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Comments

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Scotland Votes No To Independence

TheSync Re:Too bad (443 comments)

After seeing what lack of control of your own currency did to Greece, Italy, and Spain I've come to the conclusion the tight economic binding which is the EU is a bad idea.

Yeah, because insane regulation and widespread corruption can be easily solved with inflation.

Italy: Despite repeated reform attempts, short-term legislative reforms have not been implemented effectively, and the economy remains burdened by political interference, corruption, high levels of taxation, and a rigid labor market. Due to the complexity of the regulatory framework and the high cost of conducting business, a considerable amount of economic activity remains in the informal sector.

Spain: Spain continues to score below the world averages in fiscal freedom, government spending, and labor freedom.

Greece: Over the 20-year history of the Index, Greece's economic freedom score has declined by over 5 points. Despite improvements in five of the 10 economic freedoms, large declines in property rights, freedom from corruption, government spending, and investment freedom have more than offset any gains.

Form 2014 Index of Economic Freedom.

Meanwhile, the Netherlands has 5.3% unemployment, and GDP per capita of $42,194. Open to global commerce, the Netherlands has long benefited from a high degree of regulatory efficiency that facilitates entrepreneurial activity. The judicial system provides strong protection for property rights.

2 days ago
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The Future According To Stanislaw Lem

TheSync Re:Evolution is hard to stop (195 comments)

or a world where any person would be equally likely to have biological children and grandchildren.

They would have to have precisely the same number of children (i.e. not die to due accident or stillbirth before reproduction), and reproductive assignment between sexual partners would have to be completely random, not sexually selected as it is today (even in countries where sexual partners are determined by parents, the parents are still performing a kind of sexual selection).

But with sexual reproduction, even in such a completely "fair" and "random" mating situation, genetic drift would still occur because although at a single locus each parent passes on one or other allele with a 50% probability of each, that 50% is a statistical average. Out of a ten thousand reproductions, you might find one reproduction where an allele is over-represented or under-represented. So across the population, genetic change will happen.

4 days ago
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The Future According To Stanislaw Lem

TheSync Evolution is hard to stop (195 comments)

Evolutionary selection pressures never stop. Even within a dominant species, if there is any level of genetic difference, there will be both genetic drift and evolution. Other species also apply selection pressures (think of evolving viruses, for instance).

about a week ago
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L.A. TV Stations Free Up Some Spectrum For Wireless Broadband

TheSync Re:Sharing channel == worse picture quality (80 comments)

I have heard that two 720p channels can coexist on one carrier.

Not two "good quality" 720p channels! MPEG-2 encoder technology (of the highest quality pro encoders) continues to get better, but we're not quite able to fit two good 720p's into 19 Mbps. Give it a year or two.

Of course you can jam in as many video channels as you want if you don't mind it looking like crap in high-motion scenes (like sports for instance).

about a week ago
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Limiting the Teaching of the Scientific Process In Ohio

TheSync Re:just because the dept of ed.... (528 comments)

the US DoED has almost nothing to do with curriculum

That has been true in the past, however through Race to the Top Fund, the Race to the Top Assessment Program, and conditional NCLB waiver guidance (the âoeConditional NCLB Waiver Planâ), US DoE has created a system of discretionary grants and waivers that herds state education authorities into accepting elementary and secondary school standards and assessments favored by the Department.

about three weeks ago
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California DMV Told Google Cars Still Need Steering Wheels

TheSync Re:Never gonna work ... (506 comments)

The transition time from the computer giving up to the user having to take control is always going to mean this is impossible.

I can think of several recent airplane crashes that occurred because pilots tried to take back control from the auto-pilot or auto-landing system without full situational awareness.

about three weeks ago
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The IPv4 Internet Hiccups

TheSync Re:SDN (248 comments)

The question is what is the typical "working set" of Internet prefixes for Internet routers at any time? Is it 100% of the Internet? Is it 50%? Is it 10%? I suspect it is something like 10% (but don't have any numbers).

When an unmatched prefix is seen by the router, it sends the packet to the SDN controller for inspection, the SDN controller sets up the flows for that prefix on the router TCAM. It is like a cache, and only needs to happen once per flow. SDN flow setups take on the order of 1ms.

BTW, tell me that BGP doesn't have problems?

There already is an SDN-enabled Internet Exchange Point.

SDN-based routing systems would be even easier to defend against DDoS because of the ability for SDN controllers to rapidly set up firewall rules on the Internet router (which might actually be a switch, or a fabric of switches, or a set of distributed switches).

about a month ago
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The IPv4 Internet Hiccups

TheSync SDN (248 comments)

With SDN, an infinite number of prefixes can be stored on the SDN controller, and the Internet router only needs to load prefixes into the router TCAM when there is actually a flow needed for that prefix.

about a month ago
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TEPCO: Nearly All Nuclear Fuel Melted At Fukushima No. 3 Reactor

TheSync Re:Is anybody surprised? (255 comments)

I do not trust nuclear power that is run for profit.

Uh, was Chernobyl run for profit?

about a month and a half ago
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Fooling a Mercedes Into Autonomous Driving With a Soda Can

TheSync Re:Boo (163 comments)

You can drive from Baltimore to DC and back without noticing that you have a flat tire?

Actually I have done precisely that, but it was a rear tire on a front-wheel drive. Only noticed a problem when listening to AM radio and hearing a "click-click-click" when going at low speeds. That was the nail in my tire hitting the road and shorting out the static building up from the tire rubbing.

about a month and a half ago
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Google's Mapping Contest Draws Ire From Indian Government

TheSync Re:Ignorance is no excuse ... (96 comments)

Indian Constitution Article 21: "Protection of life and personal liberty. No person shall be deprived of his life or personal liberty except according to procedure established by law."

Note that the phrase "due process" is not in the Indian Constitution. For more information on why it was replaced with "according to procedure", see this reference.

about 2 months ago
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Experiment Shows People Exposed To East German Socialism Cheat More

TheSync Re:let me correct that for you. (619 comments)

In what way? Is private enterprise disallowed? Do workers own the means of production?

There is a big difference between France which rates "Moderately Unfree" on the Index of Economic Freedom and say Denmark which ranks "Mostly Free".

In France there is far more labor regulation and price controls. France also puts far more regulation on mergers & acquisitions, especially foreign ones. France also maintains a large number of state owned enterprises with stakes in telecommunications, media, aerospace, automobile, and other industries.

Of course France is also nothing like Belarus with Soviet-era state ownership of land and government-controlled collective farming.

about 2 months ago
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Experiment Shows People Exposed To East German Socialism Cheat More

TheSync Re:Wrong Control Variable? (619 comments)

I am a citizen of a third world country myself (India)

India is a socialist country. It is much less socialist since the 1980's and the beginning of economic reform of the "permit raj", but it is still rated "Mostly Unfree" on the Index of Economic Freedom.

We will see if Mr. Modi can continue the free market reforms.

about 2 months ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

TheSync Re:Completly Blindsided. (285 comments)

From the article, it sounds like CVUSD isn't an independent organization.

CVUSD is an independent organization. It put "Measure X" on the ballot in 2012 to raise $41 million for iPads. 66% voted "Yes".

CVUSD board members are elected, including Juanita Duarte, a three-term board member who is facing trial on charges of embezzlement, and Anna Lisa Vargas, a soft-spoken freshman board member who was targeted by a recall effort last year.

CVUSD is also laying off 147 workers including pre-school teachers to avoid bankruptcy.

about a month ago
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How One School District Handled Rolling Out 20,000 iPads

TheSync Re:meh. (285 comments)

Given iPads are like $400-500 each

A used iPad1 can be had for $100-$150.

Of course, I'd be more up for purchasing these if the particular school district did a randomized test of their effectiveness.

about a month ago
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Malaysian Passenger Plane Reportedly Shot Down Over Ukraine

TheSync Re:Wow. Terrble Turn. (752 comments)

The majority of those on board were Chinese... Basically Russia's only ally in this whole mess. Things are about to get very interesting.

In the era before Sina Weibo, the Chinese Communist Party had no problem sacrificing Chinese people for political objectives. Keep in mind that the Chinese have their own potential breakaway areas, and are loath to agree that the global world should have any say in domestic affairs. We'll have to see whether that has changed with the Interwebzors...

about 2 months ago
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Rand Paul and Silicon Valley's Shifting Political Climate

TheSync Re:What Kim Stanley Robinson said of libertarianis (533 comments)

The "People's Republic of Austin" as it is derisively called here is the most "progressive" city in Texas

Yeah, the state income tax rate in Texas is 0.0%. Oh my, quite progressive.

In Silicon Valley, for earnings between $49,774.00 and $254,250, you'll pay 9.3% income tax, and highest earners pay 12.3%.

You can carry an unregistered, concealed firearm in Austin. You can't in San Jose, and you'll need to register your handgun there as well (so it can be confiscated later :)

 

about 2 months ago

Submissions

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.SCOT TLD "Priority Registration" Deadline Approaching

TheSync TheSync writes  |  4 days ago

TheSync (5291) writes "Calico.UK, the registrar for the .SCOT top level domain, is advertising "priority registration" ahead of general availability of the TLD just in time for the Scottish independence vote. Scotland of course has no ISO 3166-1 two-letter country code at this time, and even if it wanted one after independence, many natural choices like "SC" are already taken, but then again UK domains tend to use .UK instead of the ISO 3166-1 code "GB"."
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Australia's Failed Government-Owned Broadband

TheSync TheSync writes  |  about 6 months ago

TheSync (5291) writes "Sold as AUS$43 billion gigabit fiber to the home (FTTH) solution, Australia's National Broadband Network (NBN) project is now the project is now years behind schedule and $30 billion over budget. The NBN has only 78,000 fiber subscribers, with a price of $93,000 per subscriber. Also most of those subscribers chose 25Mbps/5Mbps service rather than 100Mbps/40 Mbps speeds. It is unclear if NBN will be killed or changed into a fiber-to-the-node (FTTN) system."
Link to Original Source
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California seeks to shut down coding bootcamps

TheSync TheSync writes  |  about 8 months ago

TheSync (5291) writes "VentureBeat reports that the California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education (BPPE) sent cease and desist letters to Hackbright Academy, Hack Reactor, App Academy, Zipfian Academy, and others. These bootcamps have not yet been approved by the BPPE and are therefore being classified as unlicensed postsecondary educational institutions that must seek compliance or be forcibly shut down. Unless they comply, these organizations face imminent closure and a hefty $50,000 fine."
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Dark Matter Found in Cold Gas Clouds

TheSync TheSync writes  |  about 8 months ago

TheSync (5291) writes "Astrophysicist Jessica Werk of the University of California, Santa Cruz studied light from 38 quasars using the Hubble Space Telescope. By looking at the spectral fingerprints in this light, she found that galactic halos harbor at least 10 times, and possibly up to 100 times, as much cold gas as researchers had estimated. If her estimate is correct, it would account for the two-thirds of galaxies’ baryonic matter that astronomers have been looking for. This could go a long way to explaining where all the "dark matter" is."
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"Cosmos" remake coming to FOX in 2014

TheSync TheSync writes  |  about a year ago

TheSync (5291) writes "The long-awaited remake of Carl Sagan's amazing "Cosmos" series, "Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey", will be coming to FOX television next year. It will star astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson. Surprisingly, Seth MacFarlane of "Family Guy" fame is an executive producer. MacFarlane was introduced to Carl Sagan's widow Ann Druyan by deGrasse Tyson, and MacFarlane helped them pitch the show to FOX executives."
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NY AG Subpoena's Craigslist for Post-Sandy Price Gougers

TheSync TheSync writes  |  about 2 years ago

TheSync (5291) writes "In the wake of Hurrican Sandy, the New York State Attorney General has subpoenaed Craigslist, demanding that the site identify more than 100 sellers whose prices on post-Sandy gas, generators and other supplies were of an “unconscionably excessive price” during an emergency. AG Eric Schneiderman said: “Our office has zero tolerance for price gouging [and] will do everything we can to stop unscrupulous individuals from taking advantage of New Yorkers trying to rebuild their lives.""
Link to Original Source
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Dyle Mobile TV launching on MetroPCS in 2012

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 2 years ago

TheSync (5291) writes "Twice is reporting that Dyle Mobile TV, the consumer-facing brand launched by Mobile Content Venture, announced that they are partnering to enable MetroPCS customers to watch live, local broadcast television on their mobile phones later this year. This service uses the new ATSC A/153 Mobile DTV standard that allows existing television stations to provide mobile digital television service in addition to their existing HD signals."
Link to Original Source
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Venezuela's Chavez calls for Internet Regulation

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 4 years ago

TheSync (5291) writes "The AP reports that Venezuela's President Hugo Chavez is calling for regulation of the Internet and cracking down on false Web stories. In a televised speech, Chavez said: "The Internet can't be something free where anything can be done and said. No, every country has to impose its rules and regulations.""
Link to Original Source
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Massive Rube Goldberg Machine Rules YouTube

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 4 years ago

TheSync (5291) writes "US indie band OK Go has filmed a music video with an awesome 4-minute long Rube Goldberg Machine done in a single shot. The machine is timed to the parts of the song, and actually "does things" to the band members. The video is #1 YouTube's most-watched video of the week, with over 3.5 million views. The video was produced with MIT’s Media Lab and Syyn Labs, and contains the MAKE Magazine car from the 24 Hours of LeMons."
Link to Original Source
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FTC to Regulate Blogs

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 5 years ago

TheSync writes "The Washington Post is reporting that the Federal Trade Commission is planning to regulate blogs. They are concerned about bloggers who receive compensation from the companies whose products they blog about. The regulation would clarify that rules against deceptive and unfair business practices apply to bloggers. So if Slashdot gets money or non-cash support from Linux vendors and they put up articles about how bad Microsoft is, watch out!"
Link to Original Source
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"Definitive evidence" for ancient lake on

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 5 years ago

TheSync writes "Eurekalert reports on "definitive evidence" for an ancient water lake on Mars. A UC Boulder research team has discovered evidence of a shoreline on Mars of a 3 billion year-old lake 80 square miles in area and 1,500 feet deep (roughly the equivalent of Lake Champlain). Images came from the High Resolution Imaging Science Experiment (HiRISE) on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter. Water carved a 30-mile-long canyon that opened up into a valley and forming a large delta during a time when Mars is generally believed to have been cold and dry. The lack of additional, lower shorelines, shows that the lake dried up very quickly."
Link to Original Source
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First Images of Memories Being Made

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 5 years ago

TheSync writes "Eurekalert reports that researchers at the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital, McGill and UCLA have captured the first image of protein translation that underlies long-term memory formation. A fluorescent protein showed the increased local protein synthesis during memory formation, which requires cooperation between the pre and post-synaptic compartments of the two neurons that meet at the synapse."
Link to Original Source
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Mortgage Securitization Software Author Mea Culpa

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 5 years ago

TheSync writes "New York Magazine has an article written by Michael Osinski, an author of early software to enable collateralized mortgage obligations (CMOs). He even created a language for mortgage-backed bonds called BondTalk. He says "I never would have thought, in my most extreme paranoid fantasies, that my software, and the others like it, would have enabled Wall Street to decimate the investments of everyone in my family. ""
Link to Original Source
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UK and Obmama to Rate Web like MPAA

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 5 years ago

TheSync writes "The NYT reports that "A British cabinet minister says the government is considering a plan to work with President-elect Barack Obama on a new ratings system for Internet Web sites..to protect children from inappropriate material...similar to the one employed by the Motion Picture Association of America". Creepy!"
Link to Original Source

Journals

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Why does Slashdot hate/ignore Economics?

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 6 years ago

So on today's article Supplies of Rare Earth Elements Exhausted By 2017, we have these comments rated +4 or more:

The problem isn't economics, it's the idiots that try to invoke it in the way we see them doing here. The fact that the price of a commodity increases when it's in short supply doesn't cure the shortage or make it less of a problem; it merely allocates what supplies remain to those who are willing to pay the most. It's a manifestation of the shortage, not an explanation of it.

In a severe food shortage, yes, the price of food shoots up. People who can afford it continue to eat well (albeit at the expense of other things), but others starve. As far as your typical affluent conservative is concerned, the market has efficiently "solved" the problem.

Economics is the new God of the Gaps. You don't know the answer? Silly old physical laws getting in the way? No problem; Economics dictates that someone else will be motivated to come up with a solution. It's impossible? Why, that just makes it more valuable!

If you are a true economist, then fuck off and play with your stock markets and leave actual science to actual scientists.

I don't know why so many people who may otherwise be informed are so hateful of economics. It is a bit like the reaction from creationists.

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WiFi Cardboard Horn Antenna

TheSync TheSync writes  |  more than 11 years ago

I had my summer intern to build a cardboard horn antenna for testing long distance 802.11b connections. Here are three pictures of it: 1 / 2 / 3. It has about 10 dB gain over a PCMCIA card wireless NIC. The antenna is based on this design.

We tested it across the Memorial Bridge in Washington, DC. Not only were we able to get a signal, but from the DC shore near the Lincoln Memorial, we were able to pick up wireless access points in Rosslyn, VA.

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