Beta

# Slashdot: News for Nerds

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### Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

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### Study Rules Out Global Warming Being a Natural Fluctuation With 99% Certainty

Re:Why so much resistance to climate science? (833 comments)

But if you have a reasoned argument on what needs to be done w.r.t. AGW, why are you spreading lies about the facts of AGW? And if you're not actively spreading lies (as you don't seem to be at least in this post), why are you defending those that are? Claiming something isn't true because you fear what others will propose (not enforce, propose) to mitigate the fact is at best childish. In this case it's close to criminal.

4 hours ago
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### Study Rules Out Global Warming Being a Natural Fluctuation With 99% Certainty

Re:Why so much resistance to climate science? (833 comments)

Awesome, we give the US the property rights to the atmoshpere above the US. We'll fine the US for any effects that it spreads around it's any area it doesn't control. I think three trillion dollars per ppm CO2 would be nice thank you.

12 hours ago
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### Study Rules Out Global Warming Being a Natural Fluctuation With 99% Certainty

Re:Why so much resistance to climate science? (833 comments)

I'm absolutely convinced that AWG is true, but I am severly skeptical about the measures proposed in your message to have the desired effect. Unfortunately, the discussion about AWG completely dwarfs the discussion about what we can do to mitigate the effects. That is really what pisses me off. The AWG deniers are absolutely preventing a sane solution to even be discussed. It's infuriating.

12 hours ago
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### Study Rules Out Global Warming Being a Natural Fluctuation With 99% Certainty

Re:Why so much resistance to climate science? (833 comments)

Okay, so you are denying a fact because you don't like the way some people want to mitigate the effects of that fact. That's pretty mature, in line with putting fingers in your ears and screaming lalalalalalalala.

12 hours ago
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### Study Rules Out Global Warming Being a Natural Fluctuation With 99% Certainty

Re:99%? Not good enough (833 comments)

There's no 100% proof, sorry. There's 90% proof, there's 99% proof, there's 99.9% proof, there's 99.99% proof, etc. However, there's are no certainties, no 100% proof. Sorry. Try living in this world.

On another note, how much proof of of NOT crashing in the next plane do you accept as tolerable for taking said plane? You seem to argue for 0%: we need to be absolutely sure that we are crashing this plane before we refuse to take it.If we survive 1 in a 100 flights, we shouldn't complain. We need to be absolutely sure that we crash this plane before we try to do something about it.

yesterday
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### Study Rules Out Global Warming Being a Natural Fluctuation With 99% Certainty

Awesome. As long as I can kill everyone and their progeny if despite our efforts, temperatures rise by 3 degrees, I'm game.

yesterday
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### Study Rules Out Global Warming Being a Natural Fluctuation With 99% Certainty

You are looking at a large construct where each and every part has been scrutinized. The parts are put in a consistent whole to create an overall indication of the state of the climate, and you are claiming it isn't fair that they didn't put in an obvious weak spot that could invalidate the whole? Are you asking the same of engineers when they construct a bridge? "Please, please, put a single point of failure in so I can destroy the bridge without too much effort? How else am I going to prove that the bridge will crumble under the load! It ain't fair!"

So yes, I'm sorry. The state of this part of science is such that all obvious issues have been addressed. Although far from perfect, the picture emerging is consistent with a climate that is quickly heating due to forcing by CO2. This CO2 is man-made by burning CO2 previously captured. To invalidate this whole, you will have to find non-obvious sources of error. This will require a lot of work, and, might not even be possible because you know, the overall picture might actually be roughly correct.

yesterday
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### Toward Better Programming

However the programming models that claim to be following this model want to take extremely complex modules (a database engine or GUI framework) and then just tie them together with a little syntactic glue. Plus they strongly discourage any programmer from creating their own modules or blocks (that's only for experts), and insist on forcing the wrong module to fit with extra duct tape rather than create a new module that is a better fit (there's a pathological fear of reinventing the wheel, even though when you go to the auto store you can see many varieties of wheels). And these are treated like black boxes; the programmers don't know how they work inside or why one is better than another for different uses.

And honestly, what's wrong with this? Complex modules such as database engines or GUI frameworks should be black boxes, with no need to look inside. What we're failing to do as a profession is to be able to clearly state what these black boxes are providing. So yes, I want to know that if I query this database on a field that hasn't got an index that it is O(n), instead of O(log(n)) if it has one. I truly don't care how they achieve that, and if they don't achieve what they claim, I would want to be able to sue and get another library.

What you're advocating is the status-quo. We don't really engineer our solutions so we need to have knowledge of each part of the solution. If you contrast this with real engineering: there every layer provides some form of guarantees. If you build a bridge, you know the forces steel products can withstand, and you pick your supplier of steel based on these guarantees. We don't do anything of the sort. We just pick at random and hope for the best. No engineering.

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### Inside NSA's Efforts To Hunt Sysadmins

Re:Perhaps it is rather time..... (147 comments)

As the Boston bombing shows, the NSA is really not reading facebook. They're storing all this shit. but it's not used for any actual intelligence work. I can only speculate what it is used for, but chances are that's it's about money. So feel free to post on facebook, that's the last place they'll look.

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### Happy Pi Day

e^{\pi i} + 1 = 0 is written simpler as e^{\pi i} = -1. So yes, Euler's formula is doing something redundant. And how come '0' is fundamental? It is just 1-1.

e^{\tau i} = 1.

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### Happy Pi Day

This is impressive. Unfortunately, you're off by a factor 2.

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### Why Robots Will Not Be Smarter Than Humans By 2029

Re:15 years is kind of soon (294 comments)

The question of whether Machines Can Think... is about as relevant as the question of whether Submarines Can Swim.
-- Dijkstra (1984) The threats to computing science

As a corollary -- we did not need to actually understand much about how biological organisms swim to be able to build a submarine.

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### Why Robots Will Not Be Smarter Than Humans By 2029

Re:AI and the prevalence of bombast (294 comments)

The perceptron as used in the sixties had particular limits, namely that they could not do anything more when layered than when they were not. This was because the perceptrons in use were linear. Minsky pointed out this simple fact as a response to a number of outrageous claims from the NN community about the capabilities of those linear perceptrons. NN was done in by selling snake-oil. They did it again in the 90s, and they're again having a go at it now.

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### Copyright Ruling On Publishing Calculated Results: Common Sense Breaks Out

I think you've got a fair point. In this view, I would say that many accounting reports of the last few decades should be considered creative in nature and therefore copyrightable. It seems the banks agree.

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### Ghostwriter Reveals the Secret Life of WikiLeaks Founder Julian Assange

How do you know that that he isn't the prick that the media has made him out to be?

Who cares? You're just shooting the messenger. The media is simply trying to cover up the fact that they seized to be ... the media. Now we depend on the likes of Assange to question the actions of the powerful. And you complain about Assange?

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### Why Improbable Things Really Aren't

Re: The day before Fukashima happened (166 comments)

Actually, the million monkeys typing a million years is a point against things getting funky with time. Say Hamlet is 100,000 characters long, say the typewriters only consist of 52 characters (lower and uppercase, let's forget about punctuation). This means that a monkey typing a random 100,000 characters has a probability of 1 over 52 to the power of 100,000 to produce Hamlet. The monkey can bang away for a million years (10^6), he can invite a billion friends (10^9*10^6=10^15), they can bang away for a few trillion years (10^12*10^6), he can turn all atoms in the universe (10^85) into monkeys (with built in typewriters). They all can bang away for a trillion universe lifetimes (roughly a googol), and still the probability that they will produce anything like Hamlet is zilch. They wouldn't even produce the first page. Things absolutely don't get funky in that way.

In short, you either need an infinite amount of monkeys, or an infinite amount of time to produce Hamlet.

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### Ask Slashdot: Should Developers Fix Bugs They Cause On Their Own Time?

And we charge 20% maintenance fee to cover the cost of bug fixing.

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### House Committee Approves Bill Banning In-Flight Phone Calls

Re:If it's just "common sense and common courtesy" (366 comments)

Given that everyone picks their airline based on price and price alone, this absolutely make sense. You get what you pay for.

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### South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution From Standards

Re:How is presenting all theories a problem? (665 comments)

You might want to take a poll on the members of the education boards that favor creationism, and count the number of young earthians among them. The result will shock you. The political creationists in the US are absolutely insane.

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### South Carolina Education Committee Removes Evolution From Standards

You would essentially treat Big Bang theory and Black Hole theory as a hypothesis. It's an informed hypothesis, but still an hypothesis. Also note that both Big Bang and black holes are relatively recent. They might not survive the century mark, and go the way of 'Ether' before it. Not all stuff scientists work on are things that make sense. Far from it. However, in the end, evidence prevails.

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