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Comment: Re:Quick... (Score 2) 439

by Arcquist (#42033097) Attached to: Global Warming On Pace For 4 Degrees: World Bank Worried
I hear this as a counter argument a lot and I must admit complete ignorance on this topic. So, seeing as you seem more knowledgeable about climate prediction than I am, can you point me to some information on it please? Specifically, what predictions have been made based on these models for 1 to 5 year time frames and to what level of accuracy have they been right? I would assume that seeing as we're talking about predictions of 2-4 degrees Celcius over time spans of around 50 - 100 years that they should be within 0.2 degrees or less of exact in the 5 year time frame?

Comment: What the world looks like without ice (Score 1) 776

by Arcquist (#37901466) Attached to: Climate Change Skeptic Results Released Today
Calculations and map

Not sure how valid this is, I haven't checked any of the sources outside of the surface area of the earth covered in water, etc. Also, of course there would be other serious changes to the climate, it's not just a matter of water level and amount of land available, etc.

Still it is interesting if this is true that the upper limit is around 60-75 meters. It definitely puts to rest any fears of a 'Waterworld' scenario and seems to suggest overall landmass would remain about the same.

Comment: Re:Wait, so.. (Score 2) 453

by Arcquist (#36196630) Attached to: How Today's Tech Alienates the Elderly
I think this is where part of the disconnect is. I think younger users are comfortable with the fact that it's unlikely they're going to 'break' the device or get hurt if they just start randomly pushing buttons to see what they do. For many older users not used to computers doing random things was historically a good way to break things or hurt yourself so they're very hesitant to do so. When explaining things to older users I usually start with telling them there is really nothing they can do to break it and when in doubt just start trying random buttons to see what they do. Note I realize you can accidentally delete data and such but if they haven't been using a device before there really isn't anything on there to delete. If they truly manage to muck it up you can just reset it to defaults and they can start again with very little loss. These users aren't usually creating tons of content they just want to do simple things.

Comment: Re:Not a very useful comparison (Score 1) 121

by Arcquist (#34645270) Attached to: New Tech Promises Cheap Gene Sequencing In Minutes
I seem to remember looking into this a while ago and the human genome isn't really as big as I thought it was. According to this nature page there are 3.4 billion base pairs and since each is only one of 4 values it takes 2-bits per base pair to encode so the entire genome is only 850,000,000 bytes which is 810.6MB (1,048,576 bytes/MB). I don't know about you but the cost to 'store' this in my mind is essentially nothing. There are a ton of places on the web that will easily offer 1GB of storage for free, 1GB USB sticks are frequently given away and if you buy a current HD (non-SSD) the cost of 1GB is less than $0.15.

I welcome the day when sequencing a genome costs less than $0.15...

Comment: Re:Duh. (Score 2, Insightful) 368

by Arcquist (#30834784) Attached to: NYTimes Confirms It Will Start Charging For Online News In 2011
This has been my experience as well. Every time I've known the story personally and read the version in the 'news' there have been numerous errors some of which are so blatant they change the conclusions. I don't read the NYTimes so maybe they have good journalists, I don't know, but there seems to be a lack of actual, good journalism out there. What happened to news reporters doing actual investigative journalism and research to try and bring the public a deep perspective on something? It seems now that most news is just surface scratching and repetition via the AP/Reuters, etc. They ask some 'expert' 10 questions about something and then horribly mangle those answers to try and make it as flashy as possible and fit in X words.

Fortunately there are still good sources of news for computer related news. Sites like Anandtech where actual testing occurs and research is done and presented as justification for claims made. I can only hope the rest of the news industry can somehow reclaim that which once made them an important part of a free nation.

Comment: Re:Can someone explain this to me? (Score 5, Informative) 192

by Arcquist (#30684970) Attached to: Factorization of a 768-Bit RSA Modulus
It's been a while since I studied this so take this with a grain of salt. I believe RSA involves 2 random large primes, 'p' and 'q' which are multiplied together to form a bigger number, 'n'. There is a bunch of other math to generate two more values 'd' and 'e' from 'p' and 'q'. The public key is 'n' and 'e', the private key is 'n' and 'd'. The math works that you can't get 'd' from 'e'. Factorization means just that, finding the factors of a number. In this case you're given 'n' which you know has only 2 factors ('p' and 'q' are both prime) so if you can factor 'n' and get 'p' and 'q' you can recalculate 'd' yourself and you now have the private key.

Comment: Re:This is an oversimplification (Score 1) 371

by Arcquist (#29391471) Attached to: Risk Aversion At Odds With Manned Space Exploration
I submit the problem is with step 2. You seem to think we should mitigate all the risks we can. I think step 3 should be part of step 2. Evaluate each risk and decide whether it needs to be mitigated and to what extent. If we just assume we're going to mitigate any and all risks that we have the capability of doing we end up where we are now with slow progress and insane costs. With regard to understanding the risks I admit I don't know specifically what they are for a given launch but I think you should be able to distill it down to a probability of loss of life on any given mission. I think you would still get a large number of qualified volunteers if the number was 10% or even 20% chance of death on the first experimental flight. Things don't have to be 99.999% safe for people to attempt them...
Idle

Man Denied Boarding Because of Transformers Shirt 2

Posted by samzenpus
Brad Jayakody was told he would have to change his shirt if he wanted to catch his flight to Dusseldorf, Germany. The shirt that security at Heathrow got upset about depicts the Transformers character Optimus Prime holding a gun. Brad said, "I was flabbergasted. I thought the supervisor would come over and see sense, but he didn't. After I changed he said if I changed back I would be arrested." I would understand if the guy was wearing a Megatron shirt, after all that guy turns into a gun which could be very dangerous but Prime? There is no way a semi could fit on a passenger plane it's just silly.
Education

+ - 'Hero For The Planet' Imprisoned in Brazil [pics]->

Submitted by
grrlscientist
grrlscientist writes "Is this an example of government repression of scientists and scientific inquiry or legitimate protection from biopiracy? Basically, it appears to me that Marc van Roosmalen is a victim of politics. He is an internationally respected scientist and an unflinching advocate for endemic wild animals and for preservation of their habitat, as well as being outspoken, so he was imprisoned by the government, which was probably pressured to do so by powerful logging interests, which used biopiracy as an excuse for their actions."
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United States

+ - Running trail mistaken for bioterrorism threat->

Submitted by feuerfalke
feuerfalke (1034288) writes "A flour-and-chalk trail marked out by Daniel Salchow and his sister Dorothee for their running club, the Hash House Harriers, sparked fears and evacuations Thursday night, and now the siblings are finding themselves in deep trouble with New Haven police. Police were called after they were spotted sprinkling "powder" in the parking lot of an IKEA furniture store, which was later evacuated. The "powder" was, in fact, flour, which the siblings have used plenty of times before, all across the country, to mark trails for their club. The Salchow siblings are now facing felony charges, and New Haven police seek "restitution" for the resources wasted in their mistake. This sounds familiar..."
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NASA

+ - Apollo Moon photos reveal detail

Submitted by
Klaidas
Klaidas writes "Highly detailed photographs of the Moon taken by the Apollo missions are being made available to the public for the first in more than 30 years. Photos taken on the Apollo 15, 16 and 17 missions in the 1970s showed the Moon in great detail but were only ever viewed by a few scientists. Since then they have been locked away in freezers by Nasa to preserve them.
"We're scanning the pictures in a very high bit resolution — 14 bits — which means that for each pixel, you have about 16,000 shades of grey. A typical scan of a negative or film is eight bits. So it's not only that we're scanning this at a very high pixel resolution — showing detail to five millionths of a metre — but it's also a high bit resolution, because we want to preserve as much of the original information as possible.", Mark Robinson, a professor of Geological Sciences and the principal investigator on the project, told BBC World Service's Digital Planet programme."
PC Games (Games)

+ - Atari goes under AGAIN !->

Submitted by
VidGAMR
VidGAMR writes "Looks like the wrath of Atari strikes again, first in 1985, then in 2001 and now it looks like Atari is hitting the mat again, for good this time around. Real shame, Atari made great stuff in the 70's, 80's and even in the 90's Now its about to throw in the towel."
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NASA

+ - Satellites pick up distortion of space-time->

Submitted by
Lucas123
Lucas123 writes "Two X-ray satellites have picked up a distortion of the space-time continuum around three super-dense neutron stars, lending additional credence to Einstein's prediction in his theory of relativity. A similar rippling effect on the fabric of space has been seen around black holes, but this is the first time the phenomenon has been seen around a neutron star. 'It shows that the way neutron stars accrete matter is not very different from that of black holes, and it gives us a new tool to probe Einstein's theory," says NASA Goddard Space Center scientist Tod Strohmayer."
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Security

+ - Japan homes and destroyer raided over data leak->

Submitted by jcatcw
jcatcw (1000875) writes "Japanese police raided homes and a ship as part of an investigation into leaks related to the Aegis missile defense system, the sea-based Standard Missile-3 interceptor system and the reconnaissance satellite data exchange Link 16 system. An officer in Japan's Maritime Self Defense Force apparently obtained highly confidential information while swapping porn with a fellow officer. The leak was originally discovered in March as part of an immigration investigation."
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