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'Thermoelectrics' Could One Day Power Cars

exploder Sounds fishy (151 comments)

they have used a cheap, well-known material to create the most heat-hungry thermoelectric so far

Did they do it with one weird trick discovered by a mom?

yesterday
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Why Are We Made of Matter?

exploder Re:Ah, antimatter (392 comments)

That is so obviously not what the GP meant.

about two weeks ago
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A Rock Paper Scissors Brainteaser

exploder Re:BAD SUMMARY (167 comments)

Obviously it's a long-time average. The chance of deviating from 50% by any given amount goes to zero as the number of trials becomes arbitrarily large. The summary doesn't spell this out in iron-clad logic, but anyone who spends time thinking about math, stats, or especially game theory knows the score.

about two weeks ago
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The 3D Economy — What Happens When Everyone Prints Their Own Shoes?

exploder Re:So far away (400 comments)

Meant to mod parent funny, misclicked "overrated", posting to undo.

about three weeks ago
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UK Bans Sending Books To Prisoners

exploder Re:Sounds reasonable, but look who's in prison (220 comments)

Parent and GGP are right, and GP is mistaken, as TFS clearly states. The issue is "a new earned-incentives and privileges scheme", i.e., control.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Consider Elegant Code?

exploder Re:Elegant code is... (373 comments)

I suspect he meant "consistent".

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Consider Elegant Code?

exploder Re:GPS? Are you kidding? (373 comments)

Saved me from writing the same thing. The GPS code I've seen, written by engineers and not programmers, was an incredibly hacked-together, barely-functional set of kludges to implement a lot of very elegant mathematics.

Yeah. If you want elegance, you should probably just go straight to the math. As soon as you put it into a computer with its pesky limitations of finite time and space, elegance goes right out the window.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: What Do You Consider Elegant Code?

exploder Re:GPS? Are you kidding? (373 comments)

As someone who got lost somewhere deep in a single sentence (which consumed three whole screen-width lines) that spent nearly 100 words on a dependent clause (which itself contained two parenthetical clauses) before even getting to the subject (I was starting to wonder if there would be one at all) I question the value of your comments on the topic of elegance...

about three weeks ago
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Algorithm Reveals Objects Hidden Behind Other Things In Camera Phone Images

exploder Re:At least spell it right (85 comments)

Can I get this in a Car analogy?

I guess it would be like driving a Chevy Lumia van.

about a month ago
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Big Bang's Smoking Gun Found

exploder Re:Next up: a direct detection (269 comments)

Are you a physicist, or have you seriously studied physics, or do you have a source for that? Because I'm sure I've read numerous times about actual physicists hoping to detect gravity waves from merging black holes.

about 1 month ago
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Google Sued Over Children's In-App Android Purchases

exploder Re:Please.... (321 comments)

to the detriment of the rest of us.

Yes.

Yes, everyone loves to believe that they are (and always will be) smart and tough enough that THEY don't need any of those pesky nanny-state consumer protection laws. Mr. Galt, is that you?

about a month ago
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Google Sued Over Children's In-App Android Purchases

exploder Re:Please.... (321 comments)

You kept the "N hours" but conveniently forgot the "just keeping them entertained" part. Hooray for honest discourse!

Look here: I spend N hours already keeping him fed, sheltered, healthy, and educated. I also have my own responsibilities related to and financially supporting those. If I have a few hours left over, do I want to spend them watching over his shoulder while he plays PokeSmurfVillage or whatever game he's into this week? Fuck no. But I guess that makes me an incompetent parent. Right?

Parenting is a whole lot more than supervising your children while they play. There, you learned something today. You're welcome.

about a month ago
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Google Sued Over Children's In-App Android Purchases

exploder Re:Please.... (321 comments)

To begin with, the justice system should be based entirely on rehabilitation, not punishment, so it's our "Tough On Crime" mentality that causes these problems in the first place. So we should be tailoring it to the individuals, anyway. I care more about real justice than anything else.

Well, this is where I bow out. I agree entirely that rehabilitation is more worthwhile, but less emphasized (at least in the US, where I live) than retribution. But if we're beginning the discussion with a complete overhaul of the entire criminal justice system, then I think I'll sit out. I came here to talk about Google's payment authorization scheme.

Have a good day.

about a month ago
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Google Sued Over Children's In-App Android Purchases

exploder Re:Please.... (321 comments)

Kids got along just fine before tablets, and in many cases were more social and had more exercise.

This "good old days" thinking is lazy and often wrong. My kid has basically all the screen time he wants (I don't set limits), but he plays outside with our neighbors for hours a day, running up and down the street or playing basketball. And you may not have noticed it, but games are quite social these days. He's always trading pokemon or game secrets with his friends who play the same games, or even playing some of them online with the neighbors.

about a month ago
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Google Sued Over Children's In-App Android Purchases

exploder Re:Please.... (321 comments)

It's not about having "N hours to keeping them entertained", it's about choosing the mode of entertainment. Kids got along just fine before tablets, and in many cases were more social and had more exercise.

I'm not against kids playing games etc - I certainly played enough in my youth - but there are better things than surrounding them with screens 24/7

Nobody is saying that surrounding them with screens 24/7 is the answer. And it's not like other modes of entertainment are without risk. I have to supervise my kid to some extent no matter what he's doing--playing with neighbor kids, making something with glue, paint, scissors, etc., or playing games on the tablet. This isn't about parents abdicating their duties to the tablet. This is about an unreasonable system.

If the intersection by my house had no stop signs, I'd go to the city council and say, "Hey! There's an uncontrolled intersection right next to my house, and I can't let my kid out the door without direct supervision, or he could get hurt. There need to be some stop signs there!" That's the answer, not "pay closer attention to your kid you lazy parent!"

Likewise, if I can't let my kid play on the tablet without hovering over his shoulder the whole time to make sure he doesn't accidentally buy $99 worth of fooberries, the best answer isn't to just suck it up and watch him play his game for an hour. The answer is to put in some damn stop signs, and that's all people are asking for here.

about a month ago
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Google Sued Over Children's In-App Android Purchases

exploder Re:Please.... (321 comments)

This is exactly the problem.

Current situation: Thank you for entering your password to authorize the purchase on screen. I will not bother to mention that you've also authorized unlimited additional purchases over the next half hour.

Bare minimum acceptable solution: Thank you for entering your password to authorize this purchase, as well as unlimited additional purchases for half an hour.

Slightly better: Please enter your password to authorize this purchase, as well as unlimited additional purchases for half an hour.

Good, and easy solution: Thank you for your purchase. Authorize additional purchases for the next (30 minutes | 24 hours | Forever | No thanks, ask for my password next time ).

about a month ago
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Google Sued Over Children's In-App Android Purchases

exploder Re:Please.... (321 comments)

No, we treat children in a certain way because they are children.

So you arbitrarily decide to treat them in a certain way based on nothing but their age. Thanks for making that clear.

Yes. You know what, you sound like you are either a child yourself, or someone who hasn't lived as an adult long enough to learn that rules are never perfect, but "everyone should just do the obviously right thing all the time" is not a feasible substitute.

about a month ago
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Google Sued Over Children's In-App Android Purchases

exploder Re:Please.... (321 comments)

Well, I don't care about the law, so that's an irrelevant point to me. Laws are often illogical and/or unjust.

You're definitely going places with that attitude! (Places where the toilet is right next to the bed, most likely.)

Also, you do realize you're commenting on an article about a LAWsuit, right?

it would be totally impractical to make this judgement on a case-by-case basis

No, it wouldn't.

That's a compelling rebuttal, but consider this: when a minor (16 or 17 usually) is to be tried as an adult, or an adult is to be declared incompetent to stand trial (insanity defense), a lot of the court's time is taken up deciding one way or the other, independent of the question of guilt. If that process had to be followed for every criminal prosecution, every day, then yes, it would be utterly impractical.

about a month ago

Submissions

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DoJ is Against Net Neutrality

exploder exploder writes  |  more than 6 years ago

exploder (196936) writes "Forbes reports that the Justice Department has come out against net neutrality, supporting their decision by analogy to the USPS:

The agency said providing different levels of service is common, efficient and could satisfy consumers. As an example, it cited that the U.S. Postal Service charges customers different guarantees and speeds for package delivery, ranging from bulk mail to overnight delivery.
I guess they'd have no problem with the post office charging extra to deliver letters to certain people, then?"

Link to Original Source
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Gamma Ray Anomaly Could Test String Theory

exploder exploder writes  |  more than 6 years ago

exploder (196936) writes "String theory is notorious for its lack of testable predictions. But if the MAGIC gamma-ray telescope team's interpretation is correct, then a delay in the arrival of higher-energy gamma rays could point to a breakdown of relativity theory. A type of "quantum lensing effect" is postulated to cause the delay, which is approximateley four minutes over a half-billion year journey."
Link to Original Source

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