team shows up and tells you to drop whatever you're holding and lie down, do it. These cats aren't called to a scene unless it's likely there will be shooting involved so they're a little amped. It's what keeps them alive when they're kicking down the door of a meth lab with someone probably carrying an automatic weapon inside. There's no mistaking a team for regular cops, they're carrying automatic rifles (eg. M16A2). So if you're foolish enough to think there's another option to compliance with instructions, it's your lookout. Only, keep one thing in mind. SWAT teams typically aren't issued "less lethal" devices such as pepper spray or tazers. The fact this guy was ONLY arrested after non-compliance shows the team exhibited great restraint.

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Danny 6
FAIL

What it means

The charge means "acting in such a way as to cause someone to possibly get killed". In this case, acting like such a clueless boob that a SWAT team was dispatched. Not being satisfied, the boob then fails to follow instructions and, for a time, causes the team to think said boob posed a deadly threat.

He won't get more than probation, more likely just a fine and a stern warning from the bench. Usually people this dumb simply get shot.

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Republican reps push for mandatory gun ownership

Danny 6
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Not similar at all

The idea behind requiring car owners to carry insurance is to cover damages you may do to someone else (liability). I doubt there's a government requirement to purchase comprehensive insurance although your lender might.

Since you are operating a private vehicle on a public road this makes sense and at least in the US is constitutionally allowed. You aren't obligated by law to purchase a private automobile. Here in the US vehicles that aren't operated on public highways (farm trucks for example) are not required to be covered by liability insurance. Commercial and public vehicles must be insured by the OWNERS not the operators. Again, the point of requiring liability insurance is to ensure an owner's ability to meet financial responsibilities in the event his or her vehicle is at fault in a collision.

In this case, the US government is requiring every citizen to purchase health insurance. Health insurance is designed to cover the policy holder in the event of injury or illness, not to guarantee everyone has access to health care. And, in fact, the bill as passed doesn't improve access one bit.

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Danny 6
FAIL

Apples and oranges

The thing I find highly ironic is that if the Democrats had had a pair amongst them and pushed for a single payer, government run health system the plan WOULD pass Constitutional muster. Essentially we'd be talking Medicare/Medicaid writ large. The US government would collect more income taxes (allowed by the 16th amendment) and wasted the money to cover medical expenses. Instead they turned chicken and passed a bill with the "individual mandate" that isn't going to work.

There's a fundamental principle at work here that apparently some people are too obtuse to grasp. If the US government wants to operate a plan and tax the public in order to do so, it's Constitutionally allowed. Foolish, wasteful and ultimately doomed to failure but Constitutional.

On the other hand if the US government says "you must buy this product because we say so" then we have a problem here. After all, if the US government by act of Congress can make you buy health insurance then what CAN'T if make you buy? If the commerce clause has no limits to the authority granted Congress then a number of our rights specified in the 5th, 7th and 9th amendments become meaningless.

We haven't touched the fact that health insurance policies are NOT in fact issued across state lines so the idea that Congress can regulate it as interstate commerce is a rather shaky proposition to begin with. One that the courts haven't had a chance to comment on at this time.

How many people will die, "saving" taxpayer money are all nice emotional arguments that really miss the point. I'm being kind here because some political figures have no excuse for not understanding the problems with the individual mandate program. There are lots of things government "could" do that would save a lot more lives like banning automobiles and motorcycles altogether and making everyone use some sort of public transit. Or outlaw any activity that could result in bodily harm such as skydiving or bungee jumping. But at what cost to individual freedom? Freedom to only make nice, safe choices isn't freedom at all. Cattle are safe. Cattle are fed regularly, get free health care and, for a cow, a nice place to stay. Cattle are NOT, however free.

If you want to be cattle, fine by me. I'd plan on staying free.

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Utah to honour Browning M1911 semi-automatic

Danny 6
Grenade

hmmmm....

Not sure why Utah is wasting time on "state symbols". The state's budget is in a lot better shape than most states but still not great.

That said, at least they picked a decent firearm. Properly tweaked the 1911 can be a real naildriver.

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Matrix 4 and 5 in works, threatens Keanu

Danny 6
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Best - description - ever

"philosophical metaphysical headfuckery"

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Man charged in bizarre EXPLODING VIBRATOR plot

Danny 6

It's Alabama

That's east bumfuck. Idaho is west.

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Skype adds video calls to iPhone app

Danny 6
FAIL

Fring had this a year ago...

And Skype killed it in a hissy fit.

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US census takers fight angry Americans for their data

Danny 6
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Required but not enforced

Well that's really the point. As far as I've been able to tell (I started looking because now I'm curious) NO ONE has actually been charged, much less fined, for refusing to answer census questions. Until that happens, I'm not sure anyone has standing to challenge the law in court.

The census bureau website actually listed the purpose for each for the questions on the 10 question form most people received. The questions about race on the form are actually to monitor compliance with the Voting Rights Acts. Personally I didn't see anything on the form particularly objectionable as it didn't ask for SSN numbers or other more sensitive information. In 2000 it did and I simply ran a black marker across those questions. Oddly enough no one showed up at my door to ask why.

The census also conducts an "economic census" every 5 years that does ask a large number of questions. From what I've been able to tell participation IS NOT mandatory and is a statistical sample of businesses.

Two observations on the issue of census takers.

First, abusing census takers is actually a VERY, VERY OLD issue that can be traced to right after the Civil War. In the 30's it wasn't unusual for rural people to take shots (as in with a firearm) at census employees either mistaking them for revenuers (federal police either enforcing the ban on alcohol at the time or later shutting down unregistered stills) or simply out of pure cussedness. If all you got was insulted and cursed at, count yourself lucky.

Second, I have a couple of friends (retired) who decided to become census takers for something to do. From what I've been told, all you really had to have was a pulse and be able to get to your assigned area. I met a charming young lady one late morning looking for my next door neighbors. She couldn't understand why they were never home till I pointed out they both worked and didn't get home till 5pm. Apparently it never occurred to her that showing up during regular working hours probably wasn't the best method for contacting people at home. Anyway, I helped her fill out the information and then asked her to dinner. We had a nice evening.

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DARPA orders miracle motor for its flying car

Danny 6
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This is DARPA's job

DARPA is an interesting department. It's DoD (Department of Defense) official risk taking group. They specialize in high risk / high reward ventures that require a little money to see results. For instance, DARPA runs its annual competition for the best automated full size vehicle. Teams bring prototypes to run an obstacle course designed by DARPA and a prize is awarded to the team able to complete the course in the least amount of time. For only a couple million dollars US (chump change compared to what our Dept. of Human Services spends on an hourly basis) they've managed push major advances in automated navigation and obstacle avoidance.

Projects like Land Warrior may not have panned out as expected but components developed in the program are either deployed already or about to be. Stealth started life as a DARPA project though later the US Air Force picked up on the idea.

Sadly (or ironically depending on your point of view) I suspect DARPA is one of our government's better investments.

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Danny 6
Pint

Oh BTW...

And if anyone can do making this engine work, I'd bet on P&W. They have a little bit of experience in making high performance aircraft engines. They've only been doing it since 1925.

Let's see.... the SR71 ran J58's, C141's and the E3A used TF33's, the Navy used J52s in the A4's and A6s for almost 30 years (only recently retiring the A6 fleet) and that doesn't count all the radial engines used by the military and civilian airliners over the years. I'd say they've done this a time or two.

Can't wait to see what this little monster looks like. A light weight rotary diesel? Wonder how long it'll be before you see them at surplus auctions.

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Danny 6

The motor's a wankel varient

http://www.flightglobal.com/articles/2009/04/14/325020/pratt-whitney-wankel-prototype-to-test-by-june.html

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Apple threatens Java with death on the Mac

Danny 6
Jobs Horns

Old news for Apple

This certainly isn't the first time Apple has given developers the shaft. Back in the early 90's Apple pulled some stunts that basically killed any independent application development for OS 7.5 and that lead to a fairly massive drop in user base. More so when Win 95 hit the streets.

I ended up defecting from the platform myself about that time when the handwriting on the wall became 20 feet high and in fresh blood. Developing software on / for the Mac was a profit-negative proposition.

Apple has traditionally had a like/hate relationship with developers. On the one hand, the Mac OS has always been one of the more developer friendly on the market. On the other Apple tends to see 3rd party applications as potential competition and doesn't do much to actively promote development on the platform. The Mac Apps Store being a notable recent exception. I always found it ironic that Steve has decided to pan the company (Adobe) that made the Mac the dominant PC platform in the creative industry. If it weren't for Photoshop and Illustrator the Mac would have never graduated to being more than a home PC.

For those who are old enough to remember..... Steve-O was this way the first time he was at the helm. [sarcasm] Glad to see he's mellowed with age. [/sarcasm]

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