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Comments

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Bill Gates: Piketty's Attack on Income Inequality Is Right

LetterRip Re:Gates (839 comments)

Consumption taxes are relatively easy to evade.

Also the benefit from public tax expenditures isn't proportional to consumption, it is proportional to net worth.

Bill Gates benefits enormously from public education and public funding of universities. He benefits enormously from international trade negotiations and the military keeping international trade relations stable.

about a month ago
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The Minecraft Parent

LetterRip Is minecraft really 'creative'? (174 comments)

The creativity involved from my limited exposure seems close to nonexistant.

I don't really see any benefit from it, compared to any other game. Are parents just deluding themselves? Or is there some substantial creative benefit that I'm not seeing?

about 2 months ago
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Swedish Dad Takes Gamer Kids To Warzone

LetterRip Re:Gettin All Up In Yo Biznis (419 comments)

"There's a pretty big maturity difference between a grown-ass man and a 10 or 11 year old."

For many men, not as much as one might hope.

about 3 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Switching From SAS To Python Or R For Data Analysis and Modeling?

LetterRip R is not an emerging star (143 comments)

R has been around for a long time and has long been a standard.

Pythons sklearn is indeed an 'emerging star'.

Personally I use both.

Also have a look at some of the many stand alone tools vowpal wabbit (blazingly fast for regression learning, scales to ridiculous amounts of data) is superb, as is sofia-ml (for clustering, again scales quite well)

I tie them all together in python, since there are python bindings for R, and you can use pythons 'Subprocess' module to pipe commands and data for commandline tools that don't have python bindings.

There are other useful tools as well - I use Weka for some of my initial visualization and when I'm feeling lazy and want a quick result.

about 5 months ago
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Eric Schmidt and Entourage Pay a Call On Cuba

LetterRip Re:So will he go to jail upon return to the US? (190 comments)

The ban has nothing to do with 'Cold War tensions' it is because Cuban immigrants to Florida hate Castro for the property that he nationalized - and pissing off those voters risk losing Florida in federal elections (and thus losing the Presidential election). Thus draconian prohibitions related to Cuba stay in place.

about 5 months ago
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Eric Schmidt and Entourage Pay a Call On Cuba

LetterRip So will he go to jail upon return to the US? (190 comments)

So what are the legal consequences for this?

Personally I'd like to visit Cuba but haven't, in part due to the illegality.

about 5 months ago
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If Immigration Reform Is Dead, So Is Raising the H-1B Cap

LetterRip Re:No, they're replacing. (341 comments)

"There is not a fixed number of jobs in an economy."

There is demand elasticity for labor, but it is not related to availability of labor it is related to demand for goods and services, not availability of labor. The demand for labor is essentially fixed or decreasing without some sort of driver for demand. Immigration can be a source of demand, but it isn't necessarily a source of demand. Since most immigrants send much of their income to their home country they tend to be a net reduction in demand.

The reason unemployment is correlated to immigration is that countries relax immigration requirements when there is a shortage of labor.

about 5 months ago
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First Movie of an Entire Brain's Neuronal Activity

LetterRip Re:Having no idea... (44 comments)

I wouldn't call 20 years ago 'recent'.- Penrose Harmerhoff Orch Orr model was using the data on microtubules and anesthesia as support for the quantum conciousness theory in 1995.

about 5 months ago
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Microsoft To Launch Machine Learning Service

LetterRip Re:Give WEKA a try (56 comments)

Having used Weka, sklearn, vowpal wabbit, Orange, and lots of others - I'd say that Weka is my least favorite, it is slow and has crappy memory management. I do use it occassionaly for feature ranking and reduction, but rarely for the actual machine learning.

about 5 months ago
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Pixar To Give Away 3D RenderMan Software

LetterRip 'Free' (147 comments)

So what they really mean is that to increase adoption rate, they need more people trained on it.

about 6 months ago
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R Throwdown Challenge

LetterRip Re:Bad analogy (185 comments)

Look at ipython notebook,

it is a lot like the workflow for mathematica or R.

Look at pandas + scipy stack.

pandas replicates the functionality of R dataframes but integrates many features found in external R packages in a beatiful and intuitive way.

notebook + scipy stack (scipy, numpy, sklearn, matplotlib w seaborn or use ggplot if you prefer) + pandas is enough to largely eliminate the need for R for most people doing machine learning or statistical.analysis (there are still occassional times when I need something from R but it is rare).

about 6 months ago
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R Throwdown Challenge

LetterRip Re:Bad analogy (185 comments)

import pandas as pd

df = pd.read_csv("./foo", header=True, sep = ',')

about 6 months ago
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Plaintiff In Tech Hiring Suit Asks Judge To Reject Settlement

LetterRip Re:if you want your day in court (215 comments)

They actually have this type of smoking gun in the emails from Apple to Google and from Google to Apple.

This is a ridiculously slam dunk case.

about 6 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: Beginner To Intermediate Programming Projects?

LetterRip checkio and hackerrank (172 comments)

The two sites checkio and hackerrank can probably provide you some challenges. They will force you to learn some algorithms (trees, graphs, etc.) which will provide you with tools you need for more complex projects.

about 7 months ago
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Grading Software Fooled By Nonsense Essay Generator

LetterRip To generate the keywords takes knowledge (187 comments)

Since the essays are grading subject knowledge, and it takes subject knowledge to provide the keywords, it is fairly irrelevant if the essay happens to be structured in a manner that is nonsensical.

Demonstration of deeper understanding, if it needs to be tested, can be achieved via other types of questions.

about 7 months ago
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How 3D Printer Maker Aleph Objects Pushes the Open Source Envelope

LetterRip There isn't much to 'patent' available (51 comments)

Most of the important patents are expired, the technology is taking off due to a combination of the relevant patents expiring and Moores law driving down the cost of key components.

about 8 months ago
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Drone-Assisted Hunting To Be Illegal In Alaska

LetterRip Re:Bans Drones not Guns. (397 comments)

This is probably to benefit hunting guides. With a drone, the need for a guide is greatly reduced, and there are lots of Alaskans who make money off of being hunting guides and related services.

about 7 months ago

Submissions

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How do you fight link farmers/spammers

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 3 years ago

LetterRip writes "If you search for '3d animation software', at least 3 of the top ten results are owned by the same company that has used link farming to get the results — using deceptive advertising (including violating copyrights of our artists). The sites in question are blender being sold under different names — illusionmage, 3dmagixpro, etc. The individual also spams via twitter (search twitter for illusionmage ) and facebook. Google, bing, yahoo, twitter, and facebook appear to completely ignore this. On a daily basis we get reports from users who have been tricked by these people. What options are there to try and solve this?"
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Doing the math on Googles WIFI snafu

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 4 years ago

LetterRip (30937) writes "According to Google they have collected 600GB of wireless data in 33 countries. Lets assume that covers most of Europe (about 800 million people), North America (about 500 million people), Australia, and some of the wealthier Asian countries — say 1.5 billion population total. We'll assume a density of 10 people per wireless access point (given that there are residential and business WAPs, I think this is a reasonable assumption). So based on these numbers 600GB/(1.5 billion people)*10 people per WAP = 4.2kB per WAP or .42 kB per person. To put this into perspective, even assuming that there is zero overhead that amounts to at most the equivalent of 15% of the google.com graphic (28.1 kB) per WAP. Since the vast majority of web traffic is images and video (especially if sampled on a per second basis), it is fairly clear that if google is being accurate in its protrayal of method and actual quantity of data — then its claims that the information was gathered inadvertently (as opposed to just the location data which was what was intended) seems to be born out by the math. Some random packets of image or video data would be of no use to them."
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Googles Summer of Code open for submissions

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 4 years ago

LetterRip (30937) writes "Hi all, it is that time of year again where students have the opportunity to get paid for contributing to their favorite open source projects. We were fortunate enough to be selected again this year, and really look forward to the GSoC applications for Blender http://www.blendernation.com/google-summer-of-code-2010/ . Of course if 3D isn't your first choice there are hundreds of other great projects at http://socghop.appspot.com/gsoc/program/accepted_orgs/google/gsoc2010"
Link to Original Source
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Durian Film Project - coding, fame, fun

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 5 years ago

LetterRip (30937) writes "Blender Institutes next movie project Durian. has just released their feature wishlist, those who code new features used by the project typically get a mention in the credits. Also for those who want an easier way to fame and fortune (well fame anyway) they can prepay for their Durian DVD by the end of today and will get listed in the credits of the film as a sponsor. Previous projects by the Blender Institute are the open movie Big Buck Bunny and the game Yo Frankie! ."
Link to Original Source
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Google Wiki seen in the wild

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  about 6 years ago

LetterRip writes "I just did some searches and noticed three new icons appearing next to each result a 'promote' icon, a 'remove' icon, and a 'comment' icon. Promoting shifts the selected result to the top of your search for that term (unless you've already promoted another site in which case it becomes second), and increases the sites ranks for some related terms. Pressing the comment icon adds a comment below the site for search results. On first click you have to read a EULA and accept it. I'm curious what impact spammers will have. Hopefully google has a way to prevent spammers having too much of an impact."
Link to Original Source
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Big Buck Bunny Movie Officially Released

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 6 years ago

LetterRip writes "The short animated movie 'Big Buck Bunny' by the Blender Institute, which was created using open source tools including Blender for 3D animation, rendering, compositing and video editing, and the GIMP for texturing, has been released. It has great animation and is highly entertaining. Best of all it has brought many amazing improvements to Blender, including many of the features seen in the Blender 2.46 release."
Link to Original Source
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Blender 2.46 animation suite released

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 6 years ago

LetterRip writes "Blender 2.46 has been released, bursting with over a years worth of new features and developments. It now has powerful cloth simulation, updated particle system that can allow complex hair and fur to be easily sculpted, cut, and styled, a number of new tools that make Blender of the most powerful animation and rigging tools available including cutting edge tools like bone heat weighting. Also a lot of work has been put into making the Game Engine run better and faster."
Link to Original Source
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Obama breaks 1 million contributors

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 6 years ago

LetterRip writes "As I write this, the counter on for Donations to the Obama campaign has just passed 999,834 but donations are pouring in fast enough that before this gets posted it will have already passed the million mark."
Link to Original Source
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Your ideal game creation tool?

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 6 years ago

LetterRip writes "If you had free reign to sculpt Blender into the ideal professional game content creation tool, what sort of features would you like added and what sort of changes would you like to see be made? What features do you think need the most improvement to fit into a professional game developers work flow? The Blender Foundations game project team Apricot wants to know."
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Creating the perfect game content creation tool.

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 6 years ago

LetterRip writes "The team from the Blender and Crystal Space Project Apricot want to know what features would help make Blender the perfect tool for your game content creation work flow. If you would like to turn Blender into your ultimate tool for either creating your original game models, or for adding models for a 'game mod' then please post your request (here or at the blender development forum. The Blender Institutes other major project the open movie Rabbits Revenge (aka Project Peach) has already resulted in some pretty amazing improvements in Blenders tools for creating beautiful fur and for animation."
Link to Original Source
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How Blender compares to the Major 3D applications

LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 7 years ago

LetterRip (30937) writes "CGWorld and CGTalk recently asked whether OpenSource software set to become the dominant toolset in feature film production? Also TDT 3D did a comparison chart with the Major 3D Digital Content Creation applications such as Maya, 3DS Max, and XSI, and of course Blender in this 3D Application Comparison. Blender came out surprisingly well, although it definitely still has some weaknesses. So what do slashdotters think? Can Blender 'take over' the 3D industry or will it always be just for 'freelancers and hobbyists'?"
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LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 7 years ago

LetterRip writes "The Blender Foundation has announced 'Peach' a second open movie project, their first open movie project was 'Project Orange' that resulted in Elephants Dream. Peach is planned to be a funny movie in contrast to the dark and surreal nature of Elephants Dream. A second exciting announcement is that in cooperation with Crystal Space and NLGD Conference ( the "Nederlandse Game Dagen" the annual conference for the Netherlands game industry) an open game (Project Apricot) will be developed. Lastly the Blender Foundation announced the establishment of the Blender Institute that will be a studio dedicated to hosting these and future projects. Also the Blender Foundation has put out a new manual 'Essential Blender' to make it easier to learn Blender. For those unfamiliar with Blender it is a free 3d animation suite."
Link to Original Source
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LetterRip LetterRip writes  |  more than 7 years ago

LetterRip writes "I love GMail, but I just went through my spam inbox and found 8 false positives most from correspondents from India, that is a false positive rate of 1% of the stuff flagged as spam, and a much larger percentage of my emails not flagged as spam for the same time period. According to a search this is better than yahoos and hotmails false positive rate which are confirmed by my personal experience. Unfortunately they are far worse than a number of open source filters such as spamassassin. So slashdot — what do you do to battle your false positives of spam for google? Is there an easy way to retrieve all messages that end in your spam box so that a superior filter can be used to correct the errors?"

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