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Comment: DDoS .. in which attackers flood (Score 0) 360

by 31415926535897 (#48654743) Attached to: North Korean Internet Is Down

So THAT's what a DDoS is. I'm so glad Slashdot is here to hold my hand through the hard terminology. I was almost confused that it had something to do with a Microsoft Operating System (here's a link to what an Operating System, since the Slashdot community may not already know: But since everything was made clear, we don't need to worry about anyone writing uninformed posts, especially about our beloved M$.

Comment: Scummy (Score 1) 266

by 31415926535897 (#48593167) Attached to: Judge Rules Drug Maker Cannot Halt Sales of Alzheimer's Medicine

It is a terrible thing for the drug company to force this switch.

But doesn't this imply that the first drug can be created generically now? Can't we take Actavis out of the equation entirely by having Alzheimer's patients switch away from the company? Why must they take Actavis' new drug?

Comment: Re:Doesn't distilled water taste horrible though? (Score 3, Interesting) 167

by 31415926535897 (#48419987) Attached to: Bicycle Bottle System Condenses Humidity From Air Into Drinkable Water

Pure water does taste a little off, which is why bottled water companies add minerals to their product.

If this is a big concern for athletes or anyone else using this system, they could easily transport a very small amount of mineral mix to dissolve in the water to fix the problem.

Personally, I'd be shocked if this was the biggest problem. Athletes require far more fluids than this will be able to provide. I don't see this being practical.

Comment: Re:Or just practicing for an actual job (Score 1) 320

Of course we all use available code. I would be very disappointed if my colleagues were all writing their own sorting functions when that problem has already been solved a million times.

But that's not what school is about. You need to go through the process of understanding how these algos came to be understood--not so that you can re-implement them in your job--but so that you can do two things:
1. Know which algos will work when you do have a real world problem to solve
2. Use the same process that helped you solve for a known algo when the time comes to solve for an unknown one

Please, use available libraries and stack overflow on the job. But let's not pretend that we're trying to accomplish the same things on the job and in the classroom.

Comment: Okay, but (Score 4, Informative) 429

by 31415926535897 (#48334109) Attached to: Mathematical Proof That the Universe Could Come From Nothing

1. Quantum fluctuations are not nothing, but I guess we have to sell headlines here
2. Inflation Theory seems faster than "exponential" expansion. We're talking about a theory that went from the size of a singularity to something bigger than the visible universe in 10^-32 seconds. Exponential is quite pedestrian compared to what is theorized.

Comment: Re:I'm I smart? I guess I'll never know. (Score 1) 306

by 31415926535897 (#48255905) Attached to: We Are All Confident Idiots

That said I typically stand back aghast at today’s Republican conservatives – I may be wrong, but in general they seem mean and – yes I’ll say it – bigoted. Of course that could just be Dunning-Kruger blinding me to the brilliance of the current Republican vision.

I agree with you, but I also think the following is true too: :%s/Republican\|conservative/\={'Republican':'Democrat','conservative':'liberal'}[submatch(0)]/g;

Comment: How Would Hawking Radiation Dissolve a Black Hole? (Score 2) 66

by 31415926535897 (#48130509) Attached to: Hawking Radiation Mimicked In the Lab

In all my years of reading and thinking about black holes, one question I've got about HR his how it would actually end up causing the decay of a black hole. From what I understand, HR is the spontaneous creation of matter and anti-matter in space that would normally annihilate itself (allowed by QM theory)--the key difference is that this event can happen at the edge of the event horizon. With some positive probability, the anti-matter will be created within the event horizon radius, but the matter will remain outside and escape. When you look at the whole system then, the anti-matter will annihilate matter within the black hole (causing it to "dissolve") and the matter will remain outside the clutches of the black hole.

I'm sure I'm describing it very simplistically, but I believe my question after that should work for all systems that are analogous:

How is the HR process not symmetric? Whatever would cause the dissolution of the black hole--how would the same process happening in reverse (matter falling into the black hole and anti-matter escaping) not cause equilibrium to be maintained?

Comment: Re:Not this again. (Score 1) 637

by 31415926535897 (#47615925) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: "Real" Computer Scientists vs. Modern Curriculum?

I would disagree that C isn't good enough, but I do agree that at least a semester of asm would be helpful.

Watch out for mips though--that's what they used at my uni, and while it taught the principles that are found in all architectures, I found it discouraging that our only interaction wound up being through a vm. There was an excellent electrical and computer engineering class that used x86 assembly, and that's the one I'd recommend any CS student take (assuming your school offers something like that).

Finally, I think there is a skill for "memory management" that must be learned in Java (not letting the garbage collector ruin your day), but I'm not sure it's something you can learn through class when you're happy enough to get the proper incantations of javac and java right.

Sigmund Freud is alleged to have said that in the last analysis the entire field of psychology may reduce to biological electrochemistry.