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Comment: Re:Only Two Futures? (Score 1) 607

by Comrade Ogilvy (#49727649) Attached to: The Demographic Future of America's Political Parties
I find I am getting much more conservative as I get older, and I am voting against the existing Republican Party with ever greater zeal. I live in California, and due to the peculiarities of Prop 13 and tax policy, the GOP shifted towards being the Party of No 20+ years ago, while the state as a whole drifted slightly leftwards. The result is the CA GOP has hollowed out. The state could use a competent loyal opposition party, but we are not going to get one until the old men die off.

Comment: Re:Controversial because? (Score 2) 284

by Comrade Ogilvy (#49682971) Attached to: Bill Gates Still Trying To Buy Some Common Core Testing Love
Nonsense. CC is silent on the manner of grading teachers. That is simply a choice on the part of the state legislature and local school district. If the state legislature decides to enact a Procrustean regime that squashes the ability for teachers in the trenches to enact amendments to the class curriculum, then that itself is a problem regardless of whether CC is endorsed or not. In fact, we are already on that road, unfortunately, and ditching CC is not going to move us in another direction.

Comment: Re:Navy? Warships? (Score 1) 101

To look at the failure modes of the material is a known thing since the sinking of the HMS Sheffield in the Falklands War. One of the reasons that ship sunk so quickly is the fire softened the aluminum superstructure, causing the various firebreaks to fail. (With the electrical system down and no way to provide substantial water, that ship was probably doomed anyway. But the concern was a similarly damaged ship even with a working water system might be doomed anyway.)

Comment: Re:Great - suburbs are becoming urbanized (Score 1) 296

I basically agree with you. In spades.

As for my peninsula house, I might even be willing to have it demolished and replaced with 6-story condo, because I could probably walk away from the deal two million dollars richer, but NIMBYism is never going to allow it.

The Bay Area has decided to create green spaces, a policy that I support. But part of the price of having green spaces that box in growth is that we should be positively managing growth upwards in the places where infrastructure will best be able to support density. Unfortunately, we mostly to the exact opposite, and SF is the worst offender. Peninsula cities are only now meekly embracing 3 and 4 stories in locations that could darn well justify 8 and 10 story buildings.

You are paying the price through the nose.

I am paying the price, to a lesser extent. I really wish their were more poor people living nearby. It is good for the poor. It is good for the rich. It is good for society. Heck, you know how hard it is to find a baby sitter on the peninsula who will work for $15 per hour and will show up on time? (You probably do.)

Comment: Re:yeah.. (Score 2) 405

They may be more brittle than the seasoned individuals who self selected to stay in IT for 10 or 20 or 30 years. But are they actually more brittle as a group than the people who dipped their toes in the IT waters when you first started, many of whom removed themselves from the professional over the course of years because they could not hack it? I have no doubts there are aged based differences, but it is difficult to tease out the self-selection bias between generations.

Comment: Conservation of momentum (Score 1) 480

by Comrade Ogilvy (#49596179) Attached to: New Test Supports NASA's Controversial EM Drive
There is no law of physics that says physical propellant is necessary. Any light bulb and mirror can create momentum, with no propellant expended. SF writers have known for a long time that, in principle, electromagnetic effects like powerful lasers can create thrust. I need more details to make sense of this article.

Comment: Re:isn't IBM already mainly a services business?! (Score 1) 208

by Comrade Ogilvy (#49579677) Attached to: IBM CIO Thinks Agile Development Might Save Company

[IBM] attempts to transition from a hardware-dependent business to one that more fully embraces the cloud and services

I though that IBM was already mainly a services business...

Which makes sense enough. If you are a services company, getting complex enterprise solution projects up and running is what you get paid for. Agile can help there, even if it is not a magic bullet that will save you from an architecture that looked good on the power point slide but fails at scale, for example.

It is a dirty little secret that complex enterprise solution projects fail more than half the time, often to the tune of 8 figures. Companies do not issue press releases about the money they threw down the toilet on IT, so getting statistics on this kind of thing is difficult unless you delve into the fine details of the quarterly reports.

Comment: Re:Fast track (Score 3, Interesting) 355

I am sorry unless you have hard evidence of a major and specific conspiracy that everyone of your students participated in you CANT fail an entire class. The reality is there was probably a few students who are innocent or whose infractions don't justify an automatic failing grade, so its punishing the innocent. The optics of that just are not appropriate for an academic institution.

Yup. By making a blanket judging that is clearly unfair to at least a few students, the professors is demolishing his own case. Challenging the 'F' is a slam dunk. When it came to having guards in his class, he should have quietly made his ultimatum to the department already -- that they were going to back him with X, Y, and Z or he would resign. That it came to this suggests egregious failures by the school itself.

Comment: Re:Good for Amazon! (Score 1) 83

by Comrade Ogilvy (#49546381) Attached to: Amazon's Profits Are Floating On a Cloud (Computing)
Shipping costs for Amazon is steadily climbing, while revenue for shipping is flat. For all the squeezing of the carriers, they are still bleeding there. Amazon is basically paying a $3-$4 billion dollar subsidy to their online business to elbow aside the competition, by eating half the costs of shipping.

Comment: Re:A sane supreme court decision? (Score 1) 409

(BTW, kudos for your coherently made points.)

I guess the heart of the matter is what is "reasonable suspicion" in this context and what "reasonable suspicion" allows. Police can do all kinds of positive information gathering actions based on "reasonable suspicion" based on good sense in the given context. Did the officer in question have "reasonable suspicion"? Did the kind of "reasonable suspicion" here, presuming he had such, justify detaining a citizen?

It is not obvious, given the law of the land. The Court made a determination that sounds okay to me.

Comment: Re:A sane supreme court decision? (Score 1) 409

That you for the clarification, but my point still stands. The officer did not have probable cause to force the citizen to stay put beyond the time to complete the write up of the citation, which is a kind of detainment, for him to acquire the additional resources to employ this other kind of evidence gathering that steps up to the line of the 4th amendment. What the officer in question did, in some sense, laudable, obviously; but not all arguably laudable police actions are legal under the 4th amendment.

Whether the dog or psychic or dowsing rod is in his vehicle, right now, or 8 minutes down the road is irrelevant. In his good judgement, he should have more resources on hand to employ this other kind of inspection.

My reading of the Court ruling is that he had the option to use his dog immediately. That he chose otherwise is probably wisdom -- he does not want his unprotected back turned to a possible criminal if he stumbles upon evidence of a crime. Good for him.

Comment: Re:A sane supreme court decision? (Score 5, Insightful) 409

Hmm...actually the ruling is more narrow than that. The Court seems to be saying that if the police officer happens to have a dog on hand right now it can sniff around the car. But it is not reasonable to keep a citizen waiting around for the convenience of the police officer to use every possible implement that comes right up "to the line" of the citizen's rights.

Comment: Re:Well done! (Score 1) 540

I am not going to rebut that article, so much as respond with a "So what?" The massive increase in costs are most likely explained by the enormous changes in women's professional prospects since 1970. The costs per pupil have approximately doubled during a time period that women's median incomes have also approximately doubled. Obviously, the business details of how schools are run are more complicated than such a simple model as that. But the Cato Institute understands this data and the obvious implications of this correlation, and they are using a lot of smoke and mirrors to keep the discussion superficial enough that you might not notice. There are some interesting questions to investigate regarding trend comparisons between states, but that article only scratches the surface of the topic.

Comment: Re:a phone (Score 1) 237

by Comrade Ogilvy (#49479969) Attached to: Chess Grandmaster Used iPhone To Cheat During Tournament
Which is indeed a great accomplishment. But whether it is the equivalent of being as good a chess player as the best human is a choice of definitions. Normal humans do not get to claim to be the best player of game X, without grinding through the ladders and/or tournaments. That is a very real cost with potential significant long term downsides the computer player skipped over.

Comment: Re:a phone (Score 1) 237

by Comrade Ogilvy (#49472483) Attached to: Chess Grandmaster Used iPhone To Cheat During Tournament
LOL. My serious counterargument is to be genuinely as good as a human player, the computer program should qualify for the big name tournament by entering lesser many tournaments and racking up a game history that could be studied for weaknesses. IMHO Kasparov played on a not level field, because his long career was open to study and his computer opponent's was not.

Memory fault - where am I?