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Netflix Reduces Physical-Disc Processing, Keeps Prices the Same

GameMaster Re:Two words (354 comments)

Actually, as the proper name they chose for their company it's only one word.

about a month ago

A Brain Implant For Synthetic Memory

GameMaster Re:Forget reading, GET AN IMPLANT! (87 comments)

I think you're comparing apples to oranges. For every example like the ones you gave, there seem to be just as many like jetpacks and the flying car that have just never happened long, long after everyone assumed they should.

The way I see it, the difference is all about how clearly dangerous experimentation in a certain field happens to be to human lives and how much infrastructure needs to be built out to make a given iteration of the tech useful. Computer and telecommunications tend to evolve extremely quickly because they are widely assumed to be harmless to humans and because they don't usually need lots of infrastructure build-out. You'll note that in the few places where infrastructure build-out IS required (broadband and wide-area wireless communications) the time between iterations seems almost glacial in comparison to the rest of the industry.

While the kind of implant tech described in the article doesn't require lots of physical infrastructure build-out, it does involve lots and lots of human medical testing. To make matters even worse, the kind of medical testing (surgical experimentation on the brain) is the most complex and risky in the entire field of medicine. In such a field, by it's very nature, moving a single iteration of tech from prototype to commercial product can take a decade or more at it's best.

about a month and a half ago

NASA Approves Production of Most Powerful Rocket Ever

GameMaster Re:I dont see a problem here (146 comments)

The claim they're trying to make (right, wrong, or otherwise) is that the sub-systems used in the development of this system have already been proven to be so uneconomical that developing a new system, using more modern technology, would produce a more cost-effective system in the end. Furthermore, (and ironically, considering the claim you're making in your last sentence) they are inferring that the only reason these existing sub-systems are being championed is that they represent products already being produced in the congressional districts of US politicians and, thus, the people pushing for them only really care about the jobs and don't care about the actual costs involved.

Again, I'm not suggesting that they are factual correct in their argument. I'm just trying to clarify their position as I see it.

about 2 months ago

Researchers Claim Wind Turbine Energy Payback In Less Than a Year

GameMaster Re:WUWT (441 comments)

From what I took away from the WUWT article, it seems that the crux of their "argument" is that there's a possible chance you might have enough consecutive days of "just enough" wind and/or "not enough" wind that your back-up energy storage system will be empty when you have an additional day(s) of "not enough" wind (thus leading to black-outs or brown outs). Of course, what they seem to be ignoring, even if the original writers of the paper didn't take this into account and didn't include enough over-capacity in the turbine system to make this almost impossible, is that the energy industry has had proven solutions to this problem for a very long time. As it is, it's very common for power plants to have a set of back-up natural gas generators to provide power in down times. They're relatively cheap up-front; drop in;in; still relatively cheap to operate (if not as cheap in the long-haul); and they should last almost forever if they're well maintained and only run in emergencies.

about 2 months ago

Supreme Court Rules Against Aereo Streaming Service

GameMaster Re:One disturbing bit: (484 comments)

The same way, if I remember correctly, that he was "sure" that the Citizen's United ruling wouldn't lead to a massive increase in private/corporate money influencing the US election system...

about 2 months ago

Florida Man Faces $48k Fine For Jamming Drivers' Cellphones

GameMaster Re:You know ... (358 comments)

Uhm, they already do. Here in Chicago, we call it the south side.

about 2 months ago

$500k "Energy-Harvesting" Kickstarter Scam Unfolding Right Now

GameMaster Re:But it's green! It works through magic! (448 comments)

You're right, but not for the reason you list. Charlie disbanded in '76 after the fall of Saigon and unification of the North and the South.

about 2 months ago

Florida Man Faces $48k Fine For Jamming Drivers' Cellphones

GameMaster Re:You know ... (358 comments)

If what is said in the summary is true, we're past the point of a "strong risk" of it not ending well and are well into that being a reality. Apparently, this genius radio engineer was also causing interference for the two-way radio systems used by first-responders.

about 2 months ago

Florida Man Faces $48k Fine For Jamming Drivers' Cellphones

GameMaster Re:You know ... (358 comments)

He's screwed because he's a complete moron. He's just another asshole with anger management issues and/or delusions of grandeur who decided to grant himself law enforcement powers. Not only did he block cellphones but, apparently, he was also interfering with the radio communications of first-responders. It'd be like someone driving up onto a busy sidewalk for a chance to get photographic evidence of someone jaywalking...

about 2 months ago

Netflix Trash-Talks Verizon's Network; Verizon Threatens To Sue

GameMaster Re:We are being bred for slavery (364 comments)

Not that this has anything to do with the actual topic of this story, but I don't think that's an accurate description of the situation. We're not being bred for slavery because (even if they were morally willing to) the ruling class no longer has a need for slaves in the long-term (the only time-frame that a "breeding program" would actually be useful). Automation will be the new "slavery" without all the nagging ethical issues of real slavery. It will leave only the most "interesting" jobs remaining (before strong AI, if it's actually possible, replaces even those jobs) which the small portion of the population comprising the ruling class will be able to perform as hobbies to feed their intellectual curiosity/egos.

If anything, we are being obsoleted and the present struggle is between those of the ruling classes that have ethics/morals and those that don't over what to do with the excess of humans that will soon no longer be needed. The ones with ethics/morals will push for more socialization, education, and birth control adoption while the ones without morals/ethics will be more inclined to focus all excess resources/energy towards personal profits and ego driven vanity projects while letting the masses starve. They'll push for the use of highly automated police/military forces to put down any civil/political unrest.

about 3 months ago

Melbourne Uber Drivers Slapped With $1700 Fines; Service Shuts Down

GameMaster Re:A Solution (255 comments)

What in the world makes you think a criminal background check isn't relevant? You want convicted sexual predators driving taxis around? How about people that have been convicted of fraud? You want them being responsible for operating the meter in an honest manner? There are enough issues with slimy/fraudulent practices in taxis services as it is, now you want to do away with the criminal background checks entirely? You're nuts.

Also, you seem to have completely ignored the third issue at stake here: insurance. Personal auto insurance != commercial auto insurance. The moment your insurance company finds out you were driving people around for profit at the time of your accident they will, completely legitimately, refuse to pay out any claims. While it's completely fine that you don't get paid after committing insurance fraud (which IS what you're doing when you violate your CLEARLY WRITTEN insurance contract to drive for profit) the important thing here is that anyone you've hurt (such as your fares and/or whatever/whoever you hit) are now left with no way to be compensated unless they can squeeze the money out of you. Since it's unlikely that people like Warren Buffet or Donald Trump are going to be Ubering in their Bentley, this means that those people are almost certainly screwed.

about 4 months ago

US Military Drones Migrating To Linux

GameMaster Re:Kermit (197 comments)

Probably for the best, Ms. Piggy is violent enough for the two of them.

about 4 months ago

Oculus: ZeniMax Claims Over Rift Tech Are "False"

GameMaster Re:Zenimax is salty (72 comments)

Since it's a math problem instead of grammar, would that make you an an arithmetic Nazi?

about 4 months ago

Talking To the Public: the Biggest Enemy To Reducing Greenhouse Emissions

GameMaster Re:Apples, Oranges and Herrings (324 comments)

Actually, it's an even worse comparison than that. Not only does it not disrupt major industries that employee large numbers of people and, more importantly, keep a large number of wealthy people wealthy but the nuclear disarmament process has provided a source of plentiful, already mostly processed, fuel for the nuclear power industry. For a while now, many US nuclear plants have been running off of fuel sold to them by the Russians and gotten from dismantled nuclear weapons stocks (though, last I heard that supply was finally running out). This means that, unlike with the global warming debate, the entrenched industry types have a good reason to actually support the process rather than work to stop it.

about 4 months ago

Setback For Small Nuclear Reactors: B&W Cuts mPower Funding

GameMaster Re:KickStarter? (165 comments)

Rather than Ponzi scheme, the proper term for Kickstarter would probably be "confidence scheme" or "confidence trick".

about 4 months ago

NYC's 19th-Century Horse Carriages Spawn Weird, Truck-Size Electric Car

GameMaster Re:That Reminds Me (204 comments)

There's always "Au jus"

about 4 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Which NoSQL Database For New Project?

GameMaster MongoDB (272 comments)

Use MongoDB, it's web-scale. They produce kick-ass benchmarks by piping all your data to /dev/null.

about 5 months ago

How Many People Does It Take To Colonize Another Star System?

GameMaster Why send the people? (392 comments)

If it's just genetic diversity you're worried about, why send the people themselves? It seems to me that sending that many people would be a massive over-expenditure of resources. Why not send much more manageable number of people to run the ship and build the initial settlement along with preserved genetic material for a massively larger population. Breed, predominantly, through artificial insemination for the initial generations until you are back to having the desired diversity in the actual living population.

about 5 months ago


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