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Submission + - Droning for sharks

FreedomFirstThenPeac writes: Apparently Orange County (specifically, Seal Beach area) has found that drones are useful for finding hazards at the beach, the story has a nice drone-shot overhead of a small shark (scale is hard to tell). They also report that it is easy to spot rip tides. The question of the day, how long till someone links imaging processing software with the guidance system so they can get the drones to hover over, and follow along, as sharks patrol off shore? Just another day at the beach, see the shoal of nerds schooling along with their drone controls? They are the ones who are missing all the swimsuit-enhanced normals in the area.

Comment Re:Work with cloned mice (Score 1) 203 203

The problem with with asking if an animal is "sentient" is that any test rigorous enough to rule out some species will, if applied fairly, also rule out 90% of humans, and I do not just mean the young and the enfeebled. Ultimately, however, we do not need to know sentience or consciousness (be careful), what we need first is "is this entity entitled to protection under the law?

Comment Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof (Score 1) 444 444

Particle physics has a dogma (e.g, nothing with rest-mass NE 0 can travel at or above the speed of light) that makes a claim of faster-thjan-light neutrinos a claim that requires extraordinary proof, so any claim to have discovered faster-than-light neutrinos results in immediate scrutiny. Biomedicine and social science have much looser dogma, dogma that is often very much polluted by people whose world views are often much more driven by wishful thinking (unicorns for EVERYONE!), than by tested science. So I agree with the posters who claim that the problem is not throughout science, being more a problem at the left end of the scientific spectrum (a spectrum described XKCD).

Comment Why stop with Scientology? (Score 1) 700 700

What is it that we think makes Scientology so egregious when compared with other tax-exemptions? It seems to me that if this gets pushed hard enough we will conclude that "tax-exempt status" for religious groups leads to a violation of the amendment, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion". Only by NOT granting tax exempt status do we get government out of the business of deciding what is a valid religion and what is not. Look how well it worked to let government define marriage. Be careful what you wish for.

Comment We are all elitist pigs. (Score 1) 114 114

We need to remember that most of us would not know how to create a financial derivative wrapping up bad mortgages into a pretty package and then selling them to banks who then get the government to cover the losses at the high end leaving the luzr$ holding underwater assets that they have to just give up. $12T worth of equity vanishing in the process. Yet these are the guys who pay us the best. The "techs" who lurk at the fringe, and who do not really know a packet from a pickle should be treated like physician's assistants or paralegals. Useful to do the routine stuff, but needing tech supervision or nudging aside when the going gets tough. They might be the hardware guys opening the hood and putting in the parts, while we wait at the keyboard to make it work. In a repair shop, it makes sense to form these sorts of teams, but for on-site delivery it is usually a one-man team, and in that case, we need to be careful to send in the paratechs only when called for, sending in the true techs when necessary. In the end, it is about education. Educate the users about why they sometimes only need the power user, sometimes the paratech and sometimes the tech. Educate the support spectrum to have proper (if limited) respect for each other and keeping each level engaged.

Sheesh, you'd think we thought being techie qualified us to do brain surgery, for crying out loud.

Comment User's choice (Score 1) 516 516

The sound I use to indicate that the system is shutting down (the "that's it man, game over (NSFW)") sound bite from Aliens. Icons could be the same way, I would think, sort of like themes. But ultimately icons are shortcuts to replace long words like "Save" or "Stop". And look how far the Egyptians of 4,000 years ago got with their icon-based language. And cross cultural issues abound. The red "X" used in 1990's German software caught me off guard, compared to common English usage to indicate "Delete".

In the final analysis, icons are like standards ... everyone has their own, sometimes just for marketing.

Comment This Republican is smiling (Score 1) 599 599

I was putting pressure on my Representative (R) though I had no influence with my two Senators since they are both from the (D) party. I pushed for the "the Internet is a utility" based on first principles in the Republican party, which does not always lead to wanting private ownership of public goods.

Comment Re:Anecdotes from Germany ... (Score 1) 290 290

A friend told me that in China the elevator door etiquette was for in-bounds to stand in the door and, similar to the German train behavior, block the door. He is big, and would stand in the elevator with his nose almost touching the door waiting for it to open. Startled a few people, for cure. Social interaction rules are learned behavior, and we are all both teacher and student, if it is done right. Unfortunately, as a child of the 60's, I know that many of my peers refused to be bound by cultural customs, leading to a ruder world, IMNSHO.

Comment Rule of the sea (Score 1) 290 290

A vessel at anchor always has right of way (though I would not try this with a small boat and a big tanker). So I sometimes stop, take out cell phone and pretend to be answering a call. Since I am stopped, I have the right of way under most social rules of traffic in common spaces.

"What I've done, of course, is total garbage." -- R. Willard, Pure Math 430a

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