No matter the state of the shuttle program, it's also a shame that NASA didn't maintain a non-reusable rocket system that could have allowed for expensive but relatively low-risk emergency flights for this sort of thing. If the shuttle's all you've got then it's going to be difficult to address unexpected problems with another shuttle just like it.
THE ORBITER RAN INTO THE FOAMHow could a lightweight piece of foam travel so fast and hitthe wing at 545 miles per hour?Just prior to separating from the External Tank, the foam wastraveling with the Shuttle stack at about 1,568 mph (2,300feet per second). Visual evidence shows that the foam de-bris impacted the wing approximately 0.161 seconds afterseparating from the External Tank. In that time, the velocityof the foam debris slowed from 1,568 mph to about 1,022mph (1,500 feet per second). Therefore, the Orbiter hit thefoam with a relative velocity of about 545 mph (800 feet persecond). In essence, the foam debris slowed down and theOrbiter did not, so the Orbiter ran into the foam. The foamslowed down rapidly because such low-density objects havelow ballistic coefficients, which means their speed rapidlydecreases when they lose their means of propulsion.
Even if it couldn't dock with the shuttle, I wonder if it could match orbit and then do a space walk to retrieve the supplies?
Someone's not dealing with reality wish full thinking
So only half the battle won then.
How is Mono's JIT performance compared to Microsoft's? Are they nearing parity?
No you can't, obviously. You just said it. For one, you don't enjoy it.
What you need to learn is that straight programming isn't a valuable skill by itself. You already know this because you wrote an article about it. You need to be able to tie your programming skills with other skills such as selling yourself as the person to get the job done. Once you get the job, you need to be able to ship it.
There are programming skills that are valuable in isolation. If you are a world expert on a certain domain which lacks talent, then that's valuable. But that's not really isolation, that's tying your programming skills with a certain specialty.
Take a look at the model you are working under. There is a whole spectrum of jobs from good to crap. On Odesk, there are a sprinkling of good and a lot of crap. I imagine the company employing you is saying yes to every job that comes their way. They probably don't get good jobs, so it's all crap. They get crap jobs which pay crap and of course you are going to get a small slice of a crap pie.
Why take a job just because it's there? Okay, you laid out a bunch of reasons but you still hate it. I would probably hate working on crap jobs also. People worked for Steve Jobs because the guy was... well... Steve Jobs. Why are you working for people who are trying to compete on the worst model in web development, the race to the bottom in pricing?
If you know good developers, then maybe you could start your own development shop and get those developers to work for you. If you hate the work but you can get jobs, then maybe do the selling and have the other developers do the work.
Or maybe you could come up with your own projects and monetize them.
You just have to hustle, just like everyone else does. You can't just write code and expect the world to come to you. Get out there and make things happen.
Edit: In other words, quit whining. ;)
Edit: Edit: I could write a book on this subject. The above is just an attempt at an off the cuff capture. There are a ton of threads on HN which are hugely valuable on bringing the bacon as a developer. Just look around, it's more productive than ranting about your situation.
Clearly the person you are working for is trying to take a "this is how everything is done here" approach to running a dev shop and hiring developers. It's the same in the Philippines. Everyone works 10 hour days, 6 days a week and within a certain band of salary. I suppose the U.S. is like that to some degree. We have the 9 to 5 and 40 hour weeks.
Disruption in your case would be pretty easy. If the company has decent employees, then you could scoop them all up.
Getting out of such nightmare in India is a lot easier India than developed countries. You just need to make more money than salary of your job to get out it; which is about $100 at this point for you. In Silicon Valley and NYC, developers need to make $5,000 to pay bills. $500 is considered a decent salary for a first job in India; here are few ways to make $500 / month.
1) Freelancing: You can find better gigs on job boards like http://jobs.wordpress.net and https://groups.drupal.org/jobs
I run a startup (http://www.ranksignals.com), we could hire you for a freelance job if you are interested. My contact info is on my profile.
2) Blogging: Start a blog and promote it, you need about 5,000+ page views per day to make $500 a month.
3) Sell small plugins & themes on ThemeForest and CodeCanyon. You can make a lot more than $500, there are developers grossing over $100,000 per month.
If you want to get a full time job, don't work at a body shop. Work at a product or ecommerce startup, they offer higher pay and better experience. Companies like FlipKart are offering 10 lacs/year salary to new developers.
If you are able to get shit done, I might be able to exploit you in a more pleasant and productive manner than some odesk bodyshop for similar wages - no bond and no hard feelings when you quit for something better in 2 months.
Do you have a github or other code portfolio? (If not, build one.)
And get the heck out of Chandigarh. Mumbai, Pune, Bangalore, pick one. There are Hackathons here in Pune and companies who will pay you well over 6000rs/month provided you actually get shit done.
Start one! Seriously- no jive. Be that change that you want. It may be that your affinity is not to be a developer--- you may actually be an organizer of people! Try it! You can do it for free! Make announcements! Start by meeting once every two weeks in the evening and teach people everything you know! You will make connections! You will be tapped to work with others. You will grow along with those around you. The people you help will see your strengths and send better opportunities your way. Trust me, you will see.
Seriously, start it up. It is within you to do it and it is free and fun! Find a library or a park or someone's living room or a restaurant. Even if it's just one computer, gather a flock.
* Less pay (< $100 month) - totally off, recently I had an offer from a startup in Chandigarh for a very competitive salary - close to $2000 a month (pm me if you want the recruiter's email id).
* PHP projects - There a lot of vacancies for python, ruby, nodejs and angularjs jobs, either you need experience or you should have decent projects in your github repo.
* 48 hours - might be possible, but does not have to be the case
* Joining for a team - Joining a sweatshop for working with a team from whom you can learn is __Stupid__ - Chances of finding someone with proper skills in a sweatshop is close to zero.
* Bond with 2 months pay - Firstly it is illegal, but, yes I do know that sweatshops do have this practice. Avoid it at all costs. Or you can simply not pay them, as there is no way they can enforce the bond (legally). But this is a huge red flag. A proper company does not ask for that - period.
* 0 friends - where do you live? There are PG accommodations available brimming with social life (with individual accommodation - it is not always a shared thing). I currently live in one - and it is awesome.
* Change your life in 9 months - by working in a sweatshop? Not going to happen, you will instead be stuck in a pathetic project which ruins your career prospects further.
* Move to Delhi/NCR region - it is close to CH, and not as far as B'lore/Chennai/Hyderabad, and you have globally respected brands here.
Also, I would avoid Odesk like the plague. Build up a portfolio (open source works as well) and connect with people on HN.
I'm working in a startup now where our major focus is on doing quality work using modern tech. We deal with clients directly and not through websites like oDesk.Great to see that you have worked with backbone etc.Would you like to catchup some time for tech discussion? I have few friends who do that regurlay at weekends. Mail me at email@example.com :)
I think it's impossible for anyone even just barely decent in programming to get a job in India. I have seen people get into Motorola while searching for jobs like nomads. They were not from premier or even well known institutes. What you are subjecting yourself to is incomprehensible based on your objectives.
You learn discipline by sticking with something despite wanting to jump to something else.
I wouldn't recommend it to anyone - we use terrible tech(php and ftp), I haven't learned anything new in months, only taught my (senior) coworkers some tips to work even faster. I'd write more about it but my break is over.
Discipline is something that can be learned, that's why they teach it so much in the military.
Difference here is you have to force yourself through the pain once you want it bad enough. It will be worth it.
Just be aware that you could do the same thing in the US (or anywhere else, really) and make exponentially more money.
Think of this initial job as internship, but after a year when they know their stuff and can clear technical interviews and with better communications skills the pay package increases significantly.
when people switch to more reputed companies in earlier years the hikes they get is between 50-100% . for first 5-7 years the hike is abut 30% by the time these people will settle in large indian or multinational companies.
Currently we are trying to bring in talent from Delhi and Bangalore.
You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested.
a. Today, India has way more internet penetration than even 10 years ago and it also cheap enough to afford a home connection. Yes, even in a place like Chandigarh !! </sarcasm>. Though the average so called 'broadband' access it still far from what might be available in developed nations, programmers these days can at least do a quick google while they are working on something, instead of having to batch all of the querying do be done from a cybercafe. That is what we went through.
b. Having to work at a sweatshop, putting in the hours doing grunt work, earning peanuts and knowing that you could do better hasn't changed much from the way I remember it ...oh wait, hell yeah it has ! These days, you will at least have a computer to yourself. You will at least have comfortable chairs. You won't be working shifts and they at least will be paying you (I refuse to believe the $100 bit) as opposed to slaving it out, while it's being called 'training' (worse still, you have to pay them for the opportunity). That is what went through.
c. They don't have LUGs, Hackathons or any sort of local mailing lists ...oh geez, why the f* not !??! I'll tell you why ? 'cos people like this guy will bitch and moan about it all the time but will not take the initiative to just start one up themself. Indian programmers, (most of them, tbh) expect that things where they can just go to and learn just 'exist'. It's a small percentage of people who would think -- "here is this thing that I already know and I can share, let me do that with another person. It would be a very happy pleasant coincidence if the other person knows and can share something that I don't already know".
Come on man, start up a LUG, organize a hackathon, visit the computer lab in your local college and speak to that girl who appears to be frantically coding on a lab computer because her parents think getting a computer for her at home would be a waste of money ...and anyways, it's not like she needs any more education !!
d. ....I could go on, but I just realized the source of these sort of bitch-and-moan posts, as I write this. The sense of entitlement that youngsters in India have these days.
You know what buddy, you can't address people who just happen to be in a better place than you as 'first world dev' just because you happen to live in India. Being 'First World' anything is about a state of mind where your own personal issues are greater than other peoples, with the irony that the issues come from a sense of entitlement. Take a long hard look at your life and think about why you ought to be entitled to the things that you think you ought to be.
 : http://www.siyli.org/take-the-course/siy-curriculum/ a free course on meditation)
There's a payment form but I never hooked anything up -- it's all free. You can sign up to have a screenshot of any URL emailed to you on a daily basis, or opt out of emails and just have it archived on the site. I've been collecting daily screenshots of ~20 public web sites for the last few months:
EDIT: fixed embarrassing typo, good morning everyone!
So I could browse back to last week and see what my site looked like, or to my 3rd commit and see what my site looked like then.
At my previous startup I hacked this manually by taking a screen grab with Evernote once a month.
I've heard Alexis Ohanian mention he is thankful for having the foresight to take screen shots or early reddit builds too.
I'm sure a lot of startups would find this useful for capturing the journey of the product and then later nostalgia.
- Export to gifs of video might be useful
- The ability to tag information to certain screenshots would be useful for noting changes and milestones (like in Google Analytics)
In the UK, City of London already banned the wifi-enabled bins that were tracking MAC addresses.
It would be really easy to tie a name to MAC address (from point of purchase with a credit card), then see exactly where that person went via the 'sharing' of data with other retailers. This is certainly something you would expect to need 'opt in' to.
They say they are hashing the MAC address (presumably on the device). However, they can't be salting the hash (else they wouldn't be able to match across different stores).
Since there is no salt (or a fixed salt), it is trivial to de-anonymise a specific MAC address (just hash it and see if any server has it).
Worse, there are only 46 bits that are variable in a MAC address, and there is structure in there (3 bytes manufacturer, 3 bytes serial), so a complete mapping from MACs to the hashed MAC is very doable.
A secret per-device key for a HMAC would preserve privacy much better, but would stop them doing the cool stuff they plan the usual trade off.
Perhaps wifi devices should no longer provide constant MAC addresses....
The real issue with this is that most SMBs are unsophisticated when it comes to the technology stack they use. I saw this firsthand in many ways working at Swipely (swipely.com) as we figured out product market fit. While things like 'see where else your customers shop' might seem like an interesting feature from an outsiders perspective, the businesses don't actually care. They often barely have the bandwidth to worry about their own customers.
If anyone knows or can say: What physical principle(s) is the sensor operating on? There doesn't seem to be much information on that (possibly deliberately).
But how does this device work exactly? Is every phone throwing around a mac address, even if it's not trying to connect to wifi?
For example I have my phone set to use 3G expect on my home network. Would I count?
If they provided incentives to install an app/visit a website to register for rewards or be entered into a prize in return for allowing density.io to track you that would be acceptable.
I had seen news about this recently and am surprised that more people didn't notice how it is essentially the same, without funding, and less developed.
The amount of privacy we think we have must be a small fraction of what we actually have.
I'd like to check if it's too crowded before I decide to go or not.
I guess for any kind of business with lines or waiting rooms, (banks, ATMS, restaurants) customers might appreciate a way to quickly gauge the crowd level before going.
Also it could be rather easily tricked by competitors, by constantly switching the MAC address.
Or for that matter could it somehow look at cell signals?
Biscotto A CoffeeScript API documentation generator based on TomDoc notation:
React-Coffee A little glue that makes Facebook's React easy to use from CoffeeScript without having to resort to JSX:
SpacePen: A minimalist view library for jQuery, allowing custom methods, super calls, HTML-building, subviews, and easy event binding:
... and the best bit about this bonanza is that everything is really quite readable. Keep up the good work, Kevin.
And I found a screenshot... looks very much like sublime text: https://f.cloud.github.com/assets/1424/1228569/cce6eb26-27a6...
edit: based on this, it looks like this is a GitHub-aware/integrated text editor that targets both desktop (Mac, at least) and web
Aside from that approach, there are a few faithful Vim recreations that I've discovered out of the dozens that I've tried.
https://github.com/vicoapp/vico (Excellent project)http://www.viemu.com/ (Solid experience in Visual Studio)https://github.com/guillermooo/Vintageous (fairly close and getting better every day)
But I don't mean to sound like such a pessimist. The progress so far looks excellent and I can't wait to try it out. Keep it up!
Edit: I also notice that the logo looks like an iOS7 version of React's logo: http://facebook.github.io/react/
Domain : atom.io Status : Client Updt+Delt Lock Owner : GitHub Hostmaster Owner : GitHub, Inc. Owner : 88 Colin P Kelly Jr St Owner : San Francisco Owner : CA Owner : US
Domain : atom.io
Status : Client Updt+Delt Lock
Owner : GitHub Hostmaster
Owner : GitHub, Inc.
Owner : 88 Colin P Kelly Jr St
Owner : San Francisco
Owner : CA
Owner : US
"Collaboration is now working (and accepts 2FA logins)."
- vim-mode - fuzzy-finder - emmet (aka Zen Coding) - solarized-dark-syntax (heh) - snippets (check) - language-* (check; so many; awesome) - timecop (tracking where time is spent in the editor) - editor-stats (graph your mouse / keyboard activitiy) - ...
At GitHub, were building the text editor weve always wanted: hackable to the core, but approachable on the first day without ever touching a config file. We cant wait to see what you build with it.
Edit: To be clear, I am not talking about all the supplementary repositories that are already open source, but rather I am wondering if the core application will be OS.
I've been predicting/preaching about this for 2+ years now and been building my own browser code editor in that time (http://icecoder.net).
So, CodeAnywhere gets $600k in funding, Adobe is releasing Brackets to the browser soon, GitHub is launching Atom as a web based offering.
Need much more reason to leave the desktop behind?
> Would the editor itself be open-source?
> a non-opensource editor from GitHub would be ludicrous
> seems like the source code will be up today
It also has the line: "At GitHub, were building the text editor weve always wanted: hackable to the core, but approachable on the first day without ever touching a config file. We cant wait to see what you build with it."
I just hope it's not tightly coupled to the backend so I can replace it with a custom one.
I think this post exactly encapsulates the pattern my wife and I have settled on after 15+ years of lively discussion. We always ask: "are we editing, or scoping", or "tactical or strategic"? Asking what sort of feedback someone is seeks is essential to non-frustrating communication and having your review received properly -- in a manner that is actionable.
Sounds great, right? Well, I used the dual lenses to take a 3D still or video maybe, oh, half a dozen times. Why? One reason was that the screen hurt my eyes when in 3D mode. Another reason was that unless someone else had a 3D screen, I wouldn't be able to share the files with them. And another reason was that except for some gimmicky action effects in the movies, 3D isn't really all that spectacular.
But it sounds like what's going on here, with the different focal lens stuff, is a lot different than just a 3D gimmick, and I'm interested to see what can be made of it.
Actually, one thing mentioned in the article -- depth analysis, to generate blurred backgrounds -- would, in principle, work on the HTC EVO 3D. Actually, I'm kind of bummed now that I didn't look into whether any existing software could do it. I would have liked to have been able to generate 2D stills that have an algorithmically generated shallow depth of field, sort of like what the Lytro (https://www.lytro.com) light field camera does.
BTW, in case anyone's interested, I broke the EVO 3D about a month ago and got a Samsung Galaxy S4 Zoom (http://www.samsung.com/global/microsite/galaxycamera/s4zoom/) to replace it. The camera on this thing is amazing! It's got a 10x optical zoom and a Xenon flash, just like a regular point-and-shoot. Of course, when I'm talking on it in public, I end up looking like a dorkwad, because it appears as if I'm talking into a camera, not a cellphone, but it's totally worth it.
One important advantage I'd expect but not listed: an increase in effective dynamic range (the ability to capture more range in shadows and highlights in the same photo ) may be possible if there's a sensible way to interpolate data from the 3x and base focal length cameras (which seems to be the case, if the low-light claims are to be believed).
For example, how can it improve low light on the 1X shot for the pixels outside of the 3X frame?
1) Two different focal lengths/zoom levels without having to use digital zoom
2) Better low light quality due to twice as much information
3) Better depth analysis: quicker autofocus, blurred backgrounds, augmented reality
But the two lenses are taking the picture from different angles, and with different focal lengths! I don't understand how matching of pixels is possible without an error greater than the noise they are trying to remove... It definitely can't be equivalent to one large sensor, as they claim. Unless they can somehow route the image from one lens to both sensors? Is that even possible?
I am not mocking this, but am really interested. Because it seems like this idea would have already been tried & if it were good would already have existed mainstream for cameras.
This is one of the reasons some really old color movies were able to be restored so well. They filmed it with 3 lenses with one for each color (RGB). Since there were 3 sources of data the restoration it was much easier to find the best image. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Separation_masters
As for shooting 3D with dual-lenses, I don't think there are many applications for that right now, but perhaps there will be in the future.
If for example recording video in 3D will make it look much better when watching it later with a VR headset, that could be pretty cool. It could also be used for creating models/avatars of yourself, again probably most useful in VR worlds/games, and other stuff like that.
NASA engineer here. I think it's actually kind of ludicrous to claim that we have somehow "lost" the technology of the Apollo program. We're not living in some sort of space technology dark ages here, where we've forgotten all of the fundamentals of the 1960s 'classical enlightenment'. In fact, the decades since then have provided invaluable experience in the design and use of reusable launch systems, in-space assembly, astronaut medicine, etc.
If the agency and it's supporting industry contractors were given both an executive mandate and the funding to construct a comparable system to Apollo (for whatever reason that would be), today's engineers would not struggle to do it for lack of technical prowess. We might struggle to do it in the current federal budgetary climate (where we can't predict the whims of legislators 3 months from now, much less 10 years from now - and the Saturn V was expensive as hell to operate), but the "lost rocket science" myth is a bit tiring.
Back in the 60s/70s, it was not possible to do an automatic hook-up of modules in space. Today we do these routinely. Those Apollo missions could still be launched today by launching the command module, the service module and the lunar module as separate payloads and joining them in orbit. The crew would launch in the command module.
It's a bit like regretting that Formula 1 cars no longer have big 3.0L V12 engines, and instead have to get by with measly 2.4L V8s, whilst missing the fact that the modern car will eat the V12's lunch, with it's eyes close, in reverse.
Ultimately we (our representatives in Congress) decided in ~1970 that actual exploration was simply too expensive. Political goal accomplished, Moon reached, Soviets cowed, mission over. Instead we would pay endless lip service to the idea while cutting budgets as far as possible. The design-by-committee-session Shuttle was a ridiculous project in a dozen different ways and failed to do much of anything (including being cheap), beyond two key elements: firstly, being impossible to cancel. Second, it waved the flag for the notional romance of space in an age of decay, when we became disinterested in funding and structuring programs at a sufficient level to innovate or even seek out the maximum return per dollar by choosing appropriate technology.
SLS and Orion explicitly continue in this legacy. I'm hoping Elon Musk's motivations outlast the US Congress's.
A politician's job they say is very high.'Cos he has to choose who's got to go and die.They can put a man on the moon quite easy,While people here on earth are dying of old diseases.
A woman goes to work every day after day.She just goes to work just to earn her pay.Child sitting crying by a life that's harder.He doesn't even know who is his father.
- Black Sabbath's "Wicked World" (1970)
I'm a fan of manned spaceflight and exploration (slash finding a high availability arrangement for life from Earth). However, I believe we have more pressing matters to tend at the moment. In the meantime, it seems we need more Encyclopedists. ;-)
The second issue is that no one needs that powerful a rocket at the moment - though I believe if it did exist, everyone would suddenly find use for it (like it happened with PC's and smartphones, for example).
It is modular system and heaviest configuration were close to Saturn, but are currently abandoned. The lighter configurations are in active use and share the same engines and other components. Plus they develop new types.
I guess it would just take a few months/years to develop Saturn replacement if there is demand.
"So shall My word be that goes forth from My mouth; it shall not return to me void, but it shall accomplish what I please, and it shall prosper in the thing for which I sent it." -- Isaiah 55:11 (NKJV)
"In view of this, it is ironic that introductory programming is most often taught in a highly imperative style. This may be a memorial unto the children of whoredoms."
Wouldn't that be "... and the first constant"? ;-)
The conversations go like:
Me: What are you here to do?
Them: Build a school.
Me: Oh, you are a carpenter.
Them: No, part of a school program.
Me: Oh, you are providing unskilled construction labor. Didn't realize Tanzania had a shortage.
Near the end of the trip, I met a friend's cousin, asked what she was doing, and she was going from village to village verifying that chlorination systems in NGO built wells were working. I was impressed. I asked how she got that gig, and she told me a story about her going to Tanzania to build a school. She decided to make a real difference.
Her story changed my attitude. I am certainly less snarky about kids going to do unskilled construction labor.
Firstly, well-run organizations want to maximize their ROI. The volunteers usually fundraise for donations or pay out of their own pocket to go on these trips. Essentially, these funds are revenue for the organization. That revenue must then be invested into their business, as their purpose is not to make a profit (hence non-profit), but rather, accomplish their goals to make the world a better place in their specific way. As such, a good organization will get tourists who are qualified to do the work that needs to be done.
The organization with whom I volunteer has multiple programs in medicine, agriculture, construction, education, and local skills training (for local professionals for the above categories). They ensure that the people who are volunteering are qualified to do their work. For example, for my most recent excursion, I couldn't stay the entire camp, so they asked me to run some sessions with local teachers instead, since I had so much experience volunteering to teach their kids. I prepared some lessons and explained to the teachers that I was not a professional teacher like they were, and that my teaching wisdom and experience only consisted of basic theory and volunteer experience. I made it clear that I was not qualified to teach them about teaching. Instead, I focused on professional skills that I brought over from the corporate world. We had sessions on conflict resolution and negotiation tactics using concepts developed by Max Bazerman at Harvard, the Behavioral Change Stairway Model at the FBI, and discussions about conflicting cultural worldviews and personalities, the basics of which are taught in many corporate seminars. I also focused on leadership styles, motivation tactics, and decision-making strategies. My sessions were very well-received and I received lots of thanks from the teachers, as well as a round of applause at the end of my time there.
This organization never asked me to do anything like surgery, building repair, etc. They did ask me to help out with some computer stuff now and then. For their medicine, agriculture, and construction programs, they made sure to bring in only qualified people. Full stop. The organization had a relationship with the local government and had gained respect of the local government because they did things properly. That's the way it should be. When you're a non-profit, don't do anything that will waste the scarce dollars you have been given.
Secondly, it's true that your impact in these countries is small. But it's like the story of the kid who saved the one starfish. The man comes along and asks the boy why he saved that starfish, what difference does it make in the face of so many starfish dying on the beach? The boy thinks and says, "Well, it made a difference for that one." I still keep in touch with the kids I've taught. The Internet is wonderful today and makes this easier than ever, except in those locations where the situation is so dire that you take Bill Gates's attitude of choosing to fight the malaria over getting the Internet up and running. Overall, I know that the kids are impacted on an individual basis because they keep in touch with me, still call me Teacher, and talk with me about things. The people in these communities appreciate that someone took their time and money to go and help them, if what was provided was helpful. Again, that goes back to the organization making sure that the money and effort is being spent in a way that maximizes ROI. It's the same in business. You don't tell a recruiter to do the bookkeeping, you get a bookkeeper or accountant for that. It just makes sense.
Thirdly, these trips have value in that they work as vision trips. A percentage of volunteers will go on these trips and have their eyes open and their thinking changed in such a way that their life goals change. Those people are the ones who will go into this work full-time and throw away the nice cushy jobs in the first world. Those people are also often the ones who can afford to do it because they've been working nice cushy jobs in the first world for a while, so they have the savings to make it happen for some time until outside donations can take over in terms of funding everything. If these trips don't happen, a huge recruiting channel for these organizations for long-term workers completely disappears. These organizations prefer that these trips be available for people from every generation because you don't know where you'll find the people who will have the switch turned on inside themselves, and you don't know which people will have which kinds of support networks that would be willing to help fund this lifestyle. This third factor is possibly the most important reason why these trips are a good thing.
The goal to have a locally-run operation staffed by locals is an important one. But it takes time to get there, and these trips are a part of the process to get there.
I have a problem with her position, though. She ends the article with:"Be smart about traveling and strive to be informed and culturally aware. Its only through an understanding of the problems communities are facing, and the continued development of skills within that community, that long-term solutions will be created."
The problem is that it's hard to be culturally aware and to understand the problems communities are facing if you aren't exposing yourself first hand to those communities. I imagine quite a many useful volunteers, the author included, started off as "voluntourists". And perhaps therein lies the greatest strength of these programs - they help expose little white girls (and boys) to other cultures and problems they otherwise would be unaware of and some percentage of those move on to more useful volunteering.
If she is going to advocate the position she's taken, then she could at least end the article with some alternatives for would be volunteers. As is, if anything, she's just alleviating some of the guilt people might feel over not volunteering: "By volunteering I would be causing more harm than good, so the right thing to do is nothing."
You'll definitely have a positive effect on people by teaching them about western business practices. I'm told by my former coworkers that my standard US egalitarianism was quite unusual. By "egalitarianism", I simply mean "I'm CTO, you are a mechanical turk, we can go eat pancakes and you aren't obligated to make me tea". So were my efforts to ensure that everyone was growing in their career. My feminist sensibilities ("so be late, tell your husband to make dinner") were also a bit scandalous .
I came back to India a month ago to attend the wedding of someone I worked with, and I was very surprised to hear all that. I don't know whether to be happy (I made things better) or unhappy (because their next job won't be so good) about it.
By building a good business and maybe destroying some bad local ones, you'll do far more good than you will by doing unskilled construction labor. And very importantly, the people who work for you will learn that western style management is a great way to make money.
 By US standards I'm one of those evil misogynists who thinks statistical disparities are irrelevant and discrimination is a testable hypothesis and market opportunity. But drop me in India and I'm suddenly a crazy feminist ranting against rape culture (FYI India has one, the US doesn't).
We're better educated, and if these backwards countries would just start doing XYZ they'd start to lift themselves up and out of poverty. You know, things like alternative livelihood by making souvenirs out of trash. That's the ticket.
But we don't understand the issues and aren't equipped to be able to even determine what a particular region of the country actually needs, especially not in 2 years or less.
Real results can only come from funded research into what the underlying issues are and how best to combat them. Also, if the United States weren't so economically oppressive.
I disagree however, with the notion that being "white" is a hindrance in the developing world. Being "white" is an advantage everywhere.
Societies are homeostatic, equilibrium-seeking systems. If they weren't they'd fall apart under the sorts of stresses that life places on us wherever we live. Foreigners coming in to believe they are making a difference inevitably solve the wrong problems and likely solve them badly.
Now, my parents took some boarding school students to help build medical clinics (under the direction of "Where there Is No Doctor" author David Werner) in the mountains of Mexico back before I was born. They were providing unskilled labor in an area that really did have a shortage (because most people were working in the farms). The upshot though wasn't that the clinics got built faster (they might not have) but that my father got interested in medicine and changed careers from being a math teacher to being a doctor. I have never heard my parents talk about what a difference the students made, or even so much about whatever difference they made.
But having talked with David about this he told me about some of his failures, about how they had this big anti-folk-medicine campaign that they hoped would reduce infant mortality due to diarrhea but then when the floods came, people wouldn't use their folk medicine anymore and the mortality rates went up instead of down and he said they had to go back and reposition what they were offering as one remedy among many.
Often we forget that the people closest to a problem are the best prepared to solve it, and we forget to trust them on this. It is far too often the case that the do-gooders and the activists who haven't yet learned this lesson, solve the wrong problems, often badly, and make things worse.
2. These programs are as much if not more about affecting the life of the volunteer. Her realization that she thought way too much of her value wouldn't have happened without going there and having the experiences.
3. I know people who are extremely effective in what they do in underdeveloped countries. Her pride brought her to the wrong conclusion about where she was at the beginning of the experience. It's unfortunate that her pride is still in effect, misleading her about the capabilities of others.
So it was a surprise for me to find that I was one of the most experienced and skilled engineers in my organization (and in many other energy-related organizations for that matter). I concur with the OP and have met quite a few western volunteers that were well-intentioned, but generally had no technical skills.
Of those who had qualifications, they were usually in the social sciences, development studies, media / communications, public relations, etc. Useful skills no doubt, but I felt that the country could have benefited more with direct assistance from the hard sciences and engineering, e.g. hydrology, agriculture, civil engineers, etc - those skills were always in demand. In the end, there's a reason why development is often done so badly - they practically let anyone do it.
After a year in East Africa, that was one of the things I noticed here: they always come in pairs of 20-year-old white girls. Except for South East Asia, many more young men there.
> $3000 bought us a week at an orphanage
That can actually cause children being obducted or "borrowed" to staff orphanages for white Voluntourists.
> Our mission while at the orphanage was to build a library.
And another 10 African carpenters who lost a job to those white Santa-Clauses.
> have a camp run and executed by Dominicans
Good luck. I have never seen any organization actually run locally. Sure, it often looks like it is, but if you digg a little deeper, you always find at least one Westener (or local who lived half their life in the West) making sure that people actually do things and not just spend the money and idle. But there maybe one such organization, somewhere, I just haven't found it yet.
There's also Engineers without Borders, but I recently discovered it's not actually about helping with construction work, more like teaching about engineering logistics/principles. Still, point is it's done by engineering students who should know what they're talking about.
In fact there are a whole load of 'Without Borders' groups: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Without_Borders
Why does this have anything to do with race? Is it any different for a black person with no useful skills to go on one of these voluntourism trips?
If we ignore race, this model of 'aid' (at this particular stage of development) seems to hinder growth and can not lead to self-sustained communities. Think about this: I could teach somebody how to plant seeds and provide for a whole village, which will eventually lead to a better economy, or I could just buy everybody lunch for a week and wait for somebody else to do the same after me. The latter (which happens in a lot of these programs) is simply interfering with their progress by taking away jobs from the community, which would made progress had you not interfered.
The better solution is guiding and teaching nations how to improve and there are plenty of organizations that do this and have a much more positive effect. Why can't these nations develop like other nations (in similar climates) have done in the past? Nothing wrong with a helping hand but charity like this isn't a long-term solution.
As a libertarian I'm big on spending heaps of money on localised products(With low resource costs) while visiting these countries instead, I make an effort to do stuff that normally I might be stingy on. I figure the money trickles through the economy while encouraging local business.
I also donate because it also has relevance, but if you want to help a community while having a great experience, just pay for it.
I sincerely hope young Americans/westerners don't get discouraged by reading such nonsense.
The problem described here is a combination of naivety and misallocation of skills and resources. It has nothing to do with being white and yet this lady can't seem to get away from that.
I'm South Asian and I would have faced the exact same problems this lady faced had I volunteered in the places and organizations she did. However being older and perhaps wiser, I wouldn't have made the error of volunteering to do things I have no skill in. Thats the only mistake she made and the problems she mentioned are easily fixed with a little common sense. Yet somehow she can't see that
I wonder where this silliness comes from - could it be the result of the modern American education system ?
Before closing I should mention I would likely never have been born had it not been for a bunch of young European women who saved my orphaned grandmother from certain starvation and neglect when she was a toddler.They gave her a home, an excellent education and looked afer her till she was a young woman. Their actions helped my grandmother get the skills she later used to pull her family out of poverty (resulting from the Partition of India) into the upper middle class.
Thank heavens for those dedicated, young, white voluntourists.
In the end, 'voluntourists' are just trying to give what they think they're able to. If they aren't net negatives, I see it as a good thing because they will spend money there, they will bring attention to whatever cause, and other such things. When they're a net negative, though, perhaps it's not such a good idea. It's nice that you want to help, but sometimes what you have to offer isn't what they need.
Yeah, looking at it from the perspective she wrote, it seems ridiculous. It is an "industry", wrapped in a non-profit, save-the-world PR shroud, that caters to educated, Westerners who can afford to travel overseas. People feel good when they do good. Whether they other side perceives it as good, sometimes it is not clear.
One can ask, is it better if these "unskilled" people never left home? Maybe even with all the seeming waste and incompetence, it keeps people engaged. I suspect most of them would not have just taken the money for that plane ticket, and handed that check to a NGO that knows better how to spend it, and could build 10 libraries for all that money. But I am afraid it is either "send the volunteers and keep them engaged somehow" vs "don't send the volunteers at all and say goodbye to that money and resources".
People like to help others, people like to tell stories, like to have adventures. These trips cater to that aspect. Do people in Africa feel better knowing that foreigners want to come in and at least try to slap a brick on top of another even if they don't know how? I see a lot of criticism of this here, and rationally I agree, but I also feel there is a bit more too it and I personally am on the fence whether this is good thing or not.
Perhaps I'm missing something, but I don't think it immediately follows the author is "highly qualified to do international aid" at all from that description alone. Shouldn't one require a profession of some sorts to be "highly qualified" in anything, perhaps? I would assume she is college educated: shouldn't a university education have qualified her as a professional in some field already?
It was radically different.
1) Amazon bundling a video service with their free shipping program.
2) Amazon's proprietary software locking in you into whatever platforms that are in their business interests.
3) Panasonic's proprietary TV platform that people can't be bothered to develop for.
4) Digital Restrictions Management that prevents one from downloading a movie via Amazon Prime and playing it in any other video player on any other platform.
This is just the usual awful situation when you rely on proprietary software. Stop using Amazon Prime to watch videos. Write to them about the problems you have. I recently wrote to Audible because their ebooks come with DRM and cannot be played on GNU/Linux using Free Software.
If you want my money you'll have to provide at least the same amount of service. And stop being assholes trying to pass massive surveillance laws every three months.
(EDIT: And I'm very glad I did, as just the other day I bought a book that in its original format causes the Android Kindle app to go back to the main screen if I remain on the same page for more than a few seconds(!) and lose its position in the book - thanks to Calibre I know I have alternatives, including converting it to other formats and/or reading it in other readers, if Amazon doesn't manage to figure out what the issue is; that's within the first dozen books I've bought from the Kindle store)
I will start buying video online when I'm equally confident I can do the same.
The free videos via Prime I'll be more lenient with. Even rentals. I don't mind DRM on that per se. Except that the DRM generally prevents me or make it hard to access it on all my devices. If they won't run on my Linux laptop (they might, as I understand it, via Pipelight, but I've not tested), or on my Android TV stick, or on my Android phone, they might as well not exist.
In that case the value of Amazon Instant Video to me is arguably negative: I receive zero value, and there's a an added negative value in having it shoved in my face knowing they're choosing to artificially limit my access. I'm less happy about my Prime subscription today, knowing the amount of potential hassle might be involved in trying to get access to these videos than I was before I received the e-mail saying they'd added Instant Video to the UK Prime accounts last night...
Or Netflix: runs on everything. But if your "ecosystem" is limited to particular devices (see: iMessage, or the OP) then it may as well not exist as far as I'm concerned.
Hell, even Apple knew iTunes needed to run on Windows to matter. Eventually, anyway.
I don't know anything about the specific deals here, but I wouldn't be surprised if an open Amazon Instant Video was an Amazon Instant Video without very much content you'd care about.
What's not widely known is that, unlike smartphones, HTML5 is the dominant platform for TV-based apps. That's why every TV has Netflix, not because Netflix is employing an army of engineers to make a new app for each TV model.
However, TV based apps are still apps that are installed and controlled by the TV vendor. Which means Amazon has to strike a deal with Panasonic to get their generic HTML5 app on Panasonic TVs.
If HTML5 DRM (which, to clarify, I am opposed to) becomes a standard this whole mess could be avoided and Amazon could serve their videos on any TV with a modern browser.
Lovefilm were one of the most flexible and adaptable service providers although I don't know the extent to which this still applies with Amazon.
I don't blame Panasonic for not supporting Flash/Silverlight in the TV. Adopting either of these is likely to require unpleasant licensing terms AND opaque binary blobs into the TV software.
On the service provider side they cannot just drop the security measures (DRM or other security measures) as that would likely be breaching their own licenses from the content owners (film companies). If not supporting a major recognised DRM approach it can be a real sticking block.
 Including placement, branding, design and obviously any revenue share arrangements.
You know what ecosystem is nice? Earth's. Go outside and play in the snow for fuck's sake.
But, the problem comes when everyone thinks that they can be the guy with the tolerable lock-in. Use MY video service -- anywhere, MY platform -- running on anything, MY app store -- on anyone.
Amazon's model is illustrative. It's hard to read non-Amazon content on a Kindle (harder than any other platform!) but easy to read Amazon content on any rival platform. They've been less successful with video because they aren't able to leverage their existing near-monopolies as well.
Sadly Microsoft, Google, Netflix and BBC want this in HTML 5.1. We can only hope that Mozilla , Apple, Adobe, etc. won't support DRM in their products.
I generally respect Amazon, Bezos, most of what they do and their business strategy, but this is a real shitbag move towards paying Prime customers.
I don't understand the basis for making such a statement. The last Silverlight release is not very old; the linked "lifecycle search" lists mainstream support for the latest version of Silverlight until 2021; there are no announcement that the product is being abandoned. Is it just hyperbole?
If the smart TV runs android I'm ok with it the apps are already there but if anything else i would rather have the "smart" part outside my TV and just get a regular old TV.
Say for instance using XBMC I know it's a lot less likely the apps will get out of date or I'm going to be forced by some vendors whims to use certain service because they need to increase their profit margins.
You want to be able to consume X on any Y.
Companies want to sell you X on the expectation that you've bought their Y. Given that they've already been extremely successful doing this, X is only available on their Y.
Why should they change?
Just... just be a display and let me connect whatever proper devices to it, instead of trying to put a crappy and slow YouTube app that gets obsoleted within a year.
It's hard to innovate when you're an investor, so those who do manage to sell in a certain market tend to milk their users instead of trying to get more customers. They don't really understand very well why people use IT products, so they tend to take no risks and lock in.
This could be solved like this:
* Be a company who doesn't lose lawsuits to patent trolls. I don't really know the details of that. I don't know how the justice system technically manage those things.
* Fix the patent system to have an healthier innovation landmark.
* Have a business model where companies who do innovate refuse to be bought, and only agree to do partnerships with other companies so to avoid the lock-in between giants. If you get bought by google or microsoft, it will indeed change how your product will end up being used or not. This solution is naive.
Everybody and their brother wants to lock you in to their platform (whether it's a phone or an ISP) then split, differentiate, and bundle the product in so many complex ways you'll be lucky if you even understand what you're purchasing.
Cell phone companies have already done this. Airlines as well. So have insurance companies. They make money by farming the walled garden in such a way as to make it look like you have increased choices, but, mirabile dictu, all the choices end up with you paying more money each month.
Enough is enough.
I'd like to believe that HTML5 will eventually be the standard for video delivery, but this may never happen. There's no incentive to standardize streaming content delivery because it would increase competition and take power away from the corporations.
They get a TV, smartphone, PC - it works, cool. That feature is missing - oh, shucks, whatcha gonna do? It was probably too hard to implement anyway, right?
Which is why ecosystems exist - once people learn how to use that one simple system, they'll tend to buy stuff from the same company for convenience's sake. Most poeple don't want to figure out how to install apps, why this web page isn't displaying correctly, or how to make those mp3 files smaller.
I don't view Prime Video as an ecosystem but more as an added value type of thing. Beyond that, it's opt-in, therefore not limiting.
If the OP wanted Prime Video on their TV they should have purchased a TV that offered it, or buy a box that does it as an add-on.
If this information is valuable (and I think it is!) even small fluctuations on the index could push a given product up.
If you're not going to be the above, then act like a pipe-able Unix process.
Around 1980 you'd buy an Apple ][ or a TRS-80 or a Commodore VIC and they all were incompatible, although most of them still had Micro$oft BASIC.
Also, fuck the "cloud".
 - http://boingboing.net/2012/01/10/lockdown.html
 - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HUEvRyemKSg
Meanwhile, the medical researchers who look at the issue with proper study designs and statistical controls know that placebos are essentially useless, as they at most have influence just on self-reported subjective symptoms, not on any sign that affects the progression of a disease or maintenance of good health. Ladies and gentlemen, you know you aren't going to seek "placebo medicine" if you have cancer or congestive heart failure, and you know that no compassionate parent would seek "placebo medicine" for minor children who have a childhood disease. So why does this topic keep coming up over and over and over here on Hacker News, now most recently from a brand-new participant here? Take the time and effort to learn a bit more about the actual research base before assuming that this story is anything other than the outcome of carefully crafted press release.
Findings on placebo effects by researchers who have considered the issue carefully include
"Despite the spin of the authors these results put placebo medicine into crystal clear perspective, and I think they are generalizable and consistent with other placebo studies. For objective physiological outcomes, there is no significant placebo effect. Placebos are no better than no treatment at all."
"We did not find that placebo interventions have important clinical effects in general. However, in certain settings placebo interventions can influence patient-reported outcomes, especially pain and nausea, though it is difficult to distinguish patient-reported effects of placebo from biased reporting. The effect on pain varied, even among trials with low risk of bias, from negligible to clinically important. Variations in the effect of placebo were partly explained by variations in how trials were conducted and how patients were informed."
Analyses comparing placebo interventions to no treatment reveal that the apparent power of the placebo may be overstated. No placebo effects are observed, for example, when comparing placebo to no treatment for objective endpoints, or binary endpoints (Hrbjartsson et al, 2001). They are observed in subjective endpoints (e.g. pain, nausea) where the condition of the patient is filtered through the opinion and biases of the patient and/or the clinician - which makes it quite possible that this aspect of placebo action can be accounted for by the experimenter effect.
All of which leads to my primary problem with this paper. It is a comparison of open-label placebo to no treatment, with a relatively small number of participants (n = 80), studying only subjective end-points (hello, experimenter effect). The media coverage of this paper (c.f. the NPR article) makes the claim that an "honest placebo" was given, with the patients informed they were only taking placebo, which is true. But patients were also told the placebo could "present significant improvement in IBS symptoms through mind-body self-healing processes", which just as readily primes the patient for the experimenter effect as does telling them they're taking a drug.
On top of that, the clinical relevance of the IBS-GIS improvement seen in the placebo arm is questionable, improvement from "(4) no change" to "(5) slight improvement" on a seven point scale.
Small effect, small numbers, and potentially flawed methodology.
- the extra exercise of going to the medical center
- better behavior under monitoring
- talking to the test administrators (important for e.g. depression)
- better organization to follow the intake schedule
Which are not affected by knowing you are in the control group. Is this really a surprise to the medical community, or is the article just going for the "mind over matter" and general woo line?
open a door toward ethical use of placebos in daily medical practice
Interestingly enough, IBS patients have been found to have non-opioid mediated relief of pain, which is atypical (normally naloxone blocks these effects) so there may be something weird going on with this condition in more general terms.
Also, its worth noting that in modern conceptions of placebo, its part of every treatment. If you have ever felt the effects of a cup of coffee before approximately 30 minutes, that's probably a placebo. Ditto for headache tablets that work immediately, before the active substance could have gotten into the bloodstream.
Also, with respect to the drinking of water, that's unlikely to be an explanation as that quantity of water is typically not enough to provide relief from IBS.
I now know it's homoeopathic and what that means, but I still find it greatly improves my symptoms, and assume it isn't having any negative side effects (as the pills are just tiny sugar pills). Part of me doesn't like taking it, but it does help, and it doesn't seem worth stopping at this point.
But if you give a sugar pill to a person who had never heard of the placebo effect, and tell him/her that the pill is only sugar with no effect whatsoever, perhaps we might find that the placebo effect does not manifest.
This article tells nothing useful.
Please submit the original source. If a blog post reports on something they found on another site, submit the latter.
Registered "tweetcoin" handle awhile back for one of the projects I am working on, and posted on Feb 9 (my single tweet) - "Exciting things in the works" was my comment:
Tried logging in today, couldn't log in. Ended up resetting pwd using my email account, and the reset link logged me in as 'tweetcoin1' - that's when I knew that my Twitter handle had changed from 'tweetcoin' to 'tweetcoin1'.
What's even more bizarre - another tweet appeared under that account. It was dated April 2012, and it simply said:
"This isn't your account."
"So I rang my friend at Twitter" tends to be a common theme in these blog posts. I believe this was the case here too.
"finally" implies that Twitter was too slow in reacting to this. Please don't editorialize.
I don't know why but this comment makes me feel old. I wonder if it would make Kevin Mitnick feel the same.
While I understand the rhetorical usefulness of calling copyright infringement stealing, it's simply not accurate and nitpickers will be right. Again, they may also be annoying, myopic, or outright stupid, but they will be correct.
However, the article is much better than the title would imply so if you were just irked by the headline, don't skip it.
I would like to describe the situation as cheating in the game without trying to going down into the rabbit hole that the digital goods opened(or expanded, since before the digital era we already had goods that are valuable other than it's material and building value. Books, Paintings, Designs, Blueprints and more).
So, you are producing something with intention to gain money or maybe just reputation but often you already use other peoples work to do that - nothing is made out out of thin air.
Then somebody is building some other product with some intention like making money, gaining reputation or something else and his product is using your product and maybe many other people's products. Let's say a website with AI that awesomely curates the content of other people.
In this situation everybody produced a valuable product but the other guys product's success is on your expense.
Ideally you would have an arrangement where everybody wins. I will give an example from the movies and music industries:
a)When you have the arraignment it's iTunes store.b)When you don't have one, it's the Prate Bay.
or Defense industries:
a) When you have a contract it's joint venture and you exchange some information to build some product.b) When you don't have one and you spy on each other to create similar product its espionage.
or personal relationships:
a) When a couple are also seeing other people with the consent of the other one, it's open relationshipb) If there is no consent, it's called cheating.
It's not about stealing, it's about managing the resources in coordination with other parties so that everybody wins. Otherwise often one party wins in expense of the other, many time everybody loses in the long run.
I know this first-hand because I grew up in poor Appalachia, in the US. There, property and ownership and rights were much differently understood than in metropolitan Virginia where I live now. Even though we were under the jurisdiction of local, state, and national laws regarding such things, we followed the norms of the people around us. But, as I became assimilated into the urban 'middle-class', I had to re-learn these things.
I think this is why file sharing in the US became so popular in the 90s/2000s. Kids (and adults) who were otherwise raised with an understanding of US 'property rights' were nonetheless stealing media. The media that was being shared just didn't have a cultural foundation as property, to them.
Anyway, there are a lot of people on the internet that don't necessarily have the same understanding of property and rights and ownership than us. Some people just don't know that what they're doing is bad and/or illegal.
Honestly? Like you wrote, everything's going to be copied anyway, better don't let it cause frustration. It's just information, something we've never controlled successfully before the digital age and haven't given up trying to control on the web yet.
If we didn't try to (pointlessly really) fight over attention from search engines and revenue from annoying ads where we ought to put our content, it wouldn't be such a big issue and the world would probably a better place if people published stuff because they thought it would matter to do so, not for ad revenue.
However, the situation hanselman describes is certainly copyright infringement, and in my opinion he ought to look at the possibility of legal action. It might not be worthwhile, but might be satisfying and set a precedent for control of ripoff sites (modulo jurisdiction and other practical issues).
On the principles involved, IMHO copyright infringement can be justified and even admirable and virtuous in some contexts - but commercial exploitation of others' works, without the creators' permisssion, is not among them. In a just world Hanselman would get the all the profit the infringer realized plus the full cost of suing.
What's most egregious here is the relationship of economic power and enforcement of rights. Big, evil copyright-hoarding companies, that do not create anything but exploit the creations of others, are able to enforce their legal rights to an extreme and excessive degree, including interference with civil communications, taxes on blank media, false takedown orders and other abuses - while individuals subjected to exactly analogous, or even worse violations have no recourse. It's a two-tier system that deserves little respect.
'Scuze me for ranting.
Not everything makes sense to put out as Creative Commons. Sometimes you want to actually sell something like software or an ebook, but you don't think it makes sense to go after people torrenting your stuff and giving it away for free.
My philosophy is there can still be an exchange of value. So, with the Pirate License, you make a version of your product explicitly licensed under the Pirate License which calls those who steal your product pirates, and asks them to pass it along to other pirates or potential customers.
I think it makes the expectations for piracy much more clear and should lead to better outcomes.
I've always felt it questionable ethical territory to take somebody else's work, slap ads on it, and pocket the money. "Aggregators" have been doing that forever, though.
The attitude in most of these cases is innocent unless you can prove you own it and complain enough.
Extreme example - is Google stealing from you because it aggregates your content, stores it, makes it easily searchable and then serves adverts to make money from it?
Steeling would be taking away copyright ownership from author.
A good read about IP:
Better attribution would have been good, and possibly reaching out to original creators asking them to opt out if they'd rather not be involved. Offering something in return (the embedded player for relevant articles) could have helped grease the wheels. Ultimately, if they get bug they may not need massive support from content creators like Scott but they do need not to be on the wrong side of them.
People don't consider content to be proprietary. We treat a blog post in the same way we treat speech. Users ain't gonna pay for that. Period. Some of them may, but no the majority.
Totally off-topic, so I apologize, but I've always wanted to read into this topic a bit more...
i don't know, is them keeping the real names, such as david thorne in them without reference to the original fair use?
in academia this would be considered plagiarism i recon(but i may be wrong), while quoting the source wouldn't.
at the same time someone below said by the definition of the word it's not stealing because they don't take it away from you. but in a legal sense that statement might be incorrect since if they're getting more buzz they could be stealing the attribution. just like edison never really stole a light bulb, but he very well stole the fame of the light bulb.
As soon as you have to ask, "When is it stealing?", it's stealing, simple as that.
As much as people would like to believe otherwise, all the rest is hand waving, semantics, and window dressing.
It may seem strange nowadays because we are living in the musical aftermath of geniuses like these, but guitar wasn't taken seriously until the 20th century. It wasn't in the league of the piano, but rather in the league of the harmonica and the bongos.
If anyone needs cheering up: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=89zM9pZzt0U
Meta: delighted to see a story about such a wonderful musician on HN. Sad that it's an obituary.
Well put. I feel this way about computers in general (and the guitar).
Even if that was the major metric in determining a price, there's often a very large difference between the number of users currently and the expected number 1 year or 5 years out.
You don't buy a company because of the number of users it has right now. You buy it because you think you can do something better with it, or to be defensive in a field, or to expand your own customer lists.
What's more, not all users are created equal! When Flickr for instance was aquired, what percentage of users were paying users?
I think its hard to make any real generalizations here, but better than a chart of cost per user, I think this is probably closer to a chart of how badly Company X feels it needs some audience. It's some formulation of growth, panic, defensiveness, etc.
450000000 is a lot of users. Metcalfe's law says that the value of a communication network is proportional to the square of the connected users. Then add to this the amazing growth they are seeing. I don't think people quite realize what this means.
EDIT: In general, it baffles me how many armchair opinionators there are. Isn't it more interesting to try to understand why FB paid $16B, rather than saying why they shouldn't have?
WhatsApp has a huge set of "new" users on new and old devices. So, how again is a WhatsApp user on some random (non-smart) phone in India, as "valuable" to Facebook as one sitting in the Valley with their iWhatever.
It's sort of close, but we're still talking about a swing of >30% there -- $5 billion dollars in WhatsApp's case.
There are many things missing from "cost per user" but I think the first thing to ask is "user doing what"?
There's no accounting for inflation. Comparing a nominal 1999 dollar amount with a nominal 2014 dollar amount is like comparing a euro amount with a dollar amount without doing an conversion (which would actually still be more accurate).
Now is a good time to be in the yacht business.
Aardvark, Jaika, Dodgeball, Picasa, Broadcast.com, FriendFeed (missing), maybe Flickr as well as more recent acquisitions like DeepMind ($900M to Google, zero users) were bought for some combination of the team and the technology.
Some other dimensions I'd be interested in are the number of employees, year, current number of users, and (for public companies) current market cap. For acquisitions I'd be curious if there are any decent objective metrics of the "success" of the acquisition.
When a service has a lot of users, it has no room for growth and cost per user will be small.
When a service has a few users, but has potential to grow exponentially, it will have high cost per user.
Economically there's a large difference between services with respect to their monetization. A service where each user pays $1000 will have higher cost per user than a free service.
The real target were the feed subscribers, or maybe they are where can I check the data?
The same goes for Youtube, how many visitors did they have? They bring in the ad revenue.
Compared to Facebook/Whatsapp where you can usually only participate by being a user.
In most cases it's not just the users they're trying to get, but also the talent (with the idea that most of them aren't one hit wonders).
Acting like startup acquisition is a single-metric game seems like a gross oversimplification. This chart only proves it by showing there is little correlation between user count and buy price.
So yeah, users not necessarily the most relevant metric there. Which, upon reflection, makes YouTube even more of a steal than it looks in the chart.
I think the answer is that we suck at fighting for our own interests. A traditional union might not be the answer, but something like the SAG might be the way to go. It's absolutely inexcusable that computer programmers don't, for example, have the right to have a representative when negotiating with management or HR.
One interesting side story is the odd Symbolics foray into animation and video through the Symbolics Graphics Division, which afaict was reasonably successful for a few years. It seemed like the sort of application-oriented business that might let the Symbolics machines break out of single-purpose "AI machines" into being seen as general workstations, or at least dual-purpose AI/graphics workstations. But that business seems to have sort of evaporated along with the rest of their business, despite not being AI and there being no "graphics winter". Perhaps steamrollered by Silicon Graphics, and the same trends towards Unix and commodity CPUs? Or not marketed well enough, by a company whose public materials focused too exclusively on Lisp+AI?
Some bits from that era: the S-Package 3d modeling/animation system (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gV5obrYaogU), the PaintAmation package (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Cwer_xKrmI4), and the first HDTV processing on a workstation (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KppVP8PiZag).
Meanwhile, back at Symbolics, there were huge internal management conflicts, leading to the resignation of much of top management, who were replaced by the board of directors with new CEOs who did not do a good job, and did not have the vision to see what was happening.
Symbolics was supposed to be the consensus Next Big Thing. A rival to Sun. A gravy train.
There were titanic egos and divas among the engineers, too. A physical expression of which here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Space-cadet_keyboard But several of them are also remembered for big contributions to the industry.
I had the pleasure of meeting Dan at ECLM 2008, four years before his death. He was hacking away on his XO-1 and showing around fancy things. A very memorable man. He's missed.
Designers were too smart (consider David Moon) while management was "as usual".
As part of out work, we evaluated and benchmarked Xerox Interlisp machines, Symbolics systems, VAXen, later Gold Hill etc. to find a cost-effective delivery platform. We even eventually funded the development of a delivery-focused subset of Common Lisp.
One aspect that Symbolics didn't seem to understand back then was cost of entry and deployment: the Xerox D-machines were (IIRC) around 1/3 the cost of the Symbolics. Perhaps not as speedy, but adequate for our day-to-day development work as well as for the end customer's needs.
Symbolics had great development systems, but the delivery answers were late in coming; too late to help us.
There's lots more to be said about the late 80s collapse of AI (ES) applications and expectations, but the margins here are too small to contain it....
To get a rough baseline for what a generic solution could take, I took nqueens in Answer-Set Programming , set n=8, and ran it through clingo  on an Amazon micro instance, which gets me 15ms.
Another interesting question might be whether the two solutions have different scaling properties as n increases. The ASP solution scales like this (averaging a few runs and rounding):
n time 8 15ms 10 19 15 50 20 130 25 290 30 600 35 1050ms [1.05s]
 http://potassco.sourceforge.net, a menagerie of logic-programming tools, written in C++. 'gringo' takes a high-level encoding and turns it into something more SAT-like, 'clasp' solves the SAT-like (variable-free) programs, and 'clingo' staples the two steps together into one binary. I used the version in Debian stable package 'gringo', which reports itself as "clingo 3.0.4 (clasp 1.3.10)"
I was well and truly pwned, as they say (but at least I got some sleep last night).
That said, the size optimiser in me sees a noticeable absence of rbx, rsi, rdi, and ebp; those registers should be used before going into the r8~r15, since the "extended" registers require a prefix byte to the instruction every time they're used. In fact since only r8, r10, r13, r14, and r15 are used, this code could be rewritten to use only one extended register and you wouldn't need the "mov rdi, r8" at the end.
As an aside there seems to be lots of really interesting concepts involved involved in implementing chess engines.
From representing the chessboard in a highly compact manor through the use of bitboards (http://www.frayn.net/beowulf/theory.html#bitboards) to searching for 'best' possible moves.
Oh, good: there's a standalone installer available (http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1726). But the download is served over HTTP. Maybe I can just try the same URL with HTTPS:
$ curl --head https://support.apple.com/downloads/DL1726/en_US/OSXUpdCombo10.9.2.dmg HTTP/1.1 302 Moved Temporarily Server: Apache/2.2.24 (Unix) Location: http://download.info.apple.com/Mac_OS_X/031-3279.20140225.Zzasf/OSXUpdCombo10.9.2.dmg
Okay, I'll follow Apple's instructions for checking the certificate fingerprint in the installer (http://support.apple.com/kb/ht5044).But that page (Last modified November 2011) displays a different fingerprint (9C864771 vs FA02790F)...and that fingerprint was also served over HTTP.
Gives up and opens the App Store.
It's certainly a bad bug, and it ought to have been caught.But it feels like this would be much harder to exploit than many other bugs which have had far less hoopla.
As I understand, this SSL bug makes it rather trivial to perform MITM attacks against apps which use the default system SSL libs.
That's certainly a problem, but most people are using trustworthy ISPs (at least in this sense). Comcast seems unlikely to try to steal your bank password, and Verizon is unlikely to try to harvest your HN cookies.
It seems like this primarily affects people connecting to untrustworthy access-points, such as Coffee Shops, or Airport Wifi - While that's certainly something that needs to be fixed, it seems far less crucial than remote-code-execution , or many other bugs we see regularly.
I'm sure I'm missing something here, can someone help me understand?Is it just the "Ick" factor of having something you thought was encrypted actually being fairly open?
I don't understand why this is getting more attention that other (seemingly) more dangerous exploits.
 - http://msisac.cisecurity.org/advisories/2013/2013-088.cfm
It makes a bit more sense why they'd make us wait a few days, now.
Sure, they show a SHA1 on this page: http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1726 but that could be MITM'd as well.
Cool. Someday I'd like to be able to leave a FaceTime voicemail message if the receiver declines the FaceTime call.
God only knows what incompetence and disregard for user privacy and sanity awaits in these "new" versions. What are they adding that we really need? Oh, the ability to use SSL PKI. Yeah, I guess you have to upgrade.
Why isn't HN discussing the effects this screw up has on email? Email is bigger than the web, belive it or not.
And most of the world appears to use webmail.
With this "bug" HTTPS for your webmail is futile.
You have no way to know you are connecting to the real googlemail, yahoomail, hotmail, etc.
The "authentication" functions of SSL need to be made an compilation option, not a default.
It's obvious almost no knows or cares how to use SSL's PKI mechanism properly.
SSL's encryption capabilities have been useful, but using SSL to do server authentication causes more problems than it solves.
History has shown it's just not easy enough to use.
SSH can do authentication without PKI. Alas, it is embedded into a program that only nerds use.
I'm using the authentication framework in CurveCP. I'm working on making it very easy to use.
PHP Available for: OS X Lion v10.7.5, OS X Lion Server v10.7.5, OS X Mountain Lion v10.8.5, OS X Mavericks 10.9 and 10.9.1 Impact: Multiple vulnerabilities in PHP Description: Multiple vulnerabilities existed in PHP, the most serious of which may have led to arbitrary code execution <>
Unfortunately we'll probably always be in the dark about the HOW, WHO and WHY. :(
I haven't upgraded to Mavericks at all yet because I'm worried that it will break software I depend on a daily basis. Can some please confirm if upgrading has a significant risk of breaking compatibility with things like rails, mamp, netbeans, android studio, golang, vagrant, virtualbox, docker etc.
Do they use the same code stack for iOS and OSX? This seems weird to me - even though parts of code could be used in both operating systems, I would imagine separate teams would be on iOS and OSX, each reviewing code bases on their own, running unit tests and whatnot. Still, this major flaw has been present for 2.5(?) years - all the more reason for paranoia about its presence.
Add to this, why wait so long with the OSX update? A security issue THIS serious MUST be patched instantly and rolled out as an individual/separate update as soon as possible, even if that means pushing back OSX 10.9.2. Or did they need some time to introduce a new flaw somewhere? o_O
Mid 2012 MBP (MacBookPro9,2).
Awesome for those of us using FileVault who have to enter their login password each time they wake up their computer.
ocspd/usr/sbin/ocspdTotal: 196 B sent, 45.8 MB receivedOutgoing to devimages.apple.com (22.214.171.124), Port http (80), Protocol TCP (6), 196 B sent, 45.8 MB received
Technically correct, the best kind of correct.
This is great news.
This is good, too, though. I might consider checking it out, though I'm hardly a gamer.
I didn't really buy it for the savings, though.
Edit: They split it into categories a pick a winner in each and then somehow pick a 'best overall'. I like the Tesla but I don't understand how they can pick a 'best overall'. It doesn't seem like something that can easily quantified fairly. It's also worth noting the Tesla is over $30,000 more expensive than the most expensive winner out of the other categories.
Can anyone re-assure me? Is there anything that lets car batteries last significantly longer than phone batteries?
Anyone else hate "year inflation"?
Either that or I'll have to wait a decade for one with a depleted battery and rebuild the pack myself.
The stock does seem a bit overvalued currently and I wouldn't be surprised to see some drops in the coming weeks. But regardless, $500 within 3 years. Mark my words.
HN appears to have true love for any story surrounding Tesla.
Look at one of the cited examples:
> AT&T had Bell Labs, created Unix, and never made a successful product out of that work.
Which, sure, OK. But on the other hand, ask yourself where Apple (since we're talking about them here) would be today if Bell Labs had never existed. Bell Labs invented UNIX; no UNIX means no BSD, which means no NeXTSTEP, which means no OS X. Bell Labs invented C; no C means no Objective-C. Bell Labs invented the freaking transistor, without which the idea of a "personal computer" would have been utterly ridiculous. These are all fundamental inventions that made entire generations of tech businesses possible.
So one way to look at it is Gruber's way, that skipping out on R&D means that Apple is "focused." Another way to look at it would be that Apple is a freeloader. That they cheerfully take useful things that are only available to them due to the generosity of others to build products on, without seeing a need to ever be the generous ones themselves -- to replenish the commons that made their own fortune possible.
That's probably good business, at least in the near term. If there's a pile of gold sitting out in the town square, you'd be a fool not to grab as much of it as you could for yourself. But unless someone's throwing new gold onto that pile, eventually it's going to run out. And if you've used the gold to set yourself up as a goldsmith, that's going to be a pretty bleak day for you. You know?
Apple made just 5 acquisitions in 20 years to 1997. In the 17 years since, they've made 49.
And that's not counting open source adoptions or developer hirings like LLVM, KHTML, CUPS, etc.
This makes sense when you think about it. Large companies are too expensive, too inefficient, too concerned about their existing market and too risk averse to lay the groundwork in interesting technology. But large companies do have lots of money and can afford to pay small, innovative researchers and developers handsomely when they need the technology.
Gruber spends an awful lot of time trying to justify and enshrine every action Apple takes. My guess is, if Apple got an Advanced Tech Group again, we'd have a blog article talking about how it's a masterful bit of Apple strategy.
The other thing is, is Apple reallty so different? We see on the Patently Apple website, that Apple is constantly patenting all kinds of crazy stuff that never becomes products.
The only difference between Apple and Google here is that Google will expose the prototype to the public and let people play with it, and Apple will just file patents on it.
Every year at work we fill out a survey where we estimate what portion of our time was spent on R&D vs other things like maintenance. We're told it's important because there's a tax credit for R&D. My (probably faulty) memory says that our guidelines classify all development on new features and products, as well as any research necessary in executing my job, as R&D. Which is very different from something like Bell Labs or ATG.
There're clearly also companies with divisions purely focused on advanced technologies unrelated to products for this year or the next, and I'm curious where the majority of spending falls.
Edit: or, maybe it comes down to very different numbers of employees making products. A quick browse online suggests that Nokia has more employees, does some (all?) of their own manufacturing, and that many of Apple's employees work in the retail stores.
If step 1 is identifying a customer problem. (I still have to cook myself eggs every morning.)
Step 2 is identifying a solution. I know - what if a robot can cook breakfast.
Step 3 is proof of physical concepts - is it possible for a roomful of expensive equipment to cook eggs? How do you even cook eggs - I've never really thought about it... I just kind of do it.
step 4 is prototyping - how could we get this down to something integrated that still works
step 5 is even more prototyping - can we make this any simpler?
step 6 is simplifying - how could we make this EVEN simpler and more foolproof. We need a breakthrough.
step 7 is wowww is that ever elegant.
steps 8-10 are simplifying even more and getting down to the smallest thing that could possibly work.
step 11 is sourcing market-available chips and components
steps 12-15 are programming them.
Then you announce step 15. It's just a magic fucking box that cooks you breakfast in the morning.
Then the tech reaction will be - "This is just a hot plate in a minifridge - the electronics are just a temperature sensor, and power relay, driven by a $0.50 8-bit chip. It's probably less than 200 lines of code. Cute, but worth maybe $1.5 over the cost of a hot plate and a minifridge, if we're generous. This thing maybe takes an hour to make. Now what was done by Doc Brown in the intro to Back to the Future - 29 years ago; THAT is cool. That actually had motors."
Solution? Stop at step 3, back when it was a complicated solution with stepper motors and pumps. Or if step 3 wasn't complicated enough, abandon project - as it's obviously trivial.
On the other hand, if it involves a novel application of a completely impractical physical phenomenon - maybe directed 2.4 Ghz radiation while backscatter levels are monitored.
Well that, you can announce.
(1) There are all sorts of subsidies internationally for movie related industries/services. (2) US studios are "exporting jobs" by taking advantage of these subsidies to to various editing tasks overseas. (3) This is unfair because of various WTO rules and principles of free trade. (4) US states are responding by doing the same (5) Anti piracy is a higher priority for the US industry.
I don't really see the last point as related to the first 4. The other points are part of a bigger picture in the ongoing globalization process. Countries are "competing" with each other in all sorts of ways. They compete for jobs, FDI & tax revenue in ways they didn't previously, at least not as much. This gets translated into tax breaks, subsidize and lots of other things.
IMO the most interesting part of all this is that a movie cannot be said to be a US, French or South African production anymore. Shooting takes place all over the place. Editing and post production now happen place all over the place too. "Quality" in the form of the best actors or best special effects people is important. Money always flowed more freely than goods, services or labour so that comes from everywhere too as it always has.
IMO the industry is in a unique position. Much of the work is easy to parcel. The 'firm' comes into existence to make a film and then goes away so personal relationships, buildings, equipment and other things that keep firms monolithic (reduced transaction costs is usually considered the biggest advantage large firms have over individual actors transacting in spot markets, Ronald Coase's theoroms) are not much of a factor.
This is just a flimsy case for protectionism.
And then go after the amount lost in tax revenue.
(1) What the MPAA's move was
(2) How it screwed the studios
You know, instead of like the concerted efforts of the industry itself. Does the VFX arm of the industry just not care to get involved in lobbying/lawyers?
*understanding I read the part of the article that mentioned it's "difficult" because they have no union. If you don't have jobs, you don't have union busting employers - it's literally the best time to make a union.
"In 2006, Princeton economist Alan Blinder famously warned that the critical economic divide in the future will 'be between those types of work that are easily deliverable through a wire or via wireless connections with little or no diminution in quality, and those that are not.'
(Additional irony if text is a Python computer language program)
This really bugs me. It seems like many companies are either completely unaware that a breach has occurred, or know about it and are taking their time notifying customers (for PR or other purposes). Either way, customers are not getting this information in a timely manner, and that needs to change.
Anyone have a copy of the dump?
This is not exactly the case -- the amount needed to pay the fraud detection services will surely be passed on to the credit card users in the form of higher APRs.
These days I'm wondering how to go about changing my Internet to a new, secure one, where there are no financial predators.
I used Google Apps for my personal email, and I'm pretty happy with the spam protection. (Although I don't check my spam folder for false positives, so who knows?)
Anyway, can anyone who has switched from Gapps/Gmail to their own installation of SpamAssassin comment on how that worked out for them, and how much time they spend maintaining their setup?
Why can't we do this when the EU can pass useless cookie directives?