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Comment: Re:America is finished! OVER! (Score 1) 283

Leveling out of wages should be seen as an inevitable consequence of globalization. If you want to have huge inequalities of compensation again, the only way to achieve it is to make transportation much more expensive. We live in an age where jetting halfway around the world and owning cell phones is considered normal by low wage workers in even the most impoverished countries -- which is both a good thing and a bad thing. More of a bad thing, if you're used to being one of the privileged few. More of a good thing, if you're used to being poor and easily exploited.

Comment: Re:How did we manage before 'immigrants' came? (Score 1) 283

Child labor laws were different then, and a greater percentage of families lived on small family farms. Huge corporate farms make it possible to amortize the costs of millions of dollars worth of equipment over significant acreage, but they require huge amounts of seasonal labor to function. The only way to keep seasonal labor employed is to have them move with seasonal demand; migrant labor can just as easily come from another country as another state. Oh, yeah, and 500 years ago, we picked all our own maize ourselves, without any help from you damn undocumented immigrant whites!

Comment: Re:OT: Unskilled labor shouldn't be 100% free-mark (Score 1) 283

Seems more like a simple supply-and-demand problem to me. Exploitation is easy when you have a huge oversupply of unskilled labor. Cut way back on the labor supply, and wages would rise automatically, with no need to force companies by state fiat to pay employees more than they are worth in a free market. How do you "cut back on the labor supply"? Aye, therein lies the rub...

Comment: Harvesting? (Score 1) 283

Picking strawberries is extremely labor intensive, but it still seems like human beings would be better at picking out the good ones without damaging them than robots would. I've always thought swarms of small robots would be more useful for pest control: Seeking out and terminating with extreme prejudice any weeds, bugs, or rodents in the field. This could eliminate the use of herbicide and pesticide, hence no more need for "Roundup Resistant" and other GMO seeds. Grain losses to mice run into double-digit percentages in some states; seems like a mouse hunter-killer system could pay for itself.

Comment: Doesn' t the computer have a huge advantage? (Score 1) 89

The computer can count cards perfectly and brute force calculate the odds of each possible hand. The computer has no "tell"; but on the other hand, it probably can't read any human tells either. Over enough hands, the computer is always going to come out ahead, just by better calculation of probabilities. Artificial Intelligence isn't really required to give it an advantage, and other than being able to read the faces and tells of opponents, I'm not sure AI is even useful for poker. Of course, the software is probably also trying to use past bluffing history to predict when opponents are bluffing, giving this somewhat of the flavor of the Rock, Paper, Scissors programming competition (my quick and dirty algorithm sucked at that).

Comment: Proof of concept (Score 4, Insightful) 61

by Locke2005 (#49558267) Attached to: The World of 3D Portraiture
You're missing the most obvious use of this technology: you use it to make a full scale model of just one portion of your anatomy, not your complete body. You then give that model to your girlfriend to use when you're not there. Of course, guys being guys, most will be tempted to make a 150% scale model instead...

Comment: Re:This happens about... (Score 5, Insightful) 131

by Locke2005 (#49474911) Attached to: How Mission Creep Killed a Gaming Studio
Agreed. I've been writing software for 32 years, and "We've completely changed your requirements, but that shouldn't affect your schedule or your budget any!" happens all the time. The point is, you have to push back. Tell them exactly what every change is going to cost (padded heavily). Unless they agree to add time and money to the project, then just deliver the originally agreed to project. Don't let people make unilateral changes in the contract after it is signed, unless you actually like working on money-losing projects!

A committee is a life form with six or more legs and no brain. -- Lazarus Long, "Time Enough For Love"

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