Slashdot Asks: Cheap But Reasonable Telescopes for Kids?
Binoculars are the recommendation in The Backyard Astronomer. But, then, they don't particularly recommend buying a child a telescope either.
Personally, I went with a used 4.5" Orion Dob as the first instrument and I think it was a good choice. Now I have larger instruments _and_ binoculars. Yes, a small Dob isn't great for groups because you have to keep adjusting it. But, like people say, polar aligning an EQ is something to be explained too and you're still going to be moving it regularly manually. Doesn't sound like you are budgeting for a motor mount. I can just see binoculars being an interesting challenge as you try to get _each_ kid to find stuff. "No, look at where my finger is pointing. That one! Are you seeing it, the one I'm pointing at?" And, sure, I can see stuff like Jupiter's Galilean moons, the Orion nebula, a lot of moon detail, etc. with the 10x70s but anybody who tells you it's more fun to recline in a lounge chair, hold your breath and maintain your arms as rigid as possible so things don't move _too_ much should probably have his disdain for small Dobs taken with a grain of salt.
Google's New Camera App Simulates Shallow Depth of Field
But I absolutely, totally LOVE depth of field. Screw the art school graduates. I bought a large screen digital tv for the illusion of a window upon the world.
I would like to think -- I sincerely HOPE -- that artificially inducing audience "focus" by depth of field will be as quaint as silent movie captions in 50 years.
It's Time To Bring Pseudoscience Into the Science Classroom
This is one of the more compelling arguments for national standards where local administration would have the excuse that they were "forced" to follow imposed guidelines. Otherwise, every nutter in the community will rally to tar and feather the administration.
FWD.us Wants More H-1B Visas, But 50% Go To Offshore Firms
Everybody I hang with in Minnesota loves Klobuchar. She has that nerd girl with glasses look and does photo ops out bicycling with the family. Probably eats granola. Always AWOL on any serious issue where anybody might have a different view so she'd have to defend herself on a reelection, she's always present for the photo op when she brings some tax money back for a women's shelter or something. In other words, the definitional example of a pork barrel populist. My point being that people in Minnesota who consider themselves Democrats and "progressive" seem happy with her _image_, so don't expect any blow back on this _issue_. And it highlights the embarrassing point that Democrats aren't much deeper than FOX Republicans.
Ask Slashdot: What Does Edward Snowden Deserve?
Why not? Obama is the appropriate Nobel Peace Prize winner to bestow it for maximum satire.
VC Likens Google Bus Backlash To Nazi Rampage
It all comes down to pig ignorance. When they call Obama a "commie socialist fascist" they are just spouting words as meaningless grunts of disapproval like a dog barking. Considering his friendliness to capitalism with efforts like the TPP, Obama really should be a "commie socialist fascist capitalist" and then he can embrace EVERY major political/economic system. Really, how do you become a commie fascist when they are virtually diametrically opposed systems? Which is to say, what about these protestors wanting a more equitable society makes them "just like Hitler" (fascist)? Nonsense mutterings of a (rich) barbarian who hasn't a clue about history or cultural wisdom, but you can get away with that level of moronic discourse in American society.
Best skywatching equipment at my disposal:
There's the building with the permanent mount refractor. I think it's about 8". There's the building with the 16" reflectors with permanent mounts, computer control and refractor with astrocam riding one of them, there's the little hydrogen sun filter scope and the 24" dob. And the classroom building/clubhouse. That's just the facilities at the _main_ site. Not their biggest dob, not the biggest refractor. Hell, people with enough interest should MOVE here.
Man Shot To Death For Texting During Movie
That was my thought. He couldn't have just beaten the guy up?
Bradley Manning Sentenced To 35 Years
It's fun and games to paint these people as anarchists but Assange worked with major world papers about what should and shouldn't have been released. Was or wasn't this the case with the Manning files? Although I do believe after his partner was detained Glenn Greenwald has suggested he might become less selective on what gets released.
Orson Scott Card Pleads 'Tolerance' For Ender's Game Movie
In these things, protesting just means waiting a while. Buy a used copy.
Volkswagen Concept Car Averages 262 MPG
I don't know that it was ever acknowleged but as a proud Pinto owner I know the nasty visibility constraints of the rear "posts" were a problem and I've always suspected Pinto owners put themselves into position for a rear collision and explosion.
Kick-started Remake of Leisure Suit Larry Now On Sale
DOSBox, WINE or what?
HP Back In Tablet Game With Android-Based 'Slate7'
Yes. I've already had the Aspire One netbook experience so it's a deal breaker. $30 is a mighty small investment in a better daily experience with a Nexus 7.
The Two Big Problems With Online College Courses
"Historically people like you would be allowed to flunk out of college so that the seats would be available for people who valued education."
Got that right. Saw the announcement at the little state college I attended in the early 70s for a couple of my years where they congratulated faculty on maintaining the average Freshman GPA at 2.1, within .1 of an ideal Bell curve. See if that would elicit "customer delight" today, but, then, Reagan turned tertiary ed into a "business." Back when you were expected to be motivated, the government was paying most of the tuition bill so there was an implicit contract that _you_ would perform, not that the _college_ would make you happy.
90% attrition? Sounds about right. Back when I was on the move and U of South Africa was about the only option for me to get a graduate Honours through the mail and consulate exams, I believe their attrition was around 90% too. Best advice I got was to make it "real." Buy the frackin' university sweatshirt and wear it every day at your appointed study times and whatever other gimmick you can think of like streaming the campus radio station.
Monsanto's 'Terminator' Seeds Set To Make a Comeback
Yeah, lawsuits are the American way. And farmers are so rich they can hire lawyers to easily match Monsanto's legal team.
Ask Slashdot: Is the Bar Being Lowered At Universities?
Is it dumbed down at the secondary level? When I graduated from high school -- like, DECADES ago -- about 14% of my class where honor students. I recently decided to get the home town paper. Last year, 40+% were "honor" students at my high school. That Flynn Effect must really be working for them. The paper runs Snowflake of the Month stories: "Johnny has a wonderful attitude and Suzy is always helpful to other students." That sort of silliness would have embarrassed the hell out of me in my day.
The Reagan era turned universities into "businesses." Where's the customer delight in a failing grade?
Credit Card Swipe Fees Begin Sunday In USA
Pretty sure that's what we'll be doing. We've been doing "one bill shall pay them all for years" but, nearing retirement, we've got more time to hold up the line than money. The credit union gives us one free box/year, so do the math and see that it pays for us to go Old School. "Good job, retailers." I also think self-check-out at grocery stores is stupid when there is someone to do the job for you. If even more people now think like I do, maybe we can keep more cashiers off unemployment and on the payroll.
It will be interesting to see whether online sales just got a 2-3% inflation jump though because I'm _sooooo_ sure this will mean lower total prices for us all in that arena. Because, you know, when has the Libertarian Dream ever failed us?
A Humanoid Robot Named "Baxter" Could Revive US Manufacturing
If nobody has jobs anymore we better transition to an economy where everything the robots produce is free.
Degree Hack: Cobbling Together Credit Hours For Cheap
Back when it was Regents, you could get a "concentration" basically just by getting an above mean score on a GRE subject test. Since I believe the guy who started the Triple Nine IQ Society had about a dozen of them, that became a bit of a fad. I picked up English Lit, Sociology, Political Science and History -- yup, accredited as long as you say it's a "concentration" -- in a year for chuckles for slightly over a $1000 total back when the economy was good to add to my traditional two majors. I always had a sneaking suspicion the college hated our guts for making fun of the process and we may have screwed it for other people. You can still get credit but, offhand, I think it's more like half a concentration for a score significantly better than mean.
Nonetheless, if you pass several GRE subjects tests, I imagine that's still a lot of elective credits received very, _VERY_ cheaply.
Minneapolis Police Catalog License Plates and Location Data
Of course, most of the buses have had cams for years.
And since they're phasing out the old passes and pushing the convenient web account enabled smart passes that you can charge with your credit card from home, you better pay cash if you don't want your bus route tagged.
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