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Comment Re: America (Score 1) 399

Well said. The FAA has enforced it's regulations on pilots for years without giving the pilots any significant recourse or constitutional rights. Until Sen. James M. Inhofe got busted for landing on a closed runway. He was successful at getting the "Pilot's Bill of Rights" passed which established sensible burdens of proof and defendant's rights for pilots charged with violating regulations. Inhofe is considered to be something of an idiot among pilots for landing on the closed runway, but he's also considered "our idiot" if you catch my meaning.

Comment I know why (Score 4, Informative) 263

I worked designing ballot reading machines back in the late 80's. I enjoyed the work and we made some great equipment. Then the "hanging chad" incident came along and the Federal Elections Commission issued strict certification standards for ballot counting equipment. Once my company certified the machines that they sold, they ended all R&D and new product development. It was not possible to make incremental improvements without a massive retest and recertification, and the company (correctly) surmised that the certification costs would limit the playing field to the existing players. So, no incentive to build better machines.

Submission + - Have The Robots Broken The Stock Market? (seekingalpha.com)

walterbyrd writes: The markets were sloppy last week, and we went out on a bad note. Sentiment was very negative. And when Chinese stocks continued to crash on Sunday, it looked like we might be on the verge of something nasty. Uncertainty was everywhere. And then the robots took control. I watched the futures market almost all night on Sunday, and we were seeing 100-point moves in the Dow Futures contract within a few minutes. This was not human controlled. And it was not rational.

Comment In other news... (Score 0) 256

Government funds rebuilding the power grid infrastructure because vast quantities of wind power destablizes grid. And in other, other news, government funds development of massive grid-level storage batteries because quantities of wind power are generated at the wrong time of the day for utilization.

A failure will not appear until a unit has passed final inspection.