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Bill Gates Wants To Remake the Way History Is Taught. Should We Let Him?

EdmundSS Interested in amassing wealth (363 comments)

I expect that most of those poor famous artists and scientists were interested in amassing sufficient wealth, but were unsuccessful; very few people choose to be poor.

about a month and a half ago
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For Microsoft, $93B Abroad Means Avoiding $30B Tax Hit

EdmundSS Been there, done that. (316 comments)

Microsoft are simply copying what Apple does. IBM and others are doing it too.

They're all hoping that they can get the tax law changed so that they can repatriate the profits without paying the current tax rate.

about 2 months ago
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Linus Torvalds: "GCC 4.9.0 Seems To Be Terminally Broken"

EdmundSS Re:I know you're trying to be funny, but... (739 comments)

How else do you make the trains run on time...?

You adjust the timetable to match reality. The trains aren't any faster, but the timetable no longer lies.

about 3 months ago
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The Era of Facebook Is an Anomaly

EdmundSS Re: Hosting Platform (260 comments)

Yes, Facebook is the hosting platform, just as email once existed within computers and didn't travel between them. We don't yet have a Social Media Transport Protocol that allows peering between providers, but one day we will, and Facebook will follow AOL & CompuServe to the big walled garden in the sky. But, IMHO, that day is not in the near future.

about 7 months ago
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MtGox Files For Bankruptcy Protection

EdmundSS Segregated funds (465 comments)

If you're a bank or finance company, borrowing and lending on your own account, then yes, customer funds are liabilities. But stockbrokers, lawyers, accountants, et al. keep their customers' funds in a segregated trust account, and Mt.Gox and all the other exchanges should be following this model.

about 8 months ago
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Experiments Reveal That Deformed Rubber Sheet Is Not Like Spacetime

EdmundSS Analogy vs Model (264 comments)

No. A rubber sheet is a flawed *model* for the shape of spacetime; as an *analogy*, it's still reasonable...

about 9 months ago
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Telefonica To Shut Down VoIP Provider Jajah On January 31, 2014

EdmundSS Re: Old Thinking Kills New Ideas? (39 comments)

Presumably the latter -- they paid $200M for it in 2009. (Ouch.)

about a year ago
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What Are the Genuinely Useful Ideas In Programming?

EdmundSS Re: Database Transactions (598 comments)

... are too specific. The concept of an Atomic Operation is important; database transactions are just a domain-specific example.

1 year,14 days
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What Are the Genuinely Useful Ideas In Programming?

EdmundSS Recursion (598 comments)

In the list of concepts, along with OO, closures & functions, recursion is essential knowledge. If in doubt, see this post.

1 year,14 days
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Genomics Impact On US Economy Approaches $1 Trillion

EdmundSS $141 in economic output per dollar invested (115 comments)

If the returns are really as great as they want you to believe (*), then private industry will be rushing in. The federal seed money has done its job and no more is needed. Voila!

(*) Except that the numbers they've published are gross, and it's the net that counts.

about a year ago
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Geeks On a Plane Proposed To Solve Global Tech Skills Crisis

EdmundSS The wrong people (303 comments)

CEOs and VCs are not necessarily the people who have ideas, and if they do, they *already* have the means to express them. I'd rather see 100 respected, talented, peer-voted if necessary, folks on the panel: *true* technocrats, true innovators, not financial folks; people with ideas, sometimes wacky ideas, rather than folks money; the people who turn down a promotion to management because it would take them away from the detailed problem-solving.

about a year and a half ago
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Gov't Report: Laser Pointers Produce Too Much Energy, Pose Risk For the Careless

EdmundSS Re: How would you know? (260 comments)

So, you only receive a brief flash from the laser, and only have a few rods and cones ablated by the coherent pulse from the laser. That one-second blast has only damaged 0.01% of your vision. Ten years down the line, when half your vision is gone, why would you associate the loss with a laser?

about a year and a half ago
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Spy Drones Used To Hunt Down Christopher Dorner

EdmundSS Re: No problem (498 comments)

That'll be why there's a $1M reward -- cheaper to pay that than pay damages for all the innocent people they shoot by mistake...

about a year and a half ago
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How To Stop Prediction Market Manipulation

EdmundSS Circuit Breakers (129 comments)

Instead of re-inventing the wheel, use the same mechanism that stock markets use: if the price moves too much in a short period of time, a circuit breaker cuts in and suspends trading. It both stops the market getting skewed and signals that there's a problem.

about a year and a half ago
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Linus Torvalds Advocates For 2560x1600 Standard Laptop Displays

EdmundSS A Thinkpad? (Re: Put your money...) (661 comments)

Some Thinkpads have the QWERTY section full-sized (e.g. my T420). Arrow keys are below right shift, and Home, End, etc., are above Backspace, so it's not perfect, but it's better than most...

about 2 years ago

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