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Comment: Personhood (Score 1) 279

by AndyCanfield (#47425617) Attached to: The Lovelace Test Is Better Than the Turing Test At Detecting AI

This whole Turing Test discussion is talking about the wrong issue. Nobody cares if a computer is 'intelligent' or not. What matters is whether it's a person or not. I just watched 'Terminator 2' again, and the Terminators were people. They had feelings, confusions. They learned from their environment. They did not shut down for an hour or a month at the flip of a switch. I don't care if a computer is "intelligent" or not; what matters is whether it is a person, with the right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness that we grant Russians and Klingons and Terminators.

How do you detect whether the Ukranian is human? Ask him if his wife is a good screw. If he answers "NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS!", he's human. The Test is the universe to a machine, but it is only a temporary context to a human. Break out of the context and the machine is lost but the human reacts like a person.

Comment: must be a black box! (Score 1) 279

by AndyCanfield (#47422021) Attached to: The Lovelace Test Is Better Than the Turing Test At Detecting AI

The great thing about the Turing test was that it was a black box. It did not depend on assumptions about what the designers knew, or what hardware was used, or the like. And so far the only test trials I have heard of have been carefully arranged one on one. Give us a dozen Ukranian teen-agers, and pick the one (or two) which are non-human - that's a better test run.

But, of course, the ultimate test of machine intelligence is when the computer can sue your ass off and win in the Supreme Court.

Comment: Free Wifi (Score 3, Interesting) 112

by AndyCanfield (#47383361) Attached to: Android Leaks Location Data Via Wi-Fi
Here in Thailand / Laos I have recently seen massage parlor signs advertising "Free Wifi". You get in a room with a beautiful lady and she rubs her hands all over your body. Why would you want to check your e-mail? And certainly you would not "Exotic Massage" to show up in your wifi list. But remember that phones are like that. I manually checked my wife's call history to see if she had telephoned my girlfriend.

Comment: Handcuffed (Score 1) 427

by AndyCanfield (#47319591) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: What Would It Take For You To Buy a Smartwatch?
I live in Thailand. In 1992 I was going to visit the USA. so I bought a watch. A month later I was in the US. A month after that I lost the watch. A watch feels too much like a handcuff. Be there then, race the clock, step in time, step in time, step in time. No thank you. My heart made the choice. I haven't owned a watch since then. If I want to know what time it is I reach in my pocket and pull out my new Sony Smartphone. It tells me the time, and connects me with other people and the world's schedules. But only when I chose. It's not a handcuff.

Comment: Hotel Room Alarm (Score 1) 310

I was on a business t trip with colleages and we stayed at a rural hotel overnight. They said they would pick me up at 7am. I had no alarm clock, I had no watch, I did not trust a wake up call. But I had my Windows 98 computer. So between eight and nine p.m. I wrote "nalika", a program to display the current time on the screen in large digits and ring an alarm according to the paramer. Big digits; the computer had to sit across the room from the bed. In one hour; a DOS program running in a Windows 98 DOS window.

I am still running that program today under Ubuntu Linux 14.04 so my family and I can see the time all night long.

Comment: Lie to the boss (Score 4, Interesting) 348

by AndyCanfield (#47104145) Attached to: Why Snowden Did Right

The NSA is part of the U.S. Federal Government. The boss of that government is the People of the United States of America. It's in the constitution; read it. The NSA will get their asses nailed to the wall because they lied to the boss. If I'm your boss, and you lie to me, you're fired.

Edward Snowden is my hero; he can sleep on my floor any time.

Comment: A Fair Trial (Score 5, Insightful) 238

Some people ask whether Edward Snowden can get a fair trial in the US. The real question is whether Keith Alexander can get a fair trial in the US. He was the head of an organization which was doing illegal things. Will he get a fair trial? Will he get a trial at all? No.

Comment: Look! Touch! See! (Score 1) 409

by AndyCanfield (#47013969) Attached to: Don't Be a Server Hugger! (Video)
A few days ago our backup server died. The hub server detected that no back up had been done for over an hour, and changed the server status web page background from green to red. I saw it and drove over to the office - it's about 4 kilomters from here - and had a look around. Computers were OK, but the router needs replacing.

If you have wings and long hair and a beard and a white robe and a belt made out of rope maybe you can fly into the cloud and do the same.

Comment: Punched cards (Score 1) 230

by AndyCanfield (#46881063) Attached to: One-a-Day-Compiles: Good Enough For Government Work In 1983

My first programs were on punched cards at U.C. Berkeley in 1968. As a student I punched the cards myself. The serious programmers, like me, would stay up all night so we could get our results back in only an hour or two. Results came as 11 by 14 blue striped paper wrapped around the original deck of cards.

Ah, I miss punched cards! They were the perfect size to fit into your breast pocket. One side was blank to write notes on; the other side had column numbers and digit numbers: columns 1-80, digits 0-9. They were free; came in boxes of 2,000 cards per box.

My first keyboard/monitor thingy was a graphics terminal connected to the Stanford Timesharing System about 1980. The boss had an Apple II in a back room.

Comment: Pre-approvals (Score 3, Interesting) 294

by AndyCanfield (#46777707) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: System Administrator Vs Change Advisory Board
Seems to me that you need to establish a list of pre-approved changes. For example, if you're running Windows and IIS, make sure there's a clause that says anything that comes down the pipeline via Windows Update does not need formal approval. That way you can offload the responsibilty, and work, onto Microsoft. You can keep your core software up-to-date. Third party software, same thing for corporations. Student projects and your own shell scripts might need more examination; not a bad idea actually. But if there's a new version of Firefox, why in the world would a Change Advisory Board think it knows more than Mozilla?

Comment: Re:Nail My Kids? (Score 1) 632

by AndyCanfield (#46775541) Attached to: IRS Can Now Seize Your Tax Refund To Pay a Relative's Debt

"I moved to Asia and, being overseas, did not owe U.S. any tax money"

Being imployed for a salary by a foreign company in a foreign location, one gets a Foreign Earned Income deduction, which was about double what I was geting paid. And I carefully did not maintain any legal residence in the United States so I did not owe any state or county or city or property taxes.

Wrong. You don't owe the US anything only if you renounced your US citizenship.

The only reason I carry a U.S. Passport is that the government of Thailand wants me to have a passport. If they offered me Thai citizenship I would take it. But I figure it's not polite to pursue it. And in Thailand, "polite" is the key word.

A computer scientist is someone who fixes things that aren't broken.