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Comments

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Nat Geo Writer: Science Is Running Out of "Great" Things To Discover

extraqwert he invented the term ``ironic science'' (292 comments)

I think ``ironic science'' is a useful concept. However, this particular article is a bit strange. The title has ``Science running out...'' but in the body of the article he almost solely talks about physics. How about molecular biology? No hope for great discoveries? And pure mathematics? Maybe, he does not think mathematics is a science...
As for physics, it does indeed appear to be in crisis. It seems that physics is running out of fundamental problems which can be approached within its traditional methodology. But at the same time, this methodology is extremely valuable. Perhaps the right solution is to go towards becoming a ``multidisciplinary environment''. That is, to inject the methodology of physics into other fields of science. For example, many ideas of modern mathematics were inspired by string theory. This is a manifestation of the usefulness of the physicist's way of thinking.
It would be a pity if physics dies, or even worse goes into that undead state which Horgan calls ``ironic science''.

about 4 months ago
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Feynman Lectures on Physics Vol. 1 Released in HTML Format

extraqwert LaTeX to HTML (129 comments)

LaTeX to bystroTeX should be easy, although I do not yet have a working converter. BystroTeX produces HTML. The syntax of bystroTeX is Racket Scribble, it is very similar to LaTeX so writing a converter should be more or less straightforward.

about 10 months ago
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Dentist Wants To Clone John Lennon Using DNA Extracted From Lennon's Tooth

extraqwert if I were a dentist (224 comments)

If I were a dentist, I would clone myself from a tooth

about a year ago
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Jon 'Maddog' Hall On Project Cauã: a Server In Every Highrise

extraqwert Re:DEAR GOD WHY? (151 comments)

Because of the insane import tax, personal computers are very expensive in Brazil. Maybe this project would help people who cannot afford buying a computer.

about a year ago
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Meet Pidora, the New Official Fedora Remix For Raspberry Pi

extraqwert Re:News for lazy nerds (51 comments)

Wake me up when you can run a lightweight Linux distro on an Arduino.

Would you prefer Perduino or Pidorino?

about a year ago
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iPad App Offers Detailed Images of Einstein's Brain

extraqwert I apologize for my rudeness (66 comments)

Idolatry is a manifestation of laziness. We believe that Einstein had some special brain, as an excuse for not exercising ours. A person has extraordinary achievements. The easiest thing for others, is to proclaim him/her a ``genius'' and take it easy.

about 2 years ago
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Ask Slashdot: Assembling a Linux Desktop Environment From Parts?

extraqwert wmjump for switching (357 comments)

I written wmjump some time ago, for switching between workspaces and applications. Here it is: http://code.google.com/p/wmjump/ This uses ``hints'' similar to Vimperator's. If I had more time, I would maintain it more often. But it works, more or less, on all window managers which support EWMH. I use it myself (with xmonad), and I still think that this is the best format for switching windows.

more than 2 years ago
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Why Wave Failed

extraqwert no whiteboard (350 comments)

I tried to use wave, but never figured out how to use their whiteboard. Now I don't remember what was the problem. They did have a whiteboard, but for some reason it was not usable.

more than 3 years ago
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Using Classical Music As a Form of Social Control

extraqwert why not (721 comments)

Actually, a large part of the classical music is religious. Which could be considered a form of social control

more than 4 years ago
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China Will Lead World Scientific Research By 2020

extraqwert solution: 10 percent rule (387 comments)

That's why US should adopt 5-year plans, at least in academia. Then we might be able to catch up. Seriously, every US university should just increase the volume of their scientific publications, say, 10 percent every year, starting this year.

more than 4 years ago
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Russia Plans To Divert Asteroid

extraqwert Re:If it's not broken, why are you fixing it? (305 comments)

Orbital mechanics have a funny way of making an object return to its point of egress.

I think this is only true in a 2-body problem

more than 4 years ago
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In Trial, Kindles Disappointing University Users

extraqwert bookmark a page in pdf document (247 comments)

By the way, does anybody know how to open a document in Linux, on a given page: (a) in gsview and (b) in acroread ? In evince there is an option --page-label . But how to do this in gsview and acroread?

more than 4 years ago
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Future of NASA's Manned Spaceflight Looks Bleak

extraqwert Re:How can you... (452 comments)

Very well written sillybilly! But I would like to add a thought. We lost expertise, freedom of creativity, etc, because they are now useless. All that technological progress was driven by discoveries of fundamental science. But in the recent decades we have not made any serious fundamental discoveries. Fundamental science slowed down. Therefore, we should expect that applied science/technology will slow down too. Yes, we can build hybrid cars. But that will only cut oil consumption by half. This is clearly not enough. The resources are running out, and science/technology simply cannot help. I doubt that Japanese or Chinese are better than us, in this respect. I am afraid that creativity is not very useful anymore, and so instead of talented engineers we now have, here in US, talented lawyers. And strong army.

more than 4 years ago
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Google Wave Reviewed

extraqwert this situation was created by Microsoft (365 comments)

It is because Microsoft Windows is so broken, one would want to run everything inside Firefox. This is the reverse of a "sandbox". The word "sandbox" usually means that whatever you run inside the web browser is potentially harmful and should not be allowed to affect the operating system. But we want the opposite. I think we want to isolate ourself from the sickness of our operating system, and do everything in Firefox.

about 5 years ago
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Portables Without Cameras?

extraqwert Just drill it out!!! (442 comments)

Take a drill and take it out!

more than 5 years ago
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Researchers Sniff Keystrokes From Thin Air, Wires

extraqwert Re:brief question (217 comments)

OK, I had in mind a University library...

more than 5 years ago
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Researchers Sniff Keystrokes From Thin Air, Wires

extraqwert Re:brief question (217 comments)

By Internet cafe I mean Internet cafe with terminals. Not a BYOL like Starbucks. I should have said ``a safe way'', not ``the safest way''.

more than 5 years ago
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Researchers Sniff Keystrokes From Thin Air, Wires

extraqwert brief question (217 comments)

brief question: what is the safest way to login to my email account and check email, in the internet cafe? Assuming that the cafe is run by the mafia.

more than 5 years ago
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How Should I Teach a Basic Programming Course?

extraqwert Re:Task based learning (452 comments)

One thing I have seen students get hung up on is:

x = x + 1

It looks like an equality statement that couldn't possibly be correct. Just telling them it's "an assignment statement" doesn't seem to penetrate.

have you considered switching to Haskell?

more than 5 years ago

Submissions

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How do I request someone to send me a public key?

extraqwert extraqwert writes  |  about a year ago

extraqwert (983362) writes "An organization wants me to send them my personal data by email. I certainly do trust them. However, I would like to politely ask them to send me their public key for encryption. The secretary probably does not know what it is. But they do have a pretty good IT department, so they can figure out. My question is, what is the proper wording for such a request? What is the right terminology to use? Should I say ``please send me your RSA key''? ``Public key''? ``PGP key''? Is there a standard and reasonable wording for such a request? (On my end, I am using GNU PGP: http://www.gnupg.org/ ) Any suggestions on how to be polite in this case?"

Journals

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