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Comments

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Australia May 'Pause' Trades To Tackle High-Frequency Trading

mangu ANY delay destabilizes the system (342 comments)

If you need to sell some stock or commodity within a second of buying it, then something is wrong

Oh, yeah? Then, please, tell me in your infinite wisdom how long I should wait? Ten years? Twenty?

The fact is that ANY delay in a feedback system tends to destabilize it. In mechanical systems this is called "backlash" and there is extensive research on how to eliminate it and cope with the problems it causes. Anyone who proposes to artificially introduce backlash in a feedback system know nothing about what he is talking about.

In a market it would be trivially easy to manipulate prices if an artificial delay were involved, especially for the bigger traders. Put a buy order for a million shares and watch the prices rise, then sell at the higher price that would result a half second later. The same principle would work no matter how long the delay is.

Markets work so well because there is negative feedback in many different loops all over the economy. Some of these loops have shorter response times, other are slower to respond. If you invent an artificial delay that overlaps everything, this creates a well defined eignevalue that anyone with the proper technical knowledge could exploit.

about two weeks ago
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Australia May 'Pause' Trades To Tackle High-Frequency Trading

mangu Tax == Arbitrage (342 comments)

Imposing a tax only means the profit threshold is raised. That creates the market distortion called "arbitrage", where the relative costs between different transactions are not symmetric.

A .01% tax per transaction would mean that for me, a small trader, there would be a net loss unless my own profit per trade is lower than .01%. For a bigger trader, the cost per trade is lower, therefore they would gain and advantage over us, the smaller guys.

The true solution? Let it be, do not change anything.

Apart from some guys who get a lot of profit selling books claiming HFT is bad, no one actually makes very much on HFT. The margins are very low, extremely low, so you need to invest a lot of capital to get any profit from it.

Getting a small profit from economy of scale is something that hurts no one, it happens in every sector of the economy. As a small investor, I have an indirect gain from the higher liquidity when the big investors go into HFT.

The economy is not a zero-sum game, there are situations where everyone profits and situations where everyone loses. With HFT everyone gains, with taxes everyone loses.

about two weeks ago
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Book Review: How I Discovered World War II's Greatest Spy

mangu Re:Greatest, but maybe not the most damaging (102 comments)

The US didn't need to use the bomb again, the mere knowledge that it existed was enough.

Anyhow, it was several years until the Soviets got their own bomb, and even longer until they had some way to deliver them. Until the mid-1950s at least the Soviets had no bomber planes or missiles capable of dropping atom bombs on the USA.

about two weeks ago
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NASA Wants To Go To Europa

mangu History vs Pre-history (216 comments)

That's how we define what is called "history". If it happened before writing existed, it's not part of history.

Although, to be fair, Catholic missionaries destroyed a lot of written records from pre-Columbian America. They literally deleted Inca history.

about a month and a half ago
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Dyson Invests £5 Million To Create 'Intelligent Domestic Robots'

mangu Re:I'm not covinced by Dyson (125 comments)

And don't someone come up with the BS about everyone will sit around in blissful nirvana writing poetry or music or coding or go kayaking all day.

No, of course not. They will sit around and watch TV.

How many people have the ability and the inclination to write poetry or music or code anyhow?

about 2 months ago
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Google Buys UK AI Startup Deep Mind

mangu Voice needs context (113 comments)

Voice interface is one of the hardest things to implement well in AI because there are so many sentences that sound similar, understanding depends so much on context.

Without understanding the context of the conversation, a voice interface will not be able to know if you are talking about sodas or sawdust, robots or row boats, new displays or nudist plays.

about 3 months ago
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Ask Slashdot: It's 2014 -- Which New Technologies Should I Learn?

mangu C object inheritance (387 comments)

In C you just cannot use inheritance in any useful way

struct coord
{
  int x, y;
}
 
struct pixel
{
  struct coord loc;
  int r, g, b;
}

about 3 months ago
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How Quickly Will the Latest Arms Race Accelerate?

mangu Bye bye, aircraft carriers (197 comments)

work on space exploration, fusion power, renewable food production,

You know what's even worse than working on developing weapon systems? Working on 90 years old weapon systems.

Aircraft carriers were state of the art during WWII, today they are as obsolete as the USS Arizona was in 1941.

What's the point is spending hundreds of billions of dollars in building sitting ducks that can be taken out by a single hypersonic missile?

about 3 months ago
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The Internet's Network Efficiencies Are Destroying the Middle Class

mangu Re:Here We Go Again (674 comments)

your own personal information that is being bundled up and sold off.

I repeat, there is no need to "monetize" everything.

Does that personal information have any monetary value to you? Can you sell it? Does someone using it take anything away from you? If not, then you are losing nothing while you get to use the services of a site without having to pay for it.

All that information does is to enable someone to send you advertisements that might interest you. If it doesn't interest you, too bad, but it's no worse than all the junk mail you have been receiving for so many years.

Anyhow, if you do not like the way it is, no one is forcing you to use any of those sites. It's not like the government taking taxes away from your pockets.

about 3 months ago
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The Internet's Network Efficiencies Are Destroying the Middle Class

mangu Re:Here We Go Again (674 comments)

How did this half-wit get published by the NY times?

Hint: they also publish the bullshit that Paul Krugman writes.

It's easy to say that internet companies only employs X people, while forgetting that they do not charge users for whatever they provide.

I, for one, think the greatest economic advantage is when we are able to get things for free. There's no need to "monetize" everything.

about 3 months ago
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Researchers: Global Risk of Supervolcano Eruption Greater Than Previously Though

mangu Meanwhile, in North Carolina... (325 comments)

Your failure to predict it will still get you arrested in Italy.

But if you predict it you will be arrested in North Carolina.

about 3 months ago
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Nvidia Announces 192-Core Tegra K1 Chips, Bets On Android

mangu Re:"Android most important platform for gaming" (128 comments)

There will be plenty of people who prefer casual games on a phone screen, there will be plenty who prefer high-resolution fancy graphics displayed on their big TV with a control system more flexible than a touch screen

The problem with consoles right now is that any argument you can make for consoles vs. tablets you can also make for PC gaming vs. consoles, and any argument you can make for consoles vs. PCs you can also make for tablets vs. consoles.

Consoles are in an ever shrinking gap between tablets and PCs, I don't think their market has very much space to grow.

about 3 months ago
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Stellar Trio Could Put Einstein's Theory of Gravity To the Test

mangu Re:Will be interesting ... (106 comments)

And how do you know if your equations are correct?

That's the whole point raised by TFA. You know your equations are correct if the results of the simulation agrees with the results of the observation.

This system offers an unprecedented way to check how much does model general relativity fit the actual universe.

It's all in TFA, but I suppose reading it breaks the slashdot rules. Since we have three stars that are much more massive than any other three body system observed before, we can make measurements of the effects of gravitation with more precision, because the effects of those three stars on each other are so much bigger than the perturbations from other masses.

about 3 months ago
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Isaac Asimov's 50-Year-Old Prediction For 2014 Is Viral and Wrong

mangu Re:bullshit (385 comments)

provided people are free to leave.

But don't forget this is a two ended trip. There must also exist a provision that no country should be allowed to refuse immigrants.

If a person from India or Malawi wanted to go live in the USA or Western Europe they should be allowed to do so, without any hindrance.

Otherwise, it would be just a matter of luck that you inherited your parents' nationality.

about 3 months ago
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Isaac Asimov's 50-Year-Old Prediction For 2014 Is Viral and Wrong

mangu Re:bullshit (385 comments)

Why is it fair to inherit money? Because it's like any other inheritance.

Is it fair that people inherit good looks from their parents? Or athletic potential? Try getting to play in the NBA if you had two very short parents.

Or what about the place where you were born? Is it fair that some people are born in Germany, Sweden, or the USA, while others are born in Somalia, Afghanistan, or North Korea?

The simple fact that you inherited money doesn't mean you didn't deserve it. You deserve it as much as anything else you got by pure chance.

If you think it would be fair to "equalize" the situation by taking away the money people inherit, then there are many other situations that should be equalized as well. One could start by abolishing nationalities, allowing everyone to live and work in whatever country they wanted. Then one should abolish all professional sport competitions, no one should be judged by their sports skills. Also, what about people with inherited musical skills? Get rid of music as a profession as well...

about 3 months ago
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Isaac Asimov's 50-Year-Old Prediction For 2014 Is Viral and Wrong

mangu Re:bullshit (385 comments)

That is NOT guaranteed income

And it shouldn't be. This "guaranteed income" is one more bullshit keynesian theory that will never work. All that a guaranteed income in cash could bring is inflation.

There are resources, like real estate, for instance, that are intrinsically limited. Distributing cash to everyone would increase the demand for these limited resources, without contributing anything to production. For a good example of this, look at what happened when the Community Reinvestment Act forced banks to give financing to anyone who wanted to buy a house.

We can offer people the basic needs, not a basic income. We can give them food, medical care, housing, etc, but not a significant income in cash. If, instead of providing people with financing to buy any house they wanted, the CRA had provided people in need with standard basic houses, the junk mortgage bubble would have never happened.

about 3 months ago
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Mars Rover Curiosity Finds Ancient Lakebed

mangu LIfe existing != life arising (74 comments)

There are several different niches on earth where life exists in very hostile conditions. But that's not relevant to the question of life on Mars. The point is, did extremophile life arise spontaneously in such places, or did it migrate from somewhere else and gradually adapted to extreme conditions?

As far as we know, life may have a very low probability of appearing. We still don't know the exact combination of factors that led to the formation of the first living organisms, no one has ever been able to duplicate it in a laboratory.

The earth has several unique characteristics, one of them being its presence right in the middle of the habitable zone. However, the right temperature is not enough. The existence of a magnetic field is important, and plate tectonics may also be a fundamental factor, in its recycling of carbonaceous rocks that keeps the carbon dioxide in balance.

The presence of the moon could be fundamental to both the magnetic field and plate tectonics, due to the churning of the earth through tidal action. Also, ocean tides may have been a contributor to the creation of life, perhaps the concentration of soluble minerals in tidal pools were a factor. So, it could be that life will only evolve on a planet with a large moon.

about 4 months ago
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Volvo Plans To Have Self-Driving Cars In Swedish City of Gothenburg By 2017

mangu Re:Capital? (134 comments)

Volvos will use Apple maps?

I have a bad feeling about this. I don't think the Apple maps for the Swiss capital, Gothenburg, are up to date.

about 4 months ago
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Next-Gen GPU Progress Slowing As It Aims for 20 nm and Beyond

mangu Artificial Intelligence (91 comments)

The most powerful chips out there are still far below the capacity of a human brain.

I don't want just to play games, I want to retire and leave my computer to do my work for me.

At this point, we already have better software models for the brain than hardware to run it.

about 6 months ago
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Nuclear Officers Napped With Blast Door Left Open

mangu Disarmament (238 comments)

Your other choices?

It's not only that the game should not be played, the whole game need not exist anymore.

The only reason why nuclear missiles are still around is to justify the salaries and profits of the people and contractors who maintain them.

This price is too high, we could just retire all those people and let them sleep as much as they wish, at their own homes.

about 6 months ago

Submissions

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Lawsuit accuses Apple of foxing worker pay

mangu mangu writes  |  more than 2 years ago

mangu (126918) writes "Siddarth Hariharan, a former software engineer for Lucasfilm, filed a class action suit in California accusing a number of companies of antitrust violations and unfair competition. At the core of the suit is a series of agreements among the corporations, with Apple in the central role, to limit the competition among them for technology workers. Besides Apple, the companies mentioned are Pixar, Lucasfilm, Adobe, Google, Intel, and Intuit. Basically, the interconnected agreements consisted in not to “cold call” one another’s employees. Considering that switching jobs is one of the few opportunities a technology worker has to get a significant pay raise these agreements imposed strong limits on career evolution."
Link to Original Source
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Iran to 'remove fuel' from Bushehr nuclear plant

mangu mangu writes  |  more than 3 years ago

mangu (126918) writes "Iran said on Saturday it is removing the fuel from the reactor of a Russian-built nuclear power plant, a move seen as a big blow to its controversial nuclear program. The plant was first launched by the shah using contractors from Siemens. It was shelved after the Islamic revolution and it lay unfinished through the 1980s. In the early 1990s, Iran sought help for the project after being turned away by Siemens over nuclear proliferation concerns. In 1994, Russia agreed to complete the plant and provide the fuel, with the supply deal committing Iran to returning the spent fuel. The plant has faced hiccups even after its physical launch, with officials blaming the delays in generating electricity on a range of factors, including Bushehr's "severe weather." But they deny it was hit by the malicious Stuxent computer worm which struck industrial computers in Iran, although they acknowledge that the personal computers of some personnel at Bushehr were infected with it."
Link to Original Source
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Could a meteorite have hit Flight 447?

mangu mangu writes  |  more than 4 years ago

mangu (126918) writes "Air France flight 447 went down in the Atlantic Ocean last sunday with 228 people on board. The cause of the accident is still a mystery. A http://www.straitstimes.com/Breaking+News/World/Story/STIStory_385883.html>Spanish pilot 2000 km away saw 'an intense flash of white light' in the area where Air France Flight 447 was lost, the El Mundo newspaper said on Thursday. Could the unlucky plane flying from Rio de Janeiro to Paris have been hit by a meteorite, an event that has a probability of happening once every 59000 to 77000 years?"
Link to Original Source
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mangu mangu writes  |  more than 6 years ago

mangu writes "Ex-MPAA president Jack Valenti died today at the age of 85.

"Jack was a showman, a gentleman, an orator and a passionate champion of this country, its movies and the enduring freedoms that made both so important to this world," his successor, Dan Glickman, said in a written statement announcing Valenti's death. "He also embodied the theatricality of our industry with his conviction, quick wit and boundless energy. In a very real sense, he was the ultimate leading man."
"
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mangu mangu writes  |  more than 7 years ago

mangu writes "The Brazilian government Public Ministry, that is, more or less equivalent to the Attorney General's office in the USA, is threatening to sue Google unless they get the identities of people who have created Orkut communities on subjects such as racism, neonazism, homophobia, abuse against animals, and religious intolerance. So far Google has refused to supply data about the identity of the persons involved, but they have agreed to remove the infringing Orkut communities. Despite the nominal protection on freedom of expression in the Brazilian constitution, the legislation allows many exceptions that effectively limit the subjects which may be discussed publicly in Brazil. Publishing any text that incite "apology of crime", "racial prejudice", or "religious intolerance" is a felony according to Brazilian federal law."

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