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Comment: Re: OMG (Score 1) 215

Actually plutonium is mostly just a biological toxin. Its a heavy metal that gets drawn into your cells and hits you about the same as say, a dose of cadmium breathed into the lungs would.

Radiation is a funny thing: alpha emitters are harmless outside the body, but incredibly toxic if absorbed. Gamma emitters are no trouble at all - they're no more dangerous (barring chemical toxicity) outside then inside since the radiation passes through all practical wearable shielding.

Comment: Re: "Getting into orbit" requires a big rocket. (Score 1) 215

This is ignoring that the *thrust* requirements to go from LEO to Geo are orders of magnitude different though. You can get an a couple km/s delta-v from a cubesat with thrusters amounting to a taser and some metal - but you'll never get to LEO using them.

Comment: Re:In other news... (Score 1) 285

by Electricity Likes Me (#48948969) Attached to: The NSA Is Viewed Favorably By Most Young People

Alternatively, you're part of a relatively limited slice of a generation for whom "not sharing" is an odd, sociological outlier compared to those which came before and after. The 40s were war years, and everyone had the shared experience of having to contribute in some way - across most of Europe the stories are of shared communities and experiences. It's only in the time since then has the notion that everybody can be absolutely private in their affairs gained the traction it did, especially in the US.

This was then crushed again starting around the 80s when censorship rules began to be overturned, and you see the beginnings of it in a generation of filmmakers who wanted to see what they could put on screen, and the slow rise of the internet and the generation which would eventually come to be part of the Google/Facebook generation.

If you think everyone else is broken, it's more likely just you are.

Comment: Re:Lame Lame Lame! (Score 1) 178

by Electricity Likes Me (#48948893) Attached to: Can Students Have Too Much Tech?

I'm not sure I entirely agree, but I do agree that explaining "why" in decent terms has always been my biggest problem with understanding mathematics. I can just about get through calculus if I rote-memorize for long enough to start seeing the pattern, but the entire process utterly failed me when it came to complex analysis (5 textbooks and one failed semester later and I'd say I'm still at zero - the only subject where after a few hours I could still have absolutely gotten nowhere).

Comment: Re:The web can be a great tool... (Score 1) 178

by Electricity Likes Me (#48948873) Attached to: Can Students Have Too Much Tech?

I'd argue the rise of the tablet is also a problem here though: computing of 20 years ago meant you weren't too many steps away from seeing how the system runs, how it operates, how you can create new programs on it. This isn't even possible on Apple-branded tablet products, and trends too "way too complex" on Android systems (although things like AIDE do mean you can theoretically develop new apps - but I doubt I'd have gotten anywhere with Java and all the boilerplate compared to a command line terminal when I was starting out).

Comment: Re:This pays credence to my rant about tech (Score 1) 178

by Electricity Likes Me (#48948859) Attached to: Can Students Have Too Much Tech?

The basic problem is districts ship technology but not applications and basic training, nor investment in adapting their syllabus's to match and take advantage of their new capabilities (I would guess because that makes it go from "a lot but reasonable to" to "no upper bound because you need to plan to have developers on full time").

Comment: Re:OpenSSL and the Internet (Score 2) 97

by Electricity Likes Me (#48897103) Attached to: OpenSSL 1.0.2 Released

This is stupid.

If there's one lesson in the history of computing, it's that every type of possible side-channel leaks information like crazy if not properly controlled. So in what world does it make sense to mix up your application or transport protocol with your security protocol? The examples you give have nothing to do with the underlying transport protocols, or overlaying application protocols that have been in use.

Comment: Re: yeah... (Score 1) 208

by Electricity Likes Me (#48863441) Attached to: US Army Wants Weapon To Destroy Drone Swarms

You're ignoring the lessons learned the hard way when ECM was initially developed: when you fire up a jammer, all the missile has to do is home on the jammers signal instead.

A drone with some basic laser ranging/altimetering and an antenna would have no trouble locating and attacking such a thing.

Comment: Re: Where's this desire for "nice" coming from? (Score 1) 361

by Electricity Likes Me (#48843257) Attached to: Linus On Diversity and Niceness In Open Source

Bullshit. People who are difficult to work with are always a problem. They may be good at something, but they drag everyone else down to the point that they're still a net negative.

Where this relates to Linus has a lot more to do with the BS tallpoppy syndrome that people throw at him while not being part of the kernel dev circles. He's not by any measure that I can tell actually not a nice guy. He's just got a habit of sending curt emails.

Comment: Re: hard landing disaster (Score 1) 206

by Electricity Likes Me (#48810081) Attached to: China's Engineering Mega-Projects Dwarf the Great Wall

China is not going to collapse that quickly. The word "collapse" gets thrown around a heck of a lot as though these are things which can happen literally overnight, when really we're talking about multi-year declines which would hurt, but are not nearly the same thing.

Australia is fucked on it's present trajectory though because successive governments have had no interest in trying to diversity, and the population keeps buying the weird "we must be specialized for mining!" BS from both the politicians and mining companies.

It is contrary to reasoning to say that there is a vacuum or space in which there is absolutely nothing. -- Descartes