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Comments

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Greenpeace: Amazon Fire Burns More Coal and Gas Than It Should

phantomfive Re:Hipsterism at its finest (worst?) (282 comments)

I don't know, building your datacenter near a hydro-electric dam or a wind farm, or in a cool place so it doesn't need as much cooling, seems like it actually does make a difference.

2 days ago
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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

phantomfive Re:sure, works for France (277 comments)

A negotiation in which you, presumably, had them over a barrel.

No, as I said before, it was not an adversarial negotiation.

2 days ago
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FBI Studied How Much Drones Impact Your Privacy -- Then Marked It Secret

phantomfive Re:Transparency (136 comments)

I honestly would expect nothing less.......if this study is worth anything, it is going to discuss classified programs in detail, and as such, falls in the category of classified.

Now, whether anything at all should be classified is another question, but if anything should, then a study that discusses in detail classified programs should also be.

3 days ago
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FBI Studied How Much Drones Impact Your Privacy -- Then Marked It Secret

phantomfive Re:Transparency (136 comments)

The real problem was, if you didn't vote for Obama, you'd be voting for the sockpuppets the GOP put up against him.

Are there only two parties?

3 days ago
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Earth In the Midst of Sixth Mass Extinction: the 'Anthropocene Defaunation'

phantomfive Re:But what IS the point they're making? (310 comments)

I've heard of that hunting method for buffalo, but never for horses. I am not sure horses will follow over a cliff. A burro might, I've nearly seen one do that........

3 days ago
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Earth In the Midst of Sixth Mass Extinction: the 'Anthropocene Defaunation'

phantomfive Re:Terror birds extinct? (310 comments)

Well actually, I think it'd be cool if they were still around

3 days ago
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Earth In the Midst of Sixth Mass Extinction: the 'Anthropocene Defaunation'

phantomfive Re: Not news (310 comments)

Maybe. I've had dogs that looked really guilty sometimes when they knew they were doing something wrong.......

I think it's best to just accept that we're animals, but a bit smarter than the rest of them. Our differences are quantitative, not qualitative

3 days ago
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Switching From Microsoft Office To LibreOffice Saves Toulouse 1 Million Euros

phantomfive Re:sure, works for France (277 comments)

In my experience, most permanent job employers don't like to negotiate on vacation time.

It takes more negotiation skill. I recently negotiated a 4-day work week. I took a 20% pay cut for it (totally worth it). Essentially, instead of framing it as an adversarial negotiation, I considered it a problem for us to solve together. "I want to work here, you want me to work here, but this is what I need. How can we solve this problem?" Most of the time was spent helping them overcome concerns. At one point, I said, "yeah, that's a managerial problem, but I'm confident the managers here are capable of overcoming it."

3 days ago
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The Army Is 3D Printing Warheads

phantomfive Re:Quality over quantity (139 comments)

The US (at least the politicians) don't seem to mind this carnage.

John Kerry is rather upset about it. He seems to think that if only Israel gives Palestinians the right to return, then the Palestinians will want to live in peace.

3 days ago
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FBI Studied How Much Drones Impact Your Privacy -- Then Marked It Secret

phantomfive Re:Transparency (136 comments)

I apologize to everyone here for having voted for them a second time.

Wait, why exactly did you vote the second time? It's not like we didn't know he was running a secretive administration before the election (indeed, he made a vote in favor of secrecy while he was still in the senate, before getting elected the first time).

I can sort of understand saying that he was better than the alternatives and that's why you voted for him, but that's not something you would apologize for, really....

3 days ago
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Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

phantomfive Re:Proportionate response? (369 comments)

I fear it's more a problem of 'being out of touch with reality'

3 days ago
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Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

phantomfive Re:Colorado has California over a barrel (369 comments)

I mean, it's a win-win as far as I'm concerned, but the local eco-hippies might not see it that way.

Local hippies protest solar, and really anything

3 days ago
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Man Booted From Southwest Flight and Threatened With Arrest After Critical Tweet

phantomfive Re:LOL, (872 comments)

Because they're not communist anymore. I like the word too, but

3 days ago
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Man Booted From Southwest Flight and Threatened With Arrest After Critical Tweet

phantomfive Re:LOL, (872 comments)

Russia: "Welcome back, Tovarish!

I don't think they really use 'Tovarish' anymore......

4 days ago
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Man Booted From Southwest Flight and Threatened With Arrest After Critical Tweet

phantomfive Re:2nd tweet (872 comments)

then asked for the city police (not the airport police)

Who exactly would have asked?

4 days ago
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Man Booted From Southwest Flight and Threatened With Arrest After Critical Tweet

phantomfive Re:Give #$%^#% like this 24 or 48 hours (872 comments)

Maybe it happened, maybe it didn't. But this immediate rush to blame/defend lets rumors fly around while the truth takes its time.

True point.

4 days ago
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Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

phantomfive Re:Proportionate response? (369 comments)

All the farmers in California are digging deeper/bigger wells. So they feel ok for the next few years. Of course it drains the aquifer, but no one seems to care about that, for some reason.

I kind of feel like every story is sensationalized so much, whether a celebrity tweet or a war in Iraq, that people have trouble remembering what a true crisis is like. It's just another story, I need to water my lawn and the water still comes out of the hose.

4 days ago
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Western US States Using Up Ground Water At an Alarming Rate

phantomfive Re:Colorado has California over a barrel (369 comments)

Sad thing is Los Angeles is right there on the ocean......they have plenty of water if they would just purify it instead of stealing it from half of the rest of the country.

4 days ago
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Lawrence Krauss: Congress Is Trying To Defund Scientists At Energy Department

phantomfive Scope creep (289 comments)

prohibit scientists at the Energy Department from doing precisely what Congress should mandate them to do—namely perform the best possible scientific research to illuminate, for policymakers, the likelihood and possible consequences of climate change.

I'm in favor of more research, but we already have several different departments that are researching that. The DoE is a department that has suffered from scope creep, they are in charge of unrelated things like genomics research. I'm in favor of genomics research, but once again, it's not really something you'd expect to see in the DoE.

4 days ago
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The Psychology of Phishing

phantomfive Re:well (128 comments)

you are obviously not using a proxy properly if your internet slows down. Either that or you think a single cache drive is "enough" and skimped on scaling out the service properly.

Yes, well, not every IT person is as competent as you

4 days ago

Submissions

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Poll Finds San Francisco Voters Favor Tech Buses

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  about 4 months ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "A recent poll to test SF opinions on the tech buses finds that most have a favorable view. 79% of those polled said that the tech industry has helped the city, and 67% said the shuttles should be able to use the MUNI stops.

Cynthia Crews from the League of Pissed-Off Voters disagreed, saying, " “[it was] paid for by tech companies""

Link to Original Source
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Why is US Broadband so Slow?

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  about 5 months ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "Verizon has said they will not be digging new lines any time soon. Time-Warner's cash flow goes towards paying down debt, not laying down fiber. AT&T is doing everything they can to slow deployment of Google fiber.
How can the situation be improved? Mainly by expediting right-of-way access, permits, and inspections, according to Andy Kessler. That is how Google was able to afford to lay down fiber in Austin, and how VTel was able to do it in Vermont (gigabit connections for $35 a month)."
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Why Whistleblowers Cannot Get a Fair Trial

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  about 6 months ago

phantomfive (622387) writes ""Seven whistleblowers have been prosecuted under the Obama administration," writes Jesselyn Radack, a lawyer who advised two of them. She explains why they can't get a fair trial. In the Thomas Drake case, the administration retroactively marked documents as classified, saying, "he knew they should have been classified." In the Bradley Manning case, the jury wasn't allowed to see what information was leaked. The defendants, all who have been charged with espionage, have limited access to court documents. Most of these problems happen because the law was written to deal with traitorous spies, not whistleblowers."
Link to Original Source
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Congress Becomes Aware of Patent Trolls

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  about a year ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "Congressman Charles Schumer has written a piece decrying the evils of patent trolls. "Because of the high cost of patent litigation—the average litigation defense costs a small or midsize company $1.75 million—it is often marginally cheaper for a defendant to pay up front to make the case go away. The average settlement for the same group of companies is $1.33 million....Patent trolls cost U.S. companies $29 billion in 2011 alone."
His solution? Make it easier for low quality patents to be re-examined and rejected by the patent office."
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Google Maps Used to Find Tax Cheats

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  about a year ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "Some countries are worried about the privacy implications of Google Maps, but Lithuania is using them to find tax cheats. "Two recent cases netted $130,000 in taxes and penalties after investigators found houses photographed by Google that weren't on official maps....'We were very impressed,' said Modestas Kaseliauskas, head of the State Tax Authority. 'We realized that we could do more with less and in shorter time." The people of Lithuania don't seem to mind. "Authorities have been aided by the local populace. 'We received even more support than we expected,' said Mr. Kaseliauskas, the chief tax inspector.""
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Hacking the Android VM by Facebook

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  about a year ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "Facebook's new Android App literally modifies the Dalvik VM runtime while it's running.
They found this necessary because the Dalvik machine has a hard-coded limit on the number of methods that can be loaded in a process at one time, so they used JNI to modify to increase this hard-coded limit at runtime.

Is this a horrible programming technique from Facebook, or is it a workaround for a poorly-designed runtime?"

Link to Original Source
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Former TSA Administrator Speaks

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  more than 2 years ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "Former TSA head Kip Hawley talks about the TSA: "it's simply no longer the case that killing a few people on board a plane could lead to a hijacking. Never again will a terrorist be able to breach the cockpit simply with a box cutter or a knife. The cockpit doors have been reinforced, and passengers, flight crews and air marshals would intervene.

I wanted to reduce the amount of time that officers spent searching for low-risk objects, but politics intervened at every turn. Lighters were untouchable, having been banned by an act of Congress. And despite the radically reduced risk that knives and box cutters presented in the post-9/11 world, allowing them back on board was considered too emotionally charged for the American public."

Link to Original Source
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Global Warming Scientist Slamdown

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  more than 2 years ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "Earlier 16 scientists said anthropogenic global warming is not something to worry about. This generated some rebuttals, "Do you consult your dentist about your heart condition? In science, as in any area, reputations are based on knowledge and expertise in a field and on published, peer-reviewed work."
Now the 16 are hitting back. "We urge readers not to depend on pompous academy pronouncements—on what we say....everyone should look at certain stubborn facts that don't fit the theory espoused in the Trenberth letter.""

Link to Original Source
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Microsoft Wants Your Information

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  more than 3 years ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "The company everyone loves to hate is after your private information, as the Wall Street Journal reports. The IE8 design team had planned on adding the best privacy features available, but the advertising executives wanted to track users. From the story, "In the end, the product planners lost a key part of the debate. The winners: executives who argued that giving automatic privacy to consumers would make it tougher for Microsoft to profit from selling online ads. Microsoft built its browser so that users must deliberately turn on privacy settings every time they start up the software.""
Link to Original Source
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GoDaddy Follows Google's Lead

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  more than 4 years ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "GoDaddy has announced they will no longer register domain names in China, in response to new requirements that each registrant be photographed, and their business ID number be submitted. GoDaddy's representative said, "The intent of the procedures appeared, to us, to be based on a desire by the Chinese authorities to exercise increased control over the subject matter of domain name registrations by Chinese nationals." Is it possible that GoDaddy has any ethics at all?"
Link to Original Source
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Prize for Finding Unintended Acceleration Cause

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  more than 4 years ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "Edmunds Auto has offered a $1million prize to anyone who can find the cause of unintended acceleration. As Wikipedia covers, this is a problem that has plagued not only Toyota, but also Audi and other manufacturers. Consumer Reports has some suggestions all automakers can implement to solve this problem, including requiring breaks to be strong enough to stop the car even when the accelerator is floored."
Link to Original Source
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New Type of Cloud Discovered

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  more than 4 years ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "In Iowa and Scotland there are reports of a type of cloud not yet recognized by the World Meteorological Foundation. It seems the cloud does not match any of the clouds in the International Cloud Atlas, and thus there is a campaign underway to have it included. Some have said the clouds look like armageddon has arrived. For me, writing clouds all these times makes me want to eat cotton candy."
Link to Original Source
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3 charges against Terry Childs dropped

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  more than 4 years ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "Terry Childs, who was arrested nearly a year ago for refusing to turn over the passwords to the San Francisco's FiberWAN network has been cleared for three of the four charges against him. The charges that were dropped referred to the attachment of modems to the network. The remaining charge is for refusing to turn over the password. The prosecutor has vowed to appeal, to have the charges reinstated. We have the original story, and the story where Childs tells his side, for those who want a refresher."
Link to Original Source
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Redhat now part of S&P 500

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  about 5 years ago

phantomfive (622387) writes "Redhat has made it onto the S&P 500, an important measure of the stock market. It is replacing CIT, which is expected to go bankrupt after the government refused to bail them out. Redhat is the first Linux company to make it on to the S&P500. While this means little directly for the company, it is an indication of the importance Linux is taking on in the world."
Link to Original Source

Journals

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World Peace is Easy

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  more than 4 years ago

World peace is an unusually simple problem: it's entirely a marketing problem. We don't even have to get people to buy anything, all we have to do is get them to want it. The marketing is the whole problem. Once everyone wants it, then the problem is solved because no one will fight anymore. It really is that easy.

In talking to people, I have observed three broad 'market segments' that need to be addressed, three types of people. Maybe there are more, but this is what I have found so far:

1) Those who think that humans are violent by nature, and thus war is inevitable. These are believers in the 'killer ape' theory or perhaps they've just seen too much violence in their lives. Fortunately men are not violent by nature, the 'killer ape' theory is discredited, and in any case we are capable of choosing our destinies.

2) The second group are those who would stop fighting, but the 'other guys' won't stop. These are most Americans. They didn't want to attack Afghanistan originally, but the Afghanis struck first, so what choice was there? These people happily would support peace if they saw it as a viable possibility. Fortunately, peace is viable because it is the most profitable solution, we just need to help the world see that. The more people start supporting peace, the more this group will become convinced that peace is possible.

3) The third group is the most difficult group, because they actually have something to gain from war. In this category was Slobodan Milosevic, who wanted to consolidate power in his country, or warriors on the edge of the Sahara who want to take others' land for their own cattle. Some people fight because it is exciting, they like the thrill. These people need to see that there is a better way, and that their children will want to live in peace, and sometimes compromise is worth it. Anyone who has loved has learned the value of compromise. These people can too.

Try to talk to everyone you can about world peace, because word of mouth is the best type of marketing.

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Religion is falsifiable

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  about 5 years ago

http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1301347&cid=28687519

Religions are falsifiable (science is the un-falsifiable thing: it is a tool, not a proposition. How do you falsify a hammer? How do you falsify science?). Any decent religious system has ideas of the type, if you do X, then Y will happen. Let's investigate a bit, and see what some religions say:

Buddhism: if you follow the eight-fold path, your suffering will end. Extremely testable. If you follow the eight-fold path, and you are still suffering, then man, they led you astray.

Tantric yoga: do these exercises and meditations and eventually you will have a kundalini rising (enlightenment). So if you do them, and you don't have a kundalini rising, then you know tantra is worthless (either that or your teacher sucks).

The Bible: Those who believe shall be able to do miracles, such as drink poison and not get hurt, or heal the sick (Mark 16:17). So if you follow Christ and you can't do those things, then......yeah, you've just falsified it.

Daoism: 99% of the battle of daoism is figuring out what you are supposed to do. That is an ancient Chinese way of teaching.....but, if you ever do figure out what it is you're supposed to do, then you will be able to tap into the mysterious power of the Dao. If you figure out what you are supposed to do, and do it, and still can't tap into that power, then you've just falsified Daoism.

Mormonism: fast and pray oft, grow in humility, and you will be filled with joy and consolation. I really like Mormonism because it is even more scientific: it says all over the place things like, "if you have faith, God will give you anything that is good." It gives examples of people who became good enough that God gave them anything they asked for, and it says that you can do it too. It even directly gives an example of how to test these claims, and verify/falsify them. I like it because the more clear the promises, the more easily it is falsifiable.

See? If all you are saying is that some being out there exists who affects life on earth in some undetectable way, then yeah, it's pretty pointless. But any preacher who preaches that doesn't know his religion.

Also see:

http://interviews.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=39406&cid=4207448

http://interviews.slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=39406&cid=4208176

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Programming Style

phantomfive phantomfive writes  |  more than 5 years ago

"I'd crawl over an acre of 'Visual This++' and 'Integrated Development That' to get to gcc, Emacs, and gdb. Thank you." (By Vance Petree, Virginia Power)

Amen.

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