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To prepare for a coronal mass ejection, I ...

phamNewan Mostly I try to see the aurora borealis (151 comments)

But so far, it hasn't reached far enough south. What would be cooler than seeing that in the mid-latitudes?

about 5 months ago

Report: Verizon Claimed Public Utility Status To Get Government Perks

phamNewan The most traditional pass time is... (140 comments)

Isn't running circles around government regulation the oldest pass time in America. Look back at how effectively the Stamp Act was circumvented, 250 years ago. The more complex the laws gets, the easier it is to get away with things like this, because even the government can't sort through the complexity of the laws.

The solution is not more regulation, but simplifying it. If a corporation can make billions, by simply hiring 50 lawyers, or 500, to find a way to make billions, that is huge return on investment. Anyone who expects an efficient and responsive government is dreaming. The only effective solution is to make it so simple, that dodging becomes impractical.

about 8 months ago

Say What? Wading Through the Nonsense In Microsoft's Re-Org Memo

phamNewan Sprayed coffee out my nose (165 comments)

I deal with that doublespeak so much that ready Curt's summary made me spray coffee. Damn that hurt, but I will be smiling the rest of the day.

I have gotten more than a few dirty looks for playing buzzword bingo.

about a year and a half ago

The Motivated Rejection of Science

phamNewan As a free-market engineer. (771 comments)

It is interesting to me how the topics are chosen to determine what is rejection of science and what is not. For example this week another study came out that organic is not healthier than conventional, yet the anti-free market people reject that science as bogus.

I reject the idea that CO2 is going to cause global warming, but accept lung cancer is caused by smoking and AIDS by HIV. I ignore the creationists, but accept that they are free to believe what they want to on that, but evolution all the way for me.

I have also been an R&D engineer for more than a decade. Somehow the idea that because I accept free-market principles instead of central planning indicates that I am anti-science is total bullshit.

Of course since this is a peer-reviewed paper I could be labeled as anti-science for not accepting this paper, but that is something I am willing to risk.

more than 2 years ago

Sergey Brin Says Facebook, Apple and Gov't Biggest Threats To Internet Freedom

phamNewan He is of course correct (500 comments)

He is very specific about which countries are working hard to control the flow of information. China and Iran are well known for their desire to control all information. Russia is nothing new in this regard either.

I would not hate Apple if they were not the control freaks that they are. If you deal with Apple in anyway, they own you. iTunes is exactly the type of control over the users that China and Iran want over their citizens.

Keeping the Internet open is critical for many reasons. Google has been made better by the competition it has faced relentlessly over the years. Google+ is better than Facebook because they have had to innovate relentlessly. Android is getting better because they have to keep making it better because of the competition that exists.

If Apple and Facebook had their way, there would be no competition. Three cheers for Brin.

more than 2 years ago

How Companies Learn Your Secrets

phamNewan Data Mining at it's finest (354 comments)

Lying with statistics is an art, but it appears that once in a while they can be useful. This really is an impressive use of statistics.

more than 2 years ago

The Himalayas and Nearby Peaks Have Lost No Ice In Past 10 Years, Study Shows

phamNewan Nothing Surprising here (409 comments)

There is nothing surprising in this result for those that study the climate. The real sampling rate of glaciers is tiny and only ones that are receding get attention.

That most glaciers are less than 2,000 years old gets almost no attention. The Earth is a dynamic place and the energy involved is many magnitudes larger than anything mankind is capable of causing.

The climate is always changing, but we are not the source of the variability.

more than 2 years ago

Scientists Cryo-Freeze Coral Reef

phamNewan This is silly.... (130 comments)

In discussions of coral and global warming, what is really being discussed is tropical coral. That is coral that lives in water that is less than 50 ft deep and is in water that is generally warmer than 18 C (64F).

All of that coral on the planet Earth (yes, all of it) is less than 10,000 years old. All of the coral that was alive 20,000 years ago died when the last ice age ended and the ocean levels changed by > 400ft. All of the Earth's previous coral died as it was too deep to survive the new depths. In the past 1,000,000 years such events have wiped all tropical coral from existence at lest 20 times.

Coral has adapted by loading the ocean up with the eggs and sperm so it can form wherever conditions are correct. This falls into the publicity stunt range of science. They got funding for something they know isn't a problem, but they get money for it anyway.

more than 3 years ago

What is Your position on Climate Change?

phamNewan Skeptical of mankinds impact, and can prove it. (695 comments)

Does the Earth's climate stay the same? No.

Has it EVER stayed the same? No.

Were the ocean levels > 100 m (330ft) lower 20,0000 years ago? Yes.

Did the Earth enter the last glacial (ice age) from a warmer climate than today's 115,000 years ago? Yes.

Are CO2 levels causing the Earth's climate to measurably change? No.

I looked at the science, climate has always been changing, but mankind has nothing to do with it.

more than 3 years ago

2011 MacBook Pros Confirmed To Crash Under Load

phamNewan Re:If someone is going to state "very widespread". (501 comments)

Only the fanboi's go out and blow this kind of money every 2 years the moment something like this is released. That makes rubbing this in all the more pleasurable. I will be doing the same as well. I previously read that the construction on these was substandard with sloppy thermal paste application. It would seem that the issue is real and related to the assembly.

more than 3 years ago

Verizon Finally Unveils Apple iPhone

phamNewan Yawn.... (480 comments)

This is useful news for 3 year olds I suppose. For anyone else....

about 4 years ago

US Supreme Court Upholds Indefinite Confinement

phamNewan Limits of Government (745 comments)

There is no surprise that Thomas and Scalia dissented as they are always limiting the scope of the Federal government. It is the 7-2 that is surprising. So rare to have that much agreement on anything.

I would have to say this is unconstitutional, but it plugs a hole in the legal system that is incapable of dealing with properly dealing with inherently dangerous people. Anyone who is willing to destroy someone else for their own pleasure is someone that has no "right" to mix with the public. The fact that the government has not been able to get sentencing to properly account for this is the real problem and this ruling is a stop-gap measure.

In many ways the old west justice of a lynch mob was far more effective at dealing with many types of crime. Once the lynch mob was done there was no risk of repeat offenders. The downside to lynch mobs is the false/positive verdict that cannot be retracted. A solution is needed, but this law and ruling only highlight how poorly the system is at keeping people safe. It clearly does open the USA to the risk of permanent detainment of people that are at "odds" with the government. I am sure that Obama would not mind "detaining" some BP executives for a while as risks to the greater good.

more than 4 years ago

How Can We Convert the US to the Metric System?

phamNewan Re:Base 12 is the answer (1487 comments)

I will agree with this one. Base 12 is better for humans that base 10. Screw the hexidecimal.

about 8 years ago


phamNewan hasn't submitted any stories.



phamNewan phamNewan writes  |  more than 10 years ago

Anyone know how to break a Slashdot addiction?

I have been reading /. for a long time, and it was good.
I then got a login for /., and it was good.
I started meta'ing for /., and it was good.
I started moderating for /., and it was good.
I tried to stop /.'ing, and it was NOT good.

/. is good, /. is great, all hail the great and powerful /., and it was good.

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