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### Statistician Creates Mathematical Model To Predict the Future of Game of Thrones

oops... I just now realized that you are returning true in both cases... In which case the above would only work if the IsCharacterPopular(...) function always returns true.

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### Statistician Creates Mathematical Model To Predict the Future of Game of Thrones

why not just:

bool WillCharacterBeKilled(Character c) { return IsCharacterPopular(c); }

and if this were C++, I would do:

bool WillCharacterBeKilled(const Character &c) { return IsCharacterPopular(c); }

as passing by reference (using the ampersand) prevents having to create an unnecessary copy of the object.

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### SpaceX and Boeing Battle For US Manned Spaceflight Contracts

Hyundai Sega Genesis, I gotta me one of those.

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### A Fictional Compression Metric Moves Into the Real World

Re:freemasons run the country (133 comments)

The formula is not too bad, although I would suggest a minor tweak, mainly that one should change it from:

(compression ratio)/log(time to compress)

to:

(compression ratio)/log(10+time to compress).

This will ensure that no divide by zero occurs, specifically if the time to compress is 1 second, then you would have been dividing by zero in the original formula.

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### Gut Bacteria Affect the Brain

Re:We are a colony organism (162 comments)

Not only that, but the statement that we are 90 percent microbial and 10 percent human given that there are 10 times as many microbial cells as there are human cells is mathematically incorrect:

x=10y
1.0=x+y
1.0 = (10y)+y
1.0 = 11y

Therefore it is more accurate to say that we are 90.909% microbial and 9.0909% human.

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### A Plan To Fix Daylight Savings Time By Creating Two National Time Zones

Huh? DST moves the morning commute back into the DARK, just when the solar cycles start making it light.

I was just about to post the same thing. I guess the OP figured he had a 50/50 chance of being right and just decided to wing it!

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### Company To Balloon Tourists To the Edge of Space For \$75,000

It would be like paying \$75,000 to sit 30% closer to the Lamborghini than everyone else.

Wrong.

At 30km altitude, you are much more than 30% closer to space than everyone else.

Even if everyone were at the summit of Mt. Everest, which is at 8.8km, you would still be 3.4 times (240%) higher up than they are.

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### Spinal Fluid Chemical Levels Linked To Suicidal Behavior

I thought the article said that the suicidal patients had *higher* levels of glutamate, not lower. So wouldn't the extra glutamate from MSG intake make you more suicidal? In any case, it's like they say, all things in moderation.

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### Catfish Strands Itself To Kill Pigeons

...and anything that gets rid of pigeons is a good thing :-).

But then we might run into a shortage of carrier pigeons.

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### Why Does a Voting Machine Need Calibration?

Also, I would like to add that we are really talking about two separate issues here.

For me, I do not like that we lose voting accuracy. So there are simple ways to improve on it, like I stated earlier.
For you, you do not like that it has become a popularity contest, and that it comes down to uninformed masses making the decision. I won't argue with you there.

But for your issue, again that has nothing to do with voting accuracy. Instead, that has to do with educating the uninformed masses, which is indeed an entirely separate issue altogether, and the electoral college does not solve that problem.

Like they say in programming: garbage in, garbage out. Since the electoral votes themselves are based upon the votes of the uninformed masses, they too are going to be garbage. But at least we can have a more accurate outcome if we improve upon the current electoral scheme.

more than 2 years ago
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### Why Does a Voting Machine Need Calibration?

Yeah, that whole thing about each State selecting the president... All that means is that my vote doesn't matter because it is going to be nullified from winner-take-all.

Like I said before, if the US were just one big "State", then winner take all is fine. I get that. But when you have winner-take-all applied across multiple states, you lose voting accuracy.

Again consider my updated example:

State A: 500,001 votes for candidate 1; 499,999 votes for candidate 2
State B: 0 votes for candidate 1; 100,000 votes for candidate 2
State C: 0 votes for candidate 1; 100,000 votes for candidate 2

Again, state A gives ten electoral votes to candidate 1, and states B and C each give one electoral vote to candidate 2.

In this example, candidate 2 gets a total of 699,999 votes, and candidate 1 gets a total of 500,001 votes. Yet due to the electoral votes, even though candidate 2 got 39% more votes, he/she would still lose.

I will not argue that indeed, today it may seem like a popularity contest is taking place, but in the end, to allow for the outcome of one state to nullify the outcome of the others (like in the above example), seems preposterous to me.

more than 2 years ago
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### Why Does a Voting Machine Need Calibration?

And in fact, it becomes even more clear when you consider that the above example could be updated as follows:

State A: 500,001 votes for candidate 1; 499,999 votes for candidate 2
State B: 0 votes for candidate 1; 100,000 votes for candidate 2
State C: 0 votes for candidate 1; 100,000 votes for candidate 2

Again, state A gives ten electoral votes to candidate 1, and states B and C each give one electoral vote to candidate 2.

In this example, candidate 2 gets a total of 699,999 votes, and candidate 1 gets a total of 500,001 votes. Yet due to the electoral votes, even though candidate 2 got 39% more votes, he/she would still lose.

more than 2 years ago
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### Why Does a Voting Machine Need Calibration?

While we're at it, let's also do away with the electoral college. And yes, I'm being serious.

Here is a simple example:

You have three states. The first one is 10x larger than the other two, and the voting outcome is as follows:

State A: 500,001 votes for candidate 1; 499,999 votes for candidate 2
State B: 49,999 votes for candidate 1; 50,001 votes for candidate 2
State C: 49,999 votes for candidate 1; 50,001 votes for candidate 2

State A gives ten electoral votes to candidate 1, and states B and C each give one electoral vote to candidate 2.

As you can see, even though candidate 2 received more actual votes than candidate 1, he/she winds up losing.

The winner-take all rule makes sense whenever there is just one state involved, but when you carry it over across multiple states, you wind up losing accuracy. Currently there are only two states, Nebraska and Maine, which actually implement proportional voting by splitting their electoral votes. But even then, that is not 100% perfect because there are an integer number of electoral votes which are based on population size, so there is still a rounding error.

The most accurate, and to me the simplest approach is to simply add up the actual votes from each state for each candidate, and only at the very end do you compare votes to see who is the winner.

more than 2 years ago
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### Best reader-submitted /. logo of October 2012?

I for one rather enjoyed the artistic logos and appreciate the time that was spent making them.

more than 2 years ago
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### NASA To Face \$1.3 Billion Cut Next Year Under Sequestration

Re:Budget cuts should not be imposed (242 comments)

Actually, I would like to point out that as a taxpayer Al Gore contributed to DoD's budget and therefore took the initiative in creating what we know of today as GPS.

more than 2 years ago
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### Firefox Notably Improved In Tom's Hardware's Latest Browser Showdown

Re:Why IE9 did well (218 comments)

I would like to point out that your calculation of the memory per tab is slightly off. Because the first tab includes memory for both itself and the software overhead, in order to compute the actual memory/tab you need to remove the first tab's contribution from the computation.

In other words, using your observation of 61MB for the first tab in Firefox, you would subtract 61 from 794MB to arrive at 733MB for the remaining 39 tabs. This yields a more accurate memory/tab value of 18.79MB.

You could do the same for the IE memory/tab value as well, except as you noted, there is no software overhead, so the memory/tab would be the same even if you factored it out.

more than 2 years ago
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### 'Inexact' Chips Save Power By Fudging the Math

According to the IEEE 754 standard, a double allows for at least 15 significant decimal digits of precision. This means that a number like 9,999,999,999,999.99 can be represented exactly with no rounding. I believe this is more than sufficient to fit Apple's budget in a C double float, using their current market cap of 496 billion.

In contrast, because Apple's budget exceeds 2^32 dollars, using a 32-bit fixed point number would not be sufficient, whereas the double float is.

more than 2 years ago

# Submissions

top AsmCoder8088 (745645) writes "basiCommunication is a new open source software package designed for businesses, universities, and other organizations that wish to set up their own discussion network. Final exams are fast approaching, and this would be great for studying in groups as anyone can set up a server to host study sessions on the network. It features instant messaging, moderated rooms, virtual chalkboards, file sharing, among other things. It also works with both Windows and Macintosh clients!"

# Slashdot: News for Nerds

"If you want to eat hippopatomus, you've got to pay the freight." -- attributed to an IBM guy, about why IBM software uses so much memory