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Washington DC To Return To Automatic Metro Trains

mha Nuremberg: fully automated subway, works. (179 comments)

I live in Nuremberg, Germany. 2 of 3 subway lines are fully automatic. They run much more often than with drivers, and this is actually MIXED operation: the third line, that is still driver operated, shares the tracks on the middle section through the city. Nuremberg was the first city to have such a mixed-mode subway.

They are on time for the most part, stop within a few cm of where they are supposed to each time, and are just a normal part of life. I've read about an occasional hiccup but never experienced one myself, and I don't think it's more than it would be in the "old system". The biggest stops were due to worker strikes, not technology issues. They didn't lay off anyone, by the way.

Anyway, it is just unexciting business as usual for me any more, nothing special.

Video (1min):


about a month ago

The Myths and Realities of Synthetic Bioweapons

mha Just me? Article is not all that insightful. (36 comments)

Lots of generalities and assertions, no depth at all. Was this really worth being posted? They may or may not be right - but all you can have after reading it is an "opinion". No actual knowledge in that article, or even any insights. It is mere boulevard paper level journalism.

Also, what is missing is the speed with which the options increase. I just finished edX course MIT "Introduction to Biology" (HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!! WARNING: CONTAINS ACTUAL KNOWLEDGE! and so much happened just the last 10 years! So an assessment of the danger of these developments that only looks at the current state (and what a bad job they do with this) is kind of useless.

about a month ago

Radioactive Wild Boars Still Roaming the Forests of Germany

mha No natural enemies (212 comments)

There are no predators - ZERO predators, in German forests. A handful of wolves in Brandenburg, and an occasional bear in Bavaria (making headlines each time it happens). So humans MUST decimate those who proliferate too much, because nature doesn't. For you ideology trumps reason?

about a month and a half ago

Radioactive Wild Boars Still Roaming the Forests of Germany

mha What? (212 comments)

I'm confused by the text you quoted as coming from a parent comment. I cannot find that text in the parent comment, and AFAICS comments are not editable once posted, so that means it was never there. Where did you find this:

> Which means this is nothing but a hunter subsidy. Like whaling for Japan where their excuse is "whales eat all the fish".

And about the subsidy, juts for the record, since the text is there and I cannot find the quoted comment to reply to:

The articles says the compensation is just enough for disposal of the dead animals, it isn't even a compensation for missed earnings had they sold the meat. And I can tell you selling that meat would not a problem, people like buying wild animal meat. So the statement makes no sense at all, except to show that ideology often blinds ones reasoning abilities.

about a month and a half ago

Amazon To Buy Twitch For $970 Million

mha Re:The right to demand a takedown (61 comments)

I don't understand what you mean. I'm not talking about sharing of videos recorded by the league - I'm talking about privately recorded videos of the games. Here in Germany we had the case of people recording local games (insignificant, lowest level) and those videos where attempted to be taken down.

I obviously understand (somewhat) if they don't want you to share THEIR videos, but they don't want you to share ANY videos of the event, even if YOU recorded it.

I don't have a link for the event I describe above, but it would be in German anyway.

about 2 months ago

Amazon To Buy Twitch For $970 Million

mha Re:The right to demand a takedown (61 comments)

At least in soccer - and I don't watch any sports or read any sports news so there may very well be others - there ARE such notices. I heard of at least the Englisch Premier League as well as the German Bundesliga trying to enforce "copyright" against Youtube.,28312... (German)

about 2 months ago

Long-Wave Radar Can Take the Stealth From Stealth Technology

mha Mode C Transponder (275 comments)

When flying in civilian airspace they have to have their mode C (altitude reporting) capable transponder turned on, so of course they'll show up on radar. You can't have hardly radar-visible aircraft flying around busy civilian airplanes.

about 2 months ago
top, Mensa Create Dating Site For Geniuses

mha Re:why would I want to hang with a buncha cunts (561 comments)

> So what's wrong with that?

Nothing is wrong with that, but I am intelligent enough to see that you don't invalidate one shred of the original comment you reply to. What you write is orthogonal, meaning it's something unrelated, it neither supports nor invalidates the prior statement. :-)

about 4 months ago

Ubuntu Linux 14.04 LTS Trusty Tahr Released

mha Linux since 1995 but now I've Windows (on desktop) (179 comments)

I used RedHat, SuSE, Debian, Ubuntu. Ubuntu was my desktop for a long time, but slowly Microsoft and Ubuntu working together changed that. First Microsoft got better, and it supports the latest hardware and - so I heard - power management is better, important for my new notebook. At the same time Ubuntu changed to desktop to something I have no love and no use for.

I did kernel hacking (network code - NAT and firewall, kernel 2.2), Linux was my main system since 1995, I worked for one of the major Linux companies (on two continents) and my server stuff still is solidly Linux. However, on the desktops Windows (7 and 8) has replaced it.

Reason: Good enough and hardware.

I have a new (Derll XPS 13) "ultrabook" with a touch screen (yes it's "shiny" and I hate that, but *I want touch*) and SSD drive. Contrary to what I feared when everyone complained about Windows 8 the only real difference I had even before the latest big patch was that "app" start screen. It was very easy to work on the desktop anyway (without installing anything), and all I added in addition to Chrome and Firefox was git (which includes a bash - hurra!!!) and a good console app (ConEmu). Look guys, I only installed a handful of key pieces of software and I can use my Windows 8 without getting used to any "Windows-isms" like Powershell (powerful it may be but I remain a Unix person). I feel ZERO pain using Windows 8 as my desktop, even though I use the console a lot and MongoDB and node.js and vi. The hardware requires that I run Windows 8 (don't tell me "but there's a driver for xyz", that may be but I don't want to beta-test software I rely on every day. I frankly don't care too much about the OS as long as stuff works the way I'm used to. bash, git, vi, a tiny virtual screen manager software for Windows - and I get perfect support for this up-to-date Ultrabook.

So Windows 8 is good enough for me to continue without changing my (Linux) habits, and it has the superior hardware support. Sorry, Ubuntu. Oh, and on the server I installed Debian, for commercial projects I take whatever they have decided on.

I have Ubuntu in a VMware VM on my desktop, but my Ultrabook with only 256GB SSD has no room for two OS installations, which is why I tried the above workarounds in the first place and I've been pleased far beyond my expectations after having read all those horror stories about Win 8. I find myself starting the Ubuntu VM less and less, since everything works so well.

about 6 months ago

IRS Can Now Seize Your Tax Refund To Pay a Relative's Debt

mha No it does not. (632 comments)

You misunderstand this move. This isn't about the money. A drop in the bucket, utter symbolism.

This is just one small story in many decades of more and more changes to the lender-debtor relationship. In economics I learned that one of the most important reasons for US capitalism's success was that, unlike in other parts of the world until that time where debtor prison and other nasty things awaited anyone who didn't, most often couldn't pay their debts in the US you'd be freed from your debt and then could start over and try again. The invention of the corporation (16th century) was when that movement started that debts are not eternal and that one should be able to try again. It still is true for corporations, but for individuals the noose has been tightening more and more not just in the US. There have been (economic) articles about a growing disparity between economic teaching and reality in the area of lendor-debtor relationship and power for a long time. The power has slowly shifted ever more towards the lender. This story is just one tiny brick in a big wall that was started being built decades ago.

about 6 months ago

German Wikipedia Has Problems With Paid Editing — and Threats of Violence

mha No matter.. (55 comments)

I didn't claim that there IS no word - after all, there's a word for everything - only that I didn't know. I don't think it matters much that/if there is a word when few people know it. Even with your Wikipedia link, I most certainly have never ever heard the word "Randsteinbeißen" in my life. Worse: I am not even aware that "Randstein" is a word. For me that's supposed to be "Bordstein". Conceptually "Randstein" makes sense ("egde stone", for the English speakers), but I've never heard it before.

> interestingly, the German Wikipedia seems to be the only one that has an article on this.

I think this should tell us something ;-)

about 6 months ago

German Wikipedia Has Problems With Paid Editing — and Threats of Violence

mha I'm German and I have no idea. (55 comments)

I know what it means but I can't even think of a German word equivalent. I would have to resort to describing its meaning in German using at least one long sentence.

about 6 months ago

Russians Take Ukraine's Last Land Base In Crimea

mha You are so wrong. (551 comments)

It is actually pretty well known that the entire Eastern Ukraine is very much more Russian. If you want to argue that the Russians didn't *always* live there, we can continue this discussion with some American Indians if you like.

about 7 months ago

Turing Award Goes To Distributed Computing Wrangler Leslie Lamport

mha Wrong problem identification (40 comments)

I'm not sure why you care if *Microsoft* uses (La)Tex. This is a choice for the *customers*, and given that (La)Tex has always been easily and freely available for everyone I'm not sure what mindset you have to blame Microsoft. Because you don't dare insult *everyone* at once (the overwhelming customer majority), because then everyone reading your comment would have seen the lack of thinking that went into it? So you instead gained some "Insightful" votes from equally zealous MS haters, congrats, well done (from your POV).

about 7 months ago

Up To 1000 NIH Investigators Dropped Out Last Year

mha Sample of one proof (111 comments)

Nice sample of one proof you've got there, AC.

about 7 months ago

Apple Refuses To Unlock Bequeathed iPad

mha Of course they can prove it (465 comments)

If the security is so good that they need Apple to unlock it then they can easily prove that it's their mom's device because the active account on the device is her mom.

No idea who modded you "insightful" - no disrespect to you, I make 1000 silly mistakes a day, but looking at other people's texts/comments is always easier than judging your own words so I DO have some doubts about those who moderated this comment up. Unless someone can point out an error in my argument, but I think it's pretty obvious (well, obviously, otherwise I wouldn't have said it, wouldn't I).

about 7 months ago

Ask Slashdot: How Do You To Tell Your Client That His "Expert" Is an Idiot?

mha Too shallow. (384 comments)

Who is a loser? It's not always so obvious. Short term winner may be longer term looser may be looonger term winner. Short term winner may cause others (1..n) become short term and/or long term losers. As so often, nice catchy phrase - and utterly useless. It does not spare you from looking at the individual complex case. This only becomes "simple" when you suppress most of reality. Example: You say the guy who makes the most $$$ is a winner - but he may for his/her entire life lack all the things that are associated with that state. Is a lack of empathy winning or losing, and/or an overblown sense of entitlement ("I did this all by myself" - like the pharao building the pyramids, right?), in this context? Depends on the point of view, but the more of the world you include in your view the harder it becomes to see clearly using simple term such as winning/losing.

about 8 months ago

New Russian Fighter Not Up To Western Standards

mha Re:On par with F22 and F35 (354 comments)

> despite his claims

*He* does not make that claim (not in that video/interview, and nothing else from him has been referenced here). You responded to some random Slashdot commenter.

I'm curious, why do you think you can attribute what some random person says about some 3rd person (not present or involved or even aware of the discussion) to that person?

about 9 months ago

Why CES Is a Bad Scene For Startups

mha Amazing... (89 comments) you can make such judgment calls for companies you don't even know the name of, all you know is "startup". I'd like to have that crystal ball of yours. Personally, because I don't have such insights, I'm left to trusting that people closer to the action, actually working for those businesses know what they are doing - at least better than me who doesn't even know which business we are talking about.

about 9 months ago



MS developer about why MS kernel development falls behind

mha mha writes  |  about a year and a half ago

mha (1305) writes "In a response that truly seems to be from a core Microsoft developer we are told about why MS Windows kernel development continues to fall further and further behind that of the Linux kernel."
Link to Original Source

Western Lifestyle Disturbing Key Bacterial Balance

mha mha writes  |  about 2 years ago

mha writes "Trillions of bacteria living in and on the human body play a vital role in preserving health. But C-section births, antibiotics and excessive hygiene have been disturbing our microbial balance and possibly contributing to intestinal ailments, obesity, allergies and autism.


Nothing new (to those reading about such topics more or less regularly), but a nice article anyway — a nice introduction for the rest (the majority)."

Link to Original Source

Time ripe for Open Enterprise?

mha mha writes  |  more than 6 years ago

mha writes "Projects like Linux, Apache in Software or Wikipedia on the Web are hugely successful.

So what is stopping anyone from trying to extend such projects, or create new ones, to be money-making projects? If a community can build — and maintain! — Wikipedia or Linux, couldn't it also build and maintain a company like Google? Of course, not replacing traditional business, just like Open Source/Collaboration has not replaced traditional ways of producing code or content.

Are there any such projects underway? I've started one ( myself, but only because I couldn't find one to join forces with. I tried very hard, but when I ask people keep pointing me to "traditional" open projects that have no intention to go any further than producing free stuff. I'm looking for a project where marketing, supporting and selling is part of "open"!

Isn't that the logical step to take from where we are with community-projects?"

Link to Original Source

Starting an OPEN commercial project?

mha mha writes  |  more than 6 years ago

mha writes "There are two types of projects on the web:

1) Those that are or want to be commercial successes for a closed group of people (founders and investors). Examples are Google, and Slashdot.
2) Then there are many thousands tiny webprojects by one or a few individuals.

We have seen it IS possible to build something really useful and commercially successful as a big open group of users, for example Linux, Apache, Debian.

What disturbs me is that COMMERCIAL success of such projects is left to corporations. Should it not be possible to build such projects to INCLUDE the money-making, and not just the product-making?

All projects I see are either type 1) or 2). Now, if instead of contributing for nothing one could have free (as in open source, not necessarily as in free beer) projects intended to also make money, wouldn't that at least be worth an attempt?

I started a project ( for multimedia content. However, doing it alone wasn't the intention and doesn't get me anywhere. I would also be just as glad to help with some other project. The problem is, I would like to see the "web 2.0" and "Open source" ideas extended, and not limited to "you work for free", which right now no one seems to do?

So what do you think? How could WE go about starting such a project? Or would anyone be willing to share mine, or have me join theirs?"

Link to Original Source

Please participate: Multimedia Learning Content

mha mha writes  |  more than 7 years ago

mha writes "I have started producing multimedia learning content. I would like to
turn this into a community project. The aim is to jointly create
sophisticated multimedia learning and information content. Topics can be
anything, but I would like to concentrate on IT topics and open source

The website is

The name stands for LEarning and TEaching
eXchange. I found it while looking for available .com domain names that
were short, easy to pronounce, not a word in one language — and free of


I must admit I have little desire to discuss this question. If you don't
see any sense in producing such content, feel free to ignore me. I'm
saying this because after posting my latest course on the Mozilla
Thunderbird forum the second response I got sounded as if the guy wanted
to bill me for wasting his time and producing something he didn't want.

Now it is absolutely clear to me that the universe functions very well
without my project. Everything already exists, one might think, in the
form of various books, papers, forum-, mailinglist- or
newsgroup-articles, etc. That is absolutely true!

However, with the same argument you can easily argue against yet another
coffee shop in your neighborhood, against yet another book about XYZ,
against yet another car manufacturer, etc. ad infinitum — until you find
that all you need is sleep and food and maybe a roof over your head. Who
needs airlines, fun parks, TV, movies,...?

So the question is not if my project is really *needed*. Rather, once it
exists and has sufficient content and not just a handful of beta-quality
course material (the current situation), are there going to be enough
people interested in it? Provided they know it exists in the first
place, another big problem, but a completely different one — that's
"merely" a marketing issue.

I (obviously) think the answer is yes.

*What kind of content do I want to produce?*

Most, or actually almost all courses I've seen are screen recordings and
show how to do something in a particular product. I would like to
produce such content too, but I think the real fun lies in producing
background information content.

Examples are my little pieces (I call them "courselets" instead of
"course", because they should be part of a larger context) about Email,
RSS and newsgroups:

        * Email:
        * RSS: Email:
        * Newsgroups: Email:

A commercial example is something I made for Open Xchange, which is a 15
minute product demonstration, mostly of a webinterface for their product:


One could produce this for open source software, too, the kind of
software I'd like to focus on.

I also imagine things like introductory Linux courses, Linux admin
courses, networking, creating webpages, etc. etc. The list of topics is


I would like to do something a little different than other open source
projects. I would like this project to make money. Okay, maybe that
isn't so different, Mozilla makes money! But I would like to create
mechanisms that distribute the income to those responsible for creating
it. For income details see the "About" sections of the
webpage. Producing good content is a very time-consuming process
(actually, bad content takes just as long, sometimes), and I really
don't see why making money should be left to some corporations. I think
community processes *do* work well with capitalism.


My first problem is me. Who am I? Why should anyone listen? Besides,
I've got quite a few weaknesses, not the least one is that I cannot
really claim to know exactly what I'm doing and how to do it.

My next big problem is that I'm alone, and it is a HUGE project. Even
those small courses (courselets) on the Letexa website took a looong
time to produce. And they are far from what I would like them to be.
Where is the interactivity, for example?

Next, when I work on such a course I easily loose sight of the big
picture (maybe I never had a good perspective in the first place). When
I worry about why the Flash events I rely on for navigation don't fire
reliably I cannot think about larger questions. Besides, I can see how
this project works — 10 years later, with lots of active participants
and lots of users. I have grave doubts about my ability to get it there.
See the first problem.

But the fact remains, I started, I'm willing to invest even more of my
time (equals money, the income I forgo), and I have fun doing it. It
would just be nice not to be alone and to see much more progress."

Link to Original Source


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