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Comment: Sunk cost fallacy (Score 1) 264

by EmagGeek (#47423015) Attached to: The Pentagon's $399 Billion Plane To Nowhere

The whole program is a sunk cost fallacy at this point. Congress needs to look at the cost and return of fixing the F35 program versus scrapping the entire thing, which is probably the best decision it could make.

The F35 is an unmitigated disaster. It is everything a military jet SHOULDN'T be. The entire process was destined to fail from the beginning, and it all boils down to the DoD's decision processes, like those that award contracts based on the race and gender of a company's owner rather than the merit of that company's products, and the ones that say "gee, if there could only be one plane that did everything, that would definitely be the best way to go!"

Jack of all trades, master of nothing, is not what we need in a fighter. The reason we have different branches of the military is because each has starkly unique needs compared to the others. Their needs are so unique that even the most junior engineer can look at the F35 proposal and say "hahaahh fuck no."

The Military

The Pentagon's $399 Billion Plane To Nowhere 264

Posted by Soulskill
from the flights-of-fancy dept.
schwit1 writes with an update on the U.S. government's troubled F-35 program, the cost of which keeps rising while the planes themselves are grounded. A fire in late June caused officials to halt flights for the entire fleet of $112 million vehicles last week. Despite this, Congress is still anxious to push the program forward, and Foreign Policy explains why: Part of that protection comes from the jaw-dropping amounts of money at stake. The Pentagon intends to spend roughly $399 billion to develop and buy 2,443 of the planes. However, over the course of the aircrafts' lifetimes, operating costs are expected to exceed $1 trillion. Lockheed has carefully hired suppliers and subcontractors in almost every state to ensure that virtually all senators and members of Congress have a stake in keeping the program — and the jobs it has created — in place. "An upfront question with any program now is: How many congressional districts is it in?" said Thomas Christie, a former senior Pentagon acquisitions official. Counting all of its suppliers and subcontractors, parts of the program are spread out across at least 45 states. That's why there's no doubt lawmakers will continue to fund the program even though this is the third time in 17 months that the entire fleet has been grounded due to engine problems."
Build

15-Year-Old Developing a 3D Printer 10x Faster Than Anything On the Market 202

Posted by samzenpus
from the greased-lightning dept.
New submitter jigmypig writes: One of the main issues with 3D printers today is that they lack in one area; speed. A 15-year-old boy named Thomas Suarez is developing a 3D printer that he says is the most reliable, most advanced, and faster than any 3D printer on the market today. In fact he claims it is 10 times faster than any 3D printer ever created. "There's something that makes me want to keep going and keep innovating," he says, laughing at being asked if he'd be better off outside climbing trees or riding a bike. "I feel that my interests will always lie in technology. Maybe I should go outside more but I just really like this stuff."
Earth

Study: Global Warming Solvable If Fossil Fuel Subsidies Given To Clean Energy 369

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the we're-doomed dept.
An anonymous reader writes A research team at the International Institute for Applied Systems Analysis in Laxenburg, Austria, says it has studied how much it would cost for governments to stick to their worldwide global warming goal. They've concluded that for "a 70 per cent chance of keeping below 2 degrees Celsius, the investment will have to rise to $1.2 trillion a year." Where to get that money? The researchers say that "global investment in energy is already $1 trillion a year and rising" with more than half going to fossil fuel energy. If those subsidies were spent on renewable energy instead, the researchers hypothesize that "global warming would be close to being solved."
Robotics

Are Tethers the Answer To the Safety Issues of Follow-Me Drone Technology? 87

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the drone-kept-trying-to-escape dept.
Hallie Siegel (2973169) writes Camera-equipped follow-me drone technology is hitting the scene in spades, promising extreme sports enthusiasts and others amazing aerial shots. Imagine, your own dynamic tripod that follows you on command. But what about the safety issue of having follow-me drones crowding the ski slopes? The tethered Fotokite addresses these concerns while sidestepping FAA regulations.
Robotics

By 2045 'The Top Species Will No Longer Be Humans,' and That Could Be a Problem 551

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the kill-all-humans dept.
schwit1 (797399) writes Louis Del Monte estimates that machine intelligence will exceed the world's combined human intelligence by 2045. ... "By the end of this century most of the human race will have become cyborgs. The allure will be immortality. Machines will make breakthroughs in medical technology, most of the human race will have more leisure time, and we'll think we've never had it better. The concern I'm raising is that the machines will view us as an unpredictable and dangerous species." Machines will become self-conscious and have the capabilities to protect themselves. They "might view us the same way we view harmful insects." Humans are a species that "is unstable, creates wars, has weapons to wipe out the world twice over, and makes computer viruses." Hardly an appealing roommate."

Comment: Re:I wish I could do this! (Score 1) 117

by EmagGeek (#47386053) Attached to: Lessig's Mayday PAC Scrambling To Cross Crowd Funding Finish Line

That's right. We can't forget the invariable dipping that must come later. I get such pleas in emails from various PACs every single day.

"We've accomplished so much, but we must have your continued support to keep going! Send us even MOAR MONEEZ!"

If it walks like a duck, talks like a duck, and acts like a duck, guess what...

Comment: Re:I wish I could do this! (Score 2) 117

by EmagGeek (#47386019) Attached to: Lessig's Mayday PAC Scrambling To Cross Crowd Funding Finish Line

Are you kidding me? It's called the MAYDAY PAC.

MAYDAY, as in, "OMG this is an emergency! You have to do this or people are going to DIE!"

The very name of the thing is designed to elicit an unnecessary sense of urgency and an irrational emotional state in order to extract money.

It's classic self-serving political behavior.

Comment: I wish I could do this! (Score -1, Redundant) 117

by EmagGeek (#47385967) Attached to: Lessig's Mayday PAC Scrambling To Cross Crowd Funding Finish Line

Man, I'd love to get $12M from a bunch of suckers on the promise of making government better.

This sounds just like any other congressional campaign or something. It's the same tired crap we hear every couple of years.

"Things are BROKEN! If you don't pay me to fix them, children will starve and women will be forced to have babies they don't want!"

Comment: Re:What we need... (Score 1) 233

by EmagGeek (#47382613) Attached to: Radar Changing the Face of Cycling

I've seen that in races before. Cat-5 morons are so amped up on caffeine, 5-hour energy, and race-day adrenaline that they become violent neanderthals.

Bicycling is not what it used to be. I quit racing two decades ago because of the devolution of cycling. Today's hyper-competitive yuppies have ruined the sport.

Back in the 80's, I could race and everyone would talk to each other and we were all friends out on the road having a good time being competitive with character and integrity. I did a lot of racing out in Colorado, and you could be competitive, but also count on the other riders looking out for you. If you saw another rider in distress, you'd at least put a hand out and ask if they were okay. Riders competed, but they also cared about eachothers' wellbeing.

Something happened in the 90s. I'm not sure what it was, but people started getting nasty. Racing was no longer a sport - it was personal. The younger guys HATED you. You were not their friend. They were there to BEAT YOU, and not to have a good time. It was War, but one in which they simply did not understand that a 30 year old rider with 10 or 15 years of racing experience was going to shellac a 20 year old hot head in a race every single time, as had been done to them a decade before. That generation was not taught, or did not learn, that the 30 year old rider was a mentor, teacher, and friend - not a sworn enemy to be defeated.

That was when I said "fuck it" and stopped racing. About 10 years after that, in the 2000's when Mr. Dope-head started winning Tours de France, it got even worse and the "every ride is a race" mentality filtered down to the group rides, charity rides, and basically any time two riders met on the road under any given circumstances. I rode with three or four guys in my age group on a regular basis, and we always did our best to avoid other riders as much as possible.

Maybe it's just because I'm getting older, or maybe it's because the younger generations are not being taught how to be human beings with empathy and compassion for other living things. Indeed it seems like today's young people are a bunch of violent, maladjusted, narcissistic sociopaths to me, whether on a bike or not.

"Catch a wave and you're sitting on top of the world." - The Beach Boys

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