MSL Landing Timeline: What To Expect Tonight
A few hours from now.
For a handy countdown (or to avoid trying to work out the time zone differences): http://mars.jpl.nasa.gov/msl/participate/
Australia's Biggest Airline Grounds Its Entire Fleet
Agreed. I would expect the comments on a Slashdot story to be more interesting and insightful than the crap I'd often read commented on mainstream Australian news sites. So even though I've heard all the details of this story elsewhere, I opened up this page specifically to see what Slashdotters had to say about it.
Drunken Parrot Season Starts in Australia
I find it surprising that the experts are saying they don't know what causes it, seeing as I knew when I was all of 10 years old - I used to watch it happen in our back yard.
We had mango trees. The fruit would fall to the ground (usually knocked off by fruit bats), it would sit in the sun and ferment (and smell), and the birds would come and pick at it. What followed was always hilarious to watch - very loud birds acting very drunk, and usually unable to fly - they'd run around on the ground randomly flapping wings without getting off the ground. And they'd fall over, run into things and generally seem to be engaging in very obnoxious behavior. Much the same as my Alexandrian parrot would later do when my girlfriend let it drink apply cider.
A How-To Website For Australian Voters
None as far as I'm aware.
A silent elector has their address suppressed in the electoral roll, but would still be voting for their electoral division just like anyone else.
The Hurt Locker Producers Sue First 5,000 File-Sharers
Or cashed up adult wants stuff.
Sure I could wait many months for things to air in somewhere-other-than-the-US, I could buy a DVD/Blu-Ray (an even bigger delay), or hope to hell our cable would actually show something I want or even one day offer something like video on demand.
Or I could download it, enjoy it, decide it's a movie I want to buy when it does finally come out.
And don't give me that broke teenage crap. I have a single high income with no kids, and I have no problem throwing money out for my own entertainment. Broke teenagers/college students might have a problem with that but my disposable income is sitting there ready to go, and I'm impulsive. Give me a viable, timely way to PURCHASE something and I'll happily pay for it.
Some of us may have started out as those "vile downloaders", but we've now got money to spend - and my money (entertainment wise) is increasingly going towards those who put themselves out there and entice me to spend money. Not those who sit there expecting me to come to them and (possibly) enjoy their product under difficult, delayed and restrictive conditions.
As for the movie in question, I missed it at the movies, it won some awards, they seem more interested in taking people to court than sharing their creation. Don't think I'll bother. There's choice, and I'll choose from what is these days a plethora of options.
Earthlink Announces It Must Honor Comcast Cap
I'm hearing you. I feel lucky to have an 80GB cap while paying roughly US$100 a month for it.
But I live in Australia, so I'll just have to keep dreaming of fantasies like a 250GB cap...
Google Apologizes For "Michelle Obama" Results
As someone who isn't American, thank you for explaining that. I couldn't figure out what people were so worked up over.
I still think it's a steaming pile of horse shit. In bad taste, yes. Something to get excited over? I'm still not seeing it. Many people can be caricatured in various ways due to their looks, and sometimes it's even amusing. I don't see the need to declare a comparison "off limits" because of someone's race. A lot of the comments here seem to suggest it's fine for me to portray a white person as a monkey (even if we agree it's in bad taste), even if they happen to resemble one more than most of us do. But don't dare make that comparison of someone black.
Be willing to call it like it is, even it's a crappy attempt at humour. That seems to more closely embody equality, at least to me. But yes, a lot of it depends on intent, and I wasn't around to hear the racial slurs of the past.
Astronomers Invent "Galaxy Game"
Maybe we could just replace Solitaire with this on windows installs. Enough people spend some serious mind-numbing hours (over time at least) playing that, surely Galaxy Zoo couldn't be any less boring...
Obama Kicks Off Massive Science Education Effort
but 99% of Americans have enough insurance and/or other coverage to pay the bill themselves and should do so.
There, fixed that for you friend.
Disclaimer: I'm Australian. I'm glad my kids won't starve just to pay medical bills. And, right or wrong to your way of thinking, I'll happily pay for that security in my taxes
Obama Kicks Off Massive Science Education Effort
My employer (the Australian Government) is spending more and more time looking at ways of bringing more fun into the workplace.
Some of it is a bit over the top and seems aimed at those that are, well... shallow I guess. But the overall effect is a good one - enjoyment in the workplace does increase. Part of it is recruiting the right people, part is managing them the right way. A bit part though, is giving employees "permission" to enjoy themselves at work and encouraging that. To the point where I almost feel guilty (almost) if I'm in a bad mood at work. Adding to that, the overall quality of the people is good.
The workload is pretty heavy, everything seems to be tracked comprehensively, but that's a good trade-off when even a sour old grape like me has a smile on his face most of the day. Pool tables, televisions, couches, a (small) gym... add that sort of atmosphere to a decent wage where any significant overtime is paid, an employer who WILL be understanding and supportive of just about any situation you find yourself in (as long as it's doesn't go against those public service Code of Conduct values), and you attract not only people happy to be at work - you also attract people that are good at what they do. Those of us who do take pride in our work and always strive for better results deserve a better deal, and those of us smart enough to go out and find an employer that will offer it.
It took me half my working life to realise this was possible, but I'm glad I learned eventually.
If you are good at your job and you can show you're the sort of conscientious and trustworthy person any employer would want... find the place you want to be. It might not be the job you're in now, or even the next one, but if you really deserve it you shouldn't stop looking.
Growing up sucks, but there's no one to blame when YOU are the one able to change it. One of the (only slightly) less corny attempts at motivation I've seen recently was a video from http://www.pikeplacefish.com/. When enough staff take this sort of attitude on board the result really is remarkable, but it does require staff to get involved and want to be happier.
Synthetic Stone DVD Claimed To Last 1,000 Years
I'd agree with this. A parked car in summer (where I live) would be 120F only if it was in the shade, and probably with the airconditioning on too. Being white (as my car is) might help as well.
That's all beside the point though - what the hell are you doing leaving valuable data on a CD/DVD in your car in summer? Of course this isn't the target market for these disks, but surely any sensible person would take a (relatively disposable) burnt copy in the car and leave the original (or main backup, or whatever) somewhere safe - like not in a car that can easily exceed 50C in summer. These disks sound good, but any sensible person is going to take all the other common sense precautions to look after their data as well.
US Navy Was Ordered To Listen For Martian Broadcast
Coming a week or so too late to be of use to me this year. Might be something to file away in the draw of possibilities for next year though!
Wi-Fi Patent Victory Earns CSIRO $200 Million
You almost seem to be suggesting that Australia has beaten you at your own game.
I think the situation is worth judging on it's own merit - a research company that was able to obtain a patent (that is obviously still solid enough that large companies are paying) is promoting licensing of the technology in order to fund more scientific research.
Or we could just look at it as the kid next door having the toy we want - and dammit if he didn't write his name on it so we can't just run off with it. The part that amuses me is that the kid used your own damn pen to write his name.
I'd agree that there's problems with the patent system - but I won't hold a scientific research organisation to blame for using that system to support themselves.
Wi-Fi Patent Victory Earns CSIRO $200 Million
I couldn't agree more.
My taxes helped pay for the research, and continue to help fund the work of the CSIRO in a multitude of areas. The fact that they can supplement their Government budget by licensing the technology they develop is a great boon to science - especially when budget cuts can wreak such havok on worthwhile research endeavours.
As an Australian, I'm not as concerned about "paying twice" for the technology when I know it's not going to patent trolls - it's going to a research organisation doing science for purposes other than profit.
For the rest of the world, you're only paying for it once. Stop complaining.
Battle.net Accounts Becoming Mandatory For WoW
I have 3 WoW accounts on my battlenet login (2 friends who quit the game), and I can be online with all three at the same time, with the same login - you have a drop-down box to select which account to log into.
So you don't necessarily need 3 email addresses - the only issue I see is that when they log onto their accounts they'll use your login (email), and password.
Yes, that's an issue, but you seem to have solved that by using 2 email addresses (presumably 2 bnet accounts). Not sure where the credit card issue comes into it... subscription to each account hasn't changed.
Cooking May Have Made Us Human
The best fitted for the environment, in terms of evolution, is the one that survives to pass it's traits along - through breeding. So in that sense yes, it does mean leaving more offspring to pass on whatever adaptive advantage it had gained.
I'm pretty sure it doesn't mean we can select for greater brain capacity just by being bored from less effort required for our daily chores. Unless that boredom leads to more time and resources to devote to successful breeding, of course.
Personality Testing For Employment
I did one of these "assessments" about two hours ago, as part of a job application. Personally, I found it laughable. The majority of the test seemed, at least to me, more concerned with detecting discrepencies in my answers than actual narrowing down any personality traits.
An hour later I received a phone call from the employer telling me they were pleased with my results and would like to fly me down (to their corporate HQ) to discuss the position further.
Needless to say I'm happy with the result, but honestly a bit put off with the means of getting there. I gamed their system - all that was required was consistency in the answers and a (quite obvious I would think) understanding of what they would be looking for.
A large part of it involved me rating, from "strongly agree" to "strongly disagree" lists of words. Among those words were stupidities like "strong", "upright" and "planful".
I can understand the desire, in a competitive environment, to quantify the skills of prospective employees, but sometimes the attempt to reduce a persons personality to a metric is simply counter-productive.
The resulting "summary" didn't closely reflect my personality, and yet I'm quite certain I'll exceed my new employers expectations.
Mars Rover Spirit Still Alive
And all this science, I don't understand...
Aghhh! You tricked me!
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