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High School Kills Color-Coded ID Program

GeordieMac Motivation (406 comments)

Some kids are motivated by good grades, some by getting a good job, some by money, some might even be demotivated by those things.* Setting up a one-size-fits-all system (grades) and then inventing punitive solutions for those that aren't thus motivated isn't addressing the root problem.

The only people that have the knowledge and ability to motivate the children are the parents. The problem then is how to motivate the parents. There are probably a hundred ways to do that but my ideology would suggest tax breaks/penalties for each child that does well on yearly SATs. I'd suggest that the incentives should be balanced by disincentives, so that its cost neutral, or nearly so.

Even if it did cost the government more upfront, hopefully that would get offset by higher tax revenue once the children graduate...

Setting up a system like this would be relatively simple. The tricky parts are properly handling the edge cases (learning disabilities, etc.) and hardening the system. (better motivated children might feel more pressure to cheat)

* http://news.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=2467658&cid=37660992

about 3 years ago
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Stanford 'Intro To AI' Course Offered Free Online

GeordieMac Conflict of Interest (148 comments)

This is a shameless plug for their own book. (required course material) Is this legal? At any rate, if this is the ethical standard exhibited by their professors, then how can I how can I in good faith hire their students?

more than 3 years ago
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Forget Space Travel, It's Just a Dream

GeordieMac Re:How about (542 comments)

yup, excellent point. Although another poster correctly stated the similarity with solar sails its also close in concept to the Mini-Magnetospheric Plasma Propulsion concept or M2P2.

more than 3 years ago
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Expensify CEO On 'Why We Won't Hire .NET Developers'

GeordieMac Re:This dude is an idiot. See quotes below. (758 comments)

All analogies are flawed at some level, often proportionate with the author's level of understanding. :)

more than 3 years ago
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Milky Way Stuffed With an Estimated 50 Billion Alien Worlds

GeordieMac Re:78 million (331 comments)

wait... some one counted all the grains of sand? The discrepancy is likely that you are filtering based on sun-like stars. A technological civilization may need a sun-like star, but algal lifeforms probably don't.

more than 3 years ago
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Oil Companies Patent Trolling Biofuel Production

GeordieMac Re:Article is a troll (183 comments)

Posting propaganda from the websites of the companies in question is not a great way to further an argument on Slashdot. I don't disagree with you statement that TFA is trollish, however BPs token investment in renewable energy is minuscule in comparison to it enormous revenue stream. a ratio of about 4:1000 or 0.4% To call BP an "alternative energy company" is disingenuous and really just green-washing; which is especially irritating given BPs history of environmental transgressions (illegal dumping on Alaska's North Slope, Prudhoe Bay oil leak, Texas City chemical spill, and the recent deep water horizon catastrophe)

more than 3 years ago
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The Hidden Reality Draws Ire From Physicists

GeordieMac Re:Colbert (387 comments)

Since we are alluding to popular references to Brian Greene, I thought I should insert an obligatory, and relevant xkcd link: http://xkcd.com/485/

more than 3 years ago
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Egypt Cuts the Net, Net Fights Back

GeordieMac Re:effect of the 'net overstated? (232 comments)

Calling it a kill switch is disingenuous, something that is 98% dead isn't really.

Traditional propaganda doesn't work on the internet. (Thus the attempt to shut it down)

News organizations rely on the internet to receive images/video's testimonies for first hand witnesses which are still very important to getting the message out. (Thus the silencing of AlJazeera)

I'd submit that the effect of the 'net cannot be overstated.

more than 3 years ago
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Google Didn't Ship Relicensed Java Code After All

GeordieMac Re:Okay, let me see if I've got this straight. (223 comments)

It would be like the RIAA trying to collect royalties on music that I wrote and produced on my own, because they found pirated music on one of my computers.

Honestly, this is the best analogy I've ever read on slashdot.

more than 3 years ago
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Ideas For a Great Control Room?

GeordieMac Re:Natural light (421 comments)

--Why on Earth do you think we haven't considered business continuity?

Fully considered? You haven't no. By co-locating everyone you are increasing the impact of otherwise small events.

--Is there *any* business which doesn't tend to put large groups, if not all of their people in the same place for most of the time?

Businesses which have proper risk management strategies. Most militaries and NGOs, organisations that regularly deal with risk

--You should really get out of your basement.

Zing. Nice ad hominem. Point to you. I'm cut to the quick... I'm off to find my encyclopedia, maybe it has an entry for boondoggle...

more than 4 years ago
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Ideas For a Great Control Room?

GeordieMac Re:Natural light (421 comments)

Yeah, lighting is very important, sound environment anechoic tiles, or hang curtains all along the walls, quiet electronics (consider removing computers from the room all together) and phones. HVAC It's very easy to underestimate this because the number of stations you design for will likely double in real life usage. Space is really expensive and managers will always choose to double usage of space before committing to buying more structure. Underground would be worse I imagine. redundancy: I think control rooms are a little archaeic and beyond that just plain dumb. "Let's put all the really important people in one place so that they can see each other when they talk to them because that's more important than business continuity, oh yeah and let's create one single point of failure while we are at it... If you are going to make a control room anyway, make sure you have multiple redundancies for every service you tie into and at every node or point of service. Otherwise, everyone gets a free high-speed internet connection at their home and use RSA-256 if need be. The internet was designed so that it could withstand world war three, why people still building bunkers is beyond me. Control rooms as a concept are a relic of the cold war and are as useful as the 27-volume encyclopedia set in my basement.

more than 4 years ago
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The Space Garbage Scow, ala Cringely

GeordieMac Re:Make sure. (221 comments)

It won't work... there are too many unknowns and no way to fix the scow when (read inevitable) things go wrong. The scow approach can really only be designed upfront and then implemented after the fact.... risky. The lasers idea that he dismissed out of hand early on in the article actually makes more sense. Except that the lasers aren't intended to vaporize the entire object, but a tiny fraction to induce a deceleration so that the orbit can decay faster. The laser approach can go through spiral development which is preferred for high risk projects. And has the benefit of being a replicable (parallelizable), and relatively low-tech solution. I'm sure that NASA could run a $1 million dollar competition to see who can de-orbit space junk with frickin' laser beams.

more than 4 years ago
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Wearable Computer With Lightweight HUD

GeordieMac Re:Resolution (150 comments)

Apple owns the patent to the letter i and any word with which it starts. In response I've applied to the USPTO for numbers which conform to the formula where 2^n-1 In addition to my patent for all the numbers with 2^0 to 2^40 binary digits. With the royalties I intend to buy the moon from Dennis Hope.

more than 5 years ago
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Jet Pack Runs For Hours On Water

GeordieMac Re:Military and coastguard applications (268 comments)

...much less visible than a helicopter...

There is no way that a reverse geyser would be less visible than a helicopter, Navies would be much more interested in UAVs.

more than 5 years ago
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EEStor Issued a Patent For Its Supercapacitor

GeordieMac Re:I dunno... (603 comments)

If this is real then I think that one of the big car companies are going to have to buy ZENN Motor, since they have an exclusive deal with eestor worldwide. Either that or some sort of sub-licensing deal will have to be worked out.

more than 5 years ago
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Rewriting a Software Product After Quitting a Job?

GeordieMac Re:the short answer (604 comments)

If you did that to me I'd sue you. And I'd win. Not only are you breaking a non-compete clause, which was the basis upon which I've hired you, you used the time that I employed you to build yourself a copy of a software product I'm trying to bring to market (or so that's what I'd tell the judge). And instead of helping to fix the code quality, you conspired with your fellow employees to leave simultaneously, causing further injury to my company, so that you'd have time to bring your product to market. I'd sue you personally for your salary I paid you since you started working for me plus legal expenses. As well I'd sue your startup business to prevent it from bringing to market, that which was developed from IP belonging to my company, plus legal, and source code to recoup the opportunity cost of not having an employee work for me for the last while. And I'm not really the vindictive type. :)

more than 5 years ago

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