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Comment: Re:That shouldn't surprise anyone (Score 1) 339

by ClickOnThis (#49542139) Attached to: Median Age At Google Is 29, Says Age Discrimination Lawsuit

I always joked that if you ask me to write a sort routine in the interview, I'm going to lecture you about why you need to go off the shelf, and doesn't Google have anyone who can make a shareable library?

Then you'd come across as someone with an attitude. Good luck with that.

The reason an interviewer asks you to write a sort routine is to separate you from the candidates who can't (of which there are many, sadly.) The interviewer wants to see how you approach a simple problem and how you solve it.

Comment: Re:They should be doing the opposite (Score 1) 298

IP does not exist. It's a figment of our collective imagination.

Well, you can say the same about money (dollars, euros, bitcoin, whatever.) And we don't consider its value to expire (aside from effects such as inflation, statewide economic failures, etc.)

I do agree with virtually all of your other points. I just think that you can't defeat IP merely because it is a concept.

I loathe the term "intellectual property" because it is an oxymoron of sorts. But someone should be able to profit from their intellectual creations for a period of time, without having someone else steal them. One can argue in good faith what an acceptable period of time would be (or in the current discussion, what constitutes "theft") but I think 0 years is just as unreasonable as 70 years.

Comment: Re:Conservation of momentum (Score 1) 167

by ClickOnThis (#49512061) Attached to: ISS Could Be Fitted With Lasers To Shoot Down Space Junk

How does heat affect the orbit?

You vaporize one side of the object, and the expanding gases provide some thrust.

I'm not sure you'd even need to vaporize anything. Ever seen one of these?

I assume you're implying radiation pressure could push things out of orbit. Perhaps, but that device doesn't demonstrate radiation pressure.

The Crookes Radiometer depends on air molecules being present to work. It spins with the dark side of the veins trailing, in the opposite direction you would expect from light pressure (for which the light side has a greater impulse due to recoil of the photons instead of absorption.)

In theory, radiation pressure could indeed push objects out of orbit, but I'm too busy/lazy right now to run the numbers to find out how much energy it would require. Also, consider Newton's third law: any decent impulse given to space junk by the ISS using radiation pressure would affect the ISS as well.

Comment: Re:An alternative to the death penalty (Score 4, Insightful) 590

Every execution is a 100% successful deterrent - the executed criminal will never again commit a crime. Beat that.

That argument is defeated easily. If a criminal convicts a crime for which the sentence is death, then obviously the sentence was not a deterrent.

Any deterrence beyond that is a "nice to have", but not required.

On the contrary. The purpose of a deterrent is to discourage someone from committing a crime in the first place. That is fundamental, not "nice to have."

Comment: Re:An alternative to the death penalty (Score 0) 590

Killing people diminishes us - even if they were evil scumbags who deserved worse. I don't need to look to other cultures for examples and counter-examples of executing people. I don't need a popularity contest about how many other people don't like the death penalty (or the converse). Let's just go with "no killing" because it is right and be done with it.

I agree completely. I just thought I'd start the thread with the pragmatic reasons, because they tend to make proponents less defensive. And that reminds me of another one: the lack of evidence that it is an effective deterrent compared to incarceration:


If a 6600 used paper tape instead of core memory, it would use up tape at about 30 miles/second. -- Grishman, Assembly Language Programming