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Elon Musk: We Must Put a Million People On Mars To Safeguard Humanity

duckintheface More Efficient (481 comments)

Hauling 1M bodies to Mars is not an efficient way to populate the planet. Unless and until we have a reliable and cost effective artificial womb, the limiting factor is the ability to have babies. So we should start with, say, 100 very intelligent and skilled, and physically capable women. Each of them should be inpregnated on Mars with frozen, fertilized ova from a stock representing the genetic diversity of Earth. Did I mention that the ova should all be females? So assuming that each woman can bear 7 children in her lifetime (a reasonable average based on good medical care and historic norms) and that the generation time is 20 years, it would take about 125 years to reach a population of 1 million. During that 125 year period the women would be busy building a modern civilization while also devoting a major portion of their time ot childcare. Constant resupply of food and manufactured products would have to be provided from Earth. Oh, and I guess they could have a few males around... you know... for entertainment.

12 hours ago
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Seattle Passes Laws To Keep Residents From Wasting Food

duckintheface A little class with your trash. (383 comments)

I was in Seattle recently. The guys who pick up the compostable garbage were driving around listening to classical music.... turned up loud so you could hear it over the sound of the truck engine. Not your typical garbage collectors.

Yes, the headline is a pathetic attempt to ring the bell for the conservative Pavlovian dogs to make them salivate all over slashdot. The implication of the headline is that it is about people wasting edible food by throwing it in the trash. Actually it is about compostables (food or otherwise) being placed in the trash steam headed to the landfill rather than the composting station.

about a week ago
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Chimpanzee Intelligence Largely Determined By Genetics

duckintheface Re:Intelligence isn't always advantageous (157 comments)

The usual explanation is that large, active brains use lots of energy, which in some environments is better spent gathering bananas.

about 3 months ago
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Chimpanzee Intelligence Largely Determined By Genetics

duckintheface The hightest correlation... (157 comments)

... is to the A112 virus. But you knew that.

about 3 months ago
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Percentage of Elderly In Japan Continues to Grow as Number of Children Drops

duckintheface natural balance (283 comments)

The first question that anyone interested in economics, enviornment... anything really.... should ask is, "What is the optimal populaiton for the country or the planet?" To accomplish anything of value, you at least have to know if the optimal population is higher or lower than the current population.

If our goal is the best life for human beings, the optimal number is clearly less than "standing room only" for population density. Based on resource depletion, current pollution, and the massive extinction event we are currently experiencing for other species, I would think the optimum is considerably less than the current population.

The US standard of living has, on average, not improved since the 1970s and has decreased in the last 5 years. Economic growth is not the goal. Per captta economic growth is the relevant value.

Eventually we have to come into a natural balance so that each child born is replacing a person who has died. The longer we wait to start moving to that balance, the more painful the process will be.

about 5 months ago
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The Mere Promise of Google Fiber Sends Rivals Scrambling

duckintheface Re:Competition (258 comments)

Google doesn't necessarily care who provides the fast internet service to it's online customers. They aren't going to make their money from selling internet infrastructure. Google is just as happy if ATT builds the cables. However, that could change if net neutrality is knocked down.

about 5 months ago
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Jenny McCarthy: "I Am Not Anti-Vaccine'"

duckintheface Re:Why do people listen to her? (588 comments)

All of the references cited in the OA are about other people characterizing McCarthy's position. I have not seen any direct quote from her that indicates an opposition to the principle of vaccines or the efficacy of all vaccines. She is misguided in insisting that vaccines cause autism, but that is not the same thing as being against vaccination in general.

about 6 months ago
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Jenny McCarthy: "I Am Not Anti-Vaccine'"

duckintheface Re:Why do people listen to her? (588 comments)

I think she is wrong to connect vaccines to autism. But attacking her personally is not necessary or relevant. Her general position that she is not against vaccines in general but only against un-safe vaccines is a valid position. Why bother nit-picking nuances or perceived contradictions in wording. It's all irrelevant. The only issue is: Are existing vaccines safe and could they be made safer? All else is nonsense.

about 6 months ago
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Snowden Says No One Listened To 10 Attempts To Raise Concerns At NSA

duckintheface Re:The tighter you clench your fist, Lord Vader... (273 comments)

Leia directs this to Wilhuff Tarkin, not Lord Vader. Tarkin is a Grand Moff of the Galactic Empire and is in charge of the Death Star.

So the quote is:

        "The more you tighten your grip, Tarkin, the more star systems will slip through your fingers."
        Princess Leia

about 7 months ago
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Austin Has Highest Salaries For Tech Workers, After Factoring In Cost of Living

duckintheface Re:Denver? Atlanta? (285 comments)

Research Triangle Park (Raleigh-Durham-Chapel Hill) is a larger tech hub than Austin. And the cost of living is lower as well. Don't know about average salaries.

about 7 months ago
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Ubuntu Gnome Seeking Long Term Support Status

duckintheface 2 years 3 months (26 comments)

Since LTS distributions are supported for 5 years, why would Gnome only be supported for 2 years?

about 7 months ago
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Scottish Independence Campaign Battles Over BBC Weather Forecast

duckintheface Re:I will never happen (286 comments)

And all that oil would be outside the EU then.

about 7 months ago
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Scottish Independence Campaign Battles Over BBC Weather Forecast

duckintheface Not the first time (286 comments)

This would not be the first time distorted maps have been used for a political purpose. There is no reason use the Mercator projection on world maps except to make the northern hemisphere countries look much larger than those in Africa and South America near the equator. (Hint: Africa is enormous but is often shown as smaller than North America)

about 7 months ago
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Google Fighting Distracted Driver Laws

duckintheface Re:equal treatment (226 comments)

Exactly! A whining 5 year old in the back seat is more distracting than an image on Glass. You can't test every possible behavior before it is allowed in a car. The law should be that every driver is RESPONSIBLE for paying attention to the road. If I am being distracted by Glass, I have a duty to turn it off.

about 7 months ago
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Google Fighting Distracted Driver Laws

duckintheface Re:Based on what study (226 comments)

Why do you limit this to technology? What study has shown that it is safe to drive while eating a Big Mac? Are you going to test every possible behavior before it is allowed in a car? What about holding hands while driving? What about having kids in the back seat? Isn't that a distraction? I bet google glass is less distracting than a 5 year old in the back seat who is whining constantly.

about 7 months ago
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Google Fighting Distracted Driver Laws

duckintheface equal treatment (226 comments)

There are plenty of questions about privacy and security raised by Google Glass but I think all products should be treated equally. I might be more distracted while driving by a Big Mac or a cigarette than by an image out of my field of view on Glass. This is too subjective a judgement to be made by politicians through the legislative process.

about 7 months ago
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"Microsoft Killed My Pappy"

duckintheface When justice is done (742 comments)

The important date is not when the actionable behavior took place (1994) or then the anti-trust action began (1998). The important question is "when was justice done?" and the only possible answer is NOT YET. Microsoft stole all it's online market share from the inventor of the browser, Netscape. The only reasonable justice would be to return their online market share to what it was in 1994. I think that was about 20%, if we are being charitable to M$. So M$ should have been banned from selling any product that accessed the internet until thier total market share returned to 20%. That has not happened... yet.

about 7 months ago
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We Can Avoid a Surveillance State Dystopia

duckintheface time delay (267 comments)

The internet is an inherently chaotic system with most of the computing power on the edges and very weak central controls. This is by design because it creates a stable, robust network. Individuals (first from universities) swarmed the internet in an explosion of creativity. They were followed by corporations as the net was opened to commercial activity. Government was late to the game and is only now coming to grips with how to use the internet for monitoring citizens.

As individuals moved online, there was certainly an increase in freedom to communicate. But now that "total information awareness " is upon us, we are less free. And in a way that's more dangerous than it was in 1984 because, at least until very recently, we did not know how limited our freedom was.

about 7 months ago
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House Committee Approves Bill Banning In-Flight Phone Calls

duckintheface Whose phone is banned? (366 comments)

If there is a problem with voice calls bothering other people on a plane, why does the airline provide phones built into the seats. How does that differ from me using my cell phone? Oh yeah, I have to pay the airline to use their phone.

And does this new law ban calls from the airline owed phones? Well, thay ARE voice calls, and the airline phones are moving at 600 MPH so I guess that qualifies them as mobile divices. :)

about 8 months ago

Submissions

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End of the tenure process?

duckintheface duckintheface writes  |  more than 4 years ago

duckintheface (710137) writes "A professor at the University of Alabama in Huntsville reportedly (http://mediaelites.com/?p=12975) killed three members of the Biology faculty when she was denied tenure. After serving for seven years as Assistant Professor at UAH, Harvard trained biologist Amy Bishop, PhD was denied tenure and then allegedly opened fire in a faculty meeting, killing three and wounding three other members of the faculty.

As tenure becomes more difficult or impossible for even very talented candidates to achieve, many will find themselves... at the age of 35-40.... tossed out on the street with nothing to show for spending their entire adult lives working at low wages. Should we be surprised if this becomes a more common end to the tenure process?"

Link to Original Source
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Open Source as a model in the Presidential race

duckintheface duckintheface writes  |  about 6 years ago

duckintheface writes "Ed Cone at CIO Insight has just published a four-part series comparing the Presidential campaign to well known technological models. In Part 1 (http://blogs.cioinsight.com/knowitall/content001/the_ground_game_open_source_vs_closed.html) he looks at the grass-roots based Obama operation as "open source" while the McCain campaign is run like a closed source project. (The comparison is made by a Republican staffer who apparently doesn't think much of open source.)

"The differences in the two campaigns start with the candidates themselves — not just McCain's much-discussed lack of computer skills, but Obama's interest in organizing, which staffers credit with inspiring the people-powered feel of the operation. Krohn says the Republican approach is more controlled and carefully monitored. 'It's the difference between open and closed source,' he says."
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duckintheface duckintheface writes  |  more than 7 years ago

duckintheface (710137) writes "Super-blogger Amanda Marcotte (of Pandagon.net fame) resigned today from her position with the John Edwards for President campaign under pressure from right-wing groups who objected to her personal views. http://www.pandagon.net/ Marcotte submitted her resignation because she felt that "every time I coughed, I was risking the Edwards campaign". Marcotte is famous for her biting feminist wit and insight into the way the religious right slams free speech. The line that brought her down? In a discussion of Catholic teachings on birth control, she asked rhetorically, "What if Mary had taken Plan B after the Lord filled her with his hot, white, sticky Holy Spirit?""

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