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Comment Re:Market Forces (Score 2) 230

There is an economic fix for this: remove the parts of the H1B that tie the person to a specific employer. That is, allow them to take any job. This would devalue it because the companies would have to pay them as much as an American would make or they'd simply jump ship after getting the visa. By making them more expensive, they could no longer be used as cheap replacements for an American.

But what will actually happen is that they will make the rules stricter and pretend that's a solution... even though it simply reinforces the status-quo, ensuring that H1Bs are good as cheap replacements for Americans.

It shouldn't be hard to understand--this is all about money. If you want employers to buy less, then H1Bs need to be more expensive.

Comment Re: Reputation (Score 1) 131

I said *quickly* gauge the paper. Of course I can read it, but there's a lot of papers and my time is limited. If it's published in a reputable venue, that's an endorsement that helps me order the papers preliminarily.

Of course, there are other sorting criteria like a number of citations, but they have their own issues - time lag, variability across (sub)fields, biases towards certain kinds of papers, etc.

Comment Reputation (Score 1) 131

Of course, people are trying to explore other options - e.g.

The problem is reputation. *Where* was the paper published carries huge weight on both the repute of the paper and change in repute of the author, because noone figured out better ways to quickly judge a result than by the venue (which implies certain acceptance rate and level of peer review standards). If you move from the established institutions to elsewhere, you need to build up your repute from scratch and until you do...

Well, it just takes long time. That means decades when it's not a new emerging field. Many decades when the academics are particularly conservative.

Comment Re:So... (Score 1) 57

A is right. The task is identifying pedestrians. Miss rate means that the algorithm fails to identify the pedestrian. Lower number is better.

Also, when the algorithm fails, it doesn't mean the car will just happily drive through the pedestrian!

First, most pedestrians are not at the road, and the ones at the road should be actually easier to identify as they won't blend that much (I guess). Second, there are probably already many components that already identify obstacles and try to avoid them. Identifying pedestrians specifically is helpful to predict their movement, choosing another obstacle if you are going to hit some obstacle anyway, etc.

Comment Re:So... (Score 3, Insightful) 57

No. As usual, the summary is confusing as it gives numbers for the *older* methods, but the current Google's method is: "The resulting approach achieves a 26.2% average miss rate on the Caltech Pedestrian detection benchmark, which is competitive with the very best reported results. "

So, there's 26.2% chance that on a single particular image, you miss the pedestrian (at the same time, it seems that in about 15-20% images it sees a pedestrian that is in fact a shrubbery or whatever). This is an academic dataset, and in reality you will have a video feed. AFAICS it's not clear how the precision translates when you have a sequence of many pictures of the pedestrian - whether you will have much higher chances to spot them at least on some of them, or if it's more of a systematic problem and khaki-clothed people just don't stand a chance.

Comment What they actually did. (Score 4, Informative) 66

The paper is a bit confusing at first, and the /. summary doesn't help. Basically, they developed a sorting criteria to reduce the amount of work for the editors. In an isolated comparison of two jokes, the funnier joke wins 64% of them on average; this is quite better than a coin!

To get a sorted list, they run a "comparison tournament" between the jokes. The 55.8% number means that the funniest joke is in the top 55.8% of the list on average; if we are willing to occasionally miss a brilliant joke, we can cut the list in a little more than half and still keep most of the great jokes.

The full paper is

Comment qmail and Microsoft (Score 5, Informative) 85

Yeah, you seem to want to have your cake and eat it too. Doesn't produce a lot of sympathy. Think again about how to make your software free but still want users to pay. What about keeping value-adding plugins or frontends closed and opening the core? If you open source but limit ability of people to make use of the core, what exactly do you expect to gain from such a "community"?

Still, take a look at the licence of qmail. This worked not so bad for them, and might be the right equilibrium. If you just want legalese for your scenario, take a look at Microsoft's Shared Source licences.

Comment Re:That needs a stable solution, not a chaotic one (Score 1) 557

> The problem is, how do you determine who's disadvantaged?

Money, as it can be used to obtain pretty much all other advantages.

> but when you start to look at it carefully there's all sorts of possible issues. Some families are better at budgeting than others, so a family with lower income might have more money available for the kids than a family with higher income

This is not an inequality that we can (or should) correct for. People who work harder have a natural advantage. It's not right to take that away, as doing so hurts everyone. It was by gaining enough advantages to live lives where people could spend their time studying things like science that we obtained what we have now. We would all be worse off without this.

> It's a lot easier to tell if somebody is from X or Y group than to determine their level of disadvantage and what's necessary to help equalize their opportunities.

I disagree both with the idea that it's easier and the idea that it advances any sort of good for society.

Comment Re:Feminist vs egalitarian (Score 1) 557

There's a stable solution for that: help everyone who is disadvantaged, regardless of what they were born as. This will fix the bias over time without creating new victims.

Somehow it never gets put forth as an option, because enough people are more interested in their self-interest than in equality for everyone.

Comment That needs a stable solution, not a chaotic one. (Score 1) 557

In that case, you add x kg to the lighter side. But that's not at all what gets advocated. They advocate adding x kg to the X group or the Y group or whatever, rather than helping all disadvantaged people equally. If we always help those who are disadvantaged equally--regardless of whatever traits they were born with--the scales will tend towards balancing and the group interests will tend to be more aligned, as we're not deciding which groups are worthy or not worthy of society's support.

If we're always trying to figure out which group is or isn't disadvantaged based simply on group membership, rather than any observable facts, we trend towards a world where the group interests are in perpetual conflict. This is why equality cannot be achieved by perpetuating inequality against future generations. As shown, there's a way to address past inequality without creating new injustices that's stable over time.

I don't know about you, but I don't want to live in a world where society decides that you have less rights than someone else because of how you were born. Anyone who advocates treating others as lesser due to how they were born is some kind of KKK-level scumbag in my book.

Comment Are we reading the same US code? (Score 4, Informative) 93

No, if you haven't registered the work, you're only able to get actual damages (which is something like your 'customary rates' but it depends on what you can prove) rather than statutory damages and attorney's fees. Actual damages are close to what you said, but statutory damages are not "punitive" damages at all.

But don't take my word for it, read the actual law on the subject.

Oh, and it so happens that you can register just before filing suit, but a registration that isn't timely doesn't have the same presumption of validity that it would if you were registering long before there was a lawsuit close on the horizon.

Neutrinos are into physicists.