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Comment: Re:This again? (Score 2) 458

by tlambert (#49598625) Attached to: New Test Supports NASA's Controversial EM Drive

It is very hard to believe that they are going to send a propulsion system into space without a clear understanding of how it works.

We send drivers on the road every day who don't have a clear idea how cars work.

Knowing how something works is nice, but not knowing how it works won't diminish its utility, so long as it *does*.

We use gravity daily to generate hydroelectric power. Ask a group of physicists how gravity works. We have the math for it, but we don't have the story of it. Either way, the lights come on when the water weight is converted from potential to kinetic energy, and we are still damned if we know the mechanism of conversion. If we did, we'd al be riding around on hoverboards.

Comment: Re:That's not a riot. (Score 1) 141

by tlambert (#49598555) Attached to: Can Riots Be Predicted By Social Media?

I think you're just latching on to insurrection because it has fewer negative connotations which is basically linguistic pathos. I find this type of meaningless rhetoric to be counter productive.

You are incorrect. The difference between a riot and an insurrection is that, for an insurrection, I'm perfectly happy bringing in the National Guard and shooting the assholes.

A rebellion can be either violent resistance or open resistance. For violent resistance: bring in the national guard. For merely open resistance: put them on national television, and hear what they have to say. Occupy Wall Street was an open resistance rebellion; Rosa Parks was open resistance rebellion; Mahatma Gandhi was open resistance rebellion. The Serbian events which ousted Slobodan Miloevi was open resistance rebellion. Birmingham, Alabama and Selma, Alabama during the U.S. Civil rights movement was open resistance rebellion.

If it's just a riot, you handle it with local policing.

A thing is what a thing is indifferent to whatever you call it. I can call something great a pile of shit or I can call a pile of shit something great... it is still going to be itself.

But involuntary manslaughter, manslaughter, third degree murder, second degree murder, and first degree murder are all murder, aren't they?

So it shouldn't matter what we call it: if we have the death penalty for first degree murder, we should have the same penalty for involuntary manslaughter, because "A thing is what a thing is indifferent to what you call it"... right?

Just because you can lump an event into a category does not make it the same as all of the other events you are able to lump into the same broad category.

If you find yourself putting everything into the same bucket, perhaps the problem isn't the thing, it's the fact that you have too few buckets.

Comment: The clarification... (Score 1) 224

by tlambert (#49595357) Attached to: Grooveshark Shuts Down

Anyone with some legal experience able to clarify this? Given that grooveshark wasn't...exactly...apologetic about their strategy(nor has it changed all that much), my assumption is that the sudden shift to grovelling-apology-mode has much more to do with losing than it does with any change of heart.

I'm pretty sure the apology has a hell of a lot more to do with the transfer of control of the domain name to the record label than it has to do with the actual opinions of Grooveshark, or really, anyone who was employed by them, since whatever statements are up currently are hosted on RIAA owned servers on a RIAA owned domain, and likely dictated to RIAA employed web masters by RIAA marketing executives.

I don't think anyone at Grooveshark would willingly admit legal liability so blatantly, unless they had discontinued their schizophrenia medication.

Comment: Re:Try again... 4? (Score 1) 224

by tlambert (#49595313) Attached to: Grooveshark Shuts Down

If you wrote some software and sold it to someone for $1000, you are cool with them making copies and giving it away?

If it took him less than 20 hours, he's making over $104,000 / year writing software, so he's probably OK with it.

The entire GNU philosophy / GNU Manifesto is based on the idea that software writers are craftsmen engaged in making works for hire. It's no different than making furniture.

I personally don't agree with that economic model, but I'm pretty sure by his statements that he's OK with it.

Comment: Re:That's not a riot. (Score 1) 141

by tlambert (#49595225) Attached to: Can Riots Be Predicted By Social Media?

No, an insurrection requires an intention to subvert the government and take over as the new rulling authority.

Incorrect; you are confusing an insurrection with a revolution:

insurrection: noun: a violent uprising against an authority or government.
rebellion: noun: an act of violent or open resistance to an established government or ruler.
revolution: noun: a forcible overthrow of a government or social order in favor of a new system.

An insurrection can lead to a revolution, as can a rebellion, but it's not a sufficient condition. Planned rioting with no political or social goals is insurrection. Unplanned rioting is not insurrection, it is merely rioting.

Given that these riots were planned via social media, they were insurrection; given that they were against authority, rather than an established government or ruler, they were NOT a rebellion.

Comment: Re:Mod parent up. (Score 1) 141

by tlambert (#49595167) Attached to: Can Riots Be Predicted By Social Media?

I think you are mistaking "stupid" for "desperate" or "hopeless" or "disillusioned".

You can be those things without rioting. They are not synonymous with "being an asshole", which is what rioting is all about. Wanton destruction of property achieves no reasonable political or social agenda, other than harming people already operating hand to mouth in cash flow businesses, and forcing them into poverty with you.

If you weren't "just being an asshole", you'd be rioting in areas where there would be a net political effect from the reaction in the desired direction. Directionless riots are closer in nature to the 9/11 attacks than they are the Boston Tea Party.

Comment: Next version, orbit [Re:What's the point ?] (Score 4, Informative) 76

by Geoffrey.landis (#49595027) Attached to: Jeff Bezos' Blue Origin Launches Its First Rocket

why Jeff Bezos is doing the same thing that SpaceX is already doing ?

They're not, New Shepard is a SUBorbital craft not an orbital one. I don't know if there are even any plans to make an orbital version...

"We continue to be big fans of the vertical takeoff, vertical landing architecture. We chose VTVL because it’s scalable to very large size. We’re already designing New Shepard’s sibling, her Very Big Brother – an orbital launch vehicle"

So: yes.

Comment: Re:You need to research that? (Score 1) 141

by tlambert (#49591273) Attached to: Can Riots Be Predicted By Social Media?

It's harder to riot when you have a job.

It's easier to have a job (at least, in a manufacturing sector) when you don't approve the Trans Pacific Partnership, or ask for the ability to fast track it. IT's also easier to have a job when your government imposes tariffs on nations like China, based on environmental and labor standards that are enforced locally, such that it makes no sense to offshore the manufacturing sector in the first place.

That said, I think that most inner city teens wouldn't have jobs, even if that discrepancy were corrected, since the value of the labor of an inner city teen is less than the current minimum wage. So you'd hire someone whose labor is equal to or more valuable than the minimum wage for those jobs instead, like an out of work adult.

If I have not seen as far as others, it is because giants were standing on my shoulders. -- Hal Abelson