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Comment: Re:Chemical Weapons Suck (Score 1) 659

by Mgns (#44799709) Attached to: Should the U.S. bomb Syria?

How is it that the method of killing merits a greater response than the quantity of those killed? North Korea, for instance, kills tens of thousands of innocents per year and imprisions hundreds of thousands (most of whom die a slow and painful death of starvation and disease). I guess Kim is safe so long as he doesn't gas a few hundred?

Kim is safe as long as he has the means to level Seoul, for one. If we believed that Assad would completely destroy, let's say Rome, we'd leave him the fuck alone.

Comment: Re:The article is biased (Score 1) 585

by Mgns (#37007112) Attached to: Saving Gas Via Underpowered Death Traps

Yes, the summary is biased. As the article points out, it is in fact the large cars that are dangerous-- they are, however, dangerous to the smaller cars. Making cars smaller doesn't result in more deaths-- unless you have large cars on the road as well. It is the larger cars that are killing people. (and the bogus statistic comes from the "National Center for Policy Analysis"-- read: political action group paid to shill for oil companies.)

That may well be true, but which would you rather be driving in a collision, the large car or the small one?

That is a false dichotomy. The ideal preference would be small cars for everyone

Real Time Strategy (Games)

Blizzard Won't Stop World of StarCraft Mod 129

Posted by Soulskill
from the uncrossing-wires dept.
On Wednesday we discussed news of an impressive-looking mod for StarCraft II that transformed the game into a WoW lookalike, which quickly drew a copyright infringement warning from Activision Blizzard. The company has now released an official statement green-lighting the mod for continued development. "'It was never our intention to stop development on the mod or discourage the community from expressing their creativity through the StarCraft II editor,' Blizzard said in a statement. 'As always, we actively encourage development of custom maps and mods for StarCraft II, as we've done with our strategy games in the past.' Blizzard went on the say that it's looking forward to seeing development of the mod continue, and that it has invited Winzen to the company's campus to meet the game's development team."

Comment: Mr President (Score 4, Interesting) 463

by Mgns (#34885860) Attached to: Patriot Act Up For Renewal, Nobody Notices
Mr President When you swore to close Guantanamo, I wept. The pure vindication of my life long love for America seemed finally vindicated. You swore a return to sanity, to justice and peace. You swore an oath to your countrymen with such passion that they entrusted upon you the highest office. Your treachery is boundless.

Comment: Re:How can they tell its tidally locked? (Score 1) 575

by Mgns (#33745228) Attached to: Earth-Like Planet That Could Sustain Life Found

there is probably some sort of maximum initial spin rate, and even given that rate the planet might be guaranteed to be tidally locked at this point.

Glad you answered your own question. We have a good idea of what rotation rates are possible when planets form in a disk, probable rotation rates are basically a function of composition and mass (very small objects such as small moons, asteroids, and fragments are more complicated because their rotation rates are going to be affected by frequent impacts, but even then there's a limit to what gravity can hold together)

Basically, the planet in question--Gilese 581g, is very very very old. It orbits a red dwarf star whose lifetime is in the billions of decades--20-30 billion years likely (too lazy to check for an actual figure, but it's much longer than the 10 billion years for our sun). Based on the current age of the system it (and apparently every other planet in that system, from the bottom of the wiki page on tidal locking) should already be locked.

The estimated age of the universe is 13.75 ± 0.17 billion years. Where do you guys get off voting this drivel to +5 informative

Comment: Re:RTFA and it's comments (Score 1) 177

by Mgns (#32977502) Attached to: China Says Google Pledged To Obey Censorship Demands

I'd argue that they are still doing automatic redirect to the Hong Kong version. The search bar on is now a cute little element that links to

So even if you don't understand that the plainly marked link below will give you uncensored search, you're just herded to the hk version anyway.

Comment: Re:hmm (Score 1) 462

by Mgns (#32919154) Attached to: DRM vs. Unfinished Games
As a consumer, I can say that I am nervous that I will wind up paying more money for incremental delivery of content that should have shipped at release.

I'm worried that a n$ game I expect to keep me interested for maybe 20 hours will be delivered in bits and pieces


The Best Robots of 2009 51

Posted by samzenpus
from the best-of-show dept.
kkleiner writes "Singularity Hub has just unveiled its second annual roundup of the best robots of the year. In 2009 robots continued their advance towards world domination with several impressive breakouts in areas such as walking, automation, and agility, while still lacking in adaptability and reasoning ability. It will be several years until robots can gain the artificial intelligence that will truly make them remarkable, but in the meantime they are still pretty awesome."

The State of Ruby VMs — Ruby Renaissance 89

Posted by Soulskill
from the take-your-pick dept.
igrigorik writes "In the short span of just a couple of years, the Ruby VM space has evolved to more than just a handful of choices: MRI, JRuby, IronRuby, MacRuby, Rubinius, MagLev, REE and BlueRuby. Four of these VMs will hit 1.0 status in the upcoming year and will open up entirely new possibilities for the language — Mac apps via MacRuby, Ruby in the browser via Silverlight, object persistence via Smalltalk VM, and so forth. This article takes a detailed look at the past year, the progress of each project, and where the community is heading. It's an exciting time to be a Rubyist."

Computers will not be perfected until they can compute how much more than the estimate the job will cost.