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Chemists Grow Soil Fungus On Cheerios, Discover New Antifungal Compounds

mc6809e Re:Makes sense (76 comments)

It's probably also because Cheerios don't contain preservatives.

Or it has preservatives that kill those organisms that would otherwise kill the fungi.

2 days ago
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Living On a Carbon Budget: The End of Recreation As We Know It?

mc6809e Re:Navel gazing (652 comments)

Is there no difference in your view between the physical might of the state and the abstract might of economic power?

about two weeks ago
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Why the FCC Will Probably Ignore the Public On Network Neutrality

mc6809e Re:Changes require systematic, reliable evidence.. (336 comments)

I think some of the ISPs are worried that legitimate packet prioritization is going be outlawed along with other sorts of prioritization due to ignorance of technology by legislators or regulators.

I've had discussions with coworkers in IT that were very sharp but still couldn't understand why it might be beneficial to prioritize voice packets over web traffic, for example. They really believed FIFO was the only fair way to treat packets and that anything else was somehow morally wrong.

And before some people chime in and say "but that's not what we mean", let me say that's exactly what some people mean by net neutrality. Maybe it's not what you mean, but there's no guarantee that your more informed view of net neutrality is going to be made into law.

about two weeks ago
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Obama Administration Argues For Backdoors In Personal Electronics

mc6809e Re:Update to Godwin's law? (575 comments)

The Soviet Union had a certain amount of Democracy, too.

The trouble comes when you try to use "the people's" resources to challenge the current power democratically.

Want to use the people's radio station to argue against the current regime, for example?

Sorry, but duly elected representatives of the people don't believe that's the best use of the people's property.

And by the way, the duly elected representatives of the people think your share of the people's food should be reduced.

That's how you get a one-party democratic state.

about three weeks ago
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Mystery Gamer Makes Millions Moving Markets In Japan

mc6809e Re:Largest Ponzi Scheme Ever (113 comments)

So, no studying PtoE, company fundamentals, etc. etc. Further proving that the Stock Market is almost entirely disconnected from the underlying companies. Basically, it's a Ponzi scheme.

This is true mostly for new or trendy companies in trendy spaces. Boring companies that have been around for a long time are often priced based on the future dividends they're expected to pay. They don't get any attention, though, because those that make money on speculating can't make any money by trading them. The speculators and brokers don't want people paying attention to fundamentals. Volumes would plummet so how would they make money? There would be no churn. And then they'd have to sell the million dollar Manhattan apartment where they keep their mistress.

It's similar to the difference between trading Beanie Babies (or whatever faddy collectible is popular now) and something like wheat.

The US government would have invested Social Security in the Stock Market, but they can't find a spokesperson from the financial industry you can advocate the scheme without drooling at the prospect.

The US government already invests that money by spending it and leaving a bond in its place.

And how did they invest it? Well, there are some big craters in Iraq and Afghanistan now. Bingo halls and casinos also seem to have profited.

about three weeks ago
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Mystery Gamer Makes Millions Moving Markets In Japan

mc6809e Risk of ruin (113 comments)

He seems to have intuited this.

about three weeks ago
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Australian Senate Introduces Laws To Allow Total Internet Surveillance

mc6809e Re:Australia voted... for a kick in the nuts. (212 comments)

"Conservative" means different things in different countries. It even means different things in different US states.

In the USA, "conservative" might mean an advocate of small government and reduced government power, or it might mean a pro-life social conservative looking to restrict abortion or anything in between.

If privacy is a voter's primary concern in the US, it's probably best to vote based on the individual candidate's position than on the candidate's party.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Finding a Job After Completing Computer Science Ph.D?

mc6809e Re:Job market does not like PhDs (479 comments)

Why promote a PhD? 75% of US professors are adjuncts and earn less than $24,000/year. Good luck with that ivory tower dream. Learn plumbing.

A non-tenured adjunct lecturer became President of the USA, so there's that, too.

Openings are rare, though.

about a month ago
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Solar Powered Technology Enhances Oil Recovery

mc6809e Re:Renewable (82 comments)

Using renewable energy to tap unrenewable energy... Seems not really enduring. Why not just use directly the renewable energy in first place?

Because oil isn't just used as energy, though it often is.

Petroleum is a miracle substance from the standpoint of its chemistry. It would be hard to imagine modern life without all the chemicals and materials petroleum makes possible.

Burning such a flexible, important substance as fuel is terribly foolish.

about a month ago
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IT Job Hiring Slumps

mc6809e Re: GIst of the problem is ... (250 comments)

I think his 50% tax burden number comes from including Federal income and payroll taxes, State taxes, and local taxes.

That's probably correct only for highly paid professionals that get most of their income by selling their skills. Anyone with income that comes from wealth isn't paying anywhere near that.

The tax code in the US at all levels is incredible stupid.

But the 50% number isn't connected too terribly much with the lack of hiring, though. If you ask a business people why they aren't hiring many will tell you that they just don't have enough time to both run their business and worry about all the extra bureaucratic hassles that come with employing someone -- that might include paying some taxes, but it also includes liability and regulatory concerns.

Employing a new worker is like walking through a minefield. You might have seen job advertisements asking only for those that are currently employed. This is an attempt to avoid all those disasters that come with hiring the wrong person.

about a month and a half ago
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Islamic State "Laptop of Doom" Hints At Plots Including Bubonic Plague

mc6809e Re: But is it reaslistic? (369 comments)

The only Bacteria that are scary are anti-biotic resistant ones, all the rest can be cured with a dose of anti-biotic.

Don't be so dismissive.

I realize the plague is so dark ages and that we have antibiotics, but from 1990 until 2010 the overall mortality rate was 11%.

People still die even with antibiotics.

about 1 month ago
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Islamic State "Laptop of Doom" Hints At Plots Including Bubonic Plague

mc6809e Re: But is it reaslistic? (369 comments)

The plague exists in the wild in many western states of the USA.

Colorado just had four cases in the past few months.

about 1 month ago
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Why Women Have No Time For Wikipedia

mc6809e A willingness to fight (579 comments)

Men in general seem to have less tolerance for what they perceive as error and a greater willingness to fight to correct error.

That's not the say that men are more often correct than are women. They just seem more eager to do battle, even if it is from behind a keyboard.

Anyone that's been involved in an edit war of wikipedia knows that the winner is often isn't the one with the best grasp of the facts, but it's the one least willing to give up the fight.

 

about 2 months ago
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Companies That Don't Understand Engineers Don't Respect Engineers

mc6809e It works the other way around, too (371 comments)

Many engineers don't understand that business people are engineers of a sort, too.

What we all should do is realize that we're all part of a team that can't work without the participation of everyone. Mutual respect is key.

Many skills are needed if a firm is to survive.

about 2 months ago
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For Fast Internet in the US, Virginia Tops the Charts

mc6809e Re:Switzerland (98 comments)

In Switzerland the slowest speeds you commonly get are about 15 Mbits/s...

And yet the report cited shows that only 45% have access to speeds above 10Mbps and 23% of access to speeds above 15Mbps.

Five US states have more people above 10Mbps than Switzerland.

And one of those states by itself, New Jersey, has almost a million more people.

about 2 months ago
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For Fast Internet in the US, Virginia Tops the Charts

mc6809e Re:And yet here I am (98 comments)

No 4g available? I'm using a Verizon 4g access point from a horse farm in the middle of nowhere and Speakeasy's speed test gives me 10.46Mbps down/7.53Mbps up.

about 2 months ago
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Cable Companies: We're Afraid Netflix Will Demand Payment From ISPs

mc6809e Re:What? (200 comments)

Yeah, i don't see how their supposed 'netflix is going to extort us' scare is supposed to work. Everything I remember about how the internet works pretty much invalidates the idea.

I think they're looking at how cable companies have to pay content providers to broadcast their content.

Disney, ESPN, CNN, etc all charge the cable company for their content. If the cable company doesn't pay, then their customers don't get the channels.

Will this happen with websites or Netflix? It doesn't seem possible, yet it's hard to know just where all this is going.

Consider facebook. What would happen if suddenly facebook demanded an ISP pay them for access by the ISP's customers? Who would the customers blame? Would they simply give up on facebook or would they hound their ISP to pay up?

about 3 months ago
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Experiment Shows People Exposed To East German Socialism Cheat More

mc6809e Re:let me correct that for you. (619 comments)

there was no socialism in east-germany. there was none in east-europe. that was fascism with a tiny bit of communism-appearence thrown in. socialism is found in scandinavia, belgium, netherlands, france, and the former western-germany.

Most Western European countries are mixed economies, mostly capitalist, with some socialism, and a welfare state.

East Germany and the Soviet Union really bought into the idea of Socialism: the state owned everything. Private property was outlawed. You could go to jail for making a profit.

The East Germans were so committed to the idea that the state owned everything that they believed they had a right to build an enormous wall to keep the governments property (people) from escaping to the West.

about 3 months ago
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'Rosetta Flash' Attack Leverages JSONP Callbacks To Steal Credentials

mc6809e Very clever (68 comments)

Reminds me a little of some work done by Terje Mathisen, an expert assembly language programmer. Not exactly that same as the exploit, but probably interesting to a few slashdotters. I'll let him describe it:

"The most complicated code I have ever written is/was a piece of executable text, in order to be able to send binary data over very early text-only email systems:

"Minimum possible amount of self-modification (a single two-byte backwards branch), a first-level bootstrap that fits in two 64-byte lines including a Copyright notice and which survives the most common forms of reformatting, including replacing the CRLF line terminator by any zero, one or two byte sequence. This piece of code picks up the next few lines, combining pairs of characters into arbitrary byte values before flushing the prefetch cache by branching into the newly decoded second-level bootstrap. (Everything uses only the ~70 different ascii codes which are blessed by the MIME standard as never requiring encoding or escape sequences.)

"This second level consists of a _very_ compact BASE64 decode which takes the remainder of the input and re-generates the original binary which it can either execute in place or write to disk.

about 3 months ago

Submissions

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Bad news: Bertha is damaged

mc6809e mc6809e writes  |  about 8 months ago

mc6809e (214243) writes "Officials on Friday announced the seal assembly is damaged. Bertha may be shut down for several more weeks as workers fix damaged seals that protect the drive system that spins the giant cutter. The revelation comes two months after the drill failed to grind ahead and operators shut it down. The machine known as Bertha tweeted in December that she was doing fine, just facing an obstruction. An 11-day inspection in January found no big obstacles, turning engineers’ attention inward. The ongoing investigation — which includes an influx of staff from drill maker Hitachi-Zosen — could take up to two weeks before the Seattle Tunnel Partners (STP) contracting team issues a strategy to repair and restart the machine."
Link to Original Source
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F.C.C. Bars Lightsquared from Using Airwaves

mc6809e mc6809e writes  |  more than 2 years ago

mc6809e (214243) writes "A proposed wireless broadband network that would provide voice and Internet service using airwaves once reserved for satellite-telephone transmissions should be shelved because it interferes with GPS technology, the Federal Communications Commission said Tuesday. The news appears to squash the near-term hopes for the network pushed by LightSquared, a Virginia company that is majority-owned by Philip Falcone, a New York hedge fund manager."
Link to Original Source
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Killed for Tweeting: Mexico's Drug War Has Two Mor

mc6809e mc6809e writes  |  more than 3 years ago

mc6809e (214243) writes "Twitter has become deadly serious in Mexico, where two people were allegedly murdered for denouncing a drug cartel on the social network.

In Nuevo Laredo, Mexico, a man and a woman were found hanging from a bridge by their hands and feet. An examination of the bodies showed signs of torture, and the pair is thought to have been beaten and killed by a powerful local drug gang, then displayed to send a message to citizens who might want to publicly renounce the group.

Attached to the bodies were two signs, one of which read “This happens for denouncing,” according to CNN. One of the notes also had the names of two blogs, Al Rojo Vivo and Blog del Narco."

Link to Original Source

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