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Comment: Fake, not practical (Score 5, Insightful) 40

by Dan East (#49315317) Attached to: Magic Leap's AR Demo Video

First of all, of course it's fake.

The biggest flaw is the interface itself. A full 20 years ago, when Johnny Mnemonic (the movie, not the short story) came out, and I saw Keanu Reeves using that VR internet type access, I knew that those interfaces would never work in the real world. I'm sitting here browsing the internet, typing this message, etc, by moving my fingers maybe an inch most. We are currently stuck having to do physical interactions to interface with a digital world. As long as we are stuck using this kind of interfacing (IE it's not plugged directly into our mind), then the less physical effort is required to interface, the more efficient, faster, accessible, and convenient computers will be to access.

Really, I'm going to lift my arm up to head level, and make a huge gesture like I'm pulling laundry out of the washing machine, to look at a message? LOL Suuuuuure. Anyway, you can spot it in a minute when these interfaces are generated by animators / artists / movie effects people, because they could never gain widespread usage when the majority of people would be fatigued after a mere 10 minutes using such a system. Kind of like every movie with a computer makes beeps and blips every time you interact with any widget, which in reality would drive the average human out of their mind in exactly 20 minutes. Yeah, looks cool as a prop, but annoying in real life.

Oh, and I like the way that gun somehow turns into an actual prop in that guy's hands. They've invented a transporter and holodeck to go along with their VR headset apparently.

Comment: ActiveX (Score 5, Informative) 95

by Dan East (#49308361) Attached to: South Korea Begins To Deprecate ActiveX

In case anyone is wondering what ActiveX is, it's essentially a Windows program you download that runs natively on your computer. It gets to draw to the specified element in the browser, which makes it look like it's part of a webpage. There isn't (or wasn't) any kind of sandboxing or security once the ActiveX component was installed - it could do anything it wanted on your computer like any other Windows program, because that's essentially what it was. The only security was whether or not you installed the ActiveX component in the first place. If I remember correctly they are really just DLLs, and used Component Object Model for the standard in which the DLL exposes methods, etc.

Comment: Potential for abuse (Score 2, Interesting) 760

The potential for abuse is insane. Say I'm rich. I simply hire some poor guy with zero income to break the law when I need it done (driving me around when I'm in a hurry is a good one). If he gets in trouble I give him a bonus. If he gets caught too many times then I hire some other guy. Really, this is a stupid idea, and will further lead to bias and all kinds of issues with the police. Want to bet people driving more expensive cars get pulled over more often there? Especially in jurisdictions that rely on traffic fine income to support their infrastructure. Cops have latitude in writing tickets, etc. Only going 5-10 over? It's their choice to pull you over or not. They are not *required* to by law, and because of that, the potential for discrimination based on wealth will happen. Maybe you've just a got a cop who financially is in rough shape and he wants to stick it to the man. Well, he'll just wait for a luxury car to come along and bust them for going 5-6 over the limit.

Stupid idea.

Comment: Re:At this point Mars is running before you can wa (Score 2) 228

Imagine if the Roanoke colonists decided Antarctica should be their goal. Well that's where Mars colonization plans are today. Of all the reasonable candidates, (Low earth orbit, the Lagrange points, the Moon, Mars, Asteroids) Mars is about the worst. It's at the bottom of the deepest gravity well outside of earth, except for the asteroids it has the longest travel time, and will have the longest development time before it can return resources to the people that invest in it.

Hang on there a second. How do you colonize low earth orbit or the Lagrange points? By your analogy, you're saying the Roanoke colonists should have "colonized" the Atlantic on a big floating platform or something. That isn't colonizing. The point in either the moon or mars is to extract and make use of resources to build habitations, create fuel, food, energy, etc. Hanging out in space in a tin can is not "colonizing" anything, no more than sitting in a raft in the middle of the Atlantic.

Comment: Well there's your problem right there... (Score 5, Interesting) 101

by Dan East (#49224531) Attached to: Gigaom Closes Shop

Gigaom reaches over 6.5 million monthly unique readers and continues to be the leading independent voice that demystifies emerging technology through its news, events and research. We’re a new type of media company with a business model that leverages technology, transparency and access to information. The company’s growth has been propelled by great writers, journalistic integrity, industry depth and audience engagement.

We offer integrated advertising programs across all of our channels: Cloud, Data, Media, Mobile, Science & Energy, Social & Web, and Podcasts. With a strong mobile reach of over 2 million monthly readers, our mobile advertising on Flipboard is highly targeted. With an array of podcasts, newsletters and other custom campaigns, we have a campaign offering to fit any client’s budget and marketing goals.

I don't know who these "6.5 million monthly unique readers" are, but if the regular crowd at Slashdot has never even heard of their site, then they weren't really reaching 6.5 million people, or they were the wrong 6.5 million people. According to their careers page it looks like they had a lot of overhead and tried to run like an old fashioned news company with two offices in major cities. They certainly weren't lean-and-mean.


Comment: Ocean sizes (Score 4, Informative) 58

by Dan East (#49191747) Attached to: New Data Indicates Arctic-Ocean Sized Body of Water on Ancient Mars

First of all, the Slashdot headline is wrong. It is "arctic ocean" sized, not antarctic. Second, the article makes another comparison that makes more sense, since Mars and Earth aren't the same size (how big would the arctic ocean be placed on mars? Not something we can visualize). That is the ocean on Mars covered slightly more of the planet than the Atlantic ocean covers on Earth - the Mars ocean covered 19% of the planet, while the Atlantic covers 17% of the Earth. Of course the volume of water and depths are totally different.

Comment: Re:"Real" money (Score 0) 178

by Dan East (#49181599) Attached to: One Year Later, We're No Closer To Finding MtGox's Missing Millions

Mt Gox is an exchange, and exchanges exchange "real" money for bitcoins, correct? So say I paid $2,000 for bitcoins at Mt Gox, and I left those coins there instead of transferring to my own wallet. Thus if those particular coins went missing, I would have been out exactly the $2,000 I paid for them. Now on the other hand, say I mined bitcoins and transferred to Mt Gox for them to be sold, and those coins went missing. They never had any "real" value attached to them - only whatever resources I claimed to have consumed in generating them. See the difference?

Comment: Perception (Score 4, Interesting) 420

by Dan East (#49153215) Attached to: Is That Dress White and Gold Or Blue and Black?

First off, the picture is crap. It's overexposed and the white balance is off by a mile. My 10 year old Razr flip phone took better pictures than that.

However, there's still a human perception factor going on. I had looked at the picture on my laptop, and it was clearly white and gold. Then later I pulled the exact same picture up on my iPhone to show it to someone, and it looked black and blue. I then concluded that the picture looked different on my laptop than my phone due to differences in the display. When I got back home I pulled the picture up on both my phone and laptop to do a direct comparison, and both, including on my phone, looked white and gold again.

So I think it depends on whether your eyes are currently adapted to dim indoor lighting or bright outdoor lighting, in addition to the backlight on your device also changing the hue depending on if it's automatically full bright for outdoors or dim for indoors.

Comment: Realistic (Score 4, Insightful) 374

by Dan East (#49129259) Attached to: The Groups Behind Making Distributed Solar Power Harder To Adopt

I think solar is great - I have some panels on my camper, which is very conducive to solar type use because it's already designed to function off-grid. But let's be realistic. Let's say every home in America stuck a couple thousand watts of solar power on their roof, and wanted to sell the power into the grid (as opposed of having to store it on-site). How is that supposed to work? If no power generation is required by the power company when the sun is shining, but the full normal generation is required the instant clouds sweep over a community or at night, etc, then how is that supposed to work? None of the power generation plants can function in that "instant on / instant off" type of a mode. Particularly not nuclear. The point is, once the adoption reaches some (rather smallish) percentage, there will be some major problems and costs that will have to be addressed.

Regarding the incentives (tax credits and the like), again, once solar hits some critical mass, why would the government provide incentives? The incentives did their job, and got some number of people to adopt solar.

Nothing is stopping anyone from using solar. It's just that it may not be a profitable (as in selling electricity or getting a tax break) endeavor. So don't whine when it can't be used purely for an economical advantage.

Promising costs nothing, it's the delivering that kills you.