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Comment: Re:When will he be arrested? (Score 1) 666

by Kergan (#45316841) Attached to: Atlanta Man Shatters Coast-to-Coast Driving Record, Averaging 98MPH

If speed limits were uniformly and strictly enforced (rather than an occasional tax on the driver), there would likely be enough outrage to repeal them.

In some EU countries, they're uniformly and strictly enforced by automated radars. Think France, for instance. Best I'm aware, there's little outrage -- except from a very vocal group of reckless drivers.

Speaking for myself, I find it interesting that new generations of automated radars are becoming smart enough to reliably detect when a truck or a bus is speeding when their speed limit differs from those of automobiles, or when drivers fail to respect safety distances.

Comment: *Cough* Ever heard of statelessness? (Score 1) 163

by Kergan (#44205345) Attached to: Ikea Foundation Introduces Better Refugee Shelter

Six months sounds good enough, to me. That's longer than I would want to live in a temporary shelter. Much longer and you're not so much providing humanitarian aid, as you are shipping-in prefabricated houses for many thousands of people. (...)

After 6 months, you should be building-up an economy... Paying some of those local refugees (a truly tiny amount of) money, to construct real homes for their fellow refugees, and hopefully even a few commercial structures.

You don't seem to realize that there are millions of stateless people out there in the world.

Consider the breakups of Czechoslovakia and Yugoslavia for but recent examples. Not one of us says one country; not born here says the other. Stateless. Dramatically so when they end up in refugee camps, as was the case the Balkans.

What it means in practice: no citizenship in their home country; no citizenship in the country they're refugees in; no passport; no State willing to give them a passport; no State rushing to give them asylum; no right to work, let alone to travel; essentially no rights at all, in fact; nothing; zip. Just the right to sit there and wait in a camp. Sometimes for years.

Anyway, yeah, you're right on paper. It would be a lot better if you could just give them some money to move on with life. In practice, you'll find that they're simply not welcome to settle anywhere -- not even home.

Comment: Re:Targeted ads are better than untargeted ads (Score 1) 177

by Kergan (#44201293) Attached to: Student Project Could Kill Digital Ad Targeting

Seriously, WTF people?

On top of that, all these extensions to block ads are going to end up backfiring in a huge way. When sites start to lose significant amounts of money, they're going to move to more and more annoying and integrated ads, until the ads become indistinguishable from the content itself. That's just making the web worse for everyone.

So block the annoying ads, let the non-annoying ones through, and don't destroy the internet.

Meh. Too late. AdBlock Plus is already receiving sponsorships/bribes to let "quality" ads through:

Comment: Re:Was this publicly funded research? (Score 1) 38

by Kergan (#44201169) Attached to: Biologists Program <em>E. Coli</em> To Patrol For Pathogens

- If so, why the fuck am I prompted to pay/log in to download the full text?

- And if so, why the fuck are these parasite website like Springer and ACS still allowed to paywall publicly funded research??

Because you only funded the research, and they're publishing the results?

Or perhaps because they need to pay for staff, keep the website alive, and send prints to the handful of universities. You know, logistics, distribution.

Oh, and they admittedly need to make boat loads of money, too. Publishing is still a great business to be into -- there probably wouldn't be any copyright laws without them.

Whichever it is, methinks it's less noteworthy than public research ending up as patent applications. (Especially when they're filed by drug companies, which rarely fund more than the last round of tests for things that public research has proven to work for all intents and purposes, the patent application, and the marketing.)

By the way, researchers with a sense of decency will post a late draft somewhere on their site. Just google its title:

Comment: Stack Overflow? Github? Open Source pet projects? (Score 1) 358

I *might* do a search of technical forums to see what kind of tech questions and answers my applicant is giving / asking.

Let's get real here... Would you actually hire someone who isn't maintaining some kind of presence on StackOverflow, Github, or some open source pet project(s)? (Fwiw, Google head-hunts engineers based on the latter.)


+ - Can You Do The Regular Expression Crossword? ->

Submitted by mikejuk
mikejuk (1801200) writes "Programmers often say that regular expressions are fun ... but now they can be a whole lot of fun in a completely new way. Want to try your hand at a regular expression crossword?
The idea is simple enough — create a crossword style puzzle with regular expressions are the "clues". In case you don't know what a regular expression is — it is a way of specifying what characters are allowed using wild-card characters and more. For example a dot matches any single character, an * any number of characters and so on.
The regular expression crossword is more a sort of Sudoku style puzzle than crossword however because the clues determine the pattern the the entries in a row have to satisfy. It also has to use a hexagonal grid to provide three regular expressions to control each entry.
This particular regular expression crossword was part of this year's MIT Mystery Hunt, and if you don't know anything about it then good — because it could waste a lot of time. This annual event is crammed with a collection of very difficult problems and the regular expression crossword, created by Dan Gulotta from an idea by Palmer Mebane, was just a small part of the whole — and yes there is a solution."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Count on Europe (Score 3, Insightful) 138

by Kergan (#42756847) Attached to: EU Citizens Warned Not To Use US Cloud Services Over Spying Fears

Methinks you can count on Europe to eventually get this right.

Twitter getting sued and losing to France's Jew student union over obnoxious hashtags is just the high profile round two of the same joust they had with Yahoo over nazi artifacts getting auctioned over a decade ago. They won last time; they'll win this time. And US companies will comply to French law on this matter just like last time. I suspect that the pitiful €1k/day fine is going to quickly balloon to obscene amounts of money until the courts get a reaction from Twitter.

In Germany, users are suing Facebook over the right to get deleted, and while they were the first, in typical German grassroots achievements, they no longer are the only ones. This is simply going to win, and they're just getting started. Sure enough, the Irish subsidiary is dragging its feet to comply. Presumably to Zuck's despair -- here's a continent with over 600M people willing not only in fighting for the right to be deleted but also in actually enforcing it. In the end, sane views will prevail, and the US laws will get kicked back across the Atlantic where they belong -- for US citizens to debate further, hopefully with new, more enlightened insights.

The same could arguably be told of countries like China, Egypt or Iran: ironically, US firms are made to comply with local law over there, plain and simple, much faster then they are to EU laws. But the EU is hopefully similar enough to the US that the latters' citizens will not shrug that the former are merely uneducated barbarians when their laws are sent back for review.

Somebody ought to cross ball point pens with coat hangers so that the pens will multiply instead of disappear.