Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system


Forgot your password?

Comment: Re:Stop calling it AI. (Score 1) 75

by Dixie_Flatline (#49615291) Attached to: AI Experts In High Demand

If you show a very young child (less than a year old, I think) something 'impossible' happening, they will pay attention to it for longer and find it more interesting. So if you hold a ball in the air and let go, but it doesn't fall, or you throw a ball and it goes through a wall, a baby can recognise that those are weird events, and will stare at them for a long time.

If you then give the baby a choice of toys, amongst which is the ball that did an impossible thing, they will spend more time playing with it, rather than equally spreading their attention around. Moreover, they will conduct small experiments that are related to the impossible thing they saw. They will pick up the ball and drop it repeatedly to make sure gravity works. They will hold the ball and bang it on a surface to make sure that the ball does not arbitrarily pass through things.

The brain has a lot of stuff built into it. There are whole sections of the brain devoted to image processing, or understanding smells and taste. These are not inconsequential starting points.

Comment: Re:Struggle (Score 1) 401

by Dixie_Flatline (#49594219) Attached to: Tattoos Found To Interfere With Apple Watch Sensors

You've been marked as a troll, but I don't really think that's fair. Not everyone wants a tattoo or understands the tattoos that other people get.

I know these things are going to be on my arms for the rest of my life. And when I wake up in the morning and look at them, I think, "these are the arms I should've been born with".

First of all, you have to understand that not all tattoos are created equal. I paid $150/hr for mine. I looked for a long time for an artist whose style I liked, and when we sat down and did them, it took a really long time. All tattoos fade and bleed a bit, but good artists will know how to handle that a little. But hey, when I'm 80, I'm gonna be a little faded and fuzzy around the edges too.

My sleeves are thematic--I was born in the year of the Snake, in a fire cycle. I already had the words for 'fire' and 'snake' tattooed each on one wrist. My right arm is a red and black snake wrapped around bamboo with clouds, and my left arm is a blue, slick snake on a backdrop of flames and smoke. (Their mouths are closed, and they look quite happy--I firmly believe you need to be able to talk or fight your way out of any tattoo you have, and I dislike aggressive snakes for myself, because I'm not going to want to fight my way out of anything.)

Anyway, my tattoos are just a way for me to feel closer to part of my culture. They're a pretty bit of art that I get to carry around with me. They look good with the clothes I wear, like any accessory. That's what I wanted out of them, and that's what I got.

Other people have other reasons, but those are mine. :)

Comment: Re:Struggle (Score 4, Informative) 401

by Dixie_Flatline (#49587699) Attached to: Tattoos Found To Interfere With Apple Watch Sensors

It's not about capacitance. The watch shines different coloured light through the skin and monitors colour changes to figure certain things out. Ink is going to absorb or reflect that light in a way that the watch isn't calibrated to handle. Ink isn't melanin, so darker skinned people won't have the same problems.

My sleeves look a lot better than an Apple watch ever could, but I may just barely have enough open skin to wear one if I wanted to.

Comment: Re: IPhones (Score 1) 484

That's problem with OS X, not your phone. Discoveryd has replaced a bunch of their other network daemons and it's notoriously unstable and buggy at the moment. It's forward-looking (in that it supports nice features like handoff and airdrop), but Apple basically snuck some first gen software into your desktop OS. :/

Comment: Re:Many small solutions through a day (Score 5, Insightful) 174

by Dixie_Flatline (#49548053) Attached to: Apple Watch Launches

Separate money from wallets? Bring smiles to Apple fanbois faces? Usher in a new wave of corporate privacy invasion?

Christ, this is so obnoxious. Look, just because you don't have a use for this watch, it doesn't mean NOBODY does. Your implication is that this watch is literally useless except for making people that buy Apple products feel good.

First of all, it actually has functions that people theoretically feel useful. There are certainly Android Wear and Pebble owners that have similar functionality that feel that those devices fill this need. So as long as the Apple Watch does at least as much as those watches do, there's utility to some people. Even if all it does for someone is tell the time, $300 is not even close to the high end of what watches cost.

But it's also jewellery. People wear that stuff for lots of reasons. Do you understand how insanely dumb it is to buy a mechanical watch except as jewellery? They're not terribly accurate timekeeping devices. But they look good, and there's a aesthetic value to knowing that what you're wearing is mechanical and hand crafted. It's over $5000 for a Rolex STEEL wrist band. But you're not here criticising the idea of all luxury watches in general, or even all Smartwatches, just the Apple Watch.

You finish by saying that it's about the lock-in, but that's a ridiculous complaint. You think someone buying the first-gen Apple watch is the kind of person that is normally so capricious about their tech decisions?

What you don't like is that Apple made it and that other people like it. Just say that out loud and move on. Or don't comment at all. I think we can all safely assume by now that when Apple makes something there are a bunch of people that don't like it, so let's all pretend that you've said your piece and not use up the space from now on, hmm?

Comment: Re:Solution looking for a problem? (Score 1) 174

by Dixie_Flatline (#49547957) Attached to: Apple Watch Launches

To me, every 'smartwatch' has to pass this test: would I wear it if all it did was display the time? Does it look and feel good enough? After that, the $300 is either easy or impossible to justify. I'd wear the Apple Watch. I'd wear one of the Withings Activite watches.

I will probably get one once I feel like the first-gen problems are worked out.

Comment: Re:Solution looking for a problem? (Score 3, Insightful) 174

by Dixie_Flatline (#49547759) Attached to: Apple Watch Launches

I don't think it can solve any problems for you--if you're overwhelmed by notifications, your watch will just be a new point of contact for your frustrations.

You need to consider what's actually worth being notified about. I have a personal email account and one that I use to sign up for forums and get shipping notifications sent to. Only my personal account displays notifications, and I have a few people on my email VIP list. I switched my other mail account to sound notifications only. That way I know something happened and I can check it when I care.

At first it really feels like I'm missing things, but it actually worked out really well. Start with the assumption that nothing is worth as much as your time, and turn off every notification. Then add them back in one by one if you think it saves you more time to know that information immediately rather than once every hour or so.

Comment: Re:Pioneers get arrows in back (Score 1) 138

Joanna Stern of the Washington Post did a full EKG test with a bunch of fitness bands and a Polar heart rate strap. The fitness bands were all terrible, and the Polar Strap was pretty much spot on. Her testing of the Apple Watch seemed to indicate that it was within about 5 beats or so of her Polar-measured HR. It's by far the most accurate wrist-mounted HR monitor that she tested.

Comment: Who gets fired? (Score 1) 334

by Dixie_Flatline (#49539351) Attached to: Drone Killed Hostages From U.S. and Italy, Drawing Obama Apology

The highest level person that explicitly signed off on the strike should be fired. That's not the president--he authorises programs like this with the intention that they're carried out properly. (Whether or not this is an action the USA should be taking is a matter for elections.) If something goes wrong, someone should be punished for their incompetence. It can't be the lowest level person, because they're not the one calling the shots--it has to be someone high in the chain of command. Only explicit accountability can keep this sort of thing from happening again, assuming that this program must continue at all.

(I'm all for banning this sort of thing, but let's be real. Of course, if we're being real, we probably won't hear about this ever again.)

Comment: Re:$892,000 houses for the poors (Score 1) 540

Since we already know it's an area for rich people, it's likely that the land costs drive the price of the project up. Besides, if they're meant as rental properties, the idea won't be to get the money back immediately; the rental income and the theoretical dividends that it will pay back to the community will cover the costs in the long haul. Normally, the city would front some of that cost because there's value in that sort of diversity, but perhaps Lucas is shouldering a bunch of the costs that the city/developer normally would.

Comment: Re:Zotero and ResearchGate (Score 1) 81

Boycott ResearchGate: they're spammers. If you enter your papers into ResearchGate they will spam all your co-authors and FORGE YOUR NAME as the sender of the spam. Every time I've informed a colleague that "they" have spammed me, they've been horrified and unsubscribed from ResearchGate. It's no surprise that such an unethical company brags about Bill Gates being one of their investors.

We cannot command nature except by obeying her. -- Sir Francis Bacon