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Comment: Re:The judge ruled correctly (Score 2) 584

by arbitraryaardvark (#41425315) Attached to: Federal Judge Says No Right To Secret Ballot, OKs Barcoded Ballots

I agree with your first two sentences. Mod parent up.

However, the right to a secret ballot is already in the Colorado constitution. (It's also in some federal legislation called HAVA.)

This is a federal judge, properly finding that plaintiffs haven't asserted any controlling authority showing there is a federal question in the case, so it's filed in the wrong court.

I have not read the complaint in this case. If I'd been writing the complaint, I would have used equal protection, tied into the state right to a secret ballot. Under Bush v Gore, if they do it one way in Denver, they should do it that way in Boulder too. But I don't think there was an equal protection claim raised.

(I'm a former election lawyer, and I'm a former Boulder County officeholder, and I'm aware of this case, but I haven't read any of the documents, so I'm speculating.)

Your Rights Online

+ - 2257 Proof of Age rules back in court->

Submitted by
arbitraryaardvark writes: "The third circuit revived Free Speech Coalition v Attorney General, a case about the constitutionality of paperwork requirements for models on adult sites. We discussed this in 2009 when the 6th circuit overturned a finding of unconstitutionality. The case will now drag on,and may reach the Supreme Court someday. has more."
Link to Original Source

Comment: time for a new verse (Score 1) 1059

Let me tell you the story
Of a man named Charlie
On a tragic and fateful day
He put ten cents in his pocket,
Kissed his wife and family
Went to ride on the MTA

Charlie handed in his dime
At the Kendall Square Station
And he changed for Jamaica Plain
When he got there the conductor told him,
"One more nickel."
Charlie could not get off that train.

                                                Did he ever return,
                                                No he never returned
                                                And his fate is still unlearn'd
                                                He may ride forever
                                                'neath the streets of Boston
                                                He's the man who never returned.

Now all night long
Charlie rides through the tunnels
                                                                  the station
Saying, "What will become of me?
How can I afford to see
My sister in Chelsea
Or my cousin in Roxbury?"

Comment: Re:Wish they would just knock it off with "earth-l (Score 1) 168

by arbitraryaardvark (#38554674) Attached to: Where Would Earth-Like Planets Find Water?

"A space probe that takes 9 years to go from earth to Pluto would take over 100,000 years to get to even our closest neighbor, a mere 4.2 light years away."

Your major point that stars are really really far away is an important one. Stross or Scalzi blogged about that a while back.

However, I'm going to nitpick your sentence quoted above,and suggest that your conclusion may be wrong as well.

Talking about a space probe that takes 9 years to go to pluto is like talking about how long a snail would take to go to hawaii. In snail terms, it's too far. But I've been to hawaii and back. Also, I think you used a linear projection. But spacecraft don't usually travel linearly. Assuming some sort of fuel or propulsive mechanism, (a problematic assumption, i know) they keep accelerating to turn-around point. Speed of spacecraft increases by exponential factors, sort of a moore's law of spaceships. Within 100 years, some kind of fusion drive or other advanced technology should be doable. Make yourself into a software simulation, on a piece of hardware that can withstand 20 g's and weighs a gram, and has a fusion drive first stage to get it started,and you shave a lot of time off the trip. How to slow down at the other end I don't have a solution for yet.

+ - Google ups green energy funds to $700 million.-> 1

Submitted by
arbitraryaardvark writes: "Google added another $280 million to its green energy play this week, by bankrolling rooftop photovoltaic systems fro Solar City. Google already has a half billion invested in wind, solar,and geothermal projects, in addition to its east coast offshore transmission line.
Its short-term goal is to provide enough alternative energy for a city the size of san francisco. The long term goal is drive technology to make solar and wind cheaper than coal."

Link to Original Source

+ - How far and fast can commercial space world grow?->

Submitted by
coondoggie writes: "The development of the commercial space industry has in the past been slow and deliberate but that seems like it's about to change with a whirlwind of developments that could shape or break its immediate future.

First, today the Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics is holding a hearing to go over the Federal Aviation Administration's 2012 budget request which includes close to $27 million — nearly a 75% increase over 2010 — in the budget for the group tasked with overseeing commercial space development..."

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Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. -- Arthur C. Clarke