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Comment Re:What's the reason for reason? (Score 1) 76

There have been "travelling salesman" algorithms for working out Tube journeys for decades, so not sure what additional benefit this brings. Also, two stations north of Victoria is Oxford Circus, as any file kno.

I would guess that the advantage is efficiency and speed of figuring out new or changing systems on the fly... The difficulty of a brute force travelling saleseman algorithm increases superpolynomially, where as a NN can probably approximate it much faster and can deal with dynamic systems better (trains and tracks breaking, delays, busy anomalies etc), you can probably even run such a NN on your phone, I bet your phone would catch on fire if you tried to brute force a snap shot of the system :P

Of course it might not quite get the perfect solution, but if time is of the essence then time to calculate the quickest is also important.

Comment Re: Close (Score 2) 108

...Britain's sheep grow spandex instead of wool.

Close... fallout from Chenobyl ended raining down on the Welsh highlands (West side of UK island) causing a ban on the sale of farm animals in affected areas (mainly sheep):

In total, 344 Welsh farms were put under restrictions, with animals' radiation levels monitored before they were allowed to be sold at market. The number of failing animals peaked in 1992, but some still recorded higher levels of caesium as recently as 2011.

Comment Something clearly bipedal... (Score 1) 173

The shadowy silhouette of something clearly bipedal makes its way through the stand of trees before walking out of frame.

.... what like a human. When did this level of supernatural BS conspiracy nut reports get to be on slashdot, it's the opposite of science and technology. Maybe if it was a physiological study on these people it would actually be newsworthy.

Comment Maybe he could also remember (Score 1) 117

... how Jobs was so critical about not making shit products. No it's not all shit, they have a lot of momentum so it can't be, but generally focus has shifted, fragmentation has occurred just like before, and trying to sell lots of shit to lots of people with the latest flashy shiny features is more important that reliability and thoughtful design. It's a gradual shift back to short term thinking profit driven design.

Comment Re:The failure of systemd is that ... (Score 1) 508

The developers haven't stopped at what systemd needs to do and have gone on to what they want it to do, favoring the latter over the former.

I'm not experienced in this level of system design but I feel like your point applies to pretty much all code at some level. Yielding only to necessity seems to produce well structured code with a clear purpose, that doesn't mean there isn't an art to it still... it's just restraining that infantile attitude of "that would be cool lets add that" for every conceivable feature that pops into your head regardless of whether it's actually useful or whether it undermines and over-complicates the rest of the code.

Comment Re:If only we could stop the creation of smog... (Score 1) 166

Were talking about electric motors, one of the oldest, most well understood and developed electrical components in history, known for being humanities most successful invention for efficiently converting stored non-kinetic energy into kinetic energy, so yeah it's just like building a warp drive... and derogatory naming of someone who has the initiative to actually find out the details all by themselves (entirely within anyone's grasp, because no these aren't warp drives) is nothing less than elitist. But never mind that, you carry on speculating and dismissing anyone else's insights because they don't have a shiny qualification that you recognise.

Comment Re:what's the exposure time? (Score 1) 115

...If the Sahara is suffering from pollution, then I think we can safely say that pollution is a natural feature of our world, and we shouldn't be complaining about it.

I can't tell if your joking... you do realise that air moves, that's why weather is so hard to predict, the atmosphere is one giant system.

If the Sahara has highly polluted air it's unlikely to be a natural source, more likely it is accumulating there due to particular the mechanics of that part of the weather system or localised properties of atmosphere in that region such as differences in temperature, humidity... Also they are measuring for types of particulate matter that is extremely unlikely to have originated from a natural source in those quantities.

Comment Re:This may be somewhat accurate .... (Score 4, Interesting) 154

Now, would I say all of this means she's headed down the road of becoming a cyber-criminal? Not exactly .... In daily life, she abides by most of the rules. She's not the type to try to steal something from a store, for example. She generally knows right from wrong. But I think when it comes to games where everything is virtual, she has a feeling, deep-down, that it's more "ok" to cheat and hack

Her instincts and morals are good and are like most technical people, they can tell the difference between virtual and non-virtual, the true harm (if any) and consequences are understood. Hacking games never harmed anyone and should never carry severe consequences, at most you don't get to play that game anymore or have to pay for a new account, yes it's ethically wrong within the context of a game... but that's the point it's just a game, when someone cheats at monopoly they don't go to jail or get extortionate and real fines... people just don't play with them.

Of course we know hacking can have serious consequences, if it's connected to something real and dangerous, but when you hack that stuff you will know it... the problem is outsiders who can't tell the difference, it's black and white hacking === evil to them, the best we can do for those people is say hacking is a broad term: it's like "mechanic", a mechanic can fix cars and tinker with them, make them run in ways their manufacturer never intended because they have explored how these things work, but that's ok. Their knowledge also gives them the ability to modify cars in specific dangerous ways that to intentionally harm a driver... your mechanic at your local garage could do that...

Comment Next up: How to drill a hole in your MacBook (Score 1) 495

How foolish we've all been... it's nothing to do with making money on wireless headphones at all, Apple have obviously just bought up a load of power drill companies and are going to get iFixit to post how to's on drilling headphone ports. Next it will be Apple workshops on how to drill a hole in over-expensive anodised aluminium body without making a giant horrid protruding mess.

There is no other explanation, why else would people buy a notebook that's incompatible with analogue speakers.

Comment "pirates"? (Score 1) 136

Such a vauge term, if they mean copyright inf ringers then they are going to have to increase the size of their prisons massively to accommodate a 3rd of the counties population. I should probably give up copyright infringement and become a murderer as a past time so i'm less likely to go to jail for a decade.

Comment Re:We Are Made of Wilderness (Score 1) 150

You have some good ideas, but you need to focus on whats worth while... Recognise what the core principle behind each of your points is and then see if that principle makes sense in their order of execution and context.

Categories of your points in order of effectiveness:

By Designs (Preemptive)

  • We need to sort are garbage better and design things so that they can be recycled from the get-go.
  • We need to buy things that can be repaired--instead of thrown away.
  • We need to build more 2 and 3 family houses with big yards--instead of single family homes.
  • We need to make our roads safer for pedestrians, bicyclists, and motorcyclists, skateboarders, and scooterists. In the SF Bay, lots of people longboard commute.
  • We need smaller and lighter cars.
  • We need to to plant more trees, anywhere we can.

By Mindset (values):

  • We need a value system that wastes less.
  • We need not to buy things we don't need or strongly want.
  • We need to always keep in mind where "away" is before we throw something away from us. Where does it go?
  • We need to offer someone a ride in our cars--if we are going that way.

By Reduction (Damage Control):

  • We need to cut down on unnecessary packaging.
  • We need to cut down on detergents. I use 1/3 as much as I am supposed to, and no one has ever noticed.
  • We need to put an end to the Chevrolet's brother's invention of the automobile model-year, and return to model, so cars aren't devalued before they are even sold.
  • We need to recycle ABS plastic. It's good plastic, but made of 3 cancer causing chemicals, and made fire retardant with a bromine halogen.
  • We need to ration powerful chemicals such as bleach and drain cleaner.
  • Our leaders should ask us to take it easy on resources and fuel, and generally, they are not.

I want the same end result of environmentalists, but I find 99% of self proclaimed environmentalists to push annoyingly futile ideas against obvious resisting forces. But we create those forces, it's like we made a river and the environmentalists want to swim upstream and are asking everyone else to follow... no one will follow because it's not practical, only idealists - which is not useful because there is no point if we can't get the vast majority of people on board, the vast majority of people are NOT idealists. Change the river don't ask people to kill themselves going the wrong way.

Most environmentalist ideas reside in the "Reduction" category. In principle reduction is making stuff less-bad - I say fuck that, make it good. "less-bad" is pointless in the face of economic and human growth whos rate will always outpace any reduction rate (another topic all together). The Alternative to "Reduction" is at the opposite end of the scale: "Design"

Like it or not much of the world creates "stuff" whith the ultimate driving force of it being sold and put in the ground so that more can be sold. If "repairable" can be made more profitable then great, that's a practical way to solve part of this problem by design, but ultimately some things will still go in the ground... Actually it's best to just assume that everything you sell to people will go in the ground, either because it's just not a repairable thing, or (more likely) because they can't be bothered. Which is why designing it out of materials that can both go in the ground or be trivially separated (no sorting nonsense please, again dont rely in individuals to spend their lives sorting garbage) is the most effective solution, but this requires material science and engineering... your top point about designing for recycling is the closest to this.

TL;DR if you care about the environment stop whining about reduction, whine about products, manufacturers and materials or better become a material scientist and engineer a solution, make it impossible for people to put non degradable toxic carcinogens in the ground by never giving it to them in the first place.

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I'm still waiting for the advent of the computer science groupie.