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FBI Concerned About Criminals Using Driverless Cars

dpidcoe Re:don't drive with nobody in it? (435 comments)

That would remove a huge amount of the utility of driverless cars. Things like having it drop you off at the airport, or let you out at the mall while it finds a place to park, or any other number of other activities that require a bit of preplanning and someone else to drive (and often be inconvenienced for it).

about a month and a half ago
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Python Bumps Off Java As Top Learning Language

dpidcoe Re:another language shoved down your throat (415 comments)

But it's not teaching good practices, it's forcing them for what appears to be arbitrary reasons to the students. As soon as they switch to a language where whitespace isn't required, they see no reason to have proper indentation anymore since the compiler isn't forcing it.

If indentation isn't forced, then they can learn the hard way (e.g. tracking down a bug through their own horribly formatted code) about why you pay attention to making it look nice and readable even if the compiler doesn't force you to do so.

about 2 months ago
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Python Bumps Off Java As Top Learning Language

dpidcoe Re:another language shoved down your throat (415 comments)

I've never been fooled by indentation that didn't match the way it compiled. However, I have been fooled plenty of times by pythons use of indentation.

I feel like forcing indentation in the language is a crutch for people who can't figure out how the tab key works.

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Would It Take For You To Buy a Smartwatch?

dpidcoe Re:Built-in A/C and UV light (427 comments)

Anyway, unless you don't sweat I don't see how you wouldn't notice the nasty looking (and smelling) whiteness every night you took the thing off. I guess you could have low sweat and fare skin, or something.

I never take my watch off and have never ever had even a hint of that problem. Since you mentioned "on the spectrum", I'd bet there were some sensory issues going on and you were cranking the band down tight.

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Would It Take For You To Buy a Smartwatch?

dpidcoe Re:Acceptable battery life (427 comments)

That's great and everything, but I (and the poster I was responding to) were both referring to plugging in an android phone. Presumably you already take your phone out of your pocket before going to bed, so I don't see how that's an extra step unless you're in the habit of wearing your phone on your wrist.

Also, I'd find it more annoying to have to charge my phone every other night. It's a lot easier to have something as a routine you do every day at the same time, rather than to try and remember to do something on only odd days.

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Would It Take For You To Buy a Smartwatch?

dpidcoe Re:Built-in A/C and UV light (427 comments)

Built-in A/C and UV light to compensate for the sweatiness and tan-marks that come from wearing a watch. This is the no. 1 reason why I would never consider wearing a watch again. Obviously I'm joking with the subject line.

I wish you were joking about the reason too.

I've worn a $15 casio watch (I replace it every few years as the faceplate gets scratched up) for the last 15 years and I've never gotten a tan line (and no, I actually do do a lot of outdoor things) or suffered from issues with sweat or hair being caught.

Are you buying some kind of metal banded watch and then shoving it up your arm to make it as tight as you can or something?

about 2 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Would It Take For You To Buy a Smartwatch?

dpidcoe Re:Acceptable battery life (427 comments)

I can't even stand the thought of owning a smartphone model that requires recharging every day.

What's so hard about plugging it in before you go to sleep at night?

about 2 months ago
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Maglev Personal Transportation System Set For Trial In Tel Aviv

dpidcoe Re:Long Overdue Use of "free space" (81 comments)

Homeless people do not piss in inconvenient places because they hate your freedom, they do it because they have nowhere else.

No, they do it because they're mentally ill homeless people. Or do you think that all of them are just normal guys who just got a little unlucky and couldn't find a job for 20 years straight?

about 2 months ago
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Are the Glory Days of Analog Engineering Over?

dpidcoe Re:The world... (236 comments)

today's EE's dont' even know how to solder. its pathetic. they run a sim and type on keyboards. some don't even use test gear, like scopes.

I think that's more of a "todays college graduates" issue than anything specific to EEs. I'm a computer science major and I can solder, use a dmm/osciliscope/spectrum analyzer, program PICs and microcontrollers, design (simple) PCB layouts, design (simple) circuits, etc. I'm even working on a summer project to build a theremin using surface mount parts. This is all in addition to the standard CS skillset, and I do it because my immediate reaction to coming into contact with something I don't know or don't understand is to try and learn all that I can about it.

But then I've got classmates who don't know any of that stuff, and also constantly struggle with even simple CS concepts. They don't want to learn new things, they just expect that now because they did the bare minimum of effort to obtain a degree they'll land a 100k a year job doing "coding". Even though they still have only the vaguest idea about what coding actually is or how to do it. I know someone who's theoretically starting on their junior year, yet struggles with things such as implementing a function in a java program (and the entire early CS curriculum is basically in java, so it's not like a language issue or something). The scary bit is that a lot of these people have already graduated.

about 3 months ago
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Cisco Opposes Net Neutrality

dpidcoe Re:I prefer (337 comments)

Because your video stream can buffer and if you care about your trading data that much you should have a dedicated line so you don't loose 10 million from a few second network hiccup.

about 3 months ago
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Teacher Tenure Laws Ruled Unconstitutional In California

dpidcoe Re:You make it... (519 comments)

Except VB6 is not a central tenant of any religion that I have ever heard of.

Obviously you've never met a python fanatic then.

about 3 months ago
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NSA's Novel Claim: Our Systems Are Too Complex To Obey the Law

dpidcoe Re:Fine ... (245 comments)

If you can't have your data available to demonstrate what you're doing it lawful, and you are going to delete it, then only reasonable conclusion is what you are doing cannot be proven lawful.

Therefore, the program is not lawful, and you need to stop.

So if you're not going to answer the questions to demonstrate your innocence, and your memory is fuzzy anyway, then the only reasonable conclusion is that you're guilty and therefore need to be thrown in jail?

That's a bit of a dangerous precident to be setting.

about 3 months ago
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Lose Sleep, Fail To Form Memory

dpidcoe Re:College (85 comments)

Even then... It's been my experience that assuming you're not an idiot (granted that's a bold assumption since you didn't study until the night before) and showed up to lectures or at least know a little about the material, you'll often have better chances reasoning out the questions in a less sleep deprived state.

about 3 months ago
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The Sci-Fi Myth of Killer Machines

dpidcoe Re:Typical human fear (222 comments)

Especially if you were that much smarter than humanity. It makes about as much sense as humans deciding to wipe out canine life on the planet. In fact dogs are a hell of a lot better off because humans are around. Instead we control them in ways dogs don't understand.

I'm out of mod points, but that's a actually pretty insightful.

I'd suspect that the first AIs we'd see (if sci-fi style AIs even become a thing, I don't think they will but that's a different argument) would be to do things like predict markets and aid in complex decision making. If AIs did decide to "take over", I would suspect that it would come in the form of giving humans advice, and then humans willingly following that advice because they know that the AI is quite smart and it'll make things work out well in the long run.

Eventually humans might technologically regress (or AIs might just become smart to the point we can't comprehend their thought processes anymore) that the AIs become the future analog of old time prophets telling people when to plant their crops. I doubt that an AI would decide to kill all the humans, thought they might end up using humans as pawns to kill each other. Either for population reduction or maybe to take out or defend against a competing AI or some reason completely incomprehensible to us. By that point humans may willingly go and do it in the same way that dogs have been used for similar tasks.

about 3 months ago
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ISS-Above Tells You When the International Space Station is Overhead (Video)

dpidcoe I've seen these guys before (59 comments)

I've seen these guys before at maker faire. It's a neat idea, but I never really understood what was so special about it compared to just downloading a smartphone app or internet or (*gasp*) maybe even reading up on how to do the math and figuring out where it is on your own.

about 3 months ago
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Protecting Our Brains From Datamining

dpidcoe Re:Increasingly common? (100 comments)

The problem is that there's only so much you can do to a signal to amplify it before there's no signal left.

With a current gen headset, if you were to turn off the 60hz notch filter, the signal it would be picking up from the power lines would drown out the brain signals by several orders of magnitude. Even someone waving their hand over top of your head while you wear one will cause enough interference to blot out the sorts of signals the brain produces. On top of that, those signals that we can pick up are extremely broad, created by millions of neurons firing in sequence. Unless it becomes legal to plant wires in peoples heads that can detect the actions of single neurons, or we develop some kind of wearable FMRI, the kind of things that article is worried about are so far ahead as to be in the territory of asking how we should regulate flying cars.

EEG technology is akin to telling what state a computer is on by opening up the case and pointing some IR thermometers at different components and measuring the temperature. I could tell if you're doing something graphically intensive vs CPU intensive vs memory intensive, and maybe make some inferences based on the time of day and previous states but that's it. It doesn't matter how much more sensitive you make an IR thermometer, it's not going to give me any more detailed information than a vague idea of what bits are being used more than others.

about 3 months ago
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Solar Impulse 2 Makes First Flight

dpidcoe Re:Why does it need to land anyway (34 comments)

Because no one cares if a computer flies around the world. They need to see a human put their life in danger for it to be interesting.

about 3 months ago
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Protecting Our Brains From Datamining

dpidcoe Re:Increasingly common? (100 comments)

Or is it a click-bait headline that really means here's a couple of companies who have a product which does it but nobody else does?

Definitely a click-bait headline. They have enough trouble getting the accuracy and resolution required to tell those sorts of things with medical grade EEGs, let alone a consumer grade headset.

about 3 months ago
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Local Police Increasingly Rely On Secret Surveillance

dpidcoe Re:Double edged sword (146 comments)

But but but.... if you haven't done anything wrong, then you've got nothing to hide from their wiretaps!!11~

about 3 months ago
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ISEE-3 Satellite Is Back Under Control

dpidcoe Re:hard-wired can be a computer (56 comments)

This picture is clearly a Tube Amplifer for example.

Well.. if you say so I guess.

Personally I was going to chalk it up to some kind of art project where the artist was attempting to spell out letters in a different language using random electrical components as the medium.

about 3 months ago

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