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Comment Re:micro v. macro, flawed argument (Score 1) 453 tantamount to the belief that, inside every cell, there exists a mechanism that prevents mutations which would give rise to offspring if that offspring could not produce fertile progeny with not just its parents' generation, but its grandparents', great-grandparents', etc,....

That is not a belief, but a scientific, experimentally established FACT.

The paper you cite says nothing about speciation, it is about the likelihood of 2 or more mutations (each alone not giving an organism an advantage, but the set of them would) happening.

Besides, speciation has been observed in modern time. Here is one example -

Comment Re:Wow, evolution (Score 1) 453

Where does it get the additional genetic information to construct feathers? Incomplete, nonfunctional feathers or other structures are useless for survival and are therefore not passed on to succeeding generations.

Please continue running down the path of entropy and irreducible complexity.

Unless a feature confers a distinct advantage on an organism, it is invisible to the natural selection mechanism.

Off the top of my head: Insulation, mating displays, gliding.

(... by choosing which wolves to mate we've managed to created teacup poodles, bulldogs and Saint Bernards in a fairly short time - don't you think similar things happen in the wild?...)

The fact is that none of these things happen in the wild, because the selective breeding of dogs is accomplished by means of the application of human intelligence. In other words there is intelligent design to produce a desired result.

No. The mechanism for evolution in the wild and directed breeding is the same, the only difference is that the selection is done on different criteria.

There is no human effort to does not involve a measure of intelligence. Why is it that otherwise highly intelligent humans credit the existence of even the existence of a single living cell to processes NOT ALSO involving intelligence and thought?

Likewise, how is it that otherwise highly intelligent humans have this desire to turn their reasoning faculties off when it comes to the topic of how life came to be?

Science is not about what was thought to have taken place an unimaginably long time ago.

Might I assume that your position is that science taught in schools should only include "facts" (by your very narrow definition of facts that say that even the fossil record is not a fact but a "witness")? If that is not your position, please clarify.


Amateurs Are Trying Genetic Engineering At Home 245

the_kanzure points out this AP story on amateur genetic engineering, excerpting: "The Apple computer was invented in a garage. Same with the Google search engine. Now, tinkerers are working at home with the basic building blocks of life itself. Using homemade lab equipment and the wealth of scientific knowledge available online, these hobbyists are trying to create new life forms through genetic engineering a field long dominated by Ph.D.s toiling in university and corporate laboratories." Reader resistant has a few ideas about how to use this sort of lab: "Personally, I'd like to whip up a reasonably long-lasting and durable paint made with dye based on squid genes that glows brightly enough to allow 'guide lines' to be daubed along hallway baseboards, powered by a very low trickle of electricity. Plus, a harmless glowing yogurt would make for a cool prank."

Comment Re:Windows again (Score 4, Informative) 171

From what I can remember, it was also management issues at the top.

Not to mention that the Amiga was tightly bound to the custom chips they did in-house (Paula/Agnus, etc). Commodore didn't spend (or didn't have?) enough resources on R&D to keep up with the PC, and was also too slow in changing the platform so that it could use PC components instead.

Comment Re:How, indeed. (Score 3, Interesting) 331

But it is really Steve Jobs which, paradoxically, is holding Apple in the position of being the MOST closed company out there.

But is this unhealthy to the commercial result of Apple corp and the satisfaction of most Apple customers? Being closed also means that Apple has vertical control of everything from their online services to operating system to hardware, and Apple has generally been very good at using that control to deliver products that work very well if you stay inside Apple's garden.

I suspect most of us on /. (me included) would be pleased if Apple opened up more, but how much would Apple gain by doing that and risk alienating those that are perfectly happy in Apple's garden?

Comment Re:SMB (Score 1) 517

I cant get it going faster than 10-11MB/sec when copying to/from Windows XP.

It could be something as simple as the network card in the server autoconfiguring to 100Mbps, 11MBps sounds like a saturated 100Mbps link. Check with ethtool on the server and in the management interface on the switch. Bad performance like this can also be caused by mismatched duplex on the server network card and the switch it is connected to.

Comment Re:SMB (Score 1) 517

Wow. I didn't think it was even possible to buy a gigabit hub.

Half Duplex is part of the GigE spec as far as I know, but I've never seen a GigE hub. WJSmythe, could you share the manufacturer and model number on this oddity?

Comment Re:There's throughput and then there's latency (Score 2, Interesting) 231

I seem to recall that some Linux drivers try to handle this automatically (Intel gigabit chips?). They do interrupts when the traffic is below some threshold and switch to polling when things get busy. The main reason, as you say, is to avoid interrupt storms; polling becomes cheaper on CPU time than interrupts when there is a higher than x% chance of there being packets waiting. It is also more resilient to DoS or server overload - if f.ex. an Apache server receives more requests than it can handle, throttling the polling speed makes more CPU available for handling requests instead of wasting it in interrupts receiving packets that the web server is too overloaded to handle anyway.


World of Warcraft, the Restaurant Screenshot-sm 73

An Anonymous Coward writes "China's online gaming themed service industry appears to be booming, riding China's fascination with online gaming all the way to the top is a Chinese restaurateur with his World of Warcraft inspired eatery." I would recommend the Critter Bites and the Haunted Herring, but would warn against the Carrion Surprise.

Comment Re:Hypocrisy in action (Score 1) 409

I hate DRM too, I wish it would die. But that's orthogonal to my point: that IP has value, and the IP creator deserves to be compensated appropriately for that value, somehow. I obviously don't know how given the zero-replication-cost problem.

Is it really zero cost? While the cost is going down, and will go further down in the future with better/faster/larger/cheaper storage devices and transmission networks there is always going to be some cost in maintaining the distribution network, cataloging, indexing, making sure metadata is correct, making sure the content is malware free, updates/fixes. As such, people might find that an all-you-can-eat DRM-free subscription to a music label or software company might be preferable even if the same content is available for free on P2P.

Information goods also don't exist in a vacuum, communities form around many of them. Downloading an album from piratebay does not give the same experience as being a member of a fan club / community and interacting with the rock band. Downloading a software program from P2P is of less value than being part of a community around the author of the software. For information goods where you have a large and/or very faithful fanbase/community, it might be possible for the creator to extract sufficient income from them. (I think I once saw a paper showing that a book author or a band could get a fairly decent living out of a surprisingly small number of faithful fans)

There is also the fact that IP creators are in a rather privileged position compared to other workers. For example, the need for farmers dropped because the work they did were replaced by machines; the same thing has happened time and again, human labor replaced by machines. I don't really see how machines can replace the need for human creativity. Unless we create true AI, we will always need IP creators. We will always want music, books, better medicines, software.. If the market can't find solutions for how to compensate them, government will have to step in.

Comment Re:It's about time (Score 1) 409

From the complaint, it looks like it is only consumer-grade products that they got when they bought Linksys. Even if they included some IOS software in some of the products, the absolute worst case scenario for Cisco would be that they would have to dual-license those particular files as GPL. It would not force Cisco to GPL the entire IOS.

My guess is that Cisco has been dragging their feet because (1) it would be expensive to get into full compliance (they would have to dig up the build environment / source code repositories for old Linksys products, some of which they might not even have anymore) (2) by providing full source to the consumer-grade products, 3rd party firmware for those could be developed that would compete with Cisco's more expensive gear, and (3) they never expected the FSF to sue.

"I never let my schooling get in the way of my education." -- Mark Twain