Dec 11

Coding

If programmers were 95% women, we wouldn’t value coding nearly at much.binaryRingPRN

We wouldn’t insist that “everyone needs to be a programmer.”

We wouldn’t declare start-up founders who program to be geniuses from the empyrean heights, who are not mortals at all but rather gods dispensing their infallible and timeless wisdom to the rest of us. (I’m looking at you, Mark Zuckerberg.)

We wouldn’t insist that design, support, marketing and HR are worthless while programming is where the rubber meets the road, baby.

If the vast majority of programmers were women, we’d see it as “silly playing with computers” while men do “the real work of recruiting and getting customers – what really matters.”

For some proof of this, watch what happens and has happened historically when other fields are “feminized.” Accounting and HR are good examples of this. I don’t feel like getting all expository on that here, though. Do your own research if you like.

But if you want to see this phenomenon in real time, watch as doctors become less societally valued over time as women come to dominate that field. It’s already happening. When MDs go over 65% or so, the field will lose prestige rapidly.

As Justin Wilson used to say, I guarantee.

Dec 10

What a difference a decade makes

About 10 years ago, I had a blog that garnered many more hits.

I posted there the obvious idea that it would not be long before physical products would soon by protected by DRM, and this would limit user ability to modify them and to use them as one wishes.

Even my political posts didn’t receive so much pushback, so much excoriation, and so much vehemence all advocating the idea that this would never and could never happen. There were several dozen comments telling me how much of an idiot I was.

I don’t know why. Perhaps people just didn’t want to believe it?

Not a new story, but of course it is happening. It will happen more. In fact, in the US I’d wager it’ll happen to nearly everything.

I don’t care about being right, really, as it was completely obvious that I would be, but I wonder why were people so reluctant to believe it?

Some sort of self-protection? Some variant of the just-world fallacy?

I have no idea.

Dec 10

Three

I could really use three monitors, but I don’t have room for all three.

Three 5K monitors, of course.

Dec 10

CCNP

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I have a CCNP certification now. I got it a few weeks ago.

It was a very hard certification. The CCNP requires one prerequisite exam and then then three different CCNP-level exams consisting of a mixture of multiple-choice and practical tasks (configure and/or troubleshoot a router, switch, etc.) Comparatively, the Microsoft ones were a lot easier though harder than they once were.

Next week I am going after my Red Hat Certified Engineer certification. This one will be the most difficult of all as it’s all practical, all hands on. There are no multiple choice questions and only two hours to complete what I understand is many tasks.

I’ve been studying 8-10 hours a day for a few weeks now.

I feel pretty confident. I’ve learned more in a shorter time than any other time in my life, though I’ve used Linux for years so it’s not foreign to me.

But now I can set up in minutes – all without consulting anything online — services and capabilities that once took me hours to configure.

So I’m ready.

I think.

Dec 08

Warning Warning

This is the most fun sentence I’ve read all day.

Warning: do not booby-trap your finger daemon, unless you are prepared for infinite finger loops.

Infinite finger loops. Just can’t put my finger on what makes that so funny. Hmm.

Dec 07

Opting out

Comcast Makes It More And More Difficult To Opt-Out Of Internet Sharing.

Here’s how to opt out: Buy your own cheap wi-fi router. Set it up as an access point and connect it to any of your Comcast router’s LAN ports with a patch cable.

Put a metal colander over the Comcast device and place the router itself on some aluminum foil. This is a Faraday cage,  so the signal will be attenuated to ~1m or less.

To avoid being double-NATted (which can cause problems with some services), place the IP address of your new wireless access point in the DMZ of the Comcast router.

I recommend this model as it’s cheap and very reliable.

It costs $50 to defeat that evil empire, but sometimes it’s Comcast or nothing so most people can’t just switch. And this will kill the empire’s wi-fi, but let you have your own still without strangers leeching it and doing who knows what.

Dec 07

Privy

Judge Richard Posner occasionally says some intelligent things. But mostly, he is still a staunch and addlepated conservative.

“Much of what passes for the name of privacy is really just trying to conceal the disreputable parts of your conduct,” Posner added. “Privacy is mainly about trying to improve your social and business opportunities by concealing the sorts of bad activities that would cause other people not to want to deal with you.”

I will be over to his place posthaste to install cameras in all his bathrooms, and in his master bedroom.

Night vision, too, because what does he have to hide after all?

His view of privacy has to be the dumbest one out of all possible views, and the least nuanced.

Dec 06

Crash

And burn. This is the funniest thing I’ve seen in a long time.

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Pretty much sums up how women in tech great treated every day.

BTW, Casey Johnston is the best writer at Ars Technica by a long shot. I go there specifically now to look for her articles.

Dec 06

Wow

If anyone wants  a large, good monitor for a ridiculous price, this is the best deal I’ve ever seen – by far – for a 30” IPS monitor.

It’s not 4K or 5K, but still – hard to go wrong with a 30” 16:10 2560×1600 monitor for $400.

The cheapest I’ve seen one of these before now went for more than $1,000.