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Comment Re:No. Human or machine, it's a fallacy (Score 1) 748

This is nothing more than a sophisticated from of "everybody else is doing it" argument that you get from small children. If the rules aren't working, the solution is to either enforce the rules better or to change the rules. Having everybody ignore the rules and not change them is the worst possible outcome. It creates a situation where things simply can't get better. Nobody can know the real effect of properly enforced rules so there's no data that can be used for improvement of the rules. What we need is better enforcement for human drivers. It's almost inexcusable that neither cars (nor trains) have automatic speed control systems that prevent exceeding the limit. Invariably somebody will point out the fantastical corner case where accelerating and swerving makes sense but those can be easily solved.

You sir, are part of the problem and not the solution. For one thing, it is perfectly reasonable and acceptable to exceed the speed limit in order to safely merge into traffic. If you end up directly next to a car and need to merge then you have two options. One is to speed up and one is to slow down. If you're already going the speed limit then the safest option is not to slow down. You can see in front of you and next to you much more clearly than behind you. So why would you stick to a strict interpretation of the speed limit in order to merge? It's more dangerous than speeding up a few miles per hour, pulling into the gap you can see, and then driving the speed limit. Your inflexibility on the road is unsafe for yourself and everyone around you.

In fact, your strict enforcement of the rules is very difficult in the state of California. The state has a 'basic speed law' for any road with a speed limit under 55MPH. If you are not exceeding 55MPH then you may drive any speed that is safe for the road conditions (certain exceptions apply). So an autonomous car that strictly follows the speed limit could very much be a problem in situations where the basic speed law applies. Roadways are very fluid and dynamic environments. You have to have some leeway. Sometimes you need to be a little more aggressive. Sometimes you need to be a little more cautious. So yes, these autonomous cars should be able to temporarily ignore certain rules in order to increase safety. Of course, these autonomous vehicles can see behind them much more clearly than a human so the same safety guidelines may not apply to them as apply to humans.

If you had read the bolded part and it's implications you would have discovered that your reply was unnecessary.

What he/she is saying is that by changing the rules to encompass situations you describe, an autonomous vehicle would never have to break any rules. Having an autonomous vehicle which bend or break the rules in certain situations is a sure recipe for accidents and getting sued into oblivion.

In other words, the traffic laws needs to be updated to take into consideration autonomous vehicles. As with all other emerging tech we have laws and regulations that are lagging behind and in some cases they are totally obsolete.

Comment Re:And you call the Americans anti-science (Score 1) 330

From the ruling of Judge Percy Schmeiser:

It does not matter how a farmer, a forester, or a gardener's seed or plants become contaminated with GMOs; whether through cross pollination, pollen blowing in the wind, by bees, direct seed movement or seed transportation, the growers no longer own their seeds or plants under patent law, they becomes Monsanto's property.

Comment Re:She's a little crazy (Score 3, Informative) 485

She says she doesn't trust Microsoft with her information, but Google? She approves of them faithfully

Why didn't you include the whole quote from the post:

My views of Microsoft and Google are pretty much diametrically opposed -- I have enormous faith in Google and Googlers doing the right thing with respect to protecting the data I share with them,

  • but even in the case of Google -- with whom I share a great deal of data -- I'm selective about what I do share.

But I guess all you really wanted to do, was to spin it so she looked foolish (just look what you used as a title for your post) -- which tells me you aren't here to have a constructive discussion and I cannot fathom why ANYONE would mod your post as insightful.

Comment Re:Does it matter if you are a sceptic or not? (Score 1) 703

So what is an acceptable probability (cost/benefit wise) for a loss of one life?
So what is an acceptable probability (cost/benefit wise) for a loss of 1 million lives?
So what is an acceptable probability (cost/benefit wise) for a loss of an animal species?
So what is an acceptable probability (cost/benefit wise) for a loss of an insect species?
So what is an acceptable probability (cost/benefit wise) for a minimum 10% loss of viability in biomes?

I can go on, but you get my point. Of course economics play a huge role in how to tackle it, but the economics of not tackle it doesn't look good at all.

End the end, the ones usually doing the cost/benefit analysis is also the ones holding the purse...

Comment Re:Does it matter if you are a sceptic or not? (Score 1) 703

Uhm, but there is no real consensus what the magnitude of the possible problem is. When lives are at stake you mostly plan for the worst case scenario, unless you are a cynic of course.

And I'm far more concerned that we choose wrongly and the whole climate becomes counter-productive which means we only will have one goal: survive.

Comment Does it matter if you are a sceptic or not? (Score 5, Insightful) 703

Not really, since if there is no man made climate change we at least need to clean up our environment anyway. If on the other hand the skeptics are wrong and they win the argument humanity is up shit creek and it's going to cost a ton of money and lives in the near future.

So, to be on the safe side isn't it better to deal with a possible man made climate change now regardless of it's true or not?

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