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Islamic State "Laptop of Doom" Hints At Plots Including Bubonic Plague

SylvesterTheCat Re:But is it reaslistic? (369 comments)

The problem with biological weapons is that unless you make sure all your so called friends are immunised or leave they are also going to among the casualties.

Do you really think they see that as a problem?

about 1 month ago

Laser Eye Surgery, Revisited 10 Years Later

SylvesterTheCat Re:Uncertainty/fear? (550 comments)

I had the PRK as well. I don't remember the "band-aid" contact, but that was almost 20 years ago. I do remember the different eye drops and how I would set my watch to multiple alarms through the day so that I would remember to use them. I was warned that the most common cause of post-op complications was failure to use the drops, so I took that seriously. I had no serious complications, other than halo effect at night, but that diminished over time.

I do remember two things when they did the procedure. The first was the strong hands on either side of my head that prevented from moving and the smell. It took me a moment to realize that was my eyeball tissue being vaporized.

about 3 months ago

Laser Eye Surgery, Revisited 10 Years Later

SylvesterTheCat Re:Astronomy, and general poor night-time results. (550 comments)

I had my eye surgery done around 1996. Initially, I did have significant halo / diffraction spikes at night, but those diminished over time. I would guess that within 6 months to a year, they were pretty much gone. It may have been shorter than that, though. My memory is kind of fuzzy. (Yes, that was a pun.)

Seriously, I have no regrets about having it done.

Also the fact that it won't prevent future changes to vision.

I was warned of the same thing. Now, almost 20 years later, I am noticing a little deterioration in my distance sight. I first started noticing that I was unable to read street signs at a distance that others in the car could read.

I am thinking about looking into having it done again. I am now in my late 40s and if I can get similar results would consider it money well spent.

about 3 months ago

Massachusetts SWAT Teams Claim They're Private Corporations, Immune To Oversight

SylvesterTheCat Re:Repeat after me... (534 comments)

Replying to undo moderation error.

No. You are flat-out wrong.
As a Title 32 Soldier, I do not answer to the Title 10 US Army, period.
By default, I am under the authority of the Govenor, period.

It's still federal troops being used against the citizenry.

No. Until I am placed under Title 10 orders, I am not a "federal troop." If I am placed on Title 10 orders, then yes, things do change. One of those things is that Posse Comitatus then applies, as funwithBSD points out.

about 4 months ago

Continuous System For Converting Waste Plastics Into Crude Oil

SylvesterTheCat Re:Oil - Plastic - Back to Oil? (139 comments)

I don't know how they define "cost effective", but since the plastic mostly came from oil in the first place, any energy expenditure to recover it is a net minus overall.

That would certainly be true when cost is compared to the original cost of the petroleum used to produce the plastic. Depending on the current price of oil, it may or may not be true now and in the future.

about 4 months ago

Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

SylvesterTheCat Re:ok if your car is new (432 comments)

The guy who owns the station where I buy the gasoline says that it's all he uses in his car and van. He says the increased mpg more than offsets the higher price.

My best friend had a E85 pickup and he experimented with E85 and non-ethanol gasoline. He found that E85 was cheaper by the gallon and more expensive by the mile, at least according to the fuel prices at that time.

about 5 months ago

Luke Prosthetic Arm Approved By FDA

SylvesterTheCat Re:Enhancements (59 comments)

When I read about the idea of commercializing this product I thought to myself why should these types of gear be only for replacing limbs?

Would it be useful to have a third, fourth, or more arm attachments?

Sure. That -would- be neat, but then you couldn't buy shirts off the rack anymore.

about 5 months ago

US Military Drones Migrating To Linux

SylvesterTheCat Re: time for a new public licence (197 comments)

Yes. Also UAVs / UASs are not limited to only military applications and even within military applications only a few are weaponized. They just happen to get most of the media attention.

about 5 months ago

Bill Gates & Twitter Founders Put "Meatless" Meat To the Test

SylvesterTheCat Re:why copy meat? (466 comments)

If you like the taste of diet coke better, you are a weirdo, but at least I can respect that.

At last! I have an explanation.

Actually, I refer the taste of Coke Zero slightly over diet Coke and both over sugared Coke. But what do I know? I am a weirdo.

about 6 months ago
top Back-End Status: See You In September

SylvesterTheCat Re:-1 Copied from Republican Talking Points (251 comments)

The administration has no idea :
1. how many have insurance now that did not a year ago
2. how many do not have insurance now that did a year ago
3. how many that have insurance through the federal exchange have paid for it
4. how many that have insurance through the federal exchange have a significantly higher rate and/or deductible than before

about 6 months ago

Obama Delays Decision On Keystone Pipeline Yet Again

SylvesterTheCat Re:Build refineries in ND (206 comments)

An interesting idea. Distributed refining capacity would sound like a good idea.

I suspect that it was considered. At least, I would hope that it was considered.
I wonder what the cost, lead time, environmental requirements, etc. are for constructing a refinery.

about 6 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Hungry Students, How Common?

SylvesterTheCat Grad school can be done on the cheap; I did it. (390 comments)

I went to graduate school at a state university from '98-'00 and I did it with minimal student loans.

I was (am) in the National Guard (no education benefits, just the paycheck) and I always had another part-time job. The first year as a Graduate Assistant was teaching a introductory computer class and after that as a part-time employee for a state department on campus. My car was 10 years old, had well over 100,00 miles, was mechanically sound and had been paid off for several years. I lived in my friend's basement for cheap rent and it was far from the lap of luxury. Somehow I still managed to have a pretty hot girlfriend. Yeah, I know... bring on the jokes about basement and girlfriend.

My first job after graduating paid less than $40k and I was debt free within 5 years.

The point is that it is possible to live on little if you have prepared for it and manage what you do have right.

about 6 months ago

Commenters To Dropbox CEO: Houston, We Have a Problem

SylvesterTheCat Re:Justice (448 comments)

If "Condoleezza Rice" were substituted for "Susan Rice", would you opinion would be the same?

If yes, then I can respect the consistency in your view.

about 6 months ago

Book Review: How I Discovered World War II's Greatest Spy

SylvesterTheCat "Seizing the Enigma" - an excellent book (102 comments)

I found a hardcover copy of "Seizing the Enigma" in a bookstore discount bin well over ten years ago. I found it to be an excellent read. The only (very minor) criticism I would have is the title. The book seemed as much (if not more) about the Allied prosecution of the German U-boat war as about the Enigma. Again, a very minor point about what seemed to be a very well researched and written book.

I still find it very interesting how Poland's role in breaking German encryption played in the overall history at that time. Poland very well understood that they were in a bad place (geographically and militarily) with regard to Germany and their military buildup and therefore, had a interest in trying to learn the details of Germany's intentions. I found Marian Rejewski to be a particularly interesting character. A Polish mathematician who was certainly smart, but not brilliant. Through determination (and some use of statistics) he was able to work with 2 other mathematicians to break a Enigma-encoded message. I find him to be a personally inspiring individual.

I cannot help but wonder what is happening in modern Poland with the actions of Russian and eastern Ukraine. Having joined NATO and the EU, I would still expect that they are more than a little interested in knowing what the intentions are of their neighbors.

about 7 months ago

US Senator Warns Against Political Surveillance By Drone

SylvesterTheCat Re:Isn't that cute (150 comments)

..and builds a portfolio based on insider knowledge (as is legal for all Senators) and retires much wealthier than when she entered office.

If anyone wants to be thoroughly disgusted by Congress's insider information, read the book titled "Throw Them All Out."

about 9 months ago

Americans To FCC Chair: No Cell Calls On Planes, Please

SylvesterTheCat Re: Allow it... (340 comments)

Nice idea, but it doesn't work.

I fly a fair amount.

The "noise" that noise-cancelling headphones cancel are sounds that have a consistent volume, like the constant drone (no pun intended) of the aircraft engines. The headphones do not cancel sounds like other people's conversations, at least not very well.

about 9 months ago

French Team Implants First Long-Term Artificial Heart

SylvesterTheCat Re:Think it through (106 comments)

- long enough to get to a hospital.

Or the closest Batteries Plus....

about 9 months ago

Can the US Be Weaned Off Ethanol?

SylvesterTheCat Re:And in the process .... drop 10mpg (330 comments)

A friend of mine has a pickup that can burn E85 and he tested mileage with different blends.

His conclusion was that although E85 was the cheapest per gallon, the most expensive blend was the cheapest per mile.

about a year ago

Cable Lobbyist Tom Wheeler Confirmed As New FCC Chief

SylvesterTheCat Re:Meet The New Boss (242 comments)

Hey, I live in Iowa and I take offense to the idea that it could possibly smell worse than Washington.

Reminds me of the lawyer joke (told to me by a lawyer). An angry man walks into a bar, slams his fist on the bar and says "All lawyers are assholes." Another man stands up and says "I resent that!" The first replies with "Why? Are you a lawyer?"

Response: "No, I'm an asshole."

about a year ago


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