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Will the Google Car Turn Out To Be the Apple Newton of Automobiles?

TheGavster Re:How hard is it to recognize a stoplight? (176 comments)

I think the real goal would be to have all vehicles self-drive; then they can be coordinated to interlace at intersections, removing the need for stop lights and saving a ton of fuel!

10 hours ago

The Physics of Why Cold Fusion Isn't Real

TheGavster Re:TL;DR (345 comments)

He actually doesn't even get to the part about WHY cold fusion is bollocks. He explains the criteria for a reproducible experiment, states that no cold fusion experiment to date has succeeded in meeting these criteria, and then launches into a couple of ideas about how cold fusion might work before the article just kind of ... stops.

5 days ago

Michigan About To Ban Tesla Sales

TheGavster Re:Let me FTFY (293 comments)

Um, well, this isn't the free market at work. Regulation like this, where powerful officials make laws that clearly select winners and losers are exactly the kind of evil that small government libertarians fear from communism. In a free market, the government wouldn't have some weird power to dictate that a particular consumer good be sold in a special way ...

about a week ago

Journalists Route Around White House Press Office

TheGavster Re: If I were president... (111 comments)

Could you enlighten the idealists among us as to the "real world" circumstances which necessitate an administration modifying press reports? While there certainly are times when temporary secrecy is needed, the current practice of no disclosure, no explanation, never, steps over the line.

about a week ago

Ask Slashdot: Handling Patented IP In a Job Interview?

TheGavster Re:Are you patenting software? (224 comments)

On the other hand, I want to avoid a situation where for-profit companies co-opt the idea and charge people for it.

If the idea requires a level of effort to implement that only those large companies can provide, then it's probably something deserving of getting paid for. That implementation is protected by copyright. If, on the other hand, it's simple enough that other people can implement it without a great deal of work, then eventually a free (gratis) implementation will rise up. Software patents are what allow ideas to be co-opted by for-profit companies.

about a week ago

HBO To Offer Online Streaming Without TV Subscription

TheGavster Re:Bad news for ESPN (139 comments)

HBO's a-little-after-second-run movie lineup isn't why most people have it; it's the original programming. I think there's a big market for companies like HBO, AMC, etc to develop reputations based on a small number of high-quality shows. Online distribution makes it so they don't need to license a ton of filler, like AMC, or fill out a lineup with low-quality shows, like the big networks do.

about a week ago

Texas Health Worker Tests Positive For Ebola

TheGavster Re: For those who said "No need to panic" (421 comments)

I'm sure that there's a protocol you could follow to prevent catching the flu from flu patients, too, but I doubt it would be practical to practice medicine at the same time. I think that as Western medical personnel are beginning to be infected, it becomes less easy to just say "the training/equipment/conditions were the problem". At some point, we need to look at how the containment protocol interacts with the treatment protocol, and see if it actually works.

Remember, correctly executed withdrawl is just as effective a form of birth control as a correctly applied condom, but a greater share of condom users use them correctly than those who attempt pulling out.

about two weeks ago

Bash To Require Further Patching, As More Shellshock Holes Found

TheGavster Re: Nothing to do with language (329 comments)

Interpolated is correct; it means to expand specially marked parts of a string. For example, in a double quoted string, Perl will replace a word preceded by a dollar sign with the contents of the variable with that name. This operation is to "interpolate" the variable.

about three weeks ago

Nixie Wearable Drone Camera Flies Off Your Wrist

TheGavster Re:I would use this almost never (63 comments)

The example video shows several hypothetical scenarios, and half could indeed be done by tripod. But the demo riding down an off-road trail with video trailing behind would be hard to capture even if you had a live cameraman.

about three weeks ago

ISIS Bans Math and Social Studies For Children

TheGavster Re: they will defeat themselves (981 comments)

The goat herder shall receive payment for his goats as Allah decrees.

about a month ago

Court: Car Dealers Can't Stop Tesla From Selling In Massachusetts

TheGavster Re:Car Dealers should ask why they're being bypass (155 comments)

Tesla points out that new car companies in the US tend to fail and they blame the dealership system for this because they say they're invested in existing auto companies and brands.

I blame the dealerships too. The last time I went shopping for a car, I told the salesman I was looking to replace my Chevy Malibu, and wanted something small to midize that was good in the snow. Despite the bevy of options on the lot, he walked me over to a Challenger SRT ... a rear-wheel drive boat that most likely isn't even particularly good in the rain. Looking around, though, the dealer had invested in a lot of special edition models of sports cars (2 Mustang Roushes, a GT500, the Challenger, etc) and that was what he needed to sell that day. If I was the guy making midsize sedans, I wouldn't want that guy involved in selling my cars either.

about a month ago

Restoring Salmon To Their Original Habitat -- With a Cannon

TheGavster Re: Pet Peeve (147 comments)

Casualties from modern, western nuclear designs are easy: zero. You get more exposure from a banana than standing next to TMI during the event. And yes, the nimby folks are the source of most of the problems. We wouldn't have plants decades past their intended life using obsolete designs, and we'd be storing nuclear waste in geologically sound facilities rather than temporary storage pools.

As for scalability, you can add a reactor to a nuclear site much more easily than you can add a dam to a hydro site.

about a month and a half ago

The 2014 Hugo Awards

TheGavster Re: "Time" won Best Graphic Story? (180 comments)

It's actually several thousand frames that play out a sequence of events. It was notable both because of the unique presentation (most frames, particularly the early ones, change only subtly) and because of the details that go into establishing the otherwise unexplained setting.

about 2 months ago

Researchers Find Security Flaws In Backscatter X-ray Scanners

TheGavster Re: This is ridiculous. (146 comments)

What activity would the TSA need to install body scanners at to cross the line for you? The train? Subway? City bus? Terrorists have blown up far more cafes than airplanes, so logically you should need to be scanned to buy coffee. And it wouldn't be an imposition, since you're there voluntarily!

about 2 months ago

Gmail Now Rejects Emails With Misleading Combinations of Unicode Characters

TheGavster Re:all of them then? (79 comments)

The "restrictive profile" that Google is using for the filtering is defined in Unicode as any combination of the Latin character set with another set or sets, with the exception of very specific combinations (selected legitimate combinations of Asian sets that contain radically different letter forms and thus are unlikely to cause confusion).

about 2 months ago

Google Sells Maine Barge For Scrap

TheGavster Re:Why is this news? Seriously? (79 comments)

I'm glad I'm not the only one who's been like "oh, you mean the datacenters on barges for the cooling water, from several years ago?" whenever someone brings up these "super secret" Google containers!

about 3 months ago

35% of American Adults Have Debt 'In Collections'

TheGavster Re:i blame my kids (570 comments)

Children are simultaneously the most expensive and least liquid luxury you can get. If it's hard to make ends meet, maybe you should have gotten something more sensible and resalable, like a boat.

about 3 months ago

Greenpeace: Amazon Fire Burns More Coal and Gas Than It Should

TheGavster Re:Hipsterism at its finest (worst?) (288 comments)

You fail to account for how slow SD cards are so that they need to be powered longer to extract data off them.

Every so often, this argument is brought up. What universe do you live in where the wireless interface is faster than the local storage? MicroSDHC cards read at 832Mb/s (104MB/s = 832Mb/s). 4G LTE tops out at 300Mb/s (wiki). And that's optimal speed, not accounting for latency. On my personal mobile device, playing a 5 minute song from Amazon's cloud service takes 1-2 minutes to buffer and then keeps the radio going the rest of the 5 minute song. From local storage, that song would load into working memory in less than a second.

Regardless of the net energy usage, the propagation of cloud services for things that could very easily be handled locally is completely insane.

about 3 months ago

The Secret Government Rulebook For Labeling You a Terrorist

TheGavster Re:McCarthyism v2.0 (242 comments)

We have always been at war with Eastasia!

about 3 months ago

Geographic Segregation By Education

TheGavster Re: Translation (Rough) (230 comments)

Steve Jobs didn't run around with a resume because he went and started his own business. At the time, his talents were with something new, and wouldn't have been recognized by established companies anyway. If you think that your skills are something special, you serve yourself better by going and using them in an original way as an entrepreneur rather than trying to fit in the box of some established job. Of course, it is much easier to have someone else start a business and provide work for you to do, but then we;d have to acknowledge that the guy at the top is doing something special deserving of his wealth-gap-inducing income.

about 3 months ago


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