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The Dominant Life Form In the Cosmos Is Probably Superintelligent Robots

neoshroom Figure Out Electricity (378 comments)

Then lets assumed complex life did evolve on a planet... what if it's a ocean planet and they're aquatic? They're never going to figure out electricity, they can't even experiment with it.

The superintelligent alien electric eel next to me has requested you amend your statement.

2 days ago
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Supreme Court To Decide Whether Rap Lyric Threats Are Free Speech

neoshroom Absolutions & Repair-ations (436 comments)

If I were to publish an article in a newspaper claiming that you embezzled millions of dollars with no proof whatsoever

What?! You are going to publish an article in a newspaper claiming I embezzled millions of dollars with no proof whatsoever?!?! How dare you, sir!

If I read your comment as a threat to publish just such an article about me and then sue you, I only need to convince others that you meant it that way regardless of the truth -- even if the truth is you didn't mean it as a threat. Systems that don't uphold the truth as one of the principle values which are sought after in their systems of justice are not just systems. Such systems do not achieve justice, but instead enforce a false opinion. The justice system should be a just system.

about three weeks ago
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Ask Slashdot: Swift Or Objective-C As New iOS Developer's 1st Language?

neoshroom Learning Resources (316 comments)

I would stick to Objective-C for the moment as there are more learning resources online.

I agree with this. As a new user, for the moment, Objective-C is likely the way to go due to their being more documentation out there. Swift documentation though is rapidly increasing.

As a developer in both Swift and Objective-C, the primary advantage of Swift is it is slightly faster to do many things as it doesn't require strict classing of variables, so you find yourself not having to spend as many lines of code swapping strings to integers as that kind of thing and end up with slightly more readable code.

However, these advantages likely aren't as important for a new user as having a wealth of documentation to learn from.

about 3 months ago
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Melbourne Uber Drivers Slapped With $1700 Fines; Service Shuts Down

neoshroom A Solution (255 comments)

>such as mandatory criminal record checks, vehicle inspections and insurance

Allow drivers to send those in via taking pictures of them with their phones. Have the drivers maybe pay a small fee to get some kind of background check on their driving records which the DMV should have anyway (instead of a criminal background check, which does't seem relevant). Problem solved.

about 7 months ago
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X-rays From Other Galaxies Could Emanate From Particles of Dark Matter

neoshroom Oh, I can answer that. (91 comments)

He might be a bot, but he also might not be a bot.

about 10 months ago
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Japanese Firm Proposes Microwave-Linked Solar Plant On the Moon

neoshroom Re:piotr (330 comments)

M and above are capitalized and everything else is in lower case.

oH, I THInK I GET IT now.

about 10 months ago
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Japanese Firm Proposes Microwave-Linked Solar Plant On the Moon

neoshroom Re:Moon Ring Math (330 comments)

I agree with you. There would likely be a boost over land-based mw estimates. 10% seems reasonable, but I'm not sure how much exactly. I saw 144% on Wikipedia, but that number also took into account the fact that space-based uptime is better than land-based uptime in rainy and snowier places. This system uses stable weather areas as stations though, which would lower that 144% by some amount.

Good article on space-based solar here: http://physics.ucsd.edu/do-the-math/2012/03/space-based-solar-power/.

about 10 months ago
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Japanese Firm Proposes Microwave-Linked Solar Plant On the Moon

neoshroom Moon Ring Math (330 comments)

Yes, I don't however see any data on their website about how wide they are planning to build the ring out. If their graphical renderings are accurate, they display a 195 pixel moon with a 22 pixel ring. Given that google tells me the moon's radius is 1737 km, that means the ring should be about 200 km wide.

So considering that we have a 11,000 km ring that is 200 km width, the power generation for the light-facing half should be what you'd expect from 5500km x 200km or 1,100,000 square kilometers. I've seen estimates of 1.2 mw per square km for solar. Using that as a basis we'd expect 1,320,000 mw of constant power generation. Wikipedia says to take off 10% due to conversion inefficiencies of microwave transmission of electricity and we probably should take off another 5% or so for weather and atmospheric disruptions or inefficiencies. That leaves us with 1,122,000 mw of constant power.

As a point of comparison, all the wind power in the entire world added up to 238,351 megawatts in 2011, so it is roughly five times the capacity of that. However, in 2008 the world had an average power consumption rate of 15 terawatts . 1,122,000 mw is 1.12 terawatts, so this project could supply roughly 7% of the worlds electricity if it was operational today.

The moon has an area of 37,932,000 square km though, so if we coated the entire moon and got energy from the sunny side and do the same math we get 19.34 terrawats. So, at our current state of energy usage it could power the world if we coated the moon in solar panels.

I'm not sure about the aesthetics of it though, a racing stripe on the moon.

about 10 months ago
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Apple Rumored To Be Exploring Medical Devices, Electric Cars To Reignite Growth

neoshroom A Good Sign (255 comments)

It always seems that when companies start trying to branch out into wildly dissimilar industries, it's a sign of trouble within the organization. Do what you do well, figure out how to do it better if things aren't going how you'd like them. Don't try making sushi if you've always sold donuts.

Yeah, Steve Jobs, don't try making phones or music players if you've always sold computers. Actually, don't even starting making computers if you've always made Atari games. Actually, maybe you've got the whole thing backwards...

about 10 months ago
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Star Trek Economics

neoshroom Utopia (888 comments)

>If food, shelter, and energy were in virtually unlimited supply no one would need to work, yes, but more importantly, no one would *want* to.

This is incorrect. If food, shelter and energy were plentiful, people would still work. They would just work on things they wanted to work on. Some people enjoy their work or enjoy aspects of their work. (They do.)

> Where would the goodies come from then? Automation? Okay then, the Machines rule the Federation.

In Star Trek they come from essentially a microwave that spits them out. Using your logic, I have determined that the United States is ruled by microwaves. (It isn't.)

> And no one would ever emerge out of their self-created kingdoms inside holodecks. Just everyone plugged into their fantasies in their holo-simulators, a civilization of lotus-eaters.

And no one would ever emerge out of their self-created kingdoms inside books. So, I say, Mr. Gutenberg, we should burn the infernal press! (We shouldn't.)

about 10 months ago
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Nearly 1 In 4 Adults Surf the Web While Driving

neoshroom Perfectly Safe (365 comments)

I think you are being misled by the Slashdot headline. Notice the headline says:

"Nearly 1 In 4 Adults Surf the Web While Driving"

But then below it is says:

"In 2009, 13 percent of motorists admitted that they'd accessed the Internet while driving. In 2013, that figure had jumped to 24 percent."

Finally, note that "surfing the web" and "accessing the Internet" are not the same thing. Surfing the web means viewing websites. But accessing the internet while driving can occur automatically by your car, when your phone is in your pocket, by listening to Internet-streamed music or by using GPS. All of these are perfectly reasonable to use in your car.

about a year ago
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First Experimental Evidence That Time Is an Emergent Quantum Phenomenon

neoshroom Making sense. (530 comments)

It makes a certain sense to me. Indeed, I suspect it made sense enough to Newton as well, since his notes discuss what a static universe would look like:

At the end of the 9th key.
If th' whole worlds nature were but one
Merely by one figure shown
And Art could nothing els invent
The world no wonder could present
Nor nature plainly be exprest
For which let God be ever blest.

about a year ago
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4K Ultra HD Likely To Repeat the Failure of 3D Television

neoshroom Seiki 4K (559 comments)

Most people who replied to you didn't answer you and most of those people gave you the wrong answer. A number of people said that the Seiki will only run at 1080p with a computer attached, which is just flat wrong.

The 4k Seiki will run in full resolution with both the 39-inch and 50-inch models. The limiting factor on the Seiki's are the connector, which is standard HDMI. A standard HDMI cable cannot push more than 30 hz, which is a very flow refresh rate for monitors these days. Indeed, the Seiki itself supports 120hz, but because it only comes with a cable jack that allows 30hz, you need to use 30hz.

In the next year hopefully other companies or Seiki itself will come out with displays with HDMI2 or Thunderbolt ports at similar price points. This will allow higher refresh rates to be used, prevent screen tearing in 3d work and gaming and improve fast-motion scenes.

about a year ago
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OS X 10.9 Mavericks Review

neoshroom Ah, you noticed it too! (222 comments)

That's one of the first things I noticed. The strange thing is I noticed the same process in reverse when I switched to Mac's back in like 2003. Mac's color balance had a more white look and Windows was more contrasty.

After I upgraded at first I assumed it deleted the calibration profile and ended up going through the whole monitor calibration process only to end up with something close, but not exactly like what I started with and neither like how it looked under Mountain Lion. It doesn't really bug me that much, since I'm doing mostly coding and when I have graphical work I'm mostly previewing it on a mobile or a Mac anyway. You must be working in print. Blame paper. ;)

In all seriousness I hope they fix this and any other minor things. It was a much smoother upgrade than the last one though for me.

about a year ago
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Can the iPhone Popularize Fingerprint Readers?

neoshroom Re:But, honestly... (356 comments)

A strange response considering the easiest way to hack it is to replicate the fingerprint to use on the device, at which point who cares about hashes or what it does to keep the data secure after the fingerprint is used.

If your fingerprint is your passcode anyone can steal your passcode by taking your fingerprint.

about a year ago
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Can the iPhone Popularize Fingerprint Readers?

neoshroom But, honestly... (356 comments)

It's not like any group has huge databases with large portions of the population's fingerprints anyway. Who would even want access to all the personal information kept on your phone?

Now, everyone calm down and go back to reading peaceful stories about how the NSA has hacked all internet cryptography.

about a year ago
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China's Secret Scientific Megaprojects

neoshroom Scare you? (142 comments)

I will tell you what would happen in that admittedly unlikely scenario of China discovering cheap fusion power.

Prices for oil, gas and other energy sources would decrease as China decreased its non-fusion consumption. Neighbors of China may also decrease their non-fusion energy consumption as China could sell them energy over any existing grids.

So, in the short term things actually improve for non-China economies as if they are still on fossil fuels at this point, they just got cheaper and if they are not then they are unaffected.

In the long term the technology leaks or is gained via espionage and the rest of the world gets it too. That also assumes China would not just license the tech in the first place and if they do that things work out fine too.

Sounds win-win to me.

about a year ago

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