* Posts by Tom 13

7611 posts • joined 10 Jun 2009

Layabout, sun-blushed techies have pick of IT job market, says survey

Tom 13

Re: I think that would be an open question.

It's not an open question when you have both high unemployment numbers and companies saying the positions can't be filled by locals. That tells you there's a fundamental disconnect is expectations.

Web giants gang up to take on MPEG LA, HEVC Advance with royalty-free streaming codec

Tom 13

Re: more fundamental mathematics

Even US patent and copyright law (screwy as it is) doesn't permit you to patent fundamental mathematics.

Therefore MPEG LA are patent trolls.

US to stage F-35-versus-Warthog bake-off in 2018

Tom 13

Re: Lets hope it never comes to an all out war

Then you haven't been keeping up with your history. The Russians were ALWAYS planning to win the nuclear war. We were fortunate in that they always felt they were just a little short of launching the pre-emptive strike.

Tom 13

Re: But their unit cost never justified large scale production.

I always wonder when that's the justification for killing a project:

Did the small run unit cost accurately reflect what a large scale unit cost would have been?

Regardless of the run size, you have to pay the capital costs for the production equipment. If you plan to run 1000 units that makes a $10,000 capital cost more palatable than if you're planning to run 100 units. We in the public never get to see the split between the labor costs and the capital costs, so we never know if that Congresscritter demanding we halve production numbers to save us money actually did.

Tom 13

Re: Politicians and Their Responsibilities


That should have been "also makes it more difficult to kill them" not "easier". For those of you who upvoted me, thanks for the ESP correction.

Tom 13

Re: Lets hope it never comes to an all out war

Hope is not a plan. I think that attitude has made it more likely that we'll see that kind of all out war now than it was before the wall came down. Our side keeps hoping that, the other side keeps planning to win it. One of these days they're going to think they have such a substantial edge they'll be willing to risk it. We won't be able to stop it until we stop that kind of thinking. Because the edge they're going to think will give it to them, is that we aren't willing to fight that war.

Tom 13

Re: Politicians and Their Responsibilities

Part of the problem here falls on the military itself. In order to ensure programs get funded the military has worked to make sure that every national voting district has at least one part for any big system produced in it. Since the locals have a vested interest, it increases the odds their congress critter will vote to fund the program. Yes, it makes it easier to fund things, but it also makes it easier to kill them when they grow outdated, or it's just a bad idea. The multi-purpose military jet has always struck me as one of those bad ideas only a paper pusher can love. But they've got enough districts getting jobs from making parts so it is now almost impossible to stop.

Tom 13

Re: ...it's a cannon with wings.

So, if we sign a contract with Red Bull for ten years, it should last another decade then.

Ex top judge admits he's incapable of reading email, doesn't own a PC

Tom 13

Re: has other qualifications

Perhaps, but it seems to me that in his reply he has disqualified himself from hearing the case for a more egregious mistake than showing some partisan bent in the matter he was reviewing: failure to understand and uphold the law.

It matters not whether he was the person operating the computer in response to his messages. The account was in his name, and by his own admission, messages were sent at his direction. Therefore the issue of who pressed the keys is moot. It was still at his direction that the invitation was accepted.

Everyone has a political bias, even judges. I'd actually prefer that there biases were displayed rather than hidden and the question asked was "can he rule on the basis of law alone?" So I could live with him attending the fund raiser. However, such shenanigans as he engaged in to "exonerate" himself are the epitome of things which ought to disqualify a judge.

Are you a Tory-voting IT contractor? Congrats! Osborne is hiking your taxes

Tom 13

Re: how you choose to structure your remuneration from your company is up to you

Actually, that's the fundamental unfairness in all these progressive tax systems. If I'm working the same hours and doing the same work as you are, one of us shouldn't be making more simply because his accountant is more clever.

Tom 13

and then require the services of institutions that would've been partially funded by those taxe

The assumption that those who don't want to pay the taxes also require the services is a false one.

You've been Drudged! Malware-squirting ads appear on websites with 100+ million visitors

Tom 13

Re: What if

Nice thought, won't happen. Too many international boundaries and too many people making money from it.

New study into lack of women in Tech: It's not the men's fault

Tom 13

Re: gotten a woman and inwardly groaned?

Only when I knew the woman was the one who stood in the way of the junior male tech implementing the MS documented fix that kept the ServiceDesk nose deep in tickets for the first two weeks of moving to a new network. Stations were 9x and servers were W2K. The servers timed out the network connection and dropped it. Junior male tech found the tech article where you used regedit to adjust a value on the server. Woman insisted you NEVER want to use regedit to fix a problem, you always want an official patch.

On the other hand, I loved the female supervisor we hired and stayed with us for about 2 years before moving on because our company was so dysfunctional. I was RIFFed about a year later and it is one of the best things that ever happened to me.

Tom 13

Re: Not sure about lack of mathematical knowledge being the reason

I had more female math teachers only until I reached high school. There the numbers equalized, but the men were superior teachers. In college the numbers were again about equal. I might give a slight edge to the women, but that may also have been a function of class size. The men were teaching classes of 250, the women 80. Eventually I got it though my thick skull that no matter how hard I worked at it, arithmetic and I didn't get along and my schooling didn't cover some key formulas I hadn't learned to recognize (any rotated curves, everything we did was along X or Y and they claimed the rotation was obvious, it's not).

Tom 13

Re: Not sure about lack of mathematical knowledge being the reason

When you plot the data for men and women separately there's a statistically significant and observable difference between the two curves. The curve for women has a higher mean (for all subjects) and a lower standard deviation. Which means that when you are looking out at the tail ends of the curve, you tend to have more men. So if you're looking for the top 1% of the population it tends to have significantly more men than women. So on average, women are smarter, but at the exceptional levels you find more men.

Tom 13

Re: "maths is hard" says Barbie

I have to agree with this observation. I trace my dislike of math back to my 4th grade teacher who yelled at me for the way I did my math problems. I did the work in my head for short problems (I mean really, how hard is it to do 11 x 4 = 44 in your head?). She insisted I had to write it out. I also have some genetic issues. I'm ever so slightly dyslexic with a tendency toward photographic memory. The problem doesn't present itself so much with words where there are usually sufficient characters for me to auto-correct my most common mistakes, but it's killer when you flip the 1 and the 5 in 4315987634.

Tom 13


No wonder you're confused. You never had the right definitions in the first place or the reasons for their origins.

First World - Europe essentially tracing back to the ancient Greeks. Excludes Egypt and the Middle East even though you can trace Greece back to them.

Second World - The US and maybe Canada if it doesn't get included in First.

Third World - Everybody else.

First world is there because that's where the explorers who were writing the history books came from.

Second World is the region the explorers successfully colonized. The maybe on Canada is because of it's ties back to the UK and the fact that they didn't do the Revolution thing like the US did.

Third world is everybody else.

Yes, it is an ethnocentric view of the world. All histories are.

Tom 13

Re: Can you explain this to me?

As a theoretical matter, it's important. As a practical matter it isn't.

The most obvious example can be found in sorting algorithms. To conclusively prove one algorithm will always be faster than another you need to know the maths to derive the equations. In practice you can compare them and conclude the quick sort is best for large amounts of data. But here's the real rub, you only need one or maybe a few people who are good at the maths to PROVE the method. After it has been proven you can pass it out to the non-expert math people and they can use it as easily as the expert math people.

Tom 13

Re: women are the more careful

That is not merely an assertion but a statistically proven fact. US insurance companies couldn't make money selling car insurance to women at lower rates than men if women weren't more careful drivers. Yet they did so for decades, including the so called sexist 50s and 60s. They only stopped when some male got his panties in a bunch and sued for sexual discrimination. Now women subsidize male insurance.

Tom 13

Re: "...it happens a lot earier than college"

Unproven and doubtful.

People keep pretending we're living right after the 1960s. It is now 2015. I would say my US middle school classes were evenly balanced between the men and the women. And yes, I was in the highest academic group at my school. We were all taught algebra at the same time and we all progressed through geometry, trig, and calculus. As these were essentially the required track for academics, the numbers in those classes didn't change. I will observe however that for the only optional math class I took (probability and statistics), the numbers fell off by about half.

Now when you look at the sciences it is a whole other story. There we had some flexibility. While everyone took something they called Earth Sciences (I can't even recall exactly what they taught in that one) and Chemistry, in the following years we had choices of Biology, Anatomy, Physics, Nuclear Science, Geology and Astronomy. A fair number of the women ditched Physics in favor of Anatomy and there were none in the Nuclear Science group. Sadly it turned out the Geology and Astronomy classes were the ___ for Jocks classes.

When I got to college, there was one woman in my Astronomy group and maybe three in our Physics (boffins not engineers) group.

Whatever choices they are making, it is NOT societal pressure which contributes to them. The only ones pressuring anyone are the ideologues who are committed to the idea that the science must equally represent women even if the women are freely choosing otherwise.

How much of one year's Californian energy use would wipe out the drought?

Tom 13

Re: the large reliance on renewable energy?

Kali has had energy problems since about the time Enron fleeced them of billions. While renewables may have exacerbated the problem, it existed before that change. Fundamentally, too many people are unwilling to live near the power plant (whichever type you want to name) for various and sundry reasons. Couple that with a failure to increase support infrastructure with population rises and you have the perfect storm.

Oh, and for all of you talking about recycling the waste water, Kali has an interesting sewage problem in a number of locations. With all of the Al Gore low flush and super low flush toilets out there, the sewer pipes don't have enough water in them to maintain waste flow. So that ain't getting ya there either.

Tom 13

Re: No new power infrastructure is needed...this really isn't that complicated

Since an earlier poster has for someone else, let me emphasize this point for you:

California is draining its aquifers even when they aren't experiencing a drought

Kali has to rethink everything they're doing out there. The problem is too many of them won't rise above the level of feeling.

Tom 13

Re: all have good intentions.

The road to Hell is paved with good intentions, or at least that's what I've been told.

No, I don't give the benefit of the doubt to the radicals in the streets. It requires a great intentional suspension of disbelief to assign evil motives to your neighbors. Any sane examination of the results their protests have generated will tell you what they're doing doesn't achieve their stated objectives.

Tom 13

One might think that the muscular spirit of US techno-capitalism would find some way around this problem.

Most other states that would happen. You're talking Kali here though. If it ain't an environmentalist/community organizer's wet dream of government intervention, it ain't happening.

Boffins spot a SECOND JUPITER – the gas giant's baby sister

Tom 13

Re: "at around 800 degrees Fahrenheit (426°C)"

If you're being pedantic the c in Celestial Goofy Shit standard actually stands for centimeter. Temperature is measure is degrees Kelvin.

Ex-SAP director: I bribed govt officials to seal the deals on software

Tom 13

Re: I'm curious how it was only $14.5M?

You pointed to the answer yourself! That was only the first hit and didn't include the "over budget" part.

Tom 13

Re: In some parts of the world, bribe (or gratuities, perhaps) are normal.

Some parts? If we're being really honest about it, it's true in MOST parts of the world. The trick is to do it in a legally sanctified manner.

On this side of the pond it's usually called "campaign contributions" or "my husband/wife's charity" although I understand in some circumstances it is called "Speaking fees".

PALE, MALE AND STALE: Apple reveals it has just ONE black exec

Tom 13

@Arnaut the less

Cherry picking your data to prove Apple is racist is as bad as cherry picking your data to prove the are not. The AC's point still stands: If Apple were racist in the way the people cherry picking the data you want to focus on, those numbers would be true throughout the Apple structure.

And yes, US laws that they claim are used to address these issues are complete crap. I once worked for a small company that qualified as minority owned, woman-owned, and small. The employee breakdown was at least 60% black, 60% woman with a high representation of orientals. It qualified because it was a tightly controlled corporation with a black male president, a single parent white woman as VP, and a white male as CFO. The black president died of a heart attack. In order to get the black president's family as much of his investment as possible without adversely impacting any of them, they opted to transition to an employee owned company. The woman moved to President and I think they brought in a white male to be the new VP. Even though a rational person would think the raw employee numbers would still qualify for both special classes, the only one remaining after the employee-owned plan started was the small business. And that was on its way out the door too as they were a growing company.

Tom 13

Re: Political Correctness is a Double Edged Sword

Your story reminds me of a similar event on a college campus. I entered college as an astronomy major. My classmates were all white and mostly male. Naturally I also joined the Astronomy club which was again almost all white and mostly male. One our profs was a white immigrant from South Africa. As in your story, someone from the university showed up one night when we were having an open house at the observatory on the roof of one of the labs. Because of the event the single black (ok, technically half-black) female in the physics department showed up as well. As soon as the photographer was there, the SA prof re-arranged the shot so she appeared to be the one directing our attendees to look through the telescope. When everything was said and done, I think there was only ONE white male in the picture.

Tom 13

Re: Andre Romelle Young

"One fewer bitch"

1. If you are being grammatically correct, the noun would need to be plural.

2. Being grammatically correct would be bowing to the WASP slave masters. It is important to Dr. Dre and his homies that he NOT bow to thw WASP slave masters and instead reflect the Authentic Black Experience [(TM) pending].

Tom 13

Re: Eh

You are being entirely too logical to address the sorts of ideologues who track race issues. They don't understand that when you tell someone not to think about pink elephants, its 99% likely that by the time you finish the sentence, an image of a pink elephant will have flashed in their brain.

Tom 13

Re: I don't like Apple...

What rock have you been hiding under for the last 20 years? The book is called The Bell Curve and the science and math behind it cannot be disputed so all the criticism has gone directly to "RACIST!!!!"

Now there are some caveats on the data. First up, his comparison was whites and blacks, not all races. If you include all races, orientals are tops, then whites, then hispanics, then blacks. Next up, while the data sets are large enough that the differential is statistically proven, the standard deviations within any given group are large enough that only a fool would not interview both candidates and determine their actual skill level.

That's all on the purely objective level. On the moral level there is still the imperative to treat all people as equal before God.

Would YOU make 400 people homeless for an extra $16m? Decision time in Silicon Valley

Tom 13

Re: Fairness

I don't agree that it is their job to protect low-income people. But to the extent that they claim that power, I agree that it should be borne equally by all those supporting that government.

Tom 13


So based on your remark, that means the REAL humanitarian solution is to sell it to the the commercial developers with a caveat: All the current mobile home owners get to convert their mobile to one of the condos and keep the same rate for rent until such time as they sell their condo. Maybe the price goes down a bit from the $55, but it is the best overall solution.

Kaspersky: Freemasons coded fake malware in the Bermuda Triangle

Tom 13

Re: Seeding false data to baffle recognition of real malicious payloads

Neither. While I can see where some people might be confused and think it was Reuters, you need to consider that the phrase "seeding false data" implies that Reuters was aware that it was false data in the first place. No one at Reuters has ever been found inside the stadium of competency let alone on the playing field.

Dell, Google dangle Chromebooks over IT bosses sick of Windows

Tom 13

Re: Fail

Management here is talking about moving to Citrix VM environment where the computers will be eliminated and it will be a BYOD environment. Right now were using Windows laptops because that's the sunk cost. They've brought in various Chrome type devices for testing. They're particularly happy with them as a VTC solution that's far cheaper than our dedicated solution as well as easier for the average user to use.

Tom 13

Re: I still don't see the value.

The value is the $600 you spent all went to the hardware.

As for the management piece, I guess you skipped the part of the article where they discussed it.

I'm still leery of it because:

1) It's cloud based and I don't trust internet connections for that sort of up time.

2) It's cloud based and I don't trust the cloud for data migration.

3) It's Chrome which phones home to Larry.

If those things don't other you, go for it. And as you noted you can easily convert it to Linux or possibly even an MS Volume license depending on the terms of your contract.

175 MILLION websites still powered by Windows Server 2003

Tom 13

Re: instances of NT4 left!

Hey, at this point NT4 is probably nearly as secure as OS/2. Hackers regard them as such obscure and worthless systems they sort of have achieved security through obscurity.

Tom 13

Re: requires an OS that still talks to the applications

Nope, not buying that one. We're talking banks, the sort of organizations that plan on making 30 year loans. The death of Server 2003 was announced well ahead of time. They had more than enough time to plan for it and reprogram those apps.

Yeah, yeah. I know. Once upon a time I did support work for a local bank chain. Yep, their software was crap and depended on DOS functions even when XP was rolling out. No, I didn't have any sympathy for them either.

Windows Server 2003 and the industry refresh that never was

Tom 13

Re: Misleading headline

While I mostly concur with your assessment of the cloud, the problem is the headline isn't misleading. The people who spend the money are moving us to the cloud no matter how idiotic it looks to you and me.

I'm contracted for support work in a government office, the last place that should be moving to the cloud. And I'm told the plans going forward are to move to a Citrix architecture where the desktops are all virtual with a target of having a BYOD system with workers supplying their own equipment "because everybody owns their own laptop. Heck, if I plug a screen, mouse and keyboard into my iPhone 6, I can replicate my work environment wherever I am."

Yeah, the plan has some good points. But I also think it is being way oversold.

BlackBerry can't catch a break: Now it's fending off Jeep hacking claims

Tom 13

Re: How could any OS be responsible for security...

Yep, THAT would definitely count as bypassing security in my previous comment.

Tom 13

Re: It would be like blaming MS for cause adobe flash

Um, yes there is good reason to blame MS for allowing Adobe Flash to infect Windows. The OS ought not do that. If Flash is affected and it crashes Flash, yeah that an Adobe only problem, but if it gets into the OS, that's an MS problem.

In order for the Blackberry claim to be true (and I hope it is even though I'm doubtful), they'll have to prove that Fiat/Chrysler deliberately disabled security features.

A close shave: How to destroy your hard drives without burning down the data centre

Tom 13

Re: maybe more criminal charges against you

Oh, I think we can ignore that, because the original premise pretty much ignores that too. All of your data goes at the exact moment the three letter agency knocks yet you claim you were running a legit business? Nope, you're taking a long vacation overseas. Probably someplace that will make Gitmo look like the Rivera.

Tesla still burning cash: each car loses $4,000

Tom 13

Re: electric vehicles suddenly aren't cheap to use any more

What do you mean suddenly find? They aren't cheap NOW.

As far as the collections go, it's an obvious problem that is ignored by those who've argued for the subsidies. As more efficient cars of all types go up, revenues for maintaining the roads go down. They weren't in great shape 10 years ago and the situation has only gotten worse. Granted, much of the problem has been diverting money from road maintenance to other green boondoggles, but that's not going to change any time soon. Too many low info voters out there want their unicorn fart powered cars.

Tom 13

Re: Reg financial writers are talentless hacks

You don't just divide quarterly cash flow by number of cars and "OMG $4K PER CAR LOSS".

Actually, if you're not doing that you can quickly find yourself being the next Bear Stearns. It doesn't matter how much potential future earnings you have if you can't pay your current bills and no one will loan you money.

What a shower: METEORS will BLAZE a FIERY TRAIL across our skies

Tom 13

Re: Halley's Comet

Yep, and yet it was still the most people we ever had when we held our open house at the Observatory on top of Davey Lab when I was in college.

I've never understood why the Leonids gets hyped EVERY year. For my money the Orionids are a better shower. The storm associated with the Leonids is every 33 years, with the last one in 1999 and that one was a bust.

Apple, Google should give FBI every last drop of user information, says ex-HP CEO and wannabe US prez Carly Fiorina

Tom 13

Re: Mussolini...

No, The Third Way is associated with Tito.

Oracle waves fist, claims even new Android devices infringe its Java copyrights

Tom 13

Re: Apache Harmony

Hey all you downvoters to theVogon's poetry:

Sadly, in the newly revised legal world, his point stands. That's what's so damaging about this appellate court ruling. It doesn't matter how clean the clean room was, it's irrelevant.

Tom 13

Re: Apache Harmony

Sadly, unless Google can get an appeal to SCOTUS, you wrote the first part of that last sentence in your missive in the wrong tense.

Tom 13

Re: Dependencies

Well, if it were a binding ruling instead of merely the last landing of the roulette ball, that would be true.

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