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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

WillAdams Re:What will cops do for their Quota? (435 comments)

Powerful argument for why such fines should never have been allowed to be added directly into budgets, but always should have gone into the general fund to reduce the tax requirement for the next year.

about two weeks ago

FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

WillAdams Re:The funny things is... (435 comments)

Explosives are simple kitchen chemistry.

Firearms aren't that much more difficult:

  - cast bullets on your stove
  - turn cases on a lathe
  - a firearm can be made from a truck axle and some spring steel w/ a file and some patience --- better/more tools make it easier

about two weeks ago

Nano-Pixels Hold Potential For Screens Far Denser Than Today's Best

WillAdams Re:What's the point? (129 comments)

However, one doesn't read highway signs at arm's distance.

Also, lower resolution reduces the amount of information which one can fit on a given highway sign and diminishes legibility by obscuring finer details.

The human can distinguish the difference in character shapes at resolutions up to ~2,000 dpi --- see Smeijer's book _Counterpunch_ for an examination of this.

Current smart phones aren't quite able to adequately represent typeface designs w/ subtle curves such as Optima at text sizes, and engravings become a pixellated blurry mess compared to the sharp originals, some of which require extraordinary printing techniques such as two black plates to capture.

about two weeks ago

The Least They Could Do: Amazon Charges 1 Cent To Meet French Free Shipping Ban

WillAdams Re:What's the difference (309 comments)

You have to live w/in a reasonable distance of an ``Amazon Storage Locker'' and have your account set up so as to allow it to be enabled:

about two weeks ago

By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' and That Could Be a Problem

WillAdams A.I. is still hard, Self-Awareness not on map (564 comments)

Given that China's recent supercomputer can't find enough work at the rates they have to charge to cover their electric bill, it seems to me that any such problem would be as simple as pulling the plug and waiting for the batteries to die down.

I'm also mystified as to how one gets a deterministic device to have volition and self-awareness --- Heinlein could handwave this by declaring that after a certain number of transistors a device ``woke up'' and became aware (The Moon is a Harsh Mistress), Marvin Minsky sidestepped it neatly (The Turing Option), and Victor Milán had to posit algorithms which produced random results and bolt on a radioactive cannister whose decay was used as a source of random input (The Cybernetic Samurai).

about three weeks ago

Supreme Court Rules Against Aereo Streaming Service

WillAdams Re:Well that sucks! (484 comments)

Building the right antenna helps a lot for OTA TV:

I had to build one when the local PBS affiliate reduced their power output when the other stations went digital --- also location, had to run a cable upstairs and put the antenna behind the sofa (have to move it to the window when the weather is bad --- my wife won't let me hang it on the wall).

about 1 month ago

It's Not a Car, It's a Self-Balancing Electric Motorcycle (Video)

WillAdams Re:How about a BICYCLE with this tech? (218 comments)

The problem is that there isn't that much energy to harvest --- look at some of the electric conversions --- every one which I've seen which has considered regenerative energy has rejected it 'cause it doesn't make up for the added weight.

about a month ago

2 US Senators Propose 12-Cent Gas Tax Increase

WillAdams Re:One Problem (619 comments)

The bad thing is the per-axle nature of the vehicle taxes actually encourages the design of tractor-trailor designs which do even more damage --- change it to a tax based on GVW divided by the contact area of the tires (and do a tire tax based on the mass of the tire) and you'd encourage the design of vehicles which aren't so hard on the roads.

about a month ago

It's Not a Car, It's a Self-Balancing Electric Motorcycle (Video)

WillAdams Re:FF Motorcycle Solved? (218 comments)

Agree, it's an interesting solution.

If the price point were more like to that of Elio Motors, $6,800:

it'd be a lot more interesting, and I'm certainly looking forward to seeing someone make an electric version of the Elio or something like it.

(who rode his daughter's bicycle in to work today)

about a month ago

Mayday Anti-PAC On Its Second Round of Funding

WillAdams Re:interesting (247 comments)


I think it'd be a reasonable start to limit political contributions to:

  - no amount larger than $100 (make this a multiple of the current minimum wage so that the law doesn't need to be up-dated)
  - must be done as a check or money order written out by hand
  - must arrive in an envelope w/ no other funds (though as many pages of letter as the sender deems fit).

And/or, let's repeal the 17th amendment and go back to having state legislatures electing Senators --- but put in some checks and balances that the voters' will needs to be followed.

about a month and a half ago

Kickstarter Expands Allowed Projects, Automates Launches

WillAdams Re:Lazy. (58 comments)

Except they also ban weapons and weapons accessories, to include, but not limited to axes, and knives, and archery gear.

about 2 months ago

Apple Announces New Programming Language Called Swift

WillAdams Re:looks decent (636 comments)

Yes, but GNUstep is still waiting in the wings --- curious to see how this plays out long-term and if it becomes necessary for the GNUstep folks to implement a version of this, and if it does, if this results in the jump start that project needs.

about 2 months ago

I Want a Kindle Killer

WillAdams Re:Why not ask for a Jet Engine on a Motorcycle? (321 comments)

Jet engine on motorcycle --- MarineTurbine 2000:

Agree, the OP would be better served by a Surface or similar device --- my problem w/ the most recent crop of them (I need to replace my Fujitsu Stylistic ST-4121):

  - display not daylight viewable --- no one seems to use a transflective LCD aside from some ruggedized units intended for military/police use
  - moving away from Wacom stylus technology --- the Surface 3 uses an N-Trig digitizer, and I've had my fill of AAAA batteries and weird driver support issues

about 2 months ago



Trimble Software follows Adobe's subscription-only licensing lead

WillAdams WillAdams writes  |  about a year ago

WillAdams (45638) writes "From the license for the new SketchUp Make (which replaces Google's free version and complements the paid version) Trimble Navigation Limited ... gives you a ... license to use the ... Software for non-commercial use only. Non-commercial use means: you may not sell, rent, lease or lend the output of the Software or the Services. If you are ... engaged in commercial activity; therefore, in order to use the Software and Services, you must purchase a SketchUp Pro license. In addition to the basic $495 licensing fee, one must pay an annual $95 fee for maintenance & support."

Elon Musk wants to send 80,000 people to live on Mars

WillAdams WillAdams writes  |  about a year and a half ago

WillAdams (45638) writes "SpaceX founder Elon Musk wants to create a colony on Mars consisting of a population of 80,000, ferried to the planet in a reusable rocket. For the initial trip, the rocket would contain fewer than 10 humans, and enough equipment to found a colony ready for the other 79,990."
Link to Original Source

MLA updates references, web default, but no URL

WillAdams WillAdams writes  |  more than 5 years ago

WillAdams writes "Inside Higher Ed as reported the new seventh edition of the _MLA Handbook for Writers of Research Papers_ makes web references the default, but doesn't require a URL, operating under the assumption that readers will be able to find the referenced work using a search engine — an assumption which doesn't take into consideration Google bombs &c. Ars discusses it here:"
Link to Original Source


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