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Should NASA Send Astronauts On Voluntary One-Way Missions?

HuguesT What could we learn from a suicide mission (307 comments)

I'm all for risky missions (any space flight is definitely risky, contrary to what people seem to believe on this board, has everyone forgotten about Challenger ?), but guaranteed suicide missions hold no interest. We want to go to Mars to establish something there, not to be there first and then die. That would be stupid.

Mars is a really tough goal by the way. We know of virtually nothing there that can be used for a return trip.

about two weeks ago

Department of Transportation Makes Rear View Cameras Mandatory

HuguesT Re:Grabs popcorn (518 comments)

Self-driving cars will achieve this. Can't wait.

about two weeks ago

Should Patients Have the Option To Not Know Their DNA?

HuguesT Re:Op Out Knowledge? (157 comments)

Amazingly, it is illegal not to know the law. More specifically, not knowing the law is never a defense.

about two weeks ago

An Engineer's Eureka Moment With a GM Flaw

HuguesT Re:Obligatory Fight Club (357 comments)

Exactly. In spite of AC, please mod up.

about three weeks ago

The 3D Economy — What Happens When Everyone Prints Their Own Shoes?

HuguesT Difficult to do stuff will remain expensive (400 comments)

We've had the technical capacity to make durable metal items with numerical lathes for a long time, however it remains a skilled job. For the time being home 3D printing is more or less limited to making fragile plastic stuff. I can't see how that will soon start a revolution.

about three weeks ago

Ask Slashdot: How To Handle Unfixed Linux Accessibility Bugs?

HuguesT Re:It's been bisected and confirmed (266 comments)

Bill Spitzak is a well-known developer, particularly in the film industry. Among other things he created FLTK. Here's to you, Bill.

about three weeks ago

Time Dilation Drug Could Let Heinous Criminals Serve 1,000 Year Sentences

HuguesT More productive (914 comments)

If a drug like that exists and is safe, can't we all benefit and start living 1000 year+ normal lives?

Criminals can be denied this drug, this would be harrowing to be limited to a short few years, boring ones to boot.

about a month ago

NASA-Funded Study Investigates Collapse of Industrial Civilization

HuguesT Re:Maybe It's Time for a New Industry? (401 comments)

If you believe you can make power tools with some dirt and a 3D printer, many would have a bridge to sell you.

about a month ago

NASA-Funded Study Investigates Collapse of Industrial Civilization

HuguesT Re:All eggs in the same basket (401 comments)

You will not find any fossil fuel on Mars or the Moon no matter how hard you look. Mars has very little atmosphere or indeed Sun energy input. It is difficult to think of a less hospitable world than the Moon. At this stage seeding either with people is not a sustainable solution and would not help Earth. So what use is it exactly?

about a month ago

NASA-Funded Study Investigates Collapse of Industrial Civilization

HuguesT Re:BS, as usual. (401 comments)

No, resources on Earth and even the entire solar system including the Sun definitely are finite. We are not even talking about a very long time in the future. According to your theory at some point coal could become more expensive than diamond. But you cannot run a civilization on diamond.

about a month ago

NASA-Funded Study Investigates Collapse of Industrial Civilization

HuguesT Re:B-b-b-ut what about American exceptionalism??? (401 comments)

Most economists would say that Western capitalism requires a growth rate of about 3% per year to keep everyone happy (low unemployment, funding, etc). At a sustained growth rate of 3% per year, we would be using the entire energy output of the Sun in 1000 years. Do the math. Civilization is a lot older than 1000 years. From this, two conclusions

1- Even the entire energy output of the Sun is a finite resource
2- Western capitalism will fail even in the not so distant future.

For those who would say "but we can make a lot of progress in 1000 years", I would like to point out that contrary to popular opinion, we haven't made that much progress since the 11th century.

about a month ago

70% of U.S. Government Spending Is Writing Checks To Individuals

HuguesT Re: Makers and takers (676 comments)

Plus 5 degrees of global warming everywhere due to all these coal-operated power plants to conduct the artificial and useless computation called mining.

about a month ago

Meat Makes Our Planet Thirsty

HuguesT Re:Interesting Math (like there's another variety) (545 comments)

Sadly, your personal sacrifice is of very little import. Mennonites and Amish are pretty much self-reliant, so their impact is not as great as you think.

about a month ago

Meat Makes Our Planet Thirsty

HuguesT Re:There is no infinite growth scenario (545 comments)

Please do the actual math. The energy required to move a sizable portion (say 10%) of mankind off this planet is tremendous. Just off, not going anywhere. It is currently not economically feasible and physically very hard.

about a month ago

MtGox Files For Bankruptcy Protection

HuguesT Re:Closed System (465 comments)

Also notice that when energy is spent, it stays spent most of the time. At 3% annual growth, which is the amount politicians like to think is a minimum to guarantee such things as employment rates, it will take about 1000 years to utilize the entire energy output of the Sun.

Total power used by mankind today: 10^13 W
Total solar power striking the Earth: 10^17 W
Total solar power output: 10^26 W

3% compounded over 1000 years: 10^13

Who knows where humankind will be in 1000 years but my guess is that we are unlikely to achieve a Dyson sphere.


about a month and a half ago

Free (Gratis) Version of Windows Could Be a Reality Soon

HuguesT Re:Nope (392 comments)

The advantages are several, here are a few I can think of (not that I practice them myself !)

1- You can use your Windows installation in both a real and a virtual machine. Some VM engines allow you to run off a physical disk, like VMWare. If you dual-boot from Linux or OSX, sometime you want to use your windows installation to check out some software and you do not want to reboot and lose your current work. With the DRM version of Windows, you would need two licenses, even though you are never using both at the same time.

2- You can change your hardware anyway you want. The DRM version will unregister itself if you change the CPU, the motherboard, too many disks, the graphics card, and whatnot. You have to re-register by telephone, which is a huge hassle and may stop working if you do it too often.

3- You can carry over your installation of Windows to your new computer (same issue as #2, really).

4- Why do you need as many licenses of Windows if you have say 3 computers but only ever use one at any given time ? Say one at work, one at your SO, and one at home, if you are self-employed?

Basically Windows is behind the time. Linux is free and good, and OSX is becoming more and more gratis (not libre, unfortunately).

about a month and a half ago

U.S. Students/Grads Carrying Over $1 Trillion In Debt

HuguesT Re:Tell me again... (538 comments)

Ornamental subjects like dentistry? Please read the article before making such comments. Cheers.

about a month and a half ago



French supreme court neutralizes 3-strikes law

HuguesT HuguesT writes  |  more than 4 years ago

HuguesT (84078) writes "The Conseil Constitutionel, the French equivalent to the US Supreme Court, ruled today that a mere "authority" cannot cut Internet access to Internet subscribers within the frame of the new HADOPI law recently voted by French parliament. In the new law, after a warning by email and another by registered mail, French Internet subscribers could have had their access cut off for a duration ranging between 2 months and one year, without possibility of defence or due process of law, if they were accused of illegally sharing copyrighted material. They could only appeal of the decision before a court of law. The CC "sages" or wise men, ruled that this was unconstitutional on two grounds: the presumption of innocence and freedom of communication and expression. Now the laws has basically no point. The French communication minister, Christine Albanel, has vowed to return to parliament with a new law still implementing the 3 strikes in a new, as yet unknown way. For the time being, strike one for democracy and freedom!"
Link to Original Source

Gates foundation deathly side-effects

HuguesT HuguesT writes  |  more than 6 years ago

HuguesT (84078) writes "An long and detailed article from the L.A. Times points out severe, unintended side effects of the health policies of the Bill & Melinda Gates foundation. This foundation has given away almost 2 billions US$ to the fight against AIDS, TB and Malaria worldwide. Thanks in no small measure to this effort, the death toll from AIDS in most of Africa are finally levelling off. However, the money from the foundation is earmarked to the fight against these three diseases, to the detriment of global health. Sick people can also be hungry and not able to ingest healing drugs. Doctors in these countries prefer to be well paid working against AIDS than poorly working against all the other health problems, which creates a brain drain. Numerous children also suffer from diarrhea or asphyxia due to lack of basic care. The paradox is that countries where the foundation has invested most have seen their mortality rate increase, whereas it has improved in countries where the foundation was least involved."
Link to Original Source


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