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Comment: Re:A brazilian point of view (Score 1) 432

by Chibi Merrow (#47092589) Attached to: Has the Ethanol Threat Manifested In the US?

The climate on the gulf coast is too stormy, so the cane grown there is more fibrous than the stuff they grown in Brazil. As a result, the amount of sugar per ton of plant is embarrassingly smaller. We shouldn't be growing sugar cane in the U.S., and we should take off any import duties on sugar. Everyone would be better off.

I come from of one of those sugar growing areas. While I'm nostalgic about the cane fields near my home, as an adult I realize the only reason that cane exists is because of crazy tariffs and the state and local governments willing to look the other way on safety regulations.

Comment: Re:It's been a lot longer than 2007 (Score 1) 218

by Chibi Merrow (#46789227) Attached to: FAA Shuts Down Search-and-Rescue Drones

You should look at U.S. Law 112-95 Section 336. In particular, it says to be an RC Plane:

In this section, the term ââmodel aircraftâ(TM)â(TM) means an unmanned aircraft that isâ"
(1) capable of sustained flight in the atmosphere;
(2) flown within visual line of sight of the person operating
the aircraft; and
(3) flown for hobby or recreational purposes.

This guy doesn't meet those requirements, hence his aircraft is treated as a UAS, and for those the FAA requires individual certification and a LOA.

Comment: Re:It's been a lot longer than 2007 (Score 1) 218

by Chibi Merrow (#46789117) Attached to: FAA Shuts Down Search-and-Rescue Drones

There is no reason that they need to be incompatible. Just require that all aircraft have a functioning ADS-B transceiver and TCAS, both manned and drones. Require drones to obey resolution advisories. That will eliminate most of the midair collision that exists today, manned or unmanned.

ADS-B is not some sort of magic bullet, despite what they've told you. It *may* increase safety (though studies have shown all the glass we've put in cockpits probably does the opposite), but it's not suddenly going to prevent all collisions.

In addition, STUFF BREAKS. Your UAS that depends on ADS-B for sense-and-avoid isn't going to see that Bonanza with a transponder failure. If all the electrical systems in a manned aircraft go out, the pilot can still at least bring it down where it won't hurt anyone, the same is not true of a UAS. If you really want to be terrified, you should look at some of the FAA's results on simulating GPS system failures in a future, ADS-B only scenario.

And that's all irrelevant anyway, as there is never going to be a requirement (at least probably not in my lifetime) for manned aircraft to have an ADS-B transponder anywhere they don't already need a Mode C transponder. That will never fly, pun intended. The vast majority of private pilots will never need ADS-B out, as they don't fly where it matters. There are huge swaths of airspace you can fly in WITHOUT A RADIO, much less a transponder. This is a matter of philosophy: the airspace of the United States belongs to the people, and they should have free use of it. The FAA is only supposed to provide the minimum amount of regulation and oversight to keep everyone safe.

Finally the reason this stuff costs so much is the certification overhead (and the low production numbers). Sure, we could make it cheaper by cutting out certification requirements, but that goes back to my original statement: We'd have to accept lower safety levels. There is a legitimate argument to be made that the current certification regime may not actually result in increased safety, and that maybe it would be better for more aircraft to be equipped with SOMETHING, even if it's not certified, but that will require years of study to determine.

And as a final aside, the costs aren't quite that bad. The company I work for makes a pretty good ADS-B in/out solution for about $4k. You need a compatible transponder, too, but those aren't that bad. And a compatible display if you want TIS-B/FIS-B. Otherwise we have an ADS-B-in only solution that's battery powered and integrated w/ an iOS or Android device for about $600.

Comment: Re:all of IT needs an union (Score 1) 107

by Chibi Merrow (#46555275) Attached to: Startup Employees As an Organized Labor Group

And yet it's not happening, because?

Oh right, much easier to sell this sort of thing as evil governmental abuses that only feed the lazy.

Actually, no one in power is trying to "sell" Universal Minimum Income. It doesn't fit their paradigm, and gets rid of the power structure around things like Welfare, Unemployment, Medicaid, Social Security, etc.

The reason the Senate voted it down back in the 60s was an error in statistics convinced some Senators that it made the divorce rate go up.

That's ok, as long as you pay for the benefits you receive, your effective membership isn't needed.

Yeah, good luck with that.

Comment: Re:all of IT needs an union (Score 2) 107

by Chibi Merrow (#46552145) Attached to: Startup Employees As an Organized Labor Group

Oh then you want Basic income and universal healthcare.

Honestly if we had a universal minimum income then unions could become completely irrelevant. Then if your working conditions aren't acceptable, you just quit. Honestly it's a much better solution.

Especially since you'll never get someone like me to join a union...

Comment: Re:Have you actually *read* the Constitution? (Score 1) 360

by Chibi Merrow (#46199757) Attached to: Why Games Should Be In the Public Domain

You do NOT have the inalienable right to "repeat [my] story/song/whatever" in front of a paying audience while that story/song/whatever is still protected by copyright.

When did I mention a paying audience? But even if there were a paying audience, it's entirely possible for me to legally do so if my work is transformative.

The Constitution, by granting Congress the authority to create and manage copyright, is explicitly contradicting the statement you made, because if they can limit it or take it away from you it is not an inalienable right.

Except that the first amendment specifically prevents Congress from limiting speech and overrides earlier sections of the Constitution, including the Copyright clause. And that is why there is fair use: Copyright cannot interfere with your inalienable right to free speech.

You have SOME rights to use PARTS of the story/song/whatever, but you do not have the inalienable right to repeat that work -- until the copyright expires and those rights do, indeed, become yours.

But I do have an inalienable right to repeat a story. As far as you know, I'm doing it right now as I type to you. Copyright doesn't cover "repeating a story".

And they do not become yours due to the first amendment, that is a red herring. They become yours because the copyright has expired.

Nothing "becomes mine" due to the "first amendment". No amendment to the Constitution grants rights, it only protects them from the government.

+ - Slashdot users give new beta design a huge Bronx cheer 2

Submitted by Presto Vivace
Presto Vivace (882157) writes "Alice Marshall reports that:

Slashdot users are extremely unhappy with the new Slashdot Beta design. The comment section of every single post is devoted to dissatisfaction with the new design. ... ... The thing to keep in mind about community sites devoted to user generated content is that the users generate the content.


+ - Why is Slashdot ignoring the advice of so many developer articles. 2

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Over the years, Slashdot has recycled plenty of articles about lousy UX, lousy design, lousy graceful degradation, lousy development practices, lousy community management, even lousy JavaScript implementations creating security problems. Did Slashdot read any of those articles?"

Mr. Cole's Axiom: The sum of the intelligence on the planet is a constant; the population is growing.