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Journal: Mars, Ho! Chapter Fifteen

Journal by mcgrew

I started the long walk back to the pilot room wishing again for a bicycle or something.
A robot wheeled past. Hell, I should just flag down a robot. But, of course there was a reason for not having transportation; I remembered the climb up the boat when the whores locked me out and how tiring it was. A body needs exercise and the most I was going to get on a boat with two-thirds gravity was walking.

Comment: Re:So while all of this was happening (Score 1) 656

4. Figure out why you're a target and change it.

I know why for me. Because I didn't want to get in trouble for beating the crap out of someone.
Because I didn't want to fight.
Because it was never a one-to-one fight.
Because whenever I fought back, I was immediately outnumbered and had the shit kicked out of me. Sorry, but IRL, martial arts training does NOT prepare you for fighting 15 people.
Because every time I complained, the stupid, piece of shit principal would reprimand ME.
Because every time I fought back, the stupid, piece of shit principal would reprimand ME.
Because the one time I fought back against someone who was attacking me IN A CLASSROOM WITH A TEACHER PRESENT, I had the teacher try to jump on ME and restrain ME.

Fuck that noise.

By the time I hit High School, the only thing that kept me from going Columbine was lack of access to a gun, and the fact that other large weapon would have been caught by my parents when they drove me to school.

People like this are the reason I DON'T allow myself to own a gun. The urge to shoot people like this is just overwhelming.
All school REALLY taught me was that you can't trust people in authority. Ever. And, as much as your parents want to help you, they can't do anything for you. Not that my parents didn't bust their humps trying. My grade school principal HATED my family, because my parents gave him and his lazy ass, do-nothing self absolute hell. But I still got the crap kicked out of me on a weekly basis from Grade 3-4 to Grade 8 and still had to deal with assholes throughout high school.

Comment: Re:How is this remarkable? (Score 1) 211

To have 1 million dollars at retirement, all you need to do is save $5,000 per year into any normal savings account.

I suppose as long as you can work for 200 years, this will work out great. Too bad the rate of inflation is outstripping the .06% savings accounts are at right now. In 200 years, I'm not sure a million dollars is going to buy you a tall coffee at Star Bucks.

Comment: Re:Parents fault (Score 1) 225

by The Grim Reefer (#46771391) Attached to: Kids Can Swipe a Screen But Can't Use LEGOs

Most parents today are horrible. They do NOT interact with the chile like laying on the floor and playing with them. Get your asses off the couch and lie on the floor playing with your kids showing them how to stack blocks, and play.

I gave my daughter a earfull having my granddaughter use the ipad at 2 to keep her entertained. No you play with her using physical objects, and interaction.

Most parents today are horrible. They do NOT interact with the chile like laying on the floor and playing with them. Get your asses off the couch and lie on the floor playing with your kids showing them how to stack blocks, and play.

I gave my daughter a earfull having my granddaughter use the ipad at 2 to keep her entertained. No you play with her using physical objects, and interaction.

You should really do both. My daughter had her own desktop computer before the age of 2. Mainly because she was so fascinated by me working on one all day. I loaded a bunch of edutainment programs on it for her. We didn't use it as a baby sitter though. We would do things together on it. Though sometimes she used it herself. But we also played with MegaBlocks when she was at that age too. It was fun to see how high we could stack them, or chase each other around with them on our fingers. As she got older we got Kinects and smaller Lego blocks. Eventually she needed a new computer and eventually a laptop. The only thing she asked for for her 7th birthday was to have her computer connected to the internet.

She had a school project a few weeks ago where she looked up information on the internet for a poster about an element and built a 3D model of the atom using metal rings and styrofoam balls. Her teacher went nuts over both.

Anyhow, as important it is to have fine motor control, computers are ubiquitous these days. Trying to keep kids away from them is not the best approach. However, I agree with you. Parents shouldn't use them as a baby sitter either.

Comment: Re:Is it dead? (Score 1, Troll) 76

by gstoddart (#46770943) Attached to: Intel Pushes Into Tablet Market, Pushes Away From Microsoft

same endurance as ARM-based tablets with similar battery capacities while running a full-fat desktop OS rather than a phone OS with delusions of competency.

I don't know about you, but the last thing I want on a tablet is a "full-fat desktop OS".

It's not a freaking desktop. I don't use it like a desktop. I don't need the bloat and overhead of a desktop or a desktop OS.

If you want a full-fat desktop OS, get a Windows tablet or a laptop. Because until I can get a tablet with 1TB of storage, I'm not wasting several hundred megs of it on a piece of software which has been steadily growing bigger for the last decade.

The average app I download on Android is well under 30M. And, for me, that's a selling point.

And, really Android is essentially Linux. Are you suggesting Linux is lacking competency? Because Linux has been running efficiently on smaller systems for 20 years now.

Comment: Re:Is it dead? (Score 1, Troll) 76

by gstoddart (#46770813) Attached to: Intel Pushes Into Tablet Market, Pushes Away From Microsoft

They may be power-hungry (although not that much anymore), but from my experience in doing ports, the best ARM SoCs barely have the performance of 12-year-old x86 processors.

Meh, one of the things I like about tablets is that it finally forced people to scale back the bloat and make leaner software.

A full featured piece of software in 25MB? Count me in. Your 4GB bloated install, not so much.

And, really, my now 1.5 year old Android tablet is a dual core CPU with enough juice for what I need it to do.

The last thing I want is Intel ushering in the new era of going back to bloated software which demands absurd resources. Microsoft is already doing that.

Seriously, design something new and interesting. Don't just keep shoe-horning the x86 architecture into everything because you don't have anything else.

Comment: Re:Is it dead? (Score 1, Interesting) 76

by gstoddart (#46770623) Attached to: Intel Pushes Into Tablet Market, Pushes Away From Microsoft

No need to run x86. So why push x86 into the portable space?

Kinda what I was thinking. x86 is now ancient, and unless things have changed a lot in the last few years, tend to be pretty power hungry.

So, I guess if I want to run Windows on it, or legacy software, or have no real battery life this could be a good thing. And, really, who expects to run legacy software on a tablet?

Or, Intel could actually try to make a lightweight/low power chip meant specifically for tablets and not try to further saddle us with an architecture which is already long in the tooth. But, apparently they've grown beyond the 'innovating' phase of a company, and are well and truly into the 'flogging a dead horse' phase.

If you're going after Chinese white-box tablets, you're not aiming very high.

Me, if I saw a tablet which said "Intel Inside", the tablet would still be inside the store when I left. Because, right or wrong, my perception is it's going to suck power, and it's probably going to be geared to people who want to install Windows applications.

No thanks.

Comment: Re:Militia, then vs now (Score 1) 1015

by Kjella (#46770317) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

When you see how far they've stretched the "interstate commerce" clause, I think your proposal would only lead to a greater mess. Besides, people want laws that create simple rules like when can I carry this gun? Who, when, what, how, where are easy and categorical, why is often vaguely defined in someone's mind. For example if you say the "mission" is for self-defense then anyone caught with a gun can always claim that, even when it seems extremely unlikely.

I'd just start throwing lots of question at that definition until you got it narrowed down.

"A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

Who are "the people"? Is it the same "people" who have the right to a fair trial? Because I'm pretty sure that includes everyone, not just citizens or residents but that illegal immigrant crossing over from Mexico too. Does he have a right to "keep and bear arms"? Does anyone not connected to any milita? Even back then the militia was all "able bodied men", is a woman or a cripple protected? What about minors? The mentally ill? Felons? They all have the right to a fair trial, no ifs or buts about that. Can you condition this right on a license or registration or test? Can you deny anyone to buy a gun or place restrictions on those selling guns like mandatory waiting periods or is that denying them the right to have a gun like right now? Can you regulate how it's stored without violating the right to keep it, like keeping it dismantled, unloaded, ammo separate from gun, in a gun locker etc. because really you could demand it be encased in three feet of cement. What does it mean to bear arms, does it mean openly or concealed, can you have it in the glove box or under your seat? Can you carry it on private property, public property, in public buildings, on other people's private property that's open to the general public? What exactly does "arms" means, is it the right to have cannons and nukes or small arms? Poisoned darts, is that arms? What about knives or tazers or and any other non-gun "arms"?

Those are just off the top of my head, it wouldn't be that hard to make a law that actually answers all of these questions and it would lay most the issues at rest without ever going into the tricky question of why you might want to have a gun.

Comment: Re:WTF?? (Score 1) 656

The police didn't force the destruction of evidence. It was the principal that told the student to delete the recording.

You know, to a highschool student, I'm not sure there's a whole lot of difference.

Because when the principal, the administrators, the teachers, and the cops are all standing around telling you that you must delete it or face consequences ... which entity is it which is forcing you to delete it?

And since the police then subsequently charged him with something, pretending like they didn't play a role in this farce is pretty naive.

Comment: Re:Are you kidding (Score 1) 620

by Kjella (#46768937) Attached to: Study Finds US Is an Oligarchy, Not a Democracy

While this is true, there are generally two large parties that garner 60-80% of the seats, and these tend to be centrist parties with the same sort of minor differences that we see in the USA between Republican and Democrat.

That's where you're wrong, because even if you're a 30% party close to the center you can't just keep your attention on the swing voters as if they're the only ones that matter. In US politics the only other group that matters are the fence sitters and you'd need to be pretty damn pissed at the Democrats to let Bush run the show or pretty damn pissed at the Republicans to let Obama run the show. But here if you don't actually cater to your side your 35% party can be a 25% party next election and one of the usurper parties that promise to be "real" Democrats or "real" Republicans start taking over. Or if there's a wave of say environmentalism then a red-green or blue-green party might get an upswing even if there's not enough support for a pure green party. You have to defend yourself on all fronts.

One drawback to the parliamentary system that I've seen is that fringe parties can have a disproportionate influence since neither centrist party has enough votes to form a majority on its own and needs to bribe them to join a coalition. At least, this is what I saw in Israel, and bribe is precisely the correct word. At one point it got so sickening that the two major parties formed a coalition instead.

Yes, there's a bad side to it that one 5% party with special interests might end up with the swing votes and gain a disproportional amount of power. In a coalition each party also tends to blame the compromises they make when they don't fulfill their election promises. But you as a voter have more choices and the politics of a coalition mostly reflects the relative strength of the parties involved, a 30% party doesn't let a 10% party decide half the politics. Basically your vote might be a "blue" vote in US politics but it matters if it's light blue, dark blue, blue-green and there are always several parties fighting for your vote not just taking it as given.

I also don't think that the occasional grand coalition is a bad thing, it is the way to curb fringe parties from asking too much. It proves that there is a true choice in coalition partners, that the small parties can't just make ultimatums because the big party needs them. I'm sure that is an extremely foreign idea to US politics, but if you have say the fringe 20% on each side off in their own parties then finding a common ground in the 30% moderate left and 30% moderate right is not so incredible. Again if the people find they become too much Republicrats they can vote for the fringe parties, if the actually like moderates in government without loony bins on each side they might keep supporting it. Or the big parties can go back to the small parties next election and say "Can you be reasonable this time?"

Going the speed of light is bad for your age.