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In France, a Second Patient Receives Permanent Artificial Heart

canajin56 Re:I really don't my vital body parts to be on wif (183 comments)

The heart in TFA is self-regulating. It has sensors that monitor assorted vital stats and automatically adjust the heart rate as needed. According to TFA it's sophisticated enough that if your loved one enters the room the artificial heart will speed up, just like a real heart would do. The Transhumanist journalist seems to think that's a good start, but it would be even better if you could use a cellphone to override the automatic pulse so you could prevent yourself from getting over-excited, or force it into overdrive because you know you're about to go for a run / have sex. I don't know. I think my real heart does just fine in those situations. For "calming you down" I don't think induced bradycardia should go on the list. If that belongs on any list, it would be the top 10 ways to make you think you're dying.

about a month and a half ago
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Goldman Sachs Demands Google Unsend One of Its E-mails

canajin56 Re:E-mail? (346 comments)

Why? They employees doing the test were already cleared to work with the client data, or it would "violate all security policies" to have them doing the work using the old flowcharts. If you gave them fake data you would firstly also need a control group so you can be sure the fake data is just as challenging as real data (with real data you can just compare performance to the established average). And second, you're wasting time on your test! Even if the workflow ends up being less efficient so you get less work done per month, you still got some work done! If it was fake data, you would not be getting any work done while testing the new workflow.

about 4 months ago
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Goldman Sachs Demands Google Unsend One of Its E-mails

canajin56 Re:You get what you pay for... (346 comments)

This was an email about a test, not a test about an email. The email was a summary report on testing they had been doing on their "internal processes". AKA they had a new checklist or flowchart or whatever, and they were making sure that this new process meets the federal reporting requirements, while also not sucking (or whatever other requirements they have for an "internal process").

about 4 months ago
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Goldman Sachs Demands Google Unsend One of Its E-mails

canajin56 Re:why? (346 comments)

I could get prison time for opening mail that is addressed to only my wife.

No you couldn't. Well, I'm assuming you live with your wife and didn't steal the letter from her mailbox. The relevant law is 18 USC S 1702 "Obstruction of correspondence"

Whoever takes any letter, postal card, or package out of any post office or any authorized depository for mail matter, or from any letter or mail carrier, or which has been in any post office or authorized depository, or in the custody of any letter or mail carrier, before it has been delivered to the person to whom it was directed, with design to obstruct the correspondence, or to pry into the business or secrets of another, or opens, secretes, embezzles, or destroys the same, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than five years, or both.

Notice that it includes taking, opening, and destroying, all equally. If it was a felony to open your wife's mail, it would be an equal felony to remove it from the mailbox and bring it inside. It's not a felony. Mostly because this only applies while the mail is in the possession of the post office. Contrary to a related urban legend, your mailbox is not considered property of the post office. Once the letter is placed there, it is considered delievered. Taking mail from somebody else's mailbox is considered "theft" which is not a federal crime. Some states make mail theft worse than regular theft, but it's stealing regardless.

Because the law is "delievered to the person to whom it was directed" it is may still be considered "obstruction of correspondence" if you open or destroy somebody else's mail, if it was delievered to you accidentially. However, the key is still that your intent was to prevent them from getting the mail, or to pry into their secrets. If you get a letter, open it, and realize "hey, who is this from?" you are not a felon. You still need to get it back to the post office so they can deliver it properly (if they put it in the wrong box) or return it to the sender (if the person has moved without a forwarding address), otherwise you are obstructing the deliever (this is the "secreting" part of the law). But again, the law requires intent. It's not a crime if you just forget to do it.

about 4 months ago
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Mass. Supreme Court Says Defendant Can Be Compelled To Decrypt Data

canajin56 Re:The relevant part (560 comments)

It's not irrelevant. It's extremely important because of the Act of Production Doctrine.

Under the Act of Production Doctrine, the act of an individual in producing documents or materials (e.g., in response to a subpoena) may have a "testimonial aspect" for purposes of the individual's right to assert the Fifth Amendment privilege against self-incrimination to the extent that the individual's act of production provides information not already in the hands of law enforcement personnel about the (1) existence; (2) custody; or (3) authenticity, of the documents or materials produced.

For example, let's ignore computers: You are wanted for wire fraud. The police search your home with a warrant for accounting documents. They find a small fire safe in the back of your attic. They ask for your combo and like a smart criminal you say "lawyer" and nothing else. So they will see if their safe crackers can open it without risking damage to the contents. Lets say it's a sort of safe where you need to blow it open, and this may destroy the documents it might contain. So they need that combo. They go to a judge and want a subpoena for the combonation. Or rather, they subpoena the contents of the safe. You don't have to tell them the combo, but you do have to open the safe for them if you want to keep the combo secret. At least, that's what they get if the judge sides with them. So the question is, where does this fall WRT the Act of Production Doctrine. The safe was in the corner of your attic. It could have been there when you moved in. It could be your roommates. You could be aware of its existence, or not. You could have put its contents inside of it, or not. At this point, the police do not know any of these answers. So by the Act of Production Doctrine, opening the safe would be testifying as to all of these things. Therefore, the Fifth would protect you from this demand. However, if they dust it for prints and find that your prints are all over the tumbler, then you're on shakier ground. The judge may rule that this shows that your control of the safe is now a "forgone conclusion" and issue the subpoena. Of course, you could say "Well yeah, it was here when I moved in, I tried a few obvious combos, they didn't work, I gave up". That will be up to the judge to decide. Contrary to /. belief, judges are not robots, and are allowed to make this kind of judgement. If you say "I bought that years ago, I don't even remember the combonation anymore" then it is up to the judge, again, to decide if you're lying. If he thinks you're lying, he can lock you up for contempt to "jog your memory". IIRC there is no limit to how long this can go on. It's a shitty thing to happen if you legitimately don't remember your safe combo. But it's nothing anywhere CLOSE to new.

On the other hand, if instead of saying "lawyer" you said "hahaha, stupid coppers, only I know the combonation, and if you try to crack the safe you will destroy all of the evidence of my many crimes! The Firth will protect me and I'll walk!" then a judge will almost certainly accept your volunteered testimony on the matter and rule that it is a "foregone conclusion" that you know the safe combo (and that you know it contains the documents the police are looking for). So, don't say that.

In this case, the defendant did the second thing, though without all of the "I did it" bits. He admitted the laptop was his, he admitted it contained encrypted emails discussing the allegedly fradulent things the company was doing, and he admitted that he still knows the password. So the legal question was not "can we compel somebody to reveal a key" because that's already legally decided. The question is "is a password a key? or is it just a word?" The judge ruled that a password was a key, and since the defendant was no longer protected by the Act of Production Doctrine due to his own previous testimony, he can be compelled to use that key. This will only apply to you if the Act of Production Doctrine does not protect you.

about 4 months ago
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Intel Announces Devil's Canyon Core I7-4790K: 4GHz Base Clock, 4.4GHz Turbo

canajin56 Re:Can we PLEASE get rid of "turbo" (157 comments)

That's its purpose. It was going to be labeled "Slow" but it sounds cooler if you call it "Turbo" and reverse the On/Off.

about 5 months ago
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McAfee Grabbed Data Without Paying, Says Open Source Vulnerability Database

canajin56 Re:Aaron Swartz was charged for scraping content. (139 comments)

Actually, motive and intent are perhaps the most fundamental aspects of a crime. This is codified as Mens rea . Each law has its own mode of culpability. The weakest is called "strict liability", which is what you're thinking of. Under strict liability, the mind of the individual does not matter. If your vehicle is going 31 in a 30 zone, you are guilty of speeding no matter your metal state. I'm no expert, but I believe in the USA you cannot face jailtime or fines over...I want to say $1000? under strict liability. In Canada I know that you cannot face jailtime under strict liability. The rest of the levels of culpability are Negligently "Should have known their actions might lead to an illegal outcome, but didn't", Recklessly "Did know their actions might lead to an illegal outcome, but took them anyway hoping they wouldn't", Knowingly "Did know their actions certainly would lead to an illegal outcome, but took them anyway", and finally Willfully "Did know their actions certainly would lead to an illegal outcome, and took those actions because of the illegal outcome".

about 5 months ago
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Bill Gates & Twitter Founders Put "Meatless" Meat To the Test

canajin56 Re:The diffciulty in getting carnivores to switch (466 comments)

Well, but it's vegetable protein, not vegetable carbohydrates. That doesn't as such mean they are good at getting all the pea starches out...but let's look at their packaging (assuming they're not committing fraud)

For an 85g (3oz) serving of Beyond Meat "chicken" strips, the macros are: 3g fat, 20g protein, 6g carbs, 2g fiber.

For 85g of cooked chicken breast (grilled) the macros are: 2-3g fat, 19-21g protein, 1-2g carbs, 0g fiber.

So 4g net carbs vs 1g net carbs. Even on Keto I wouldn't worry too much about the difference. Overall the macro balance is quite close to chicken breast. They also appear to have more iron than real chicken by a lot (20% RDI vs 3-6%). More than steak, even (~15%).

about 6 months ago
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First Phase of TrueCrypt Audit Turns Up No Backdoors

canajin56 Re:memset() is bad? (171 comments)

As a special case, MSVC++ removes memset(array,value,sizeof(array)) if array isn't read again before the end of its scope.

For example

void Foo()
{
char password[MAX_PASSWORD_LEN];
InputPassword(password);
ProcessPassword(password);
memset(password, 0, sizeof(password));
}

The MS compiler will delete the memset. In Windows you should use RtlSecureZeroMemory to zero out memory you want to keep secure.

about 6 months ago
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Thieves Who Stole Cobalt-60 Will Soon Be Dead

canajin56 Re:isn't it possible to detect (923 comments)

Short answer: No. Long answer: What do you mean "big doses"? There are many sources of gamma rays in the atmosphere (when stuff like cosmic rays hit it, you get a nice shower of gamma rays and other neat thingies). Maybe if you have a gamma spectrograph you can filter out just the cobalt-60 gamma rays, assuming they're unique? In that case you just need to worry about the fact that the surface is huge and gamma detectors are non-directional. That means that to scan a point on the surface you need to point straight at it. Unless you have a massive constillation of sats that means each "square" you scan will need to have a pretty high CPM for there to be a statistically significant number of counts during the scan. Due to the inverse square law, your satellite in LEO will only see a few CPS if somebody within 1KM of the source is getting several MILLION CPM. That translates into radiation sickness within a few days. For being 1KM away. Don't even ask about being in the same room as it! And of course the area you're scanning in 1 second is pretty huge so this detector wouldn't be much help locating things. And that's assuming no background radiation on the same order (or higher) CPS.

This would change if you have a gamma ray vector spectrograph that lets you measure the exact frequency and vector of each gamma ray it detects. But right now I think the filters are pretty fuzzy AND the techniques used are all non-directional. Even assuming perfect filters and vector detectors, the counts have to be huge before they show up in space right when you're looking. And I think the assumption you even can filter so you won't see any background ticks is incorrect, but I have no idea what kind of spectral distribution the Earth's gamma background has.

The reason you can have satellites that detect and locate the gamma bursts of underground nuclear tests is because of the B word. If it's a burst then you can triangulate between satellites even though their detectors are scalar not vector. That's because the sudden uptick that each satellite sees is tied to the same physical event. If you're looking at decay emissions then the counts are not synchronized so you can't triangulate. Oh, and also the gamma ray burst from an explosion is pretty big compared to the decay from a few kg of cobalt-60.

about 10 months ago
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How an Astronaut Falling Into a Black Hole Would Die Part 2

canajin56 Re:Long before the event horizon (263 comments)

That depends how high you go when you say "more massive". For example, the black hole at the center of our galaxy is 4 million solar masses, and ones thought to be as heavy as 1 billion solar masses have been spotted I believe. Lets do some basic maths of proportions. The Schwarzchild radius of a blackhole is proportional to its mass. Not the something-root of its mass, but to its actual mass. That's unexpected, and it's why the other guy was almost right (but not about micro black holes). Newtonian gravity is M G / r^2 (where G is the gravitational constant G = 6.67E-11 m^3/(kg s^2)). So it will vary with mass, and inversely with squared distance. Distance at the event horizon, we just established, will vary with mass. So force at the event horizon varies with the inverse of the mass. So a 1E6 solar mass black hole would have 1E-6 as much gravity at its event horizon. So instead of about about 1.5E13, it would be 1.5E7. That's still a lot of gravity! However, remember that we are also 1E6 times as far away. The difference that 1.5M makes is then 1E-6 as great. While you might initially expect this to be 1E-12 because of it being squared, you'd be wrong if you did so. You'll have r^2 - (r+1.5)^2 = r^2 - (r^2 + 3r + 1.5^2), or proportional to r, not to r^2. So all told, the tidal forces should vary inversely with the square of the mass of the black hole. Thus, I would expect the gradient to be 1E-12 as great, or basically 2 thousandths of a gravity over 1.5 meters. More than the tidal forces of standing on Earth, but not something that will shred you. The other considerations vis-a-vis dying in a horrifying (but thankfully brief) manner at that distance are another matter entirely. But as pointed out it's a pretty rough guess to be using Newtonian gravity while standing, as it were, directly on a singularity. And about that word: A black hole can have two different sorts of singularities. A singularity means a point at which an equation is undefined. (In the equation 1 / (1-X), X=1 is a singularity). The event horizon is a singularity in equations for relativity. At this point, length and time are 0, and mass is undefined. The second singularity is what everybody always thinks of. That is a point mass, or a point with 0 volume and finite mass. Density = mass/volume. Finite/0 is undefined, so a point mass is a singularity of a different sort. However, I should note that a point mass is only required for small black holes. As the radius varies with the mass, and the volume of a sphere varies with the cube of the radius, the density of a black hole is proportional to the inverse square of its mass. When you get to the millions or billions of solar mass black holes, the density is very low and no point mass is necessary.

about a year ago
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Ramanujan's Deathbed Conjecture Finally Proven

canajin56 Re:Guy was so smart it's scary. (186 comments)

Newton was the Frozen-Light Alchemist. He earned his name from his ability to transform light into solid matter (and vice versa).

about 2 years ago
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Unredacted Filings Reveal Claims of Juror Misconduct in Apple vs Samsung Trial

canajin56 Re:He didn't disclose what he wasn't asked (282 comments)

He answered yes by raising his hand. He then volunteered ONE example. He was not asked to disclose all cases. He did not misrepresent anything. He did not state he only had one lawsuit, or answer any questions as to how many lawsuits he had been involved in. That's not his fault for those questions not being asked.

What the judge said is "All right, let's go to Mr. Hogan". You are trying to say "Mr. Hogan didn't have to say anything because that's not a question, the judge just said 'let's go' and that means nothing!" However, standard voir dire instructions are that when you raise your hand and it is "your turn", you must explain your answer in "narrative form". So the reason he gave an example is not because he volunteered an example without prompting. It was because he was instructed that, when picked by the judge, he must elaborate on his yes/no answer. To repeat that, he was required to explain his answer. The judge did not vocalize that requirement at that time, because it was part of the previous instructions. That's why all of the people who raised their hand were not asked explicitly to elaborate, but they all did when he called their names. Since he was, in fact, instructed to explain, he was required to answer truthfully. Omissions are considered deceit as far as the court is concerned.

about 2 years ago
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Are SSDs Finally Worth the Money?

canajin56 Re:Not sure if you can post anonymously early or n (405 comments)

It wasn't a question of "5 times as much an SSD" (and of course much more if the SSD is idle or off) it was a question of "too much power and heat to be used in a residential situation." It's foolish to have 1TB of ram in a desktop and then never be able to turn it off without losing everything, but not because the power consumption is so high that you couldn't use residential wiring ;)

more than 2 years ago
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Australian Study Backs Major Assumption of Cosmology

canajin56 Re:Aliens? (94 comments)

This doesn't change much. As mentioned, this is a pretty fundamental assumption. What this assumption gets you is that if you go big enough, all of the differences in mass distribution smooth out and everywhere is just like everywhere else. There will be a "typical" cluster of galaxies that "most" are "pretty close" to. And within such a typical cluster you can talk of a "typical" galaxy, and a "typical" star within that galaxy. But are we a typical planet in a typical solar system in a typical galaxy in a typical local cluster in a typical supercluster? Unknown ;)

What's more important is how common solar systems with terrestrial and gas giant planets are. If there are rocky planets, it's thought that more or less they will turn out the same at the same distance from the sun, (scaled by the sun's intensity of course), and depending on their mass for how well they can hold onto an atmosphere. (And of course that's wishy washy, it's argued whether or not Mars would be earth-like at our distance, if it would still have been too small to hold onto an atmosphere long-term, and if the a large moon is necessary to keep the magnetic field rolling). More or less the distance and primary's luminosity will determine atmospheric temperature, and that will determine the rate of out-gassing, and you'll get all kinds of feedback, and either end up with a Venus, Earth, or Mars depending on how the atmospheric pressure and temperature equilibriums end up balanced. There doesn't appear to be a HUGE amount of variance in elemental abundance between solar systems, except according to their age. (Even that is more of a quick rule of thumb than a hard curve). This of course isn't settled by any means. Then you have things that are less settled. How important is a moon to things? Some say our magnetic field would be gone by now without the tidal forces of the moon keeping the core etc. churning away. Others say that's silly, but it might be a bit weaker by now. Then you have to figure out how much water and such we got from bombardment by comets flung out of orbit by gas giants. How many and how large of gas giants do you need to typically get that effect? Is it even strictly necessary, or just handy? Would we have still ended up Earth-like (with much smaller oceans perhaps?) without Late Heavy Bombardment? Or would we have frozen solid without the greenhouse effect of all that water? Or did most of our water come from within anyway so at most we would just have slightly smaller oceans and slightly lower temperature? If gas giants are needed, we at least have spotted those all over the place. (In fact we've spotted them around stars we thought shouldn't have any!)

None of that is really helped or hindered by the homogeneity of the entire universe. If we can get the telescope resolution to make fair estimates on the likelihood of earth-like planets (for some definition of that term) throughout the Milky Way, then we can maybe look at nearby galaxies and guestimate how likely those stars are to be like our own stars...and from there if we can eventually look far enough we can say "OK well by homogeneity most galaxies are probably pretty close to this, so maybe earth-like planets are around about this common...ish".

more than 2 years ago
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Red Hat Fights Patent Troll With GPL

canajin56 Re:Not a NPE, Is it a Troll? (98 comments)

SCO wasn't a patent troll by any reasonable definition of the term. This is not because they had a product for sale, but because they didn't sue over patents.

more than 2 years ago
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Astronomers Fix the Astronomical Unit

canajin56 Re:Distance remains the same? (182 comments)

The semi-major axis is usually called the "distance" because it's equal to the averaged mean distance between the planet and the foci (one of which is the sun). Though that depends what you average over. I think if you average over time it's approximately equal if eccentricity is small.

more than 2 years ago
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Black Mesa Released

canajin56 Re:Comparison to HL2 port from Valve? (130 comments)

Half-Life: Source used all of the same models and maps, but added the physics engine for rag-doll effects, used shaders for improved water effects, had some limited dynamic lighting improvements (I think?), replaced the pre-rendered 16-bit skybox with dynamic effects, and cleaned up the specular/normal maps for better bump mapping and such. That is, it was a port to a new engine, with almost no changes to the content other than the cleaned-up normal maps and the quick switch-out of the skybox. Black Mesa is not a port, but a remake. They redid all of the maps and most of the models that weren't available already as part of HL2, so it takes full advantage of all the new shaders and lighting stuff, and has much higher resolution textures and models.

more than 2 years ago
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Scientists Themselves Play Large Role In Bad Reporting

canajin56 I hate Odds Ratios (114 comments)

One of the worst "bad abstract tricks" is putting your findings as Odds Ratios. What's an Odds Ratio? You probably know that the "probability" of an event is "Event over Total". The probability of rolling a 6 on a standard die is 1/6. The "odds" of an event is "Event to Not Event". The odds of rolling a 6 are not 1:6, they are 1:5 for (or more often said, 5:1 against). So then the odds ratio (OR) of two groups is the ratio of ratios, or the ratio of the odds for one event compared to the odds of another. So a big source of confusion is thinking the odds and probability are the same thing. Clearly they aren't. And clearly the closer they get to even odds, the bigger the difference. The odds of tossing a coin and getting heads are 1:1, but that's a 1:2 probability.

An example of the odds ratio in action: You ask 1000 men if they smoke, and you get 300 who say "yes" (made up statistics). That's odds of 300 to 700, or 3:7. You ask 1000 women if they smoke, and 250 say "yes". That's odds of 250:750, or 1:3. The odds ratio is then (3:7) : (1:3) or 9:7, or 1.2857...:1 So in the abstract you will see that this study has found that males have an OR of 1.29 when compared with women. And they'll just sit back and let the journalists call that "almost 30% more likely!" When it's not. That's how much higher the odds are, and odds are not probability! And of course you can't forget about confidence intervals. It's actually even worse than that. An increasing number of medical papers will take the OR of 20:1 and go straight to "20 fold more likely to blank!" when the probability ratio is 3.5:1 not 20:1.

Part of the problem is not enough statistics courses for scientists. I had to take 2 as part of my degree, and they never covered odds ratios, or odds at all actually. Only probabilities, which are more useful to reason about usually. This is further compounded by people using odds and probability interchangeably. I see on things like scratch and wins and store give aways "Odds of winning 1 in 3", which is a probability.

more than 2 years ago

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