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Comment: Re: Really ? (Score 2) 246 246

No, we don't. If you don't have the water, or at least the hydrogen and oxygen, you don't have a large body of water to moderate the temperature and host cyanobacteria to create oxygen, which takes hundreds of thousands to millions of years, assuming you have enough bound oxygen to begin with. We don't have the technology. We can't even filter out a little carbon dioxide in our own atmosphere.

Comment: Re:Why force her to do something she doesn't want (Score 1) 245 245

No, she doesn't. He specifically said:

"but she is just not very passionate about coding or IT in general."

So yes, it does look like he's trying to push her. Most women I know take a few months of maternity leave, not a few years, so maybe that is why he is pushing, but he's pushing her in the wrong direction.

Comment: Re:Or (Score 1) 117 117

If you do the leading edges and windscreen with furniture polish (people swear by Lemon Pledge, I use Mr Sheen because Pledge doesn't seem to be sold locally) the bug guts wipe off very easily (and I suspect many just don't stick but I've not done a scientific test of this).

Take an awful lot of Pledge to do an airliner leading edge, though.

Comment: Re:Kids don't understand sparse arrays (Score 1) 128 128

They need diplomas or certificates in programming.

If they don't understand mathematics or computer systems design then their code will be useless

But note that the question wasn't about understand mathematics or computer systems design; it was about diplomas or certificates in programming. It's fairly well understood that those are orthogonal quantities. ;-)

Comment: Re: Next Up: *Delay* delay send (Score 4, Informative) 95 95

I stand by my words, never regretted clicking send. This is a feature for people for whom 30 seconds is long enough to change their mind on if they have something to say. Maybe they could think for 30 seconds and ask two questions.

Well, a few years ago, I'd have said the same. But then I got involved with several of the latest "smart" phones and tablets. As a result, I now think "Undo Send" sounds like a fine idea.

The reason, of course, is all the times I've been typing a message, when suddenly it blinks out in mid-word, and I find that the partial message has apparently been sent. My muttered "WTF!?" has no effect. I've generally had no idea what I may have done (if anything) that caused the software to act that way. This happened once today on my Android (HTC ONE) phone, and I've seen it on several iPads and Android tablets. My wife reports the same behavior on her iPhone.

Of course, this wasn't a case of me clicking Send, so perhaps your "never regretted clicking send" does apply. But it'll be useful if a Send triggered by the software itself when I didn't want it to send anything will suffice as grounds for wanting an Unsend capability.

The only problem is the 30-second window. The email (and IM) interfaces are getting progressively more baroque, and that may often not be enough time to understand what has gone wrong inside the goofy software. What we really need is a way to tell it "Don't ever send anything unless I explicitly hit the Send button." But the clever software "designers" also seem to be eliminating things as mundane as buttons with words on them, replacing them with idiosyncratic icons (different in every email/message app) whose behaviour can be hard to remember if you routinely work on several different machines, as many of us do.

(Just today, I tried to back out of a messaging app by using what looked a lot like the usual left-pointing "Return to previous screen" button. It sent the message, though I'm not sure who it went to, and I hadn't even intentionally been trying to make a reply. Things really are getting this messed up. ;-)

Comment: Re:First they made food portions smaller (Score 1) 273 273

But if you don't need the allowance, Ryanair is still the best price by a country mile.

I keep thinking of converting a ski jacket so I can pack 2 weeks clothing in the lining (they never check the size of coats!) and go on a fortnight's vacation hand luggage only...

Comment: Re:How does "drone time" look like on your logbook (Score 1) 298 298

A lot of this hit the fan about 10 years ago when a crash was partially blamed on the pilot working two jobs, being overtired and overstressed, and then crashing with a load of passengers. People were shocked at an airline pilot would have trouble feeding himself on just one job. I don't think much has changed since then.

There have been changes. Standards for pilots of the tiny airlines have been raised a bit, extra restrictions were put on their schedules, and loopholes that allowed reducing pilot pay have been closed.

But most importantly, the big airlines are now held responsible for those tiny regional/commuter airlines they're contracting with. The big guys no longer get to take your money and book you on a tiny turboprop (with their logo on the side) while washing their hands of the poor safety record of those "regional" airlines. Their own big pockets will be the target of any future lawsuits.

However, the practice has continued:

"A government study recently found 61% of all advertised flights for American, Delta, United and US Airways (now merging with American) were operated by regionals in 2011, up from 40% in 2000."

If you're smart, you avoid regional airlines. The accident rates are dramatically higher, and you're saving little, if any, money booking flights on them.

Comment: Benefits of no backgroiund music (Score 1) 389 389

You get more mileage from a cheap pair of speakers.

One of the most popular cafes in this town is successful in great part because of their lack of background music. It's not a fancy place at all, just a deli-style counter with fairly good sandwich and salad makings, lots of good pastries, and a variety of (non-alcoholic) drinkables. I've lost track of the number of times I've seen groups decide to go there explicitly because conversation is possible.

Of course, I can see other restaurant owners deciding to go with the music because it interferes with conversation, so people will just eat and then free up the table for the next customers. Groups that are talking tend to stay around too long for a truly "commercial" establishment. This may well be the main reasons that eateries pay for licenses to play music. They want you to eat and get out in as short at time as possible, not sit around and talk.

The local cafe mentioned above is frequented by the local political crowd, and by the leaders of many local organizations. My wife is involved in organizing an upcoming music & art & food festival, and most of the organization's meetings have been held in that cafe. The cafe's owners presumably like serving this local function (and they also cater events in your home if you prefer). Maybe there's only enough of that sort of business to support one such eatery locally, or there's nobody else that wants to get into that niche.

If it's not in the computer, it doesn't exist.