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Comments

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Net Neutrality Comments Surge Past 1.7M, an All-Time Record For the FCC

guises Re:Tits (81 comments)

Yeah, this isn't so much encouraging news for net neutrality as it is a discouraging illustration of our willingness to censor. Though, as I recall, a large number of the breast complaints were form letters sent by a single organization.

about two weeks ago
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Microsoft Paid NFL $400 Million To Use Surface, But Announcers Call Them iPads

guises Re:How much! (405 comments)

In some countries this wouldn't fly, but the US has pretty weak anti-trust laws and Microsoft is not in a dominant position in the tablet market anyway.

There's no blanket prohibition against giving away your product to achieve marketshare (in the US) - this is the Gillette model, after all.

about two weeks ago
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DNA sequencing of coffee's best use:

guises Re:Only profitable option for the coffee companies (228 comments)

This is on the nose. I'd love decaffeinated coffee without the additional costs and loss in flavor from the decaffeination process, and it's not as though this would impact caffeine seekers in any way - caffeine can be added back in whatever proportion you'd like. They already do something like this with many products: all milk is skimmed, for example, then some of the fat is added back to make 1%, 2%, and "whole" (3.25%) variants.

about two weeks ago
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Responding to Celeb Photo Leaks, Reddit Scotches "Fappening" Subreddit

guises Re:Sub Reddits that still aren't banned... (307 comments)

How about a British prince then? They're basically just celebrities.

I think the point he was making, a well-trodden point, is that wealthy / famous people have more privileges, including legal privileges, than normals. From the bizarre amount of attention this has gotten you'd think this was new and shocking ("What?! Pornography?! On the internet?!?!") as opposed to an everyday occurrence.

It's certainly a valid point, and it's important to keep bringing it up when something like this happens, but it isn't exactly new or insightful. I don't know why he did the stupid karma disclaimer.

about two weeks ago
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New DNA Analysis On Old Blood Pegs Aaron Kosminski As Jack the Ripper

guises Re:I now know what age Russell Edwards is (135 comments)

That's a reasonable point, Russell Edwards doesn't matter to this story. Though it's easy to guess why he was mentioned - he likely wants a little fame / notoriety / credit for his part in this. A journalist can get further by stroking egos than not.

about two weeks ago
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New DNA Analysis On Old Blood Pegs Aaron Kosminski As Jack the Ripper

guises Re:I now know what age Russell Edwards is (135 comments)

That's likely true - just throw in whatever facts you know in order to flesh out the story a little. I wonder a bit about the interview though which would lead to that question.

about two weeks ago
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New DNA Analysis On Old Blood Pegs Aaron Kosminski As Jack the Ripper

guises I now know what age Russell Edwards is (135 comments)

This is slightly off-topic, but why this?

...businessman Russell Edwards, 48, bought the shawl...

Why do they throw his age in there? Why does it matter? Is that in any possible way related to the story? I'm not calling out this story in particular, I see this all the time. I'd like to know the motivation behind the trend.

about two weeks ago
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Obama Administration Seeks $58M To Put (Partly) Toward Fighting Ebola

guises Re:"Scarcity" of ZMapp (105 comments)

"Scarce" is accurate - the drug is derived from genetically modified tobacco plants of which there are only a very limited number. Obviously they're working on producing more, but the plants don't grow overnight.

about two weeks ago
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Obama Administration Seeks $58M To Put (Partly) Toward Fighting Ebola

guises Re:Nice (105 comments)

Are you seriously trying to imply that the only reason to address an ebola outbreak is to score popularity points? Or are you saying that your personal bias is so strong that if Obama's name is on it, it must be bad? Even when it's as no-brain obvious as this?

Reporter: "Thousands of people are dying from a massive outbreak of a terrible disease."
Reporter: "Libya's health infrastructure has been completely overwhelmed. A number of hospitals, including their largest, have been closed and quarantined."
Obama: "Yeah, we should do something about that."
Mr D from 63: "Oh ho! Look who's jumping on the bandwagon!"

about two weeks ago
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Egypt's Oldest Pyramid Is Being Destroyed By Its Own Restoration Team

guises Re:a shame but... (246 comments)

There were skilled slaves too, that's not the why it's believed that the pyramids were built by free labor. There are two reasons that I know of: first, there is some writing on the side of one of the pyramids talking about their construction and, in particular, what the workers were fed. This was considerably more generous (more meat) than slaves would have received. The second reason is that tens of thousands of people worked on the pyramids and is just isn't possible to manage that many slaves when your most advanced weapon is a bronze sword (the chariot wasn't introduced to Egypt until after pyramids were no longer being constructed).

about two weeks ago
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The Argument For a Hypersonic Missile Testing Ban

guises Re:Ban when you are done testing? (322 comments)

The X-15 was a manned rocket-propelled aircraft that hit mach 6.7 in 1964. If you ever see it in the National Air and Space Museum it's not nearly as big as you'd think - smaller than most fighter aircraft. Comparing it to a Saturn V is a huge exaggeration. If they're using RAM jets in missiles it's all about range and not about speed.

about two weeks ago
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The Argument For a Hypersonic Missile Testing Ban

guises Re:Ban when you are done testing? (322 comments)

I don't know anything about the specifications of the missiles that the military currently uses. I do know that a rocket has a vastly higher thrust to weight ratio than even the most idealized SCRAM jet - if current missiles are slow then it's not because they're incapable of going faster. I expect it has more to do with turning radius and the fact that cruise missiles are supposed to stay very close to the ground / sea to minimize their chances of detection.

about two weeks ago
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The Argument For a Hypersonic Missile Testing Ban

guises Re:Ban when you are done testing? (322 comments)

The only thing that hypersonic cruise missiles offer over conventional rocket-propelled missiles is fuel efficiency, i.e.: additional range. The ballistic ones would at least be cheaper than their rocket-based counterparts... Would the cruise missiles be cheaper? I don't know, probably not.

Let's be clear what we're talking about here: hypersonic missiles are just missiles that use a SCRAM jet instead of a rocket. That's it. Despite the fancy name, they're slower than rocket-propelled missiles. The advantage is that a rocket is entirely self contained while a SCRAM jet pulls part of its fuel from the oxygen in the atmosphere - this makes it more fuel efficient.

about two weeks ago
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The Argument For a Hypersonic Missile Testing Ban

guises Re:Ban when you are done testing? (322 comments)

No one else is willing to blow that much money on their military. Missiles are the cheap counter to giant expensive ships.

However, it's not accurate to say that hypersonic missiles are the only weapons that can take down carriers. In fact, this has nothing to do with anti-ship weapons - these are ballistic missiles. The argument against them is first that they make a nuclear first strike easier and second that they don't offer any sort of non-military functionality. Hypersonic airliners, for example, are probably a pipe dream, but even if they are realized any technological overlap between an airliner and a missile would be extremely small.

about two weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: the State of Free Video Editing Tools?

guises Re:How about for simple animations? (163 comments)

I have not, much appreciated. This whole thread has been edifying - all I'd previously heard of for open source video editing was Avidemux, which no one's even mentioned here. Seems that options are much broader than I'd realized.

about three weeks ago
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Grand Ayatollah Says High Speed Internet Is "Against Moral Standards"

guises Re:Anything that wrests away control (542 comments)

Not rewarded for suffering through physical abuse - rewarded for their humbleness, rewarded for their poverty, etc. This life is just a test, so put up with what you have to and wait for heaven.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: the State of Free Video Editing Tools?

guises How about for simple animations? (163 comments)

I've been thinking about doing a series of videos covering some basic math for a while now, but I'd like to be able to do some (very simple) animations of equations and graphs. How do people do those? I see all these Youtube videos with effects and I have no idea how people are pulling it off.

about three weeks ago
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Grand Ayatollah Says High Speed Internet Is "Against Moral Standards"

guises Re:Anything that wrests away control (542 comments)

... This is the opposite of the purpose behind Marx's condemnation of religion. Marx saw religion as filling a bread and circuses role - people would quietly suffer through abuse by those in power, with the belief that they would be rewarded in heaven. In other words, religion is about monopolizing focus and control and communists sought to break away from that.

about three weeks ago
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Systems That Can Secretly Track Where Cellphone Users Go Around the Globe

guises Re:This is a surprise to anyone? (76 comments)

This is indeed surprising to me. I'm anyone - you're saying that I can find someone's location this way? Or are you saying that only someone with access to the phone company's network can do this?

about a month ago

Submissions

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Orca recently identified as 103 years old

guises guises writes  |  about 4 months ago

guises (2423402) writes "The oldest known orca has recently been spotted off western Canada at an age of 103. A female nicknamed "granny," photos exist of her from the 1930s, where she can be identified by her distinctive saddle patch. The news has prompted calls for another evaluation of marine mammals in captivity — orcas in captivity usually don’t live beyond their 20s."
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What good print media is out there that hasn't already died?

guises guises writes  |  about 5 months ago

guises (2423402) writes "A recent story discussing the cover of Byte Magazine reminded me of just how much we've lost with the death of print media. The Internet isn't what took down Byte, but a lot of other really excellent publications have fallen by the wayside as a result of the shift away from the printed page. We're not quite there yet though, there seem to still be some holdouts, so I'm asking Slashdot: what magazines (or zines, or your newsletter) are still hanging around that are worth subscribing too while I still have the chance?"
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Lavabit shuts down citing legal interference

guises guises writes  |  about a year ago

guises (2423402) writes "Lavabit, originally envisioned as a privacy-conscious alternative to Gmail, has shuttered. Ladar Levison, the company owner, offers this explanation:

I have been forced to make a difficult decision: to become complicit in crimes against the American people or walk away from nearly ten years of hard work by shutting down Lavabit. After significant soul searching, I have decided to suspend operations. I wish that I could legally share with you the events that led to my decision. I cannot. I feel you deserve to know what’s going on--the first amendment is supposed to guarantee me the freedom to speak out in situations like this. Unfortunately, Congress has passed laws that say otherwise.

"
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Canonical launches highly ambitious smartphone crowdfunding campaign

guises guises writes  |  about a year ago

guises (2423402) writes "Canonical has launched an indiegogo campaign for the Ubuntu Edge — a proposed high-end smartphone that would dual-boot Ubuntu and Android by default. The campaign has a lofty goal of $32 million, which they hope to raise in only thirty days. An ambitious goal, given that the highest-funded campaign ever on Kickstarter, the Pebble watch, raised only $10.2 million in thirty eight days. Never the less, the project certainly has it's appeal and those who get in early (today only) can get the phone for as little as $600."
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Al Franken proposes an amendment to overturn Citizens United

guises guises writes  |  about 2 years ago

guises (2423402) writes "Al Franken has started a petition for a constitutional amendment to overturn Citizens United. Online petitions are perhaps of dubious efficacy, but hopefully one started by a sitting senator will have a little more impact."
Link to Original Source
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Ebay updates their user agreement, requires arbitration

guises guises writes  |  about 2 years ago

guises (2423402) writes "Ebay has updated their privacy policy, effective October tenth. Joining many other prominent companies following the AT&T v. CONCEPCION decision last year, Ebay is requiring users to agree to arbitration and give up their ability to file for class action status. Ebay has humorously included an option to opt out of this provision, but only by submitting an opt-out notice in writing no later than November 9th, 2012. (eBay Inc., c/o National Registered Agents, Inc., 2778 W. Shady Bend Lane, Lehi, UT 84043) At the bottom of the email announcing this, they include the line, "If you choose not to accept the new terms, visit this help page for further direction.""
Link to Original Source
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Wasteland 2 adds Linux support

guises guises writes  |  more than 2 years ago

guises (2423402) writes "Wasteland 2, a Kickstarter project which has already met it's primary funding goal, has added Linux to the list of platforms which will be supported if funding reaches the $1.5 million mark. Currently, they're less than $50,000 from that secondary goal. For those unfamiliar, Wasteland was an acclaimed post-apocalyptic CRPG released in 1988. Fallout was the spiritual successor to Wasteland, being made by the same people who did not have the rights to the Wasteland name."

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