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Study Finds US Is an Oligarchy, Not a Democracy

Max_W Idealizing Democracy (680 comments)

What is Democracy? A bunch of slave-owners in ancient Greece were discussing decisions in forums. This is it.

Cannot we do any better?

Cannot we discuss and make decisions via modern systems? Do we really need corrupted representatives? A semi-god president?

I mean a democracy is still much better than a tyranny. Yet, it is not perfect obviously to put it mildly.

Really? Democracy, the end of history?


Mathematicians Use Mossberg 500 Pump-Action Shotgun To Calculate Pi

Max_W Only in America... (306 comments)

a gun to calculate Pi value...

2 days ago

New French Law Prohibits After-Hours Work Emails

Max_W Another idea (476 comments)

Sometimes it is hundred times easier to solve a problem by communicating urgently, even after work, than in the morning.

For example, a colleague from another city arrived at the airport and for some reason does not know the name of a hotel. She needs just one word from me.

Or something like this. Just one or two words, and a week of calm work afterwards.

about a week ago

Why Are We Made of Matter?

Max_W Re:Umm , thats unlikely to happen (392 comments)

The Earth emitting readable radio transmissions about 100 years.

Since we cannot detect signals from other civilizations, it means that this period does not last long. Perhaps, we are also close to the bottleneck.

Just devastation of planet's surface does not stop radio transmissions. Radio is simple and robust technology. It should be something else.

Certainly, it could be that humanity is unique in the Universe, and the Civilizations' Bottleneck theory is not valid.

Still the Universe's Great Silence is disturbing, seeing how many worlds are out there.

about two weeks ago

Why Are We Made of Matter?

Max_W civilizations' bottleneck (392 comments)

As soon as physicists solve the problem of antimatter the antimatter bomb will be created.

It will be the size of a coin and could literally destroy literally a quoter of a planet. This is how civilizations end in the Universe.

And that is why we do not hear any intelligent radio transmissions from other star systems.

about two weeks ago

Most Expensive Aviation Search: $53 Million To Find Flight MH370

Max_W Re:100 foam plastic balls of orange color (233 comments)

OK, no batteries and no blinking LED lights (though it is doable and much cheaper than 100 million USD), just 100 orange foam plastic balls with an aircraft's serial number.

Still it is easier to spot than and aluminum wing or a passenger's suitcase on the bottom of the ocean.

about two weeks ago

CryptoPhone Sales Jump To 100,000+, Even at $3500

Max_W only really secure communication (68 comments)

Go to the stadium in shorts and t-shirt, freshly washed (and dried indoors). Wear new style running shoes with very thin sole, as recommended in Scott Jurek's "Eat and run".

Talk while walking via woods or a park, among trees.

Not phone, no watch, no camera, no heavy clothing.

And speak quietly anyway. Still it does not guarantee privacy.

All other talk or messaging are public. It is a new brave world where there are no secrets.

about two weeks ago

Most Expensive Aviation Search: $53 Million To Find Flight MH370

Max_W 100 foam plastic balls of orange color (233 comments)

Why about 100 foam plastic balls of orange color with a plastic orange flag and LED light (blinking for 3-4 months after contact with water) cannot be placed inside the fuselage on an aircraft which costs hundreds of millions?

The size could be of a tennis ball, an additional weight and cost almost zero.

about two weeks ago

Skydiver's Helmet Cam Captures a Falling Meteor

Max_W Why it is not white-hot? (142 comments)

Should not it be glowing from atmosphere resistance?

about two weeks ago

Russian GLONASS Down For 12 Hours

Max_W Re:Warning Shot (148 comments)

Anyone else think this is a shot across the Russian bow? Demonstrating to the Russians that the US really does control space even if we have to bum rides to ISS at the moment?

Seriously? The US does not even control its inner cities. Have you been in Detroit, in Trenton, etc. lately?

Instead of such "Star Wars" the money could be better spent to tackle the severe social problems at home.

about two weeks ago

WSJ: Prepare To Hang Up the Phone — Forever

Max_W negative consequences of wireless telephone system (449 comments)

- ubiquitous electromagnetic radiation could be harmful for biological organisms - increased radio footprint will make our planet even more visible (vulnerable) in the universe - scrappers will lose an important copper source (of old copper cables)

about two weeks ago

U.S. Court: Chinese Search Engine's Censorship Is 'Free Speech'

Max_W Re:the real America (284 comments)

But the Food and Drug Administration has no say as to how prepare Chinese food. And the New York court distributes judgments about Chinese web sites.

It is because that they think that they have a moral high ground to do so. My argument is that I doubt it, that there are serious social, economical and other problems at the USA as everywhere else.

My point is that there should be peaceful international cooperation based on equality.

about three weeks ago

U.S. Court: Chinese Search Engine's Censorship Is 'Free Speech'

Max_W Re:the real America (284 comments)

Yes, I agree there are very serious social problems in China. But the same is valid for the USA too.

I saw areas in the US cities where people are just hanging en mass on the streets days long, obviously unemployed. There are also a lot of homeless people, incredibly many.

Certainly, there are well-to-do communities, even gated communities. But it is not like the USA has nothing else to do to improve inside its own country and just has to concentrate on China and the other bad apples.

Perhaps, it shall improve the world via itself? By an example?

about three weeks ago

U.S. Court: Chinese Search Engine's Censorship Is 'Free Speech'

Max_W the real America (284 comments)

I've been in China and I've been in the USA.

There are places in San Francisco, even in central part of the city, where it is just scary to walk. The same about the LA and NYC.

Certainly the USA is a great country with immensely interesting culture, still there are serious social, racial, economical problems there, perhaps, even more acute than in China.

At least, I do not remember being scared just to walk in a city in China.

America has got a very efficient advertising and propaganda machine, probably, this is what makes the difference.

about three weeks ago

Russian Officials Dump iPads For Samsung Tablets Over Spy Fears

Max_W classic desl telephones (198 comments)

Desk telephones were in the beginning produced only in the USA, UK, and Italy. Later they were produced everywhere.

I think we need open source hardware and software for mobile devices. Like it is already done with PHP, GIMP, OpenStreetMap, etc.

I realized only by now how important these Open Source Software movements are. We should really support such projects. This is our vital interest.

about three weeks ago

The New PHP

Max_W Re:PHP (254 comments)

I would say even more. Any language has its weaknesses. Even Great English Language. For example, a tower dispatcher says to pilot: "Turn left. Right now!"

about a month and a half ago

Inside Chris Anderson's Open-Source Drone Factory

Max_W Wrong camera in principle (56 comments)

GoPro camera is a wrong choice for the UAV. It has a display. But at the UAV there is nobody to look at this display during the flight.

Still a display adds to the weight. And the weight of the UAV is crucial for flying inside the city. If UAV weighs 100 - 150 grams then it is safe, if 1000 - 1500 grams flying is extremely unsafe for people and property on the ground.

A new ultralight HD, wide angel camera is needed for UAVs. Then they could be used inside the city for mapping, surveying, etc.

about 1 month ago

EU Parliament Rejects Asylum For Snowden

Max_W Final settlement of the issue (88 comments)

I would suggest an international conference of the USA, UK, Sweden and Russia on Edward Snowden, Julian Assange, Sarah Harisson, and Bradley Manning.

The best solution would be to send them to live to the North-Eastern Siberia, to Yakutsk or Krasnoyarsk regions, for, say, 10 years. During imperial period such an exile was a punishment in itself. At the same time they would be safe and free. The climate is very cold, but healthy and beautiful. It is another world. Everybody is happy.

Life itself suggests it. Edward Snowden is already almost there. They could work there as school teachers of English language and literature, and IT education.

After ten years emotions would calm down and the situation will be more clear.

about 2 months ago

DDoS Larger Than the Spamhaus Attack Strikes US and Europe

Max_W Where are (158 comments)

NSA and GCHQ when you need them?

about 2 months ago

Windows 8.1 Passes Windows Vista In Market Share

Max_W confusing interface (249 comments)

I do not like 8.1. Probably they are trying to innovate but the result is a confusing jerky interface.

about 2 months ago



Internet and computing in post-Snowden world

Max_W Max_W writes  |  about 6 months ago

Max_W (812974) writes "Edward Snowden has not received any international award. Neither the Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, nor the Nobel Peace Prize.

Snowden had stopped releasing any new documents and stopped giving press-conferences. We had a glimpse under the hood, into the machinations of the world, and it seems to be over.

So, is jinn back in the bottle and we can carry on as before with "secure computing", "unbreakable encryption", "safe browsing", "social networking", etc.? Or are the Internet and computing will never be the same again?

As for me, I am a bit worried nowadays anytime I switch on a computer or smartphone. Who or what is lurking beneath a glossy hardware and graphical user interfaces? How can a feeling of security could be returned? Or are the Internet and computing in general inherently unsafe?"

Lon Snowden, former Coast Guard officer, is on the way to Moscow

Max_W Max_W writes  |  about 8 months ago

Max_W (812974) writes "Lon Snowden, the father of Edward Snowden, gave an interview to the Reuters: http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/08/07/us-usa-security-snowden-idUSBRE97617S20130807 He is also practically on the way to Russia, to visit his fugitive son. He applied for the Russian Federation entry visa already.

Edward Snowden's deeds could be debatable, but I am absolutely fascinated by his father's courage. He is calm and absolutely fearless in trying to save his son. Is it a former Coast Guard character? As we know Coast Guard officers are facing grave danger on a daily basis. Or would anybody act like this in his place?"

Is the Article #12 of The Universal Declaration of Human Rights outdated?

Max_W Max_W writes  |  about 9 months ago

Max_W (812974) writes "Here is the text of the Article #12 http://www.un.org/en/documents/udhr/index.shtml#a12 :
"No one shall be subjected to arbitrary interference with his privacy, family, home or correspondence, nor to attacks upon his honour and reputation. Everyone has the right to the protection of the law against such interference or attacks."

The United Nations insists on the compliance. U.N. human rights chief Navi Pillay said yesterday http://news.yahoo.com/snowden-case-shows-leakers-protection-u-n-rights-192207562.html : "While concerns about national security and criminal activity may justify the exceptional and narrowly-tailored use of surveillance programs, surveillance without adequate safeguards to protect the right to privacy actually risks impacting negatively on the enjoyment of human rights and fundamental freedoms."

Is it realistic to expect the compliance with this article from the world's major players in the age of large storage disks, fast networks and computers? Or are we entering a new brave world, a new phase of human civilization, where quaint notions of privacy and traditional moral principles are becoming ridiculous?

Then what to do with the Article #12? Shall it be "intentionally left blank"? Shall it be updated to a new wording? What words could they be?"

A song from 1976 USSR went viral on Youtube

Max_W Max_W writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Max_W (812974) writes "A song from 1976 of the Soviet singer, Eduard Khil, went viral on Youtube among mainly US listeners, 2 million hits. A song is without words, that is why the international audience call the singer a trololo man http://rt.com/Top_News/2010-03-10/trololo-khil-sensation-waltz.html

I had to listen to this song in 1976 and, frankly, I cannot get it why it is popular now."

Link to Original Source

Popular video blogger-policeman Aleksey Dymovskiy

Max_W Max_W writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Max_W (812974) writes "Aleksey Dymovskiy, an officer of the Russian militia, whose videos on Youtube were seen by millions of Russian speaking viewers, is arrested on January 22, 2010. He is in prison in the south of Russia.

It seems only a president is allowed to have a video blog in Russia."

Link to Original Source

Russian Federation selects open source PHP

Max_W Max_W writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Max_W (812974) writes "The government of Russian Federation selects open source PHP programming language for its central portal www.gosuslugi.ru (short for "gosudarsvennye usugi" — state services). One even can see ".php" file extensions.

This website is being updated directly from more than 60 ministries. It will work for one year in the testing mode, but it provides even now the real forms, for example, to get a civil passport, travel passport, etc.

We were talking a lot about Russian government's plans to use Open Source OSs on desktops, but it seems it became a reality first in a server-client environment.

It is not clear to me what database is being used. But if it is MySQL this thing may work after all."

Link to Original Source

Tech solution to swine flu virus problem

Max_W Max_W writes  |  more than 4 years ago

Max_W writes "The flu viruses are incredibly smart. They mutate to avoid an immune system, they are minuscule, they can transmit fast over large human population. Viruses use sort of a system of their own.

Can we, engineers, suggest decisions, which can outsmart viruses?

I hear medics suggest to wash hands often to protect oneself. I would suggest an international law to ban the handshakes totally, all over the world. And substitute a handshake with a bow like in Japan. Or maybe in some other cultures too?

What else geeks, system architects, software engineers, who are to deal with the computer viruses on daily basis, can suggest?"

Google maps satellite view is gone

Max_W Max_W writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Max_W writes "Google maps satellite view is gone on 20FEB'09 at about 17:00 GMT. Any idea why this happened?"

Exhibition and Conference "Photos08", Gene

Max_W Max_W writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Max_W writes "The leading Swiss magazine "L'illustré" www.illustre.ch (in French) and "International Committee of the Red Cross" www.icrc.org organized on June 27, 2008, in Geneva, Switzerland, the exhibition and conference "Photos08" www.photos08.ch (in French).

Almost everyone of us nowadays carries a digital camera. Why do people are interested in images, what are the obvious and hidden goals of taking a photo? How these hidden goals can interfere with story telling?

What is the difference between a great image and mediocre one? What it takes to make photos for albums of The Beatles, Françoise Hardy, and Rolling Stones?

I attended the conference and wrote a short article in English (with my photos) about it http://www.enetplanet.com/photos08/ , in which I as concisely as possible tried to report the interesting ideas and answers, which I learned at the conference.

Next time before pressing a button on your camera think about these issues."

Link to Original Source


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