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  • Aug 25th, 2016 @ 5:56am

    (untitled comment)

    Thought problems in ethics have little to nothing to do with real life. They certainly have no application to a vehicle run by either a human or a computer. If there is sufficient time for either to make a decision about what to hit, then there are multiple other decisions available to avoid an accident.

    But of course accidents occur because people or CPUs put themselves in conditions that allow no time to make a decision of value. Most people would simply freeze, while a CPU would more likely be able to keep searching for an answer.

    Any number of "what if" strawmen can be invented. Their utility other than discussion in ethics seminars has no meaning in the real world.

  • Aug 22nd, 2016 @ 2:28pm

    Journalistic standards?

    I am not sure what journalistic standards you are referring to here. The NSA/Bush spying story, kept quiet for a year over the 2004 election season, which would have undoubtedly changed the outcome of the election?

    The support of an illegal and criminal war which killed well over a hundred thousand, displaced millions, destabilized the middle east, causing more wars and deaths.

    And too much more to include here?

  • Aug 19th, 2016 @ 11:11am

    Re: Re: Speculation about the costs...

    Shouldn't the fines and costs have to be more, considering that there was more litigation that blew up in Prenda's face.

  • Aug 15th, 2016 @ 11:01am


    Far worse than being useless, as so many agents are, he gas EMBARRASSED them.

  • Aug 13th, 2016 @ 1:10pm

    Maginot line

    That "History doesn't repeat itself, but it rhymes," is credited to Mark Twain.

    The same type of thinking that lead to the horrific disaster of the Maginot line, can certainly be credited with this current idiocy on the part of the French government.

  • Aug 12th, 2016 @ 8:33am

    (untitled comment)

    This problem has been recognized for more than 20 years. It is not solely in the domain of user devices, but professional data centers as well. First of course is the issue of bit rot, followed by loss of data structures. But most important is the loss of devices to read the data on (tape drives, disk platters, card readers, etc,) and of course the software with which to read it.

    The Y2K frenzy caused a lot of hardware and software to be replaced, but much of the data wasn't transferred. And now if you try to find a programmer who is familiar with say BDAM files, you will be luck, if the individual doesn't suffer from dementia. Never mind the hardware to run it on.

    What is on personal PCs may be significant, but the data in large centers dwarfs it in volume and value.

  • Aug 12th, 2016 @ 8:21am

    (untitled comment)

    Is Facebook English for 'Grandpa?'

  • Aug 10th, 2016 @ 6:34pm


    A firearm is just another tool. For me it is good to scare off bears, coyotes, two legged thugs, and other animals which can be hostile and dangerous.

    It is very nice of people who live in cities and suburbs are willing to put my life and that of my family in danger by arguing that firearms can be replaced by the police. First, the police take 20 minutes or more to get here, and secondly it appears that the police are even more dangerous than large carnivores.

    While I do not hunt, others in my area are poor enough to really need the extra protein that hunting and fishing bring in. Having spent my career in Public Health, I have seen far too many infants and children that were suffering from malnutrition. To take away the food brought in by hunting would be another crippling and disabling blow to children and expecting mothers.

  • Aug 8th, 2016 @ 7:07pm

    (untitled comment)

    Corporations have demonstrated their ability to utilize the legal system. With new laws that ostensibly remediate anti-consumer legislation, the corporations always seem to end up with more power, control, and profits.

    The only solution is to stop buying anything that is controlled by these organizations. A month of greatly diminished sales will bring about change.

  • Jul 30th, 2016 @ 8:08am

    (untitled comment)

    A recording of "You have the right to x, but if you invoke that right, things are going to go way worse for you." should be grounds for charges of extortion.

  • Jul 30th, 2016 @ 8:05am

    Re: there's a simple fix

    A real fix is to recognize such behavior for what it is -- at least a battery under the color of authority. The cop needs to be held both civilly and criminally liable for his/her actions.

  • Jul 28th, 2016 @ 8:53am

    Re: Re: In 2016? Really?!

    His [Lysenko's] experimental research in improved crop yields earned him the support of the prominent Soviet politician Joseph Stalin, especially following the famine and loss of productivity resulting from resistance to forced collectivization in several regions of the Soviet Union in the early 1930s. In 1940 Lysenko became director of the Institute of Genetics within the USSR's Academy of Sciences, and the exercise of political influence and power further secured his anti-Mendelian doctrines in Soviet science and education. Scientific dissent from Lysenko's theories of environmentally acquired inheritance was formally outlawed in the Soviet Union in 1948.

  • Jul 27th, 2016 @ 6:12am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: In 2016? Really?!

    Stalin followed and supported Lysenko, who was the antithesis of Darwin in particular, as well as science in general.

    Hitler was a Catholic. The Church claims anyone who was baptized through their lives. Hitler never repudiated his Catholicism.

    "By defending myself against the Jew, I am fighting for the work of the Lord." Adolf Hitler, "Mein Kampf"

    Stalin studied for the Orthodox priesthood until his father could no longer pay the tuition. This likely had a significant impact on Stalin's later denial of religion.

    Perhaps the previous writer needs to revisit his

  • Jul 27th, 2016 @ 4:24am

    Re: Re: In 2016? Really?!

    Certainly there are many reasons to castigate the behavior of pharmaceutical houses. But it makes no sense to attack the most effective medications, which incidentally create the smallest profit.

    Please note that the utility of vaccines is under constant review for both safety and efficacy.

    Your avoidance of flu vaccines is your personal opinion, but personal experience has nothing to do with epidemiology.

  • Jul 27th, 2016 @ 4:14am

    Re: Anaphylactic shock

    Perhaps you would like to bring up the laws of Thermodynamics, Maxwell's equations, and the age of the Universe. And apply these facts and one estimate to the incidence of autism?

  • Jul 26th, 2016 @ 12:36pm

    (untitled comment)

    Trump could only entreat three children who were naive enough to support him?

  • Jul 20th, 2016 @ 11:47am


    Why? I have 6 I7 PCs, about 20 Raspberries, 4 PineA64s, and about a dozen others, and I am retired. Depending on the problem I am working on, all of the I7s and the Pines can be working on it at the same time. The others are just there for data gathering, actuator control and development.

    Keeping track of the weather world wide is important to the navy, and probably eats all the CPU cycles from several super computers. Many of which are clustered PCs. A lot of other disciplines eat computers by the shipping container load.

  • Jul 14th, 2016 @ 5:24pm

    (untitled comment)

    Trump appears to have no internal self other than lashing out at anyone who he perceives as being a threat or insulting. Putting together various Trumpisms, it would appear that he sees the presidency as the ultimate means to destroy his enemies. Other than that, there is nothing to the man.

    OTOH, Hillary is quite the miscreant. Biliary seem to have enriched themselves rather incredibly. Another wretch who has slithered her way around immoral and criminal acts. Her disdain for the application of the law to her behavior is an exemplar of sociopaths.

    I will vote for Hillary, not because I have any appreciation for the woman, but rather because she obviously prepares her ploys in advance, and they are thought out. Trump acts and then reacts. No apparent thought involved. No perception of consequences, just the exercise of power by making others suffer.

    I wish that there was someone worthy of being president. It is difficult to believe that in a nation of some 315 million that these are the best available. Makes me nauseous.

  • Jul 14th, 2016 @ 3:29pm

    Re: sensor

    What is a sensor? That usage of that terminology is field dependent. It is also technology dependent. A cell spoofer accepts data, manipulates it, decides if it is relevant, and hopefully throws away the chaff.

    Would you call a DS18B20 a sensor? Many years ago I would have called it a microcontroller. These days I call it a sensor. It accepts analog data, converts it to digital, possibly it to ASCII, decides if it has a valid reading, sends back an error message if not, and otherwise returns values, allows the user to specify resolution and more.

    Human skin is among other things a multitude of sensors connected to a very complex computer. It can decide whether the impulse is pain or pleasure, if so, which sub variety. Even the intent of a stroking (good, bad) is in part first interpreted at the sensor level.

    But I did make a mistake. I was really referring to the device that an agent roamed the halls with trying to pinpoint the location of the signal by sensing its strength.

  • Jul 14th, 2016 @ 3:10pm

    Re: NDA

    I understand the point of claiming the NDA is an umbrella. What I don't understand is how they can withstand a judges order, or even a defense attorney's subpoena. I do know that several cases were dropped by the Department of (In)justice rather than cough up such documentation. But some have been adjudicated guilty as the fruit of this poisonous tree.

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