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L.A. Science Teacher Suspended Over Student Science Fair Projects

jxander Re:Losing good men to the war on pretend violence (158 comments)

What gets me is the blowback issue. The schools are starting from a small age forbidding anything gun related... and we all know that the harder stuff gets forbidden, the more it gets in demand.

As some one who grew up as the friend of a preacher's daughter (both literally and figuratively, her dad was a preacher and had very strict rules regarding boys) I can very enthusiastically confirm this concept.

6 hours ago

L.A. Science Teacher Suspended Over Student Science Fair Projects

jxander Re:First they get rid of shop (158 comments)

We have to give everyone a medal for participating

Should we really be giving students metal? It could be ferrous, and people are already in trouble for experimenting with magnetic acceleration!

Oh, wait .. you said ... nevermind.

6 hours ago

$42,000 Prosthetic Hand Outperformed By $50 3D Printed Hand

jxander Re:Sunk Costs (138 comments)

There's also the concept of "Price the Market will bear," which gets convoluted in the mire of health insurance companies. No one really knows what the market will bear, cuz it's always just payed whatever price was asked.

$42,000 for a prosthetic hand? Sure, if that's what it costs.
$1000 for an MRI? OK, if you say so.
$500 per pill to treat my hypochondria? Seems reasonable... etc.

Right now, the market will bear a 42,000 hand. And these guys could probably sell their $50 version for 45,000 on the claims that it performs better and feels more comfortable. The real costs of medical stuff (operations, hardware, medication, etc) has long since been lost to the bureaucrats.

6 hours ago

Americans Uncomfortable With Possibility of Ubiquitous Drones, Designer Babies

jxander Re:Personal Drones (153 comments)

I am sure you would agree to the idea of a gun license to keep arms, right mate?

I'm not GP, but yeah, actually.

The word "license" is a bit tricky, because it implies a bit of tracking and government oversight which probably won't fly in a business like gun sales. However, requiring some form of in-house training before sale of a gun wouldn't be a terrible idea.

As one option, we could require a certified gun-safety person administer the training (look, I'm making jobs!) Before you purchase a firearm, you and Captain Safety have to spend some time on the range. He/she would observe as you load, fire, clear, etc. Maybe it could even be similar to vehicle certification (i.e. your drivers license) in that there are different flavors. Just like I'm only licensed to drive a car, and not a bus, motorcycle or big rig. I'm only licensed for handguns, not shotguns, rifles, etc.

Just a few idea... but yeah. Having some mandatory training wouldn't be a terrible idea. And if someone is already familiar with firearms, the training would be a breeze. Just another day on the range.

2 days ago

Lavabit Loses Contempt Appeal

jxander Re:All it takes is one criminal now? (128 comments)

Meatspace isn't much better. They're up to, what, 3 degrees of separation to qualify you for a search?

So if the mechanic that works on your car stops to eat at a McDonald's, and a terror suspect has visited that same McDonald's ... you're now a viable target for gubment surveillance. And apparently, so is everyone that uses the same email client.

4 days ago

More Than 1 In 4 Car Crashes Involve Cellphone Use

jxander Define "Involve" (367 comments)

I don't see a solid definition of what constitutes a crash involving a cell phone.

If the phone is strapped to the dashboard streaming music with the screen off... does that count? The phone is "in use"
If I'm driving and my passenger is texting... and someone runs a red light, hitting us. Does that constitute a crash involving a cell phone?
If my phone is providing turn by turn directions for me, does that make the cut?
If I'm stopped a a red light and talking on my phone, when someone rear ends me...?

Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera...

Ambiguous syntax implies intentionally loose constraints, imo.

about three weeks ago

Some Mozilla Employees Demand New CEO Step Down

jxander Re:No (824 comments)

Their release cycle isn't THAT sho-

Hold on, I've gotta update before it will let me finish this comment.

about three weeks ago

Facebook To Begin Deploying Btrfs

jxander Re:Trial by fire... (115 comments)

A reboot isn't typically necessary... (though not a bad idea)

What is this? Windows?

about three weeks ago

eBay Japan Passwords Revealed As Username+123456

jxander Re:Not salt (80 comments)

We'll call this "just a pinch of salt"

about three weeks ago

Xbox One Reputation System Penalizes Gamers Who Behave Badly

jxander Re:OMG FAG LOL (183 comments)

Actually, yeah. You can. Especially these days where consoles are basically just underpowered PCs. For example, the XBone is running a Frankenstein'ed version of Windows 8 and Windows RT. PS4 is using a modified version of FreeBSD. Neither one are strictly "off the shelf" operating systems, but neither one are completely new, either.

Last generation, Sony caused a ruckus by tangling with people who installed Linux on their PS3s for fun (and promptly learned not to tangle with the types of people who install Linux on a PS3 for fun)

So yeah, they're just computers. Really, the only difference is that you don't get the administrator/root login. You just get user credentials, with no rights or access to change anything. Imagine if you set your PC to automatically login and launch Steam's "Big Picture" view on boot up. Congratulations, you just made a console.

about three weeks ago

Xbox One Reputation System Penalizes Gamers Who Behave Badly

jxander Re:Bullying (183 comments)

If only there was a website that had a system whereby the users would self moderate and allow the more Interesting, Insightful or Funny comments to be more visible.

about three weeks ago

Weev's Attorney Says FBI Is Intercepting His Client's Mail

jxander Re:How Does He Know it's the FBI? (109 comments)

TFA implies only that the FBI had access to what was in the Attorney/client communiques, not who's surveillance arm gathered it.

Occam's razor. If the FBI had knowledge of the contents of his private letters, then the FBI did the surveilling.

about three weeks ago

Minnesota Teen Wins Settlement After School Takes Facebook Password

jxander Re:Without her permission? (367 comments)

Of course you wouldn't be liable for slander.

Slander is spoken. In print, it's libel.

about three weeks ago

Tesla's Fight With Car Dealers Could Help Decide the Next Presidential Election

jxander Re:There is no irony (282 comments)

Democrats with party hats and noise makers. Clearly.

about three weeks ago

Tesla's Fight With Car Dealers Could Help Decide the Next Presidential Election

jxander Re:Doubt it. (282 comments)

Part of the problem is that the current supply/demand situation prevents any reasonable negotiation over the price of a Tesla.

There is a months-long waiting list. If you want to try and haggle over the sticker price, Tesla can just say "next" and have another 1000 customers lined up for the vehicle you passed over. And personally, this is 100% fine by me. I'd rather know the price, evaluate the cost and benefits on my own terms and buy a car without trying to talk down some greasy salesman.

If we ever reach a point where a hundred Teslas are sitting on a showroom floor collecting dust, then MAYBE we'll need some dealers to help us haggle out a price... but until then, Tesla has a simple "take it or leave it" price.

about three weeks ago

Security for the 'Internet of Things' (Video)

jxander Re:don't connect it (106 comments)

True, there are other options aplenty... but we're living in a time when email is too slow for a lot of people and thoughts don't break the 140 character limit. A time when the convenience of one-click purchases trumps the obvious security issue therein.

Everything is getting more online, more interconnected, more convenient ... it makes more sense to embrace the change and work to make it smooth and safe, instead of fighting back against it.

about three weeks ago

Security for the 'Internet of Things' (Video)

jxander Re:don't connect it (106 comments)

Because convenience and optimization.

You can lower your energy bill by setting your thermostat to a more relaxed temperature while you're at work (hotter or colder, depending on your climate) and then remotely set it back to a more comfortable temp as you leave the office. You can fire off your dishwasher or laundry at a certain time, when energy is cheaper. If you have kids who leave the house after you, you might want to make sure they locked up, or check how many times they hit snooze after you left. The list goes on.

Of course, there's the security to consider, as you and TFS point out ... but to ask why someone would want this ability is intentionally naive.

about three weeks ago

Klingon Beer

jxander Re:only 5.5%!?! (100 comments)





about a month ago

Diablo 3 Expansion Reaper of Souls Launches

jxander Re:Too Little Too Late (166 comments)

Well technically Patch 2.0 was a start. RoS is next ...

Patch 2.0 introduced all of the changes to loot and leveling and the difficulty system about a month ago. Those changes are available without the expansion. If you only have the original game, you can log on and play through the original levels with the new system.

about a month ago

Diablo 3 Expansion Reaper of Souls Launches

jxander Re:Nope. (166 comments)

Amusing that a post full of blatant lies can get +5 Interesting, if it just uses a bit of proper grammar and a tab indented list.

  1. You list "always online" as a problem, then immediately compare it to the other main platform that requires (nearly) Always Online: Steam. Battle.net chatting has pros and cons v Steam. You don't actually have to pause the game or bring up an overlay to use it, but it's harder to keep multiple conversations separate
  2. Grindfest? Compared to D2? Clearly you've never played either game. Leveling in Diablo 2 took an absolutely absurd amount of time. Less than 1% of players (by Blizzards metrics, so grain of salt) ever made it to the cap of 99 in D2. You can reach the level cap in D3 within a week, easily. Of course, then there are innumerable Paragon Levels after that (tiny little buffs, but they stack up over time) Blizzard's official intent was to create an equivalent level of difficulty to reach maximum Paragon level in D3 as to reach level 99 in D2 Either way, you certainly didn't reach the cap "somewhere in your 3rd play-through"
  3. The maps are random enough. Sure Zone 1 always connects to Zone 2, but beyond that, how they connect is random, which hallways leads to the stairs is random, which sidequests spawn is random. Speaking of Sidequests, D3 has many MANY more non-plot related events. Some are simple, some are more involved. Some are scripted events, some are just random dungeons full of monsters... but any way you slice it, there is WAY more side-tracking in D3. The expansion even introduced entire optional quests lines (relatively short ones, but still) for all 3 of your hirelings, the Blacksmith, Jeweler, etc.
  4. Loot has been completely revamped, and the AH is gone. Sure, the AH was a spectacular failure, and maybe it was just a blatant moneygrab, but at least it was something new. Blizz tried a new thing, it didn't work, they removed the thing. I can't say that it was ever abused, at least not any more than any market can be abused. Sure, people probably tried to corner markets or bot for loot, but I dno't know if that counts as abuse of the sales system
  5. Dev teams always change. Some people stick around, some people leave. Doesn't mean the game will be better or worse. One definite improvement was the story line. I suppose that you're claim of "it sounds like..." should be a clue that you're just making shit up, but the characters in D3 are much more realized, backstories much more fleshed out. Part of that is simply time and tech. We can support beautifully rendered cut scenes these days, which helps. But the story doesn't just exist in those cut scenes. Characters will tag along with you and occasionally chatter a bit. Not a lot, just enough to get to know them... so that we feel a little investment later when we're called upon to rescue them.

Far be it for me to tell you how best to spend your time and money, but you might want to actually give it a shot before pontificating

about a month ago


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