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Journalist Sues NSA For Keeping Keith Alexander's Financial History Secret

Serzen Re:If true. If. (200 comments)

You don't give up your 4th Amendment rights just by getting behind the wheel. If you're driving erratically, the officer has probable cause to stop you and verify your sobriety. The officer is also able to shine his flashlight through your window and see if you have anything illegal *in plain sight*. He is not, however, allowed to search your trunk, make you pick your sweater up off the seat next to you, or otherwise SEARCH your car. And, if you are found to be driving while impaired, you still HAVE A TRIAL. You have the right to call into question the methods the officer in question used. If he violated your rights, and you are able to articulate and demonstrate it, your offense is null and void. If HE screwed up, you get a walk. And even if it's a small town, and the cop is the judge's brother (oh, hey, look, another reason the case should be tossed), you have the right to appeal. I know, I know, reasoned discourse is no match for vitriol, but it's early in the day and my hopes haven't been utterly eroded yet.

about 6 months ago

Orca Identified As 103 Years Old

Serzen Re:Fuck seaworld (194 comments)

The water in these tanks is not only filtered, but runs through protein skimmers and usually UV sterilization, too. The amount of feces (and urine) the animals are drinking or otherwise absorbing is small. Nitrates are A Bad Thing to most marine life.

about 9 months ago

Homeland Security Stole Michael Arrington's Boat

Serzen Re:so what? (812 comments)

Quite the opposite happened to me: We were crossing at the Thousand Islands Bridge to do some sight-seeing on the Canadian side and were detained for 2 hours while the Canadians tore the back seat out of the car, pulled the spare tire, grilled us about our criminal records (none), demanded to know about any sealed juvenile records (we told them to ask the Attorney General if they wanted to know about that). When we finally got our car back, we were escorted to it by armed guards wearing bullet-proof vests, to find that nothing had been put back the way it belonged.

When we returned to the US side, the agent asked us to pop the trunk, didn't even look in it, but shut it for us and said to have a nice day.

All of our paperwork was in order--the only reason we can come up with is that I'm brown-skinned and have a beard. Except that my ancestry is English, Irish and Native American.

about 2 years ago

Self-Destructing Bacteria Create Better Biofuels

Serzen Re:Water is a scarce resource (139 comments)

Yes, they do in fact grow in saltwater. Ask anyone who keeps a marine aquarium about how hard the shit is to get rid of, too. If you're not careful, it can overtake your tank pretty quickly.

more than 5 years ago

New Left 4 Dead DLC Coming Next Month

Serzen Re:L4D (55 comments)

The last DLC for L4D was sponsored by, if I recall correctly, Sam Raimi's Drag Me to Hell or whatever it was called. The funding for the DLC was provided that way.

more than 5 years ago

Games That Design Themselves

Serzen Re:Skynet... (162 comments)

I could actually hear it in a perfect valley girl voice.

Well, isn't that what the Valley Girl tags were for?

more than 5 years ago

Pirate Bay Day 5 — Prosecution Tries To Sneak In Evidence

Serzen Re:That would be really weird... (341 comments)

In your example, Mr. Y is offering testimony regarding his own actions, but is not, presumably, offering testimony to incriminate Mr. X. Also, I think you've slightly misunderstood the GPs intent. In your example, Mr. Y has directly heard Mr. X say "your mother is a whore," making his testimony admissible. If, however, Mr. Y were to offer that "Mr. Z told me he was calling my mother a whore," the testimony becomes hearsay. IANAL, etc

more than 5 years ago

Ultrasound Machine Ages Wine

Serzen Re:Whiskey? (448 comments)

Aging in the bottle, in relation to wine, and, presumably, the rest, has to do with micro-oxidation that takes place in the bottle. It has nothing to do with what was used to produce the wine or spirit in the first place. For an alcohol to be safe from oxidation and able to age more or less without harm, it needs to have an alcohol content of 18% or more (by volume); see Port, Sherry, Marsala or Madeira for examples of non-distilled wines capable of extended aging. Less than 18% and there IS a finite limit as to how long the offering in question can age, dependent on other factors, of course, such as tannin and acidity levels in the wine, as well as the amount of oxygen that the wine comes into contact with. Thus, the reason most wine spends not more than 2 or 3 years in barrel before being transferred to bottles. In bottles, there is less room for oxygen to intrude into the wine. (see above post regarding storing bottles sealed with a cork on their sides) In fact, if you truly want to buy wine that you intend to age yourself, you're better off buying magnums or larger, as the wine/oxygen ratio is smaller, meaning that the wine will age more gracefully than it does in a standard fifth/750.

Distilled spirits, as has been covered by several other posters, age in the barrel because of the interactions between the barrel and the spirit. Climate, in particular, has an effect on the process, as does the barrel itself. As the spirit sits in the barrel, the wood (a porous material) absorbs some of the liquid; during changes of temperature, the barrel absorbs more or less. As the spirit is absorbed, it passes through outer layers of charcoal (as most barrels are charred on the inside), providing a certain amount of filtration, but once it gets a chance to seep into the wood, the alcohol also absorbs some of the compounds that exist in the wood. Vanillan is one, and the flavo(u)r of the various essential oils are change by how hot they got during the charring process. Moreover, if the barrel has been previously used, there may well be trace amounts of the previous "occupant" still stored in the wood that will co-mingle with the new addition, lending their own character to the spirit. Finally, alcohol does, in fact, tend to evaporate at a fairly low temperature, and so the longer that a spirit is in the barrel, the more of the raw alcohol that seeps out of the spirit, helping to gently mellow the character. Most, are, however, cut with water before bottling, since even after 6 or 8 years a spirit that was put into barrel at 180 proof (90% alcohol) will have only reduced to about 130 proof (65% alcohol).

more than 6 years ago



Apple, AT&T sued over iPhone restrictions

Serzen Serzen writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Serzen (675979) writes "MSNBC may not be the most popular website for hordes of Slashdotters, but they are running a story about two new lawsuits filed against Apple and AT&T as a result of the use restrictions and recent updates to the iPhone's soft/firmware. From the article:

Two separate lawsuits were filed in San Jose on Oct. 5 — one in federal court and the other in state court and both seeking class-action status. Both cases accuse the companies of unfair business practices and violations of antitrust, telecommunications and warranty laws.
The suit also alleges that: "The companies are unlawfully restricting consumer choice by preventing users from 'unlocking' their iPhones, and Apple intentionally disabled unofficial third-party programs or rendered unlocked phones useless with its software update...""

Link to Original Source

Space Plasma Mimics Life

Serzen Serzen writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Serzen (675979) writes "Space.com has an article describing how gas in space mimics life. A new computer model shows what happens when dust is injected into plasma. According to the article:

The new computer simulations suggest that in the gravity-free environment of space, the plasma particles will bead together to form string-like filaments that then twist into corkscrew shapes. The helical strands resemble DNA and are themselves electrically charged and attracted to one another.
The authors are quick to point out that no one is calling the filaments "life" just yet, but also are willing "to start the discussion ... once more of what exactly do we mean by life.""

Link to Original Source

Serzen Serzen writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Serzen (675979) writes "In what can only be called a puzzling move, Sony's launch party for God of War II featured topless women, at least one dead goat and an "offal" eating competition. Almost entirely too strange for words, the Daily Mail covers some of it here. Even with the goat censored out, the woman is only wearing body paint for a top, so use some caution if viewing at work.

Apparently photos from the event can be seen in subscriber's editions of PlayStation magazine, but copies bound for retail have been recalled."


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