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Proposed Penalty For UK Hackers Who "Damage National Security": Life

mpe Re:could be? (164 comments)

Could be? Come on - targeting whistleblowers is the point. It's not about damaging national security, the economy or the environment - it's about damaging somebody's political career.

If it was about any of these you'd expect it to be used against politicians, bankers, government contractors, etc.

yesterday
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Snapchat Will Introduce Ads, Attempt To Keep Them Other Than Creepy

mpe Re: The first one is always free (131 comments)

The disadvantage is that designing such systems is much harder than designing a centralized system, that performance will be more unpredictable, it's hard to achive very low latencies, and that the creator will have less control.

Part of the latter is that it can make it far more difficult to datamine or snoop on the content.

5 days ago
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Why the FCC Will Probably Ignore the Public On Network Neutrality

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

If the government wants to control the hundreds of billions of dollars of network infrastructure that private companies have invested it, it has an obligation to show that such control is the least burdensome method of achieving a compelling state interest.

How many of these actually are regular private companies? Public utilities, including telcos, often have all sorts of special rights plus direct and indirect subsidies granted to them even if nominally "private".

about three weeks ago
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It's Not Just How Smart You Are: Curiosity Is Key To Learning

mpe Re:.. and this is new ? (83 comments)

Actually, I believe it isn't curiosity that was tested. I believe it was interest. Interest != curiosity. Curiosity would involve something the subject didn't know. Interest is something totally different since it relies on a topic the subject already has some familiarity with.

Actually "curiosity" might still be the best term. Since it can be independent of how much knowlage of a subject someone currently has.
It's also important that this is subject specific and follows that person's own definition of the "subject". Which can be an issue in an educational environment.

about three weeks ago
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Possible Reason Behind Version Hop to Windows 10: Compatibility

mpe Re:I call hogwash (349 comments)

What is Microsoft going to do next? Windows 12, Windows 13, etc., up through Windows 29, and then skip to Windows 40 because Windows 3.x apps checked for version 3?

Though there's also "NT4" and "Windows 2000" to consider here.

Any software old enough to care about Win9x is software that Microsoft does not care about supporting on Windows 9.

Even if it does exist it would probably misidentity as "Windows 1".

about three weeks ago
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Solar Could Lead In Power Production By 2050

mpe Re:Only (167 comments)

Only if they orbit solar power satellites. Part time power is silly."

That eliminates the random element. But the power output will still be "part time" due to the Earth being in the way for about half the time. Only a geostationary orbit will not require any kind of tracking. A geosynchronous orbit creates a North-South ground track. (The article dosn't even mention Indonesia, BTW). Any other orbit is going to create a complex ground track requiring "handover" and possibly multiple satellites in the same orbit. There's also the issue of how do you create such a satellite which isn't capable to being used as a weapons grade maser.

Build 100 1000 megawatt fission plants and be done with it.

Which is something we already know how to do. Including designs which can be throttled and produce little long term radioactive waste.As well as designs which could be developed if money wasn't being squandered on wind and solar.

about three weeks ago
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Solar Could Lead In Power Production By 2050

mpe Re:So tax us honestly. (167 comments)

Generation and power delivery need to be separate, so you pay to have grid tie and pay for power delivery. You can also sell your power back at some rate that the market will bear.

The structure of the grid depends very much on the kind of power plants used though. In terms of are they generating full time or part time. If that latter is it to a schedule or effectivly random.

about three weeks ago
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Nearly 2,000 Chicago Flights Canceled After Worker Sets Fire At Radar Center

mpe Re:what a difference a day makes (223 comments)

That's actually a really good point. If you want to get access to sensitive locations, get hired onto the work crew. Want a key to the CEO's office? Become a janitor.

Cleaners and janitors are a known known issue with physical security. So this is unlikely to work with the likes of the NSA :)

about a month ago
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Nearly 2,000 Chicago Flights Canceled After Worker Sets Fire At Radar Center

mpe Re:Striking air traffic controllers fired (223 comments)

Parent has seen all the proof he needs in "Die Hard II".

This fiction. Mythbusters managed to inadvertantly "bust" the ending too.

about a month ago
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Nearly 2,000 Chicago Flights Canceled After Worker Sets Fire At Radar Center

mpe Re:Striking air traffic controllers fired (223 comments)

No, but commercial aircraft in high traffic areas tend to have TCAS and similar to alert them to traffic, and if on a proper clearance won't run into anyone anyway.

IIRC there are plenty of places where TCAS is mandatory. Even for light aircraft which intend to use that airspace.

about a month ago
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Nearly 2,000 Chicago Flights Canceled After Worker Sets Fire At Radar Center

mpe Re:Striking air traffic controllers fired (223 comments)

Believe it or not, there are other people who stop planes from running into "each other". They're called "pilots". Actual human beings who control the airplanes and where they go.

They also tend to have a direct personal interest in planes not colliding too. They are also not obliged to follow ATC either. There are rules specifically indicating that if ATC and TCAS are in conflict to follow TCAS. Though a pilot might have to answer to all sorts of people afterwards if they said "unable" without a good reason.

about a month ago
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Nearly 2,000 Chicago Flights Canceled After Worker Sets Fire At Radar Center

mpe Re:Really, a single oint of failure? (223 comments)

You might as well be the person in the back yelling "WHY AREN'T WE TAKING OFF" after a blown tire and abort near V1.

Or even the one in the back of the plane behind the one now stuck half way down the runway until all the wheels on the MLG are changed.

about a month ago
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Nearly 2,000 Chicago Flights Canceled After Worker Sets Fire At Radar Center

mpe Re:Really, a single oint of failure? (223 comments)

Now, what happens when a nutter cuts the cable going out of the building, or sets it afire? Yeah, it has a serious impact.

Where there is malicious action that can easily circumvent "redundancy". Especially where this involves "insiders" who can know which parts of systems are the least redundant. Since redundant systems are generally intended to be so against random damage.

about a month ago
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Nearly 2,000 Chicago Flights Canceled After Worker Sets Fire At Radar Center

mpe Re:Really, a single oint of failure? (223 comments)

Not even barring inclement weather. The navigation aids were not impacted by this, only center. Departure and approach were still functional, too. Get an IFR clearance and fly it. You don't have to talk to a center to do that.

It's the getting the clearance which is the issue. Because of the problem the FAA might reject your flight plan. If the flight is effectivly a charter by the FAA then that isn't likely to happen.

about a month ago
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Nearly 2,000 Chicago Flights Canceled After Worker Sets Fire At Radar Center

mpe Re:HR still says (223 comments)

loyalty side effects may occur (aka you get what you pay for)

There are also highly paid (possibly overpaid) people who show utter contempt for their employers though.

about a month ago
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The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

mpe Re:Its not the CFL/LED (602 comments)

The problem is, we are trying to adapt CFLs to Incandescent sockets.

Not always too well, since the result can be a a bad fit. Sometimes even a lamp which can't fit in the fixture.

The CFLs you're getting have about the cheapest ballasts that can be made in them and the airflow through them is awful. In an ideal setup you'd have these ballasts elsewhere... where they can remain cool.

Which is how "classic" florescent fittings work. With the ballast typically nowhere near the lamp.

about a month ago
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The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

mpe Re:Its not the CFL/LED (602 comments)

LED is DC, and it needs regulated DC.

LED stands for Light Emitting Diode. So they can be fed AC and illuminate. One way of making a tri-colour LED is to connect a red and a green one in anti-parallel within the same package. Result DC one way red, DC the other way green, AC yellow (actually the illusion of yellow due to presistance of vision).

about a month ago
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The Great Lightbulb Conspiracy

mpe Re:"the Phoebus cartel still casts a shadow today" (602 comments)

None of the LEDs in this house have failed so far (after close to three years since installation), so I have no reason to expect that they won't last the rated lifetime.

I've seen one fail. But it looks like it was some of the electronics driving the lamps which literally "went up in smoke".

about a month ago
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A DC-10 Passenger Plane Is Perfect At Fighting Wildfires

mpe Re:Hmmm .... (112 comments)

Now, when you're using it as a water bomber, you're never going to pressurize the cabin, and you've likely made some other major changes.

But you will put a different set of stresses on the airframe through dumping the cargo.

about a month ago
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A DC-10 Passenger Plane Is Perfect At Fighting Wildfires

mpe Re:The DC-10 was killed by poor management. (112 comments)

What killed the plane for commercial service is the same thing that killed every other tri-jet. Third Engine meant higher costs both in terms of fuel and maintenance.

There's also the costs of requiring 3 cockpit crew. Unless converted to an MD-10.

about a month ago

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