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Foxconn To Employ 1 Million Robots

phearless Re:Robots problems (372 comments)

Not 'under a bus', 'in my bathtub', but 'off the roof of my employer's factory'. Workplace-releated suicides must be somewhat rarer than, say, romance- or test-score-related suicides. And, I'd say, throwing yourself off your boss' roof, indicates a work grievance.

more than 3 years ago
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Can AI Games Create Super-Intelligent Humans?

phearless Re:No (312 comments)

Regards your .sig: All due respect, but science does *not* encompass the mystical ("Wovon man nicht sprechen kann, darüber muss man schweigen." -- L. Wittgenstein); rather the converse. Science and empirical method represents only a very tiny, self-referential fraction of what is intuited about the universe. Objectivity is more of a myth than Flying Spaghetti monsters (see Critical Theory; Post-modernism).

more than 3 years ago
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Can AI Games Create Super-Intelligent Humans?

phearless Re:Have you not seen (312 comments)

Intelligent tutoring systems in education is my field, so I say with some confidence that so-called AI won't replace human tutors anytime soon. Online workbooks and computer-aided learning are a wonderful adjunct to classroom instruction, but cannot replace a live teacher. About 30% of instruction can be reasonably handled remotely (software- or video-based instruction), but the other 70% of the task of educating and motivating learners is non-trivial. File the OP under jet-cars of the future.

more than 3 years ago
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'The Code Has Already Been Written'

phearless Um, no kidding (253 comments)

I'm a programmer who spent the last 8 years developing a commercial language tutoring AI. The original prototype was written in Prolog, consisting of about 5,000 lines of code in a Hypercard-like environment. The current system contains back-end authoring tools in C++ (15,000 lines), various tools and utilities in C/C++/Java/SQL (20,000 lines), Java/JSP web application (75,000 lines), a 50,000 word dictionary, 500,000+ entry grammar/morphology, plus 5,000 audio and video clips. The original software was developed by 2 people; we've had 20 contractors and contributors (graphic designers, voice talent, audio engineers, GUI designers, testers, programmers, editors and linguists) involved for a total of 40,000 man-hours. So, yeah, the academic version was a bit simplistic.

more than 3 years ago
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Wolfram Launches Computational Document Format

phearless Re:really? (167 comments)

167 MB (download), 533 MB (installed) on OS X, Safari. And, because it took me 15 minutes to find all the bits and pieces, I'll add:

To uninstall on OS X (10.6), delete:

/Applications/Wolfram CDF Player
/Library/MathematicaPlayer/
/Library/Internet Plug-ins/Mathematica.plugin
/Library/Spotlight/Wolfram Notebook.mdimporter

more than 2 years ago
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Wolfram Launches Computational Document Format

phearless Conrad?! (167 comments)

My God, there's a brother? Can you imagine Xmas in that family?

more than 2 years ago
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EA Considers Service-Based Business Model For Sports Games

phearless Re:$20 million to $40 million for games (64 comments)

The games might be more fun if more of the $20-40M went to the people who actually design and make the games.

The bigger games have circa 100 worker bees for 6 months, at least some of whom are contract freelancers or near/offshore (i.e., not all that well-paid), plus a few hot shots, so that's, say, $4-5M per game. Add another $1M to house and equip said workers, that's $5-6M, considerably less than EA claims to spend on each game (my estimate is rough, but not a whole order of magnitude wrong, methinks).

It's quite misleading of Mr. Riccitiello, therefore, to claim that EA spends $20-40M making each game. The truth is likely considerably less. Assuming he's not outright exaggerating, the lion's share of the $20-40M must be going to league/celebrity/etc. licensing, promotion/advertising and executive salaries, and to balance failures and mistakes; perhaps, he's including some of the debt incurred when acquiring (aka, "crushing") smaller game studios.

IMHO, Riccitiello is just trying to justify charging $30-60 retail per year on franchises that gross up to $100M a year, but cost less than $10M to make.

more than 3 years ago
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DOJ: We Can Force You To Decrypt That Laptop

phearless Re:This is an easy decision. (887 comments)

The standard weasel phrasing is, "I don't recall." Used by Tony Hayward. Use by Alberto Gonzales 71 times, no less.

more than 3 years ago
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Company Fined €25,000 For Altering Wikipedia

phearless But my perfectly well-intentioned link was removed (141 comments)

I had a Wiki link for a music synthesis app (shareware) that was removed. I assumed Wiki had changed policy re linking to anything remotely commercial. So, why should someone get a commercial link/free advertising from Wiki anyway?

more than 3 years ago
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Roundabout Revolution Sweeping US

phearless Re:Really bad idea. (1173 comments)

"b. more lanes" is incorrect. Build it and they will come is the rule of thumb. The English tried it; LA tried it; Singapore tried it. Adding more capacity to roadways just attracts more cars (usually at enormous expense) and is generally considering a fail. What is needed is alternate modes of transportation, and taxes, tolls or other disincentives to driving.

more than 3 years ago
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Climate Skeptic Funded By Oil and Coal Companies

phearless Re:Should result in a prison sentence (504 comments)

"Leftists lie about everything. No need to read further" Wow. Just wow. Look at that crazy illogical bastard go.

more than 3 years ago
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Netflix's New Web Interface Gets Thumbs Down From Users

phearless Netflix is after $$ (267 comments)

Bumping a week-old story here, but... Netflix has done some cost accounting. By dumping/burying the ratings and sort function they ensure that people will watch crappier, less costly content, or watch less. They probably pay more for higher rated movies, and perhaps a bump per view. I think it's a cynical move on Netflix's part; the claim (by a VP) that "the vast, vast majority" of users tested preferred the new interface is risible bullshit.

more than 3 years ago
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Bitcoin Price Crashes

phearless Re:Growing pangs (642 comments)

I think bank-issued digital currency would be worse than government-issued currency

In the U.S. during the 1800's, there were over 8,000 private currencies. Banks, or pretty much anyone, could issue paper notes. This situation undoubtedly led to some interesting travel experiences, exchange rates and collapses, but mostly I imagine it led to a lot of confusion.

more than 3 years ago
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Supreme Court Rules Against Microsoft In i4i Case

phearless Re:can't sue those that does not create (162 comments)

Not to dispute your main point, but i4i, while small (65 employees, $1-4 million/year sales), is a legitimate software company. They developed the technology in question and patented it fair and square.

more than 3 years ago
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Canadian Researchers Create Thin-Film Flexible Paperphone

phearless Re:Stupid Canadians (81 comments)

Douche.

more than 3 years ago
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Canadian Researchers Create Thin-Film Flexible Paperphone

phearless Re:Stupid Canadians (81 comments)

What is this post talking about? Anybody? Did I wander into an episode of the "Young and the Restless"? Forget it. Don't care.

more than 3 years ago
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Apple To Distribute OS X Lion via the Mac App Store

phearless Physical product option (517 comments)

I hope they'll continue to provide a physical product option (USB stick or DVD) for future release, else, what will become of my *AWESOME* collection of every Mac OS from 6.1 through 9.1, 10.x to current? I don't want some lousy little self-burned DVD. I want the big, shiny box.

more than 3 years ago
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Steve Jobs: 'We Don't Track Anyone'

phearless Can't any Telcom's track cell phones? (373 comments)

I suppose there's a different privacy issue w/ regard to phone manufactures and software developers (and potential hackers) tracking your rough whereabouts, but, technically, isn't locally stored location information redundant? Telcom's have long cooperated with law enforcement in tracking and spying on their customers, and, my understanding anyway, is that provisions of the Patriot Act allow for warrantless taps, searches, etc.

So, what is the difference? Why the outcry and concern? Heck, there's even a case of the FBI activating users' microphones remotely to bug their conversations. Seems scarier to me. http://news.cnet.com/2100-1029_3-6140191.html

more than 3 years ago
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WordPress Hacked, Attackers Get Root Access

phearless What have I learned here? (168 comments)

If large, well-funded companies, even those that specialize in security (!), or whose business depends upon keeping their proprietary info safe, cannot keep their servers secure, what chance does a Mom and Pop operation like mine have?

This year I spent 4 weeks studying the OS X Server Security Config (400 pp.), and implementing those recommendations. I've looked at best practice guides for all the underlying FOSS tools I use. I monitor logs.

But it's seems never enough to keep out a determined, skilled hacker. Do I despair? Give up? What lessons can I take from this?

more than 3 years ago

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