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Green Lantern Writer To Pen Blade Runner Sequel

Chris Burke Re:Does BR even rate having a sequel? Explain plea (326 comments)

One has the voice-over narrative, which gives the movie a feeling reminiscent of the old "gum-shoe" detective movies from the Golden Age of Hollywood

It already had that feel in spades. Adding the voiceover just beats you over the head with it. Which I guess is appropriate, because the voiceover itself just beats you over the head with everything else.

about a year and a half ago
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Scientists May Have Detected Neutrinos From Another Galaxy

Chris Burke Re:not so good with numbers... (151 comments)

What kind of pedantic choice of interpretation is that?

Internet-pedantry, where either 1) pedantry is misapplied because the word in question does not have a single, precise definition to be pedantic over, and both the the original and the "pedant's" "pedantic" correction are correct or 2) pedantry is possible because the word does have a precise technical definition, but the "pedant" has no idea what that is and is wrong while the original usage was correct.

about a year and a half ago
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Will Future Tesla Cars Use Metal-Air Batteries?

Chris Burke Re:My car has a range of 6000 miles (171 comments)

15,000 watts per kilo of aluminum made in electricity

For how long are 15,000 watts expended? Power usage isn't meaningful in this context. Need a duration to get energy.

about a year and a half ago
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Global Temperatures Are Close To 11,000-Year Peak

Chris Burke Re:Original AC here (416 comments)

The opportunity for "wrong" is that you can be biased to choose one expert or priest over another. You're likely to make this choice based on, to some extent, what the guy next to you thinks.

I choose the concesus. I never choose "one" expert unless I'm sure that expert is representing the concensus opinion of many scientists. If there's large segments with varying opinions, usually indicating a lack of data to explain which is more correct, then I remain agnostic. If there's one expert who disagrees with everyone else, I am leery of that expert's opinion, even if it's exactly what I want to hear.

If that expert turns out to be right, then that will eventually be reflected by the rest of the scientific community as the evidence becomes more and more convincing. As has happened over and over again.

Could this still mean I pick the wrong group of experts? Yeah.

Is that anything like a priesthood? No. That comparison is just stupid.

about a year and a half ago
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Global Temperatures Are Close To 11,000-Year Peak

Chris Burke Re:Clear bias against the oil industry (416 comments)

There are probably literally a handfull of people who actually have opinions formed on science. They're sitting in universities looking at models run on supercomputers. Everybody else is using these people as priests, even if they didn't ask to be priests.

And for those of us who want to form our opinions based on science, but aren't climatologists, looking to the people who are and actually do study and understand climate science and asking them is wrong... how exactly?

For any other non-controversial field of science, this wouldn't be controversial either. Nobody says we're treating particle physicists like "priests" when we go with their best working picture of the microscopic universe with the understanding that this picture may change. How is that like a priest?

And for the record, while I do take what the climatologists say as a provisional truth, I would be delighted if they came out one day and said they were wrong all this time and it turns out there's nothing to worry about. So far, so bad.

about a year and a half ago
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Dotcom Wins Right To Sue NZ Government

Chris Burke Re:Mega and YouTube (127 comments)

I can't answer that, but I know YouTube never intended itself to be, didn't want to be, and took pro-active steps to deal with that situation.

Well, minus the one Youtube founder who was deliberately posting copyrighted material without permission to drive traffic early on.

Though the others did take pro-active steps by making him stop so on the whole, your statement is true.

about a year and a half ago
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North Korea Threatens US With Preemptive Nuclear Strike

Chris Burke Re:the wtc was taken out with box cutters (727 comments)

Of course you stopped reading. Just like you stopped looking at reality as soon as it stopped conforming to your pre-conceived ideology. And of course you call trumping reality with ideology "intelligence". Even though this viewpoint has been tried and found woefully lacking. But that was only in reality!

I wish I was perceptive enough to see that reality is wrong when it contradicts what's in your head.

about a year and a half ago
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North Korea Threatens US With Preemptive Nuclear Strike

Chris Burke Re:the wtc was taken out with box cutters (727 comments)

the truth is, you can't talk about what is stupid/ rational when you are talking about a regime that starves it's people while it builds nukes. rationality and intelligence are not part of the equation.

Of course they are part of the equation! Their behavior is extremely rational. Just not moral. Their goals are not what you think they should be. It's not to work for the betterment of their people. It's to maintain their hold on power over their people. This doesn't make them irrational. It does mean that as long as you equate rationality and morality and therefore assume that they are irrational that you will never understand them. And because you will never understand them (deliberately!) you will never deal with them effectively.

But failing before you even begin because of a conscious decision to replace reality with ideology is old hat for you, isn't it Mr. Iraq War Cheerleader? Is this you re-polishing your rhetoric in support of another war?

about a year and a half ago
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US Attorney General Defends Handling of Aaron Swartz Case

Chris Burke Re:What else can he say? (276 comments)

I am offended by your metaphoric comparison of pitbulls, wonderful creatures whose reputation was solely an artifact of those among whom they were popular, to something a beastly and vile as an Attorney General.

about a year and a half ago
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Discovery Increases Odds of Life On Europa

Chris Burke Re:Europa was discovered in 1610 by Galileo... (164 comments)

Fair enough, a cable was involved. They didn't lower it to the ground on a cable. They didn't lower it while in powered flight hovering above the ground. They did it to separate the rover housing from the descent stage so it would have room to deploy the airbags. Compare to the Curiosity EDL and the operation is quite different.

about a year and a half ago
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Why Can't Intel Kill x86?

Chris Burke Re:A hard time keeping on the forefront? (605 comments)

Alpha designers worked on Alpha at HP -- they produced several variants of the EV7 there. And the servers based on those chips performed better than HP's Itanium offerings, which was rather awkward for them.

Dirk Meyer went to AMD long before that. It was still DEC when he left. Dirk was the lead architect of the K7 (that success being a big part of how he ended up in a position to become CEO) which came out while Compaq was still making new Alphas.

But you're right that a great many jumped ship from Compaq.

about a year and a half ago
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Why Can't Intel Kill x86?

Chris Burke Re:A hard time keeping on the forefront? (605 comments)

You're being completely revisionist.

No, just uninformed about the extent of the embedded use of these chips. By the time I heard of them (e.g. Playstation/N64, and much more recent uses of SPARC) their heydey was over. I had no idea there was a SPARC-based camera in the mid 90s. Obviously I was much more in tune with their traditional business side.

about a year and a half ago
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Why Can't Intel Kill x86?

Chris Burke Re:A hard time keeping on the forefront? (605 comments)

Some of these ISAs found new life, but MIPS and SPARC were for SGI boxes running Ultrix and Sun boxes running SunOS/Solaris respectively for many years. It's only once the original business models collapsed that they became otherwise.

NT on Alpha was contemporary with the ISA's hey-dey, though all it really did was demonstrate that you shouldn't count on Microsoft for the success of your non-x86 server platform. I did know someone who used such a box though. Four processors, baby!

Oh and yeah, the 68k is awesome. It was used in so much stuff besides machines running Unix, though, that "Unix processor" isn't an accurate historical metaphor.

about a year and a half ago
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Discovery Increases Odds of Life On Europa

Chris Burke Re:Europa was discovered in 1610 by Galileo... (164 comments)

Yeah, even some of the new parts weren't that new, though doing aerodynamic flight in Mars atmosphere counts as fairly new if not unprecedented.

The Viking's last stage of descent was done entirely with retrorockets on the lander itself. The MER rovers used a rocket powered descent stage that then dropped the rovers in their airbag-lined shells only the last 10s of meters. MSL was closer to the MER rovers in this sense, however the Sky Crane part was still completely new.

about a year and a half ago
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Discovery Increases Odds of Life On Europa

Chris Burke Re:Europa was discovered in 1610 by Galileo... (164 comments)

Spirit and Opportunity were dropped from their "sky cranes" (yes, they had them too, but they weren't called sky cranes at the time) from several storeys up,

They had a rocket-powered descent stage, but it wasn't a "sky crane" because it didn't lower them on a cable, ala a crane, thus why it wasn't called one.

Yes. If anything, Curiosity had it easy. It was placed ever so gently on the surface.

Easier on the rover by design/necessity, though more complicated for the EDL team. Not ridiculously so like everyone thought, but definitely a source of complication and stress.

I didn't realize it when I was watching the EDL stream live, but later learned that they had agreed that, largely due to the public watching, they had to be careful how they called out the steps of the landing. Specifically they said "TD nominal" when telemetry said the wheels were on the ground rather than "Touch Down" because they didn't want to get the public excited when the next thing telemetry told them could have been that Curiosity was being dragged across the surface of Mars by the descent stage after a failure to release the cables. They waited until they were sure Curiosity wasn't moving before declaring "Touch Down Confirmed."

Oh man, still gets me a little thinking about those words. Hehe.

about a year and a half ago
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Discovery Increases Odds of Life On Europa

Chris Burke Re:Europa was discovered in 1610 by Galileo... (164 comments)

Heh. What I like about the MSL pessimism is that most people didn't realize that literally the only new parts of the landing procedure were the sky crane at the end, and aerodynamic flight before parachute deploy.

It's like they think Spirit and Opportunity were just dropping onto Mars from orbit and some measely air bags absorbed all that energy.

But that's how Mission to Mars showed it, so I guess that's legit!

about a year and a half ago
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Why Can't Intel Kill x86?

Chris Burke Re:A hard time keeping on the forefront? (605 comments)

I suspect that part of the reason Intel invented Itanium is that a totally new and very weird architecture means a new set of patents for the core stuff that you need to make a processor which can run user mode code written to the standard ABI.

Patents with a fresh 17 year expiration date and not covered by licensing agreements with AMD et. al... Yes, I'm quite certain you are correct.

about a year and a half ago
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Why Can't Intel Kill x86?

Chris Burke Re:A hard time keeping on the forefront? (605 comments)

Heh. Given the intimate relationship between the proprietary Unix vendors and their proprietary RISC chips it's not completely bonkers to call em that. I mean did a PA-RISC chip have any purpose besides running HPUX? And did HPUX have any purpose besides being the Unix you got when you bought your PA-RISC systems?

That's an honest question; I've never seen a machine that had one without the other. I'm sure someone runs NetBSD or Linux on it but as far as market presence...

about a year and a half ago
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Why Can't Intel Kill x86?

Chris Burke Re:A hard time keeping on the forefront? (605 comments)

The writing was on the wall for the proprietary RISCs already as x86 ate their lunch from below. The main thing that was different in this respect was the amount of silicon they threw at Itanium. Give Xenons giant caches (and a non-shit bus) and they would have had the same effect of just completing the process that had already started.

The big wild card is HP. Itanium thoroughly killed Alpha because the half of the Alpha team Intel got obviously wasn't going to work on Alpha, while the half HP got was still doing good work but HP's commitment to Itanium meant they were actually down-playing the performance of their own Alpha servers.

I am pretty sure that Intel did not intend for Itanium to fail in the market, but in retrospect the outcome for Intel has been close to perfect.

Kinda true, but not really. As a consequence of the time wasted pursuing IA-64, AMD was able to beat them to market with 64-bit extensions to x86 making excluding them from the future of the x86 market impossible, while simultaneously jumping ahead in desktop and x86 servers, slashing the margins for Xenon.

Certainly it's not all downside for Intel. But it was a misstep and nothing like what they planned. If it weren't for their illegal business dealings that limited AMD's ability to take advantage, it would have been a disaster for them.

about a year and a half ago

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