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Researchers Test Developer Biometrics To Predict Buggy Code

ortholattice Re:64.99%, 84.38%, Really? (89 comments)

While I agree the extra precision is misleading, the real problem is that they don't provide confidence intervals. Even a rounded 80% could be misleading if it could fall between 60% and 90% due to sparse data.

On the other hand, if in their report details they said "84.38% with a 99% confidence interval of 72.27% to 94.49%", then the extra precision is no longer necessarily misleading (it is just the calculational result of the model used) and, although it is a little pedantic and redundant, I would have no fundamental problem with it. It might even be argued that it is infinitesimally more precise, allowing the calculations to be confirmed by an independent researcher. However, for presentation in summary form, it would be much better to say "between 72% and 94% with 99% confidence".

about two weeks ago

A Skeptical View of Israel's Iron Dome Rocket Defense System

ortholattice Re:Subject bait (379 comments)

Why the hell are you still living there?

It's my home.

People are constantly losing their "home" for as minor a reason as losing their job and having to transfer to another city. Call me a coward, but I'd move if my city was under long-term, constant attack.

But regardless of your personal motivation, why would you want to traumatize your children by having them grow up in the midst of such fear and violence?

about three weeks ago

A Peek Inside D-Wave's Quantum Computing Hardware

ortholattice Re:WoW! (55 comments)

Um, last time I looked, most microcontroller chips could make calculations in "mere millionths of a second".

Yes, but they can't do 2^512 (2 to the 512th power) calculations simultaneously in mere millionths of a second.

Of course, this would be for an ideal quantum computer with 512 qubits. There's still some confusion about what the D-Wave "is".

about three weeks ago

Unicode 7.0 Released, Supporting 23 New Scripts

ortholattice Proprietary fonts (108 comments)

Over the years, I've tried to use Unicode for math symbols on various web pages and tend to revert back to GIFs or LaTeX-generating tools due to problems with symbols missing from the font used by this or that browser/OS combination, or even incorrect symbols in some cases.

IMO the biggest problem with Unicode is the lack of a public domain reference font. Instead, it is a mishmash of proprietary fonts each of which only partly implements the spec. Even the Unicode spec itself uses proprietary fonts from various sources and thus cannot be freely reproduced (it says so right in the spec), a terrible idea for a supposed "standard".

I'd love to see a plain, unadorned public-domain reference font that incorporates all defined characters - indeed, it would seem to me to be the responsibility of the Unicode Standard committee to provide such a font. Then others can use it as a basis for their own fancy proprietary font variations, and I would have a reliable font I could revert to when necessary.

about a month and a half ago

Scientists Find Method To Reliably Teleport Data

ortholattice Re:This research should receive enormous funding. (202 comments)

What you can do is use quantum teleportation to "transmit" (in a manner of speaking) a real (or complex) number, i.e. a quantum superposition, which in theory could contain infinite information, by using only a couple of classical bits. This real number can't be observed directly - you can only tell whether it's less than or greater than a specified number by appropriately designing your observation - but until you observe it, it can be further processed in its full precision as a superposition at the receiver end using quantum operations. What you can do with this internal (uncollapsed) infinite information is up to you, e.g. as part of a quantum factoring or search algorithm, until you finally collapse it and read out some yes/no answer. All in theory of course; in practice you have noise and other sources of error.

about 2 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Professional Journaling/Notes Software?

ortholattice Re:paper...pencil (170 comments)

I do this. Also, once every year or two, I scan all the pages and make a nice pdf file of each volume. I put bookmarks on pages that I think I may want to look up quickly (often these correspond to physical bookmarks such as little sticky notes) and also bookmark start of month or start of new project. My bookshelf, with 5 linear feet of notes over the years, fits on a thumb drive. In practice, I typically look up things in the pdfs rather than the physical notes. I intend to dispose of the physical notes someday, at least the very old ones (ego has prevented me from doing so thus far), but even if my house burns down my notes are safely stored away on a remote backup.

about 3 months ago

Ask Slashdot: Hungry Students, How Common?

ortholattice Re:Get creative (390 comments)

Corned beef AND cabbage?...

Beano works for me. However, for it to really work well, I've found you need 2-3 pills per serving of food, typically 6-9 pills per meal, which (even for the generic version) can cost more than the meal itself!

about 3 months ago

Plant Breeders Release 'Open Source Seeds'

ortholattice Re:The wrong license (136 comments)

You are confusing copyright with patents. TFA is about "patent-free" seeds, not GPL copyrighted seeds (if there even is such a thing).

about 3 months ago

New 360-Degree Video Capture Method Unveiled

ortholattice Re:Video too slow (58 comments)

So how come I have no problem with streaming video, youtube, etc. which typically use about 20% of the CPU? What makes this so special?

about 5 months ago

New 360-Degree Video Capture Method Unveiled

ortholattice Video too slow (58 comments)

On my 2GHz laptop, the CPU is pinned to 100%, and all I see are frozen frames that skip through the video every few seconds. The dragging response is so sluggish as to be meaningless since any visual feedback is delayed many seconds. I guess this technology isn't ready for prime time unless you have a bleeding edge gamer GPU or something.

about 5 months ago

Would Linus Torvalds Please Collect His Bitcoin Tips?

ortholattice Re:Copyright infringement. (231 comments)

I don't see what this has to do with "copyright infringement". Anyway, from what I could tell, Tip4Commit takes a 5% cut.

about 6 months ago

An OS You'll Love? AI Experts Weigh In On Her

ortholattice Re:OS upgrade time... (175 comments)

Yes, but for those of us who know how to root it, your old one will keep up the house and intelligently manage half of your assets.

about 6 months ago

Ask Slashdot: How Can I Improve My Memory For Study?

ortholattice Re:Nootropics (384 comments)

Be careful with priracetam. There is anecdotal evidence that although it may make people with low IQ/memory problems smarter, it might also make people with high IQ dumber. Personally, I tried it for a while and it seemed to make no difference. (Does that mean I have an unremarkable IQ? :-) )

about 7 months ago

Smart Cars: Too Distracting?

ortholattice Re:Buttons vs Touch screens (180 comments)

Buttons vs Touch screens? I must be really ancient, because I still hate the replacement of Knobs with Buttons. There is nothing more user-friendly than a rotating volume control knob you can reach for in the dark without taking your eyes off the road, vs. finding a little button and hoping it's not set to the wrong mode.

Oh and while I'm at it, what's the deal with the "fade-in" response volume control knobs where when you turn up the volume, it only increases a half-second later? Give me the old-fashioned potentiometers that respond instantly.

And get off my lawn.

about 8 months ago

Have 100GB Free? Host Your Own Copy of Wikipedia, With Images

ortholattice Re:2013-11-04 (151 comments)

I agree that ISO 8601 is much better, but people will still put the year last in informal usage no matter how much you try to convince them otherwise. Among the countries that I've visited (not an exhaustive list obviously), only the US (usually) uses "/" as the separator. The others usually use "." or "-". And only the US has the month first. So an informal convention that usually works for me when there is ambiguity is to interpret "/" as meaning month first, anything else day first.

about 8 months ago

Man In Tesla Model S Fire Explains What Happened

ortholattice Stupid idiot messages (526 comments)

A pet peeve with cars is the stupid engine light that gives no clue what the problem is. I have no idea if it's some lower-priority thing like a polution sensor slightly out of spec or something where I need to stop immediately to avoid engine damage. (I know you can buy the code readers, but I don't carry one around in my car typically.)

So the Tesla, with all its sophistication, says 'Car needs service. Car may not restart.' WTF? They might as well replace it with an engine light to save money.

I do agree that 'Please pull over safely. Car is shutting down.' is a little better, but not much.

about 9 months ago

Laser Communication System Sets Record With Data Transmissions From Moon

ortholattice Bandwidth of early space missions (43 comments)

One thing that still puzzles me about the early space explorations is the extremely poor quality of the audio. When I see film clips of those days, I often cannot understand what they are saying at all; "Houston, we have a problem" would be like "Hous-acch w-cch acch a pracch-acch". At first I thought it might be that the extra bandwidth needed for clean audio would be prohibitively expensive in those days, yet they were able to transmit live video very early on, which of course uses far more bandwidth.

Wouldn't the barely intelligible audio be a safety issue, or is it just that I'm not trained to understand it? Does anyone with historical knowledge know what the deal with this was?

about 9 months ago

IsoHunt Settles With MPAA, Will Shut Down And Pay Up to $110 Million

ortholattice Re:ISOhunt had 5-6 million dollars?!? (245 comments)

Actually, if they have 5-6 million, they might as well just use it up on appeals rather than paying the MPAA. In the best case there's a minuscule chance of finding an uncorrupted, rational judge who understands how the Internet works and that an informational link to content they don't host isn't the same as hosting or distributing the content. In any case, once it's exhausted, they declare bankruptcy, and the MPAA will have nothing to collect.

about 9 months ago

ArkOS: Building the Anti-Cloud (on a Raspberry Pi)

ortholattice Re:Net neutrality (166 comments)

I'm not sure you understand the problem. The outgoing service (free public wireless) allows only outgoing ports 80 and 443, whether I'm using ssh, http, or whatever. The destination (my home) blocks incoming ports 80 and 443. It is impossible to get from one to the other without going through a commercial 3rd-party service, which is the point of my complaint.

about 10 months ago


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