On the general question: there is an obvious distinction to be made between someone asking you for advice on what they plan to spend the next three years doing, and what they're hacking together on a single pizza-fueled weekend. The latter is a learning experience and even without your advice they'll fail fast if they fail, so don't sweat it.
> there's no semantic distinction between code and data
I struggle to understand how this can be true, and I say that as a Lisper (spiritually if not currently), because 'this data does something meaningful when interpreted by a computer' is exactly a semantic distinction from 'this other data doesn't'
As stories go, this one would be a lot better if it actually linked to some technical information about the bug. Does anyone have a reference for what the samsung_laptop driver's doing that is so bad? The kernel bugzilla link (#47121) that someone has speculated is related is a boot panic, not a complete bricking, so while it _may_ be the same thing ...
Indeed, the value of threading on usenet was that it provided data for the user-agent to decide in what order to present unread posts to the user - if the original topic A had drifted to subjects B C and D which were being discussed in parallel, when reading it three hours later I would get all the posts about B before the posts about C and then the posts about D. And if I grew tired of B I could hit 'k' and move immediately onto C. As long as I wanted to carry on reading, though, all I needed to do was hit SPACE (or in today's language, scroll down)
This is all a completely separate issue from the one of whether replies should be indented under their parent. For my money, this only makes sense if the reply is approximately as long as 'ME TOO!!!11!!!1!' and in the more interesting case that the reply is actually a reply and not just a comment, indenting is the wrong decision. But there is no need to conflate the two: ordering and indenting are independent decisions
So why is an article about the Metropolitan Police forensic lab in south London (UK) illustrated with a stock photo of what appears to be a US power socket? (It might be a Euro socket, but it's certainly not a UK one.) Do they not have electricity sockets anywhere at the BBC that they could have taken a picture of?
The continual references to how much easier it was "ten years ago" makes me wonder if the author was actually in the industry ten years ago, or is merely using it as a shorthand for "grandpa's stories of how it was in his day"
I'm pretty sure I could have written the same thing in 2002 except that the list of technologies would have looked different.